Many people don't enjoy flossing, but it becomes even more difficult to become a habitual flosser if you also experience serious discomfort while flossing. If you want to floss regularly but can't get past the pain you're experiencing, check out this guide to learn what you can do to diminish your discomfort.
The first step you should employ to make your flossing easier is to remember to be gentle. Like brushing your teeth, it isn't necessary for you to be forceful while flossing, and doing so can actually do more harm than good.
If the sensation of your gums being hit by the string of floss feels painful, consider gradually see-sawing the floss down between your teeth instead of just tugging it straight downwards. This will allow you to slowly make your way to the gumline while still effectively cleaning out the space between your teeth.
Another good option is to use pain relievers prior to flossing your teeth. There are a couple of ways you can do this: taking pain killing pills beforehand, or by using topical numbing products.
Pain killers can be an effective choice because they typically help to reduce the swelling and inflammation your gums may be experiencing. However, the one downside is that you generally need to take them long before you floss for max efficacy.
Numbing products, on the other hand, are applied directly to your gums and work immediately. While they generally don't help to reduce inflammation, if pain is your main concern, a numbing product may be your best bet.
If you find that flossing is just too painful, consider using a water flosser instead. Multiple studies have found that water flossers are equal or even superior to traditional floss in removing plaque, and they're also praised for their ability to reverse gum disease. Water flossers generally are less painful to use if you have gum disease, so this might be a good option for you.
Lastly, make sure that you visit a dentist for a thorough cleaning of your teeth and gums. If you experience enough pain that you can't floss easily, chances are you've developed gum disease. The good news is that if you visit your dentist right away, you can probably reverse the gum disease with little to no bone loss or tooth damage. Even if you're anxious about seeing your dentist, it's better to get it over with and start improving your oral health than to put it off and wait for things to get worse. Talk to a local professional at a place like Glacier Centre For Dentistry.