Dental Floss as the name implies is a floss used to clean teeth. Tooth brushing can only clean three of the five surfaces or faces of the tooth and fails to clean the parts between the teeth, which are in contact with the adjacent tooth, it is necessary to use different accessories such as floss for clean the sides of each tooth that when laying the floss should be cleaned each side of each tooth in the same place where the floss enters.

Why Should I Floss? Several reasons are: clean both sides of the tooth that the toothbrush cannot clean, remove the plaque between the teeth, to remove food scraps, remove the odor of this area, (after using floss you can smell the bad odor), to avoid the accumulation of tartar and periodontal disease, and another point that still does not have consensus due to the lack of studies on whether or not it prevents cavities.

When should I floss? It is enough once a day, and this should be done at night before bedtime. Before or after brushing? At this point, there is no consensus and no studies can verify this. One approach says before brushing because flossing is less pleasant and it is better to do it before brushing, and a different approach says that after brushing with fluoride toothpaste there is a possibility that fluoride will penetrate between teeth, however, there are no studies that prove what is right. In my opinion, and to my understanding the floss complements oral hygiene and brushing is the main action, so flossing should be done at the end. My reasoning says how a perfume is used after a bath and shower and not prior. So, must with the flossing after brushing

What kind of floss should be used? There are three kinds of floss 1) Waxed floss 2) Unwaxed floss 3) Brush floss

Waxed floss: may be with fluorine, or mint etc.


1) Wax gives  a smoother surface and helps prevent gum injury

2) allows better penetration in very narrow places

3) almost does not fray and if it breaks a single floss remains without leaving fibers stuck between the teeth


1) Wax residue can remain between the teeth and irritate the gums

2) Thicker

3) Does not extend to clean teeth well

4) because it is very soft cannot remove most plaque

Unwaxed floss:


1) A thinner yarn that comes in several thicknesses

2) If a lot of pressure is applied to it it cuts and prevents injuries to the gums

3) when it rests on the surface of the tooth it extends and gives a wider cleaning zone

4) When you pass through a clean surface you hear a typical sound of a whistle

5) If it always breaks in the same area, it indicates a problem requiring examination by the dentist because it may indicate that treatment is necessary.


1) When passing between the teeth can be cut leaving nylon frayed fibers that will disturb until they are removed.

2) Injury of the gums in a careless and incorrect introduction between the teeth

3) Strong stretching and horizontal rather than vertical movements can cause irreversible injury on the neck of the tooth as a kind of channel / fissure that will cause excessive sensitivity.


Floss with brush there are 2 types:

A type with two parts: called fluffy floss one part is a regular floss intended for cleaning between the teeth and the second part in which is an elongated brush along the floss that is thicker than it is used when there is retraction of gums and large interdental space Very suitable for adults (PARO company)


1) Excellent cleaning when the teeth are larger and there is gingival retraction

2) Very soft yarn that prevents gum injury

3) Does not cause tooth neck erosion

4) It eliminates very well the bacteria and bad odor

5) Quickly remove food scraps

Disadvantages: None

The second type of floss with brush is composed of three parts: called super floss .The first part is quite hard and thin and is intended to insert it in the area of ​​the bridge, not for cleaning, the second part has the brush in order to clean under the bridge area between the teeth, and the third part is a regular yarn for cleaning the teeth on the bridge (ORAL B)


1) There is no need for a yarn enhancer to clean under the bridge

2) Adequate when there are large dental spaces due to gingival retraction

3) Suitable for cleaning when there are brackets on the teeth during orthodontics of the teeth

Disadvantages: None

Many people do not floss because they are lazy, or do not know how to do it, or just think it is not important. After doing it once and smelling the floss, you will be convinced how important this action is.

General Rules for Flossing

1) It is sufficient once a day and should be at night after correct brushing

2) Having patience takes time acquiring skill and has a learning curve like anything new

3) Without pressure, there is no hurry which will prevent injury to the gums

4) Lean on the teeth and not the gums

5) Must be introduced when we lean on one side of the teeth to avoid damaging the gums

6) Do not intrude straight up to avoid gum damage

7) The floss is designed for use when the teeth are very close and not when there is a significant retraction of the gums, it will be more appropriate to use small interdental brushes or oral irrigators

8) Do not floss on children

9) It is possible to begin at the age of puberty 12-13 years after the eruption of all permanent teeth

How to Floss Your Teeth

First, cut the yarn about 40 cm long enough to be able to wrap it up and stretch it. It is rolled up between the index fingers and the thumbs will help to stretch it. Be careful, since after stretching it can act like a knife to the gums. Leave about 5 cm  between the fingers to stretch with the thumbs and insert them between the teeth using the fingers as a guide and taking your hands forwards or backwards and then lean on the side of the tooth and with a soft sawing action pass the intersection between the teeth will sometimes hear the sound of the whistle when you put it and especially feels when removing it from the place When you feel a lack of resistance when crossing the point of contact between the teeth with up and down moves on the side from a tooth to gums and then take the side of the adjacent tooth in the same way until it is removed from the place and you hear the sound of the whistle. It is important not to insert directly without leaning on the teeth to avoid damaging the gums, do not perform horizontal movement from the inside to outside that damages the dental neck as explained at the beginning and is seen in the image. Then the floss is rewound between the fingers to clean each time with clean floss each tooth and continue this way until you finish cleaning your whole mouth.

For people who have difficulty wrapping the yarn or are not well skill with their hands, you can buy dental floss holder in Y form like a sling or even are floss set with plastic toothpick. The advantage is that you do not have to work with your fingers, but there is also a disadvantage that you cannot adjust to the curvature shape of the teeth and it is more likely to do gums injuries. In any case, each one needs to find what is more appropriate or comfortable for oneself. Is recommended use intredental brushes or oral irrigators for clean between teeth you don’t need any skills for it and they are more efective than floss

Recommendation what kind of floss to use

Waxed floss for beginners until you get enough skill and teens who are also starting to use it is a waxed yarn that is smoother and will prevent gum injuries

The unwaxed floss is recommended for everyone, as long as there is no gingival retraction and the teeth are quite close together

Floss with brush 2 parts FLUFFY FLOSS of the company PARO for cases when there is retraction and larger spaces between the teeth

Floss with brush 3 parts SUPER FLOSS of ORAL B Suitable for cleaning under bridges, orthodontics and retraction of the gums

Each one must find what is good for him or what suits him.

Do not use in children under 12 years of age. There is no medical justification for this, and can cause injury or damage.