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Make Flossing Your New Year’s Resolution

January 20, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — healthybarton @ 3:17 pm
Woman smiling and flossing her teeth while wearing a white shirt

What kind of New Year’s resolutions have you made for 2023? Many people set goals based around improving their health, such as losing weight or exercising more often. However, if you specifically want to take better care of your smile, you might consider resolving to floss every day. Here’s why flossing is an important part of any oral hygiene routine as well as a few tricks for turning it into a habit over the coming year.

The Importance of Flossing

Many people aren’t as diligent about flossing as they are about brushing. More than half of Americans report not flossing regularly, and as many as 20% don’t floss at all. This is a major problem because flossing is essential for protecting your smile.

The carbohydrates and sugars in the foods you eat can get stuck between your teeth. Harmful oral bacteria can feed on these food particles and turn them into an acid that gradually breaks down your enamel, leading to cavities. Since a toothbrush can’t clean between your teeth very effectively, flossing is the best way to remove bacteria and food debris from these hard-to-reach spaces.

Tips for Remembering to Floss

Research shows that it takes around two months for a new behavior to turn into an automatic habit. Until you reach this point, you’ll need to make an effort to remind yourself to floss every day. Here are a few tips that can make the process easier:

  • Choose a flossing method that works for you. Some people don’t floss because they find it too difficult. If you find that you have a hard time cleaning between certain teeth with traditional string floss, you might consider using a floss pick or a water flosser instead.
  • Place a sticky note on your bathroom mirror that says, “Remember to floss” or something similar. That way, you’ll be less likely to forget to make flossing part of your oral hygiene routine even when you’re tired.
  • Put your floss where you’re sure to see it. One idea is to place it on top of your toothpaste. This way, when you go to brush your teeth like you normally do, you’re guaranteed to pick up your floss first.
  • Keep some floss at your desk at work or in your purse. That way, even if you forget to floss at home, you’ll be able to clean between your teeth no matter where you are.
  • Finally, remember that there’s no shame in asking others for help. Have your family members give you a gentle reminder to floss every day.

Making a small change to your oral hygiene routine can make all the difference for your smile. This year, take whatever steps are needed to make flossing a regular part of your day.

About the Author

Dr. Steven Rodriguez is the lead dentist at Healthy Smiles Dental Care of Barton City. He has over three full decades of dental experience, and he still pursues continuing education so that he can expand his clinical skillset even further. During regular checkups and cleanings, he’s always happy to give his patients advice for improving their oral hygiene routines. To schedule your first dental visit of 2023 with Dr. Rodriguez, visit his website or call (989) 736-7000.

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