Flossing helps prevent accumulation of tartar, and also gum disease, cavities and bad breath. In addition to regular exams and cleanings, North York, Ontario family dentist Dr. Eli Shem-Tov recommends daily practice of this simple at-home hygiene discipline for children and adults of all ages.
Dentists across North America agree that preventive dental care is more than oral examinations, x-rays and hygienic cleanings. Dr. Eli Shem-Tov, family dentist of North York Dental teaches patients that while in-office care is indispensable, brushing and often neglected flossing are key to a dazzling, long-lasting smile.
Get a check-up with your dentist in North York, Ontario twice a year
The Canadian Dental Association maintains that twice yearly check-ups and cleanings promote excellent oral health and catch any developing problems at their earliest stage. During an oral exam, Dr. Shem-Tov:
inspects teeth for signs of decay and gums for periodontal disease
performs periodontal probing to assess the depth of gum pockets
looks at restorations such as fillings, crowns, fixed bridgework for signs of breakdown
sees how teeth bite together
does a fast and painless oral cancer assessment
The hygienist scales plaque and tartar from tooth surfaces and at the gum line to prevent decay and gum disease. She also polishes the teeth for a shiney clean. Check-ups and cleanings provide the dental care provider and patient opportunity to discuss concerns, treatment goals and the best way to take care of teeth and gums at home.
Carryover hygiene to the home
Besides twice daily brushing, your best dentist in Toronto, Ontario wants all his patients, both children and adults, to floss their teeth daily. Whether using waxed or plain floss, thin or thick, the important thing is consistency. Flossing every day removes bacteria-laden plaque and food residue from between the teeth, reducing the chances of tooth decay and gum disease (periodontitis).
Gum disease loosens teeth and leads to puffy, red infected gums. In its worst stages, gum disease causes tooth loss, and gum and bone recession. Overall health worsens, too, as research indicates that periodontitis plays a role in heart disease, stroke, dementia, pregnancy complications and a host of other serious health issues.
So, here’s how to floss:
1. Unwind an 18” length of floss from the dispenser. Wrapping one end around the middle or index finger of each hand, pull the floss taut between your thumbs.
2. Starting on the top arch, gently move the floss back and forth between each tooth. The key word here is “gently,” because you don’t want to cut or abrade tender gum tissue with the floss.
3. Work your way between all teeth, top and bottom. Pay extra attention to the very back molars on each arch. Move the floss with up and down strokes to thoroughly clean the interdental spaces.
4. Rinse your mouth well with water.
Research indicates that some people floss before they brush their teeth, and others floss after brushing. The timing doesn’t seem to matter as long as you floss carefully each day.
Your North York, Ontario family dentist is a wealth of information
Dr. Eli-Shem-Tov and his staff welcome your questions about dental hygiene or any other dental topic–from general and restorative dentistry to implant restorations and root canal therapy. They encourage patient input and questions. Would you like to set up a consultation? Contact the North York, Ontario office today for an appointment.