How to get your patients to floss their teeth. Most patients will either find an excuse not to floss their teeth, or find it to be a very inconvenient process. Most dentists would like to think this is a part of everyone’s morning and nightly routines, but so often this is something that gets pushed aside. Most dentists would say there are convenient ways to floss that will address any excuse your patients might have. Some patients will only floss right before their dentist appointment and think that is sufficient enough to prove to their dentist that they do floss… Wrong!
A recent survey found that only 49% of Americans floss daily, and 10% never floss. This statistic is very disappointing to most dentists, since they believe that flossing is more important that brushing. Flossing is the number one way to help prevent periodontal disease and tooth loss. The number one excuse why your patients do not floss is because they think that the only time you need to floss is if you feel like there is food stuck in between your teeth, this is not true. The main reason you floss is to remove plaque, which is what causes tooth decay, inflamed gums, periodontal disease, and eventually will result in tooth loss.
A lot of patients will claim that they just simply do not know how to floss. Make it part of your patients dental exam to show them how to appropriately floss their teeth. Just getting the floss in between the teeth is not the key, you must follow the contours of the teeth and form a C shape once the floss reaches the gum. Do not ignore your back molars, this is where most decay occurs. Flossing your teeth daily will not only give you a beautiful smile, but will also help prevent much more serious diseases, some of which can be life threatening.