HEY YOU! Are you flossing correctly??

Everyone knows you should floss once a day, but not everyone knows how to floss properly. Here are some step by step instructions and tips for using dental floss and a water pik.
Dental Floss
  1. Wrap the dental floss around the middle fingers of each hand and hold the dental floss tightly between the thumbs and forefingers. This gives you more control and helps you to gently insert it between the teeth.
  2. Curve the dental floss against the side of the tooth in a ‘C’ shape.
  3. Rub the floss gently up and down, keeping it pressed against the tooth and drawing the floss slightly under the gums. Don’t jerk or snap the floss.
  4. As you move from tooth to tooth, unwind the clean floss with one finger and take up the used floss with the opposite finger. This eliminates spreading bacteria.
  5. Don’t forget to floss the back side of your last tooth.
Water Pick
  1. Fill the reservoir with warm water. Warm water is generally more comfortable especially with sensitive teeth.
  2. You can add a small amount of mouthwash for flavor. Diluted mouthwash, if not prescription strength, loses its effectiveness when diluted. With some units, flavoring agents can shorten the life of the unit, so read your instructions first. If using a flavoring agent, flush the unit with plain water when finished.
  3. Select your preferred tip and click into the Handle. If this is your first time using a water pick, choose the pressure setting that is most comfortable and gradually work your way up.
  4. Keep your thumb on the pause button so you can avoid splashing if things get messy.
  5. Lean over the sink and place tip in your mouth. To avoid splashing, clean while slightly closing your lips and letting the water run out of your mouth into the sink, or while keeping you mouth completely closed and pausing to spit out the water when needed.
  6. Place the tip at a 90 degree angle between the teeth. Pause for a few seconds between teeth before sweeping along the gumline to the next area. Many people like to start on their back teeth and work their way around each arch, top and bottom.
  7. Make sure you use the water pick to clean from both the cheek and the tongue side of each arch.
Whatever flossing method you use, we recommend flossing first and then brushing.
-Michelle, RDH