How Often Should You Floss? 40

how often should you floss

The following article is a guest post.

The short answer: for your dental health, you should floss as often as you can. After all, it is a key part of maintaining that pretty smile that many people tend to focus on during a conversation.

But of course, you are far more interested in the long answer and the justifications that further explain it. According to the American Dental Association, you should floss at least once a day, before or after brushing. As they explain it, “This is important because plaque that is not removed by brushing and flossing can eventually harden into calculus or tartar.” Flossing prevents the spread of bacteria in the mouth, which is already a place that is hard to keep bacteria-free. Flossing will increase the health of your teeth and gums as it removes the bacteria that a toothbrush is unable to reach. If frequently done, flossing should not be painful. Choose a time after brushing your teeth to do it in order for it to become a habit instead of a chore.

Because whether we like to admit it or not, we do not floss as often as we tell the dentist when the inevitable appointment comes around. And that type of inaction, combined with not brushing teeth, can lead to both short and long term ramifications. As an article for the Today Show stated, “It takes about 24 hours for plaque to form in the mouth and twice daily brushing and daily flossing disrupts the plaque, also known as biofilm, build up.” This build up not only damages the health of your teeth, but tends to smell as it is not being cleaned out of the crevices of the teeth, which contributes to the smell of bad breath. In addition, this bacteria can eat away at the enamel of teeth and damage the aesthetic look of smiling as the teeth are not being properly taken care of.

And before you ask, yes, there is a right way and a wrong way to handle flossing. For one, try not to use dental picks if you can help it. The aforementioned Today Show article commented that dental picks cannot remove the bacteria that grows where the teeth meet. Instead, stick to the standard string floss, though it does not really matter whether it is waxed or unwaxed. As the American Dental Association advises, break around 18 inches off and wrap the majority of it around a middle finger and then do the same on the other hand. From there, floss each and every one of your front teeth in a C-shaped formation in a completely thorough manner. For the back teeth, do a U-shaped formation instead, as that will dig in and remove the extra plague that tends to build up back there. Then again, the ADA did mention to “Don’t forget the backside of your last tooth.” Then throw away the floss, and rinse with water until everything is out.

To avoid expensive dental bills, be sure to also have annual cleanings. It can be hard to create the habit of flossing twice a day, but be sure to make the attempt so that it creates less work your dentist. Less work means less pain and bills when it is time to sit down in that chair. Dr. Johnson at Premier Smile Center can assist in dental care questions or concerns while also advising their patients on the best way to prevent tooth decay. Be sure to have those appointments scheduled twice a year to be sure that your smile is taken care of.

Get The Lifestyle Designer's Digest
Directly into your inbox every Monday.
Previous ArticleNext Article

The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience 11

The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience

Providing a flawless customer experience is the ultimate goal for any business.

There’s a lot that goes into creating a customer experience that keeps your clients coming back for more. In fact, there’s so much involved that it can almost seem overwhelming.

However, providing a flawless customer experience becomes much easier when you approach the task through these five distinct elements:

Time
Understanding
Ownership of Emotions
The Unexpected
Follow-Through

Time

When it comes to your customers’ satisfaction, time is essential. Think of how a great experience at a new restaurant quickly sours if you’re left waiting for your food to arrive. Think of how your excitement over a great department store sale turns into frustration as you stand in line for what seems like hours.

Time is your most valuable resource and it is up to you to make sure you’re using your customers’ time wisely.

This is why restaurants have comfortable waiting areas with drinks and appetizers, or why airports have lounges with restaurants, shops, and even bars.

If your customers are being forced to wait for a service, make them feel as if their time spent is not wasted. The more positive drivers you offer customers, the less likely they are to grow dissatisfied with their experience.

Think of how you can implement this in your own business. Are there places where you can help fill customers’ time? Are there places where technology can be used to cut down on the time it takes to complete a task? Remember, it’s the customers’ time that should be valued, not your own.

Understanding

How to Use Content Marketing to Boost Your Business 6 Marketing Influencers You Must Follow

You must understand what your customers want, when they want it, and how.

While this may seem daunting, getting a better understanding of your customers doesn’t take millions of dollars, complex data analytics, and a degree in psychology. Instead, all it takes is a simple look. Watch their process, engage with them, ask them questions, and listen to them.  

How are customers interacting with your product? What’s the first thing they do when they enter your store? What’s the last thing they do before they leave? How long are they spending in each department? Do you notice anything that hampers their experience?

Take a look at your competitors. How are your potential customers interacting with them? What does this business offer that you don’t or vice versa? What is your, as Harvard Business School professor Clayton M. Christensen says, “job to be done?” What are your customers hiring your product or service to accomplish? Understand why your users are turning to your products.

Ownership of Emotions

Many companies have already taken hold of their customers’ emotions, though cynically. Subliminal advertising is a key example. However, the ownership of emotions does not have to be cynical. When used correctly, it can be the “holy grail” for companies.

Owning emotions begins with the aforementioned ability to understand. When you truly understand a customer’s choices and then act to make the experience better, you’re building a relationship of trust. That trust is the foundation of emotional ownership.

One way to build this trust is to reduce the “emotional” noise that surrounds your customers. Let them know that, even on their worst day, your business or product is there for them and that it will be a constant in their lives.

Think of restaurants and the long wait times you have to endure when they’re busy. Think of how angry—or “hangry”—you feel as you stand around, waiting for your table, and listening to your stomach growl. However, think of how some restaurants are able to reduce that emotional noise by serving you finger foods and drinks as you wait.

Also, seek to understand what emotionally motivates your customers.

Why should they be motivated to visit your store or use your product? To feel confident? Free? Unique? Secure? Successful? Research shows that all human beings are motivated by one of those factors.

The Unexpected

Experiences become stronger and more memorable when they’re accompanied by an element of surprise. Surprise can be addictive, which will only keep your customers coming back for more.

Think about mailing your customers or clients small packages with gifts and swag. Everyone loves to get mail and everyone loves free stuff, especially when it’s least expected.

A surprise doesn’t have to be a huge flash mob (though it could be!). Hand out snacks at your store. Is it a cold day? Give your customers hot chocolate or warm punch. Is it a client’s birthday? Send a card! Even a small note of thanks for a customer’s business is a nice little surprise.

The most important thing to remember: simply be sincere and don’t become predictable. Chocolates on hotel pillows were once a great surprise for guests. However, now that their wow-factor has faded, hotels are continuously trying to get back to the “unexpected.”

Follow-Through

You’ve made promises and established goals. The only thing that’s left is to follow through on them. This starts with creating your mission statement, one that you, your employees, and your customers can commit to it. This will define your customer experience.

Your mission statement must promise to impact yourself/your business, the community, or the world. It may commit to impacting one, or all three. However, whatever it promises, you must follow through on. Your customers’ trust, and thus their experience, depends on it.

More about these five elements can be discovered in Unforgettable: Designing Customer Experiences that Stick, to be published in 2018.

***
Kyle H. David has made a career in technology and entrepreneurship for nearly 20 years. In 2001, he formed The Kyle David Group, now KDG. Over the past 16 years, KDG has grown at a rapid pace, attracting clients ranging from the United States Senate to major financial institutions, international nonprofits, and Division I universities.