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What is the Best Dental Floss?

May 28, 2014

We have often been asked, "What is the best dental floss to use when flossing?" Dr. Reese has two brands in mind but wholeheartedly agrees with the American Dental Association when they say, “It's not what type of floss you use, but how and when you use it. If you have a preferred type of floss, you may be more likely to use it.” The most important part when choosing dental floss is whether you actually use it or not.

What does it mean to floss?

Flossing is running a piece of floss (which resembles thread or string) between your teeth. It cleans away plaque that your toothbrush will miss, and is a very essential part of good oral health. In fact, if you only brush twice a day and do not floss, you're only really doing part of the job.

What is the Best Dental Floss? Choosing a Dental Floss to Use

Just like how our teeth and the spaces between it are different, so are the types of dental floss that are best to use with it. Dr. Reese says that the key to choosing what is the best dental floss for you and your family is to find one that doesn’t stick to your teeth.

  • Are there large gaps between your teeth? Use dental tape or super floss.
  • There aren’t much spaces between your teeth? Waxed floss is easier to slide into those tight spaces.
  • Do you want to use floss that is less messy? Look for disposable floss or floss in pre-measured strands.
  • Are you wearing braces or bridges? Spongy floss is a good option, but any floss can be used if you wear dental appliances, especially if you have a floss threader.

When shopping for dental floss, always check for the ADA label. It proves the product has been tested and packaging claims are true to the intended use of the dental product. Dr. Reese usually recommends Glide floss by Oral B or Reach floss by Johnson & Johnson.

How To Floss Properly

Referring to an illustration from the ADA:

  • Starting with about 18 inches of floss, wind most of the floss around each middle finger, leaving an inch or two of floss to work with
  • Holding the floss tautly between your thumbs and index fingers, slide it gently up-and-down between your teeth
  • Gently curve the floss around the base of each tooth, making sure you go beneath the gum line. Never snap or force the floss, as this may cut or bruise delicate gum tissue
  • Use clean sections of floss as you move from tooth to tooth.
  • To remove the floss, use the same back-and-forth motion to bring the floss up and away from the teeth.

The Bottom Line

Proper and regular brushing of one’s teeth as well as flossing is part of your preventive dental care. However, you should still visit your dentist twice a year to have your teeth cleaned as there are teeth that are more prone to cavities even if you brush your teeth regularly and watch what you eat.

Indianapolis Dentistry is located just north of Greenwood, Indiana, 5 minutes south of I-465 on US 31 between I-65 and Highway 37. To make an appointment or to call for directions, please call 317-882-0228.