May 21, 2024 - minute readminutes read

How to Floss Your Way to Better Health

Flossing is an important part of oral hygiene, as it helps to remove plaque. 


While a toothbrush is great to remove plaque and food particles from most surfaces, it is too big to reach between your teeth where leftover food and plaque tend to accumulate. This is why using floss or another interdental tool is so important. Daily flossing before or after toothbrushing is a great way to ensure you cover and remove plaque from all surfaces working to prevent tooth decay.

Plaque is a sticky biofilm made up of bacteria that forms on the tooth surface, including between the teeth. If not removed properly, it can compromise the health of your gums and teeth, causing gum disease, bad breath, yellow teeth, gum bleeding & recession and potentially lead to overall health issues.

Want to perfect your flossing technique and care for your oral and general health? Watch our video below and follow our tips for a healthy mouth, smile and body! The basics of dental care can benefit everyone but remember, we are all different. This is why you should visit your dental professional twice a year for personalized care and a professional clean. 

How Effective Is Flossing?

Flossing plays a critical role in maintaining oral health. It effectively removes plaque and food particles trapped between teeth, areas that are hard to reach with a toothbrush. Regular flossing not only helps prevent tooth decay and gum disease but also contributes to fresher breath and a healthier mouth.

Removing plaque through flossing reduces the risk of tartar build-up, which can lead to more serious gum problems if left untreated. Additionally, flossing helps in preventing gingivitis, the early stage of gum disease, and can play a role in reducing the risk of heart disease and other health issues linked to oral bacteria.

Flossing can be tricky, watch our video to learn how to floss like a "pro"

A FEW THINGS you may be wondering about: 

The American Dental Association recommends flossing at least once a day to effectively remove plaque from between the teeth and under the gum line, where a toothbrush can't reach. Flossing before bedtime can be particularly beneficial as it ensures that food particles and plaque are not left to accumulate overnight. It's important to floss regularly, as plaque can harden into tartar within 24-36 hours.

Everyone is different, and the type of floss can make a difference in how well it works. Are your teeth very tight? Do you have sensitive gums? Or maybe you just got braces? If you’re looking for a solution that considers your specific needs, head to our page to learn how to choose the best interdental for you.

We all get food debris and plaque stuck between our teeth so we all can benefit from flossing. Ideally, you should floss once a day before or after brushing your teeth. For people with limited dexterity, flossing may be a challenge. Many people find it easier to clean between their teeth with interdental picks or brushes, or with flossers.

Plaque is soft so it can be removed mechanically using different tools such as floss. Flossing is particularly suited to people with tight interdental spaces and good dexterity. Remember that plaque tends to build up below the gum line as well as between teeth so always make sure you floss both areas daily.

An unpleasant smell and/or taste when you floss may be due to food stuck between your teeth. Flossing more regularly and effectively should help with this. However, persistent bad smell and/or taste may be the sign of another issue, in which case you should contact your dental professional. 

If you find flossing too difficult or time-consuming, or if it just isn’t for you, there are other options. Consider using GUM® PROFESSIONAL CLEAN FLOSSERS or GUM® SOFT-PICKS® ADVANCED to remove plaque effectively in a different way.