Did you know that your oral health affects your overall health? Your dentist may recommend to brush and floss daily, drink water, reduce sugar and routine dental visits every 6 months. We live busy lives making it easy to forget to floss regularly. Flossing once a day reduces your risk of cavities and gum disease.
Here are the main reasons why flossing is essential:
Gets Rid of Plaque
Your mouth houses millions of bacteria that combine with leftover food particles to form a sticky film called plaque. Plaque is a clear and sticky film that forms on your teeth near the gumline and can easily go unnoticed. If unremoved, over time the plaque will harden into tartar and attach onto your teeth long term causing gum disease. Regular brushing and flossing assures the plaque removal and prevent tartar formation and gum disease.
Helps to Prevent Gum Disease
Gingivitis or inflammation of the gums is the most common form of gum diseases resulting from the accumulation of plaque and tartar around the gums. As a result, when brushing and flossing, your gums will bleed easily. When patients see blood, they assume it's as a result from excessive or improper flossing and therefore stop decide to stop flossing. In reality, if you see blood on your floss, it means you should floss more often. The good news is that gingivitis is reversible if you improve and maintaining good oral hygiene. The bad news that if gingivitis is left untreated, then you will develop gum disease or periodontitis an irreversible process.
Flossing regularly will assure that all the plaque is removed and keep your gums healthy. Make sure to ask your dentist on the proper technique to floss to make sure that you hug the tooth surface tightly and remove all the food particles.
Prevents Bad Breath
Bad breath is most commonly as a result of poor oral hygiene and plaque build up. Brushing your teeth helps reduce bad breath but you cannot eliminate bad breath with brushing alone. Flossing removes the food particles and bacteria trapped between your teeth and under your gums that cause bad breath.
When Should You Floss?
Patients often ask how often they should floss and if its better to floss before or after brushing your teeth. Dentists recommend to floss at least once a day and floss at night before going to bed. Flossing is not to be used as a substitute to brushing your teeth. Dentists also recommend to floss before brushing to dislodge the food particles and bacteria between your teeth before removing them with your toothbrush.
At the pharmacy, you may find several types of floss, such as waxed and unwaxed thread, air flossers, water flossers, and super floss. There is no right or wrong option, find the type that works best for you.
Keep in mind, oral hygiene is essentiel to your daily hygiene routine. Combining brushing and flossing with six month professional teeth cleaning keeps your teeth and general body in good condition. Flossing can help you prevent gum disease, cavities, and infections from spreading to the rest of your body.