We are all told from an early age that flossing is important for dental health, and it should be a part of our regular oral hygiene routine. The reality is that many people skip flossing because they think oral health problems can be avoided simply by brushing their teeth twice a day. But if you see your dentist and they strongly suggest you floss more, maybe you really should! After all, dental floss goes where your toothbrush cannot reach. Floss before or after brushing—it does not matter, just as long as you floss once a day.
Now, here are five good reasons why your dentist wants you to floss your teeth every day:
- Stave off gum disease: Daily flossing helps you to avoid gum disease by removing dental plaque. Dental plaque comes about when harmful microorganisms—including bacteria, viruses and protozoa—accumulate and cause inflammation between the teeth and near the gum line. This phase of gum disease is called gingivitis. Gingivitis must be taken care of to keep it from developing into periodontitis, which can lead to tooth loss.
- Avoid dental caries: Flossing is necessary in order to remove dental plaque and food debris from between teeth—the areas where your toothbrush cannot reach. Over time, dental plaque that is left between teeth will turn into dental caries—this is the dental term for cavities or tooth decay.
- Prevent tartar buildup: Dental professionals recommend you visit your dentist for routine cleanings every six months to remove tartar buildup and to check for and take care of dental issues. Without proper cleanings, dental plaque is free to form and accumulate around your teeth, which then turns into tartar with help from the calcifying action from saliva. The thing about tartar is that it can also cause gum disease. While flossing and brushing every day delays tartar formation, only regular professional dental cleanings and scaling can remove the tartar around teeth.
- Prevent halitosis: Flossing is a great way to clean away dental plaque that is found between teeth. You want that plaque gone because it will eventually release a bad smell, as well as leave a bad taste in your mouth. In other words, dental plaque can be a reason someone suffers from bad breath, also known as halitosis. Plaque also causes tooth decay and gum disease, and therefore is another source of bad smell in the mouth.
- Reduce your risk of heart disease: Did you know that oral hygiene is connected to heart disease? The mouth is a major entryway for harmful bacteria to reach cardiac tissue. So if you are suffering from heart disease already, you must be vigilant in your oral healthcare routine. Keep your mouth and teeth clean to reduce your risk of cardiac complications. Brush and floss daily, and see your dentist regularly.
If you want to learn more about the importance of flossing every day or schedule a dental exam or cleaning, call Modern Smiles Family Dentistry today!
Categorised in: Dentist