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Ask the Dentist: Flossing

Expert answers to your questions about flossing.

Q: Is it better to floss before or after I brush?

A: Dentists are divided in their opinions on this. Flossing before you brush lets you dislodge plaque and food particles before brushing them away.

Those dentists who prefer flossing after brushing say it's better because you can floss out particles that get pushed between teeth during brushing. They recommend following with an oral rinse.

"Floss once a day," says dentist Barbara Ann Rich, of Cherry Hill, New Jersey. "When you start worrying about flossing at the right or wrong time, it can be a barrier to doing it."

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