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Proper Use of Dental Floss

Dental floss is an essential tool in maintaining good oral hygiene. It is a thin, flexible thread that is used to remove food particles and plaque from between teeth and along the gumline. Despite its importance, many people do not use dental floss correctly. In this article, we will discuss the proper use of dental floss and its benefits for oral health.
Dental Floss

Why is Dental Floss Important?

Dental floss is important because it can reach places that a toothbrush cannot. When you brush your teeth, you only clean the surfaces that are visible. However, there are many areas in your mouth that are hidden from view, such as the spaces between teeth and under the gumline. These areas are prone to plaque buildup, which can lead to cavities and gum disease if left untreated.

The Proper Technique for Using Dental Floss

Follow these steps for proper use of dental floss:

  • Begin with about 18 inches of floss.
  • Wrap the floss around your middle fingers, leaving about 1-2 inches of floss between them.
  • Hold the floss tightly between your thumbs and index fingers.
  • Gently insert the floss between your teeth using a back-and-forth motion.
  • Curve the floss around each tooth in a C-shape and gently slide it under the gumline.
  • Use a clean section of floss for each tooth.

The Benefits of Using Dental Floss

Using dental floss regularly can have many benefits for oral health, including:

  • Removing food particles and plaque from between teeth and along the gumline.
  • Preventing cavities and gum disease.
  • Reducing bad breath.
  • Improving overall oral hygiene.

Advantages and disadvantages

The advantage of using dental floss is that it is able to clean between the teeth and minimizes the risk of cavities and gum disease. Meanwhile, the disadvantages of using dental floss are that it is less comfortable to use and takes longer.


1. Is dental floss safe to use every day?
Yes, dental floss is safe to use every day to clean between the teeth and prevent tooth and gum disease.

2. Can dental floss cause damage to teeth or gums?
No, using the correct dental floss can actually help prevent damage to the teeth and gums.

3. Can dental floss be used on children?
Yes, dental floss can be used on children who already have permanent teeth. However, make sure to use floss that is suitable for the size of the child's mouth.

4. How often should you use dental floss?
It is recommended to use dental floss every day after brushing your teeth.

Dental floss is an important tool for maintaining good oral hygiene. By using it regularly and correctly, you can prevent cavities, gum disease, and bad breath. Remember to use a clean section of floss for each tooth and to curve the floss around each tooth in a C-shape. If you have any questions or concerns about using dental floss, consult with your dentist or dental hygienist.