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Tips for Effective Flossing

Flossing is part of a healthy oral hygiene routine and, if done on a regular basis, can help prevent a host of dental health problems like plaque buildup, cavities, gum disease, bone loss and bad breath.

Unfortunately, most of us don’t floss enough. Why is that? Part of the reason could be the fact that we’ve never been taught the proper way to floss, therefore we see flossing as a more daunting task than it truly is.

The following tips won’t change the world, but at least if you know the proper technique, perhaps you’ll make flossing a lifelong habit that could save your teeth.

 

So here we go!

  • Dentists recommended that you use about 18 inches of floss. That’s approximately the distance from the end of your bent elbow to the tip of your fingers for most people. So that should help you get the recommended length of floss without having to look for a ruler.
  • After you’ve measured out your floss, wrap most around the middle finger of one hand, the rest around your other middle finger. Grasp the string tightly between your thumb and forefinger. Use a rubbing motion to guide it between teeth. It may take a bit of time to get the hang of, so don’t get frustrated if you don’t master it the first or second time or even a third time. Just don’t give up! Practice makes perfect! And your teeth will thank you.
  • When the floss reaches the gum line, form a “C” to follow the shape of the tooth.
  • Hold the strand firmly against the tooth and move it gently up and down.
  • Repeat with the adjacent tooth, then with the rest of your teeth. Use fresh sections of floss as you go. It’s really an easy process once you make it a habit. 

Here’s a short animated video from our friends at Colgate showing us the proper way to floss:

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Most people are a little apprehensive about a visit to the dentist, while others are just downright frightened. People who don’t see a dentist regularly admit that fear is the overriding issue. The fear can be so severe that some individuals will put up with gum infections, pain, or even broken and unsightly teeth, rather than make a dental appointment. 5 Ways to Help Alleviate Fear • Identify your causes of anxiety and phobia. Pain is the major concern. Other concerns include loss of control, feeling of helplessness, embarrassment over condition of teeth and gums, and negative past experiences. • Communicate fears prior to appointment. Before you set an appointment, be vocal about your apprehensions, fears and anxiety. This gives the dentist a way to gauge the situation and create an action plan suited for your needs. In most cases, dentists will devise cues and signals. • Use distractions. This helps divert attention during treatment. Try listening to music, fiddling with a stress ball or counting to yourself. Prior to appointment, watch a funny video or a feel-good clip to help you relax. • Are sedatives helpful? Sedation can help reduce anxiety and keep a patient calm and relaxed during treatment. Sedatives include nitrous oxide, and oral or IV sedation. Discuss with your dentist which one might work best for you. • Practice relaxation techniques. Relaxation exercises can help someone stay calm during treatment. The tactics include breathing, which involves taking a deep breath and letting it out very slowly. This will help relax the muscles and slow down heart rate.
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Win prizes at the dentist’s office this summer.
Western Dental and Brident Dental are giving you more reasons to visit the dentist this summer.   Starting now and lasting through the summer, Western Dental and Brident are running the “Embrace your Summer" and #GrinIt2WinIt selfie promotion in all of its 244 offices throughout California, Texas, Arizona and Nevada. To participate, patients can post a selfie to receive a Pop Socket and a chance to win an Amazon gift card.    Every office has created a selfie station for the purposes of staging a selfie, but the photos can be taken anywhere as long as they are tagged with #GrinIt2WinIt and posted to a social media site like Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. Patients who post while in the office receive an instant gift of a Pop Socket (a stylish accessory that adds versatility to cell phones or tablets), while supplies last. After a selfie is posted with #GrinIt2WinIt, patients can win a $10 Amazon gift card.   Of course, patients can also enjoy big values in dental treatments at every Western Dental and Brident office. Throughout the summer, patients can take advantage of attractive financing with approved credit on braces ($99/month) and dental implants ($125/month), and new patients receive free exams and x-rays and free ortho consultations. PerioProtect, a new, at-home gum treatment that painlessly kills bacteria deep below the gum line while freshening breath and whitening teeth is another treatment option for patients seeking to improve their overall dental health.   There is a lot going on at Western Dental/Brident this summer. Be sure to make an appointment and join in the fun. You’ll receive more than just a healthy smile!   Head over to our Instagram  to see some #GrinIt2WinIt inspo in action and start sharing your own selfies!