Why Aren’t You Flossing?
Did you know that, according to the American Dental Association, only 50% of Americans actually floss on a daily basis? Even worse, up to 18% of Americans do not floss at all. This is staggering news considering that the Academy of General Dentistry claims flossing is the single most important weapon against plaque.
We have all heard the common excuses to flossing; perhaps you’re guilty of declaring a reason not to floss yourself. The truth is, there are so many different options in flossing and its ability to go beyond just regular brushing in cleaning your teeth make skipping this oral hygiene job inexcusable. Did you know that you are missing almost a third of your tooth’s surface when you neglect to floss. Harmful bacteria and plague accumulate from food stuck between your teeth. If left alone, plaque can lead to gum disease, tooth decay and other serious oral health problems.
Flossing options have grown greatly in the last 10 years. Today, there is a technique and flossing tool out there for just about everyone. You can choose between woven floss, floss embedded with fluoride, floss coated with Teflon®, uncoated floss, whitening floss, thin floss, thick floss and a variety of flavored flosses to suit you best. If you simply cannot manage floss at all, there are also floss holders and flossing machines that effectively remove plaque between your teeth such as the latest AirFloss by Sonicare, which is a great product for kids with braces or patients with dental implants. Your dentist can help you find a flossing plan that is right for you.
Simply put, when it comes to flossing, your excuses don’t stand a chance against the benefits and the vast range of flossing options out there today. Resist the urge to only floss before a dental appointment. Your gums will thank you!
Posted on behalf of Dr. Paul Gilreath IV, Gilreath Dental Associates