National Flossing Day takes place the day after Thanksgiving. On the day after devouring turkey, stuffing, potatoes, and many pies and treats, it’s meant to shift focus to the importance of oral care each day. Flossing is an important part of oral care, yet the American Dental Association found that only 16% of those surveyed actually floss daily.
Why do people avoid flossing? More than have of those polled said it’s too time-consuming. The other top reasons were it’s painful or simply too gross to do. What about your mom? Is she flossing enough or is arthritis pain making it hard for her to floss her teeth?
Why is Flossing Important?
Proper flossing removes food particles and plaque. This helps lower the occurrence of tartar. Plaque and tartar play a role in tooth decay and gum disease. There is also some evidence that gum disease may increase the risk of heart disease. It’s important to floss properly for those reasons.
The Proper Way to Floss
The problem is that people don’t always floss properly. You need 18 inches of floss. Wind a two-inch stretch of floss between index fingers and slide the floss between the teeth moving it up and down. Curve the floss around the back of the tooth you’re working on. Make sure you go below the gumline each time. Wind a new section of floss between the fingers when you move to the next tooth.
What Happens When Arthritis Pain Makes It Difficult to Floss?
If arthritis pain is keeping your mom from flossing, she has two options. The first is to invest in an electric flosser that uses a powerful spray of water to floss the teeth instead of string floss. She only needs to hold the handle with this type of device, so it will make flossing easier for her.
The other option is to hire senior care services. Once a day, she could have a caregiver help her with oral care. There are additional benefits to senior care. She’ll gain companionship and have help with other daily tasks.
Don’t let pride or embarrassment keep your mom from practicing proper oral care. Talk about the advantages of having a caregiver who is trained in senior care services like hygiene and grooming. Let her talk to the senior care agency when you call. She’ll feel better if she’s involved in the arrangements.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Senior Care in Spring Branch, TX, contact the caring staff at Personal Caregiving Services at 832-564-0338. Providing Care in Houston, Bellaire, West University Place, Katy, and Sugar Land and the surrounding areas.