What Should Come First: Toothbrushing, Flossing or Mouthwash?


Does the order of toothbrushing and flossing really matter in your oral care routine

The number of people who believe in flossing is unfortunately low.  The people who actually do it may have one question in their minds.  What should be the order of a proper oral care routine?  Will the sequence of toothbrushing, flossing and mouthwash really affect oral hygiene?

This question has been subject to controversy over the years.  Some dentists believe that flossing should be first and some suggest that the order really does not matter.  What matters is that you actually do it!

Flossing removes the bacteria in between teeth allowing the toothpaste to reach there.  Vice versa, tooth paste may remove the bulk of plaque making it easier for the floss to remove the titbits of it.  

I personally believe that you should floss first, not just because it affects your oral hygiene, but because it is the tougher job.  The toughest should be done first, or you may end up not doing it at all!  It is also true that it removes interdental plaque leaving a way for the toothpaste to enter.

Flossing, followed by brushing and then mouthwash is what I recommend to my patients.  The choice is really yours.  Also, never forget to clean your tongue after you are done with brushing.  What really matters is that you are performing all the steps in the correct manner. Mouthwash should always be used at the end of your routine.

To do or not do is the main question!  Not, in what order to do!

Toothbrushing, Flossing, Mouthwash, Oral Care, Oral Hygiene

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