Flossing is an often overlooked component of many people’s daily oral health routine, but flossing may be one of the most important things that you do. Flossing allows you to get the remaining two sides of your teeth, ensuring they are thoroughly cleaned and free of cavity-causing plaque build up. Here are just some of the many reasons why you should floss every day.
Flossing prevents plaque build up
Flossing is the best way to prevent plaque build up between your teeth. Plaque is produced by bacteria in your mouth that consume the little bits of food and drink left behind after you eat. Plaque is a soft film that builds up on your teeth and contains bacteria.
The plaque, if not removed through brushing and flossing daily, can harden to form tartar. Tartar is harder to remove and creates a safe environment for bacteria to live in. Tartar can only be removed by a dental professional, costing you time and money in the dentist’s office.
The plaque is acidic and will eat away at the surface of your teeth, causing cavities to form. If left untreated, these cavities will result in major tooth pain and possibly result in your tooth being pulled.
Flossing gets where your toothbrush can’t reach
Your toothbrush is a fantastic tool in maintaining your dental health, but it can’t be the only thing you do. Simply brushing your teeth isn’t enough. You only hit three of the five surfaces of your teeth, and flossing is the only way to reach the remaining two sides. Flossing should become a major part of your daily routine.
Flossing may seem to be tedious and time-consuming, but with the use of tools like a dental floss holder or dental pick, it makes the process very easy. Instead of having to figure out how much dental floss or dental tape to use, these tools allow you to simply begin flossing, going through your entire mouth start to finish without worrying about the floss slipping or how to get in weird angles.
Not flossing puts you at risk for gingivitis and periodontal disease
Flossing helps clear plaque not only from the teeth but from the gums as well. Gingivitis is a form of gum disease that causes inflammation and redness in the part of the gums around your teeth. Gingivitis is easily prevented by maintaining good oral hygiene. Brush at least twice a day, and floss daily. This can help you prevent, and with your dentist’s help, even reverse gingivitis.
If left untreated, gingivitis can transition into a more serious form of gum disease, called periodontal disease. Periodontal disease, also called simply gum disease, is when the inner layer of the gum and bone pull away from the teeth and form pockets. These small pockets then can collect debris and become infected. The enzymes and toxins produced by the bacteria and your body’s response to the bacteria can enter your bloodstream and cause other health issues. Additionally, they can destabilize the tooth, wearing away the bone that anchors the teeth and causing a loose tooth or bone lose. All this damage because of plaque!
According to the ADA (American Dental Association), gingivitis and periodontal disease are the leading causes of tooth loss in adults. Flossing each day will not only save you your teeth, but save you money too!
Flossing makes you look younger
The bone loss and potential tooth loss associated with gum disease will change how your face is shaped, giving you an older appearance. Keeping your teeth clean and healthy will give you a youthful smile and face shape. By flossing at least once a day you will not only look younger but you will be able to keep your smile for a long time.
Flossing should be a fundamental part of your daily routine. The benefits of flossing once a day are well worth the few minutes it takes to clean your teeth. Flossing helps you fight against plaque build up and keeps your teeth and mouth healthy and happy. For more information or for tips on how to floss, speak with your dentist at your next visit and they will be happy to show you proper flossing and brushing technique.