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What Types of Floss are Better for Tender Gums?

Most adults experience bleeding and sensitivity occasionally when flossing teeth. But did you know that some types of floss can be abrasive?

When it comes to tender gums, choosing the right dental floss can decrease pain and lead to a healthier, happier mouth.

Why Floss?

Oftentimes people balk at the idea of not brushing their teeth, yet they floss infrequently. Brushing is obviously necessary and is the single most effective way to clean your teeth, but even the best toothbrush can’t get all the way into the tiny cracks between your teeth. Flossing between your teeth daily helps remove plaque and reduces the risk of cavities, tooth decay and gum disease.

It’s a common saying among dental providers that floss is cheap and dentists are expensive. Flossing your teeth regularly can prevent costly dental work down the road. Take a look at this step-by-step guide for correct flossing from the American Dental Association.

Different Types of Floss

  • When it comes to the many flosses available, it’s important to remember that the best floss is one that you use every day. That being said, there are several varieties of floss and it can feel overwhelming trying to pick one. Here’s a look at some of the common types of floss and the benefits of each:Waxed floss — Typically made of nylon, this type of floss has a waxy coating that makes it harder to break but it has a harder time cleaning the tightest spots.
  • Unwaxed floss — Also made of nylon, this floss has several skinny strands wound together. This makes it better for cleaning tight places but breaking and shedding is common.
  • Dental tape — Available in both waxed and unwaxed versions, dental tape is wide and flat and fits well in mouths with more space between the teeth. This type of floss tends to be more comfortable and less abrasive than nylon floss.

Floss and Tender Gums

It’s normal to experience tenderness and bleeding when you first begin flossing, or floss for the first time in a while. This pain should ease within a few days of continued flossing.

Sometimes, no matter how much you floss your teeth, your gums are still tender and bleed. If your gums are extremely sensitive, a tape floss should help. Due to its wide and flat construction, dental tape is less aggravating than other flosses. A waxed tape is the best bet, but any product that is labeled “tape” instead of “floss” will help.

If dental tape is uncomfortable, buy a few different kinds of floss and try them out to see which kind feels the best in your mouth. If you still have trouble finding a floss that is comfortable, ask your dental care provider for recommendations. They probably even have some samples you can try.

Oral & Facial Surgery of Utah is Here

Here at Oral & Facial Surgery of Utah, we know that you have many options when choosing an oral healthcare provider. And just like choosing from the various types of floss for your mouth, we hope you’ll look for an oral surgeon that meets your specific needs and makes you feel comfortable. Our team works hard to provide quality care to each and every one of our patients. We have offices in Cottonwood Heights, South Jordan, and Tooele, Utah. Call us today for your free consultation!


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