Isn’t daily brushing enough to keep my teeth and gums healthy? Not really. Brushing is crucial but it can be less effective at removing biofilm from between the teeth. Biofilm is the sticky bacteria-laden film that accumulates between teeth and causes decay and disease. While you can also use a Waterpik®, brush pick or soft pick to remove biofilm from between teeth and at the gumline, flossing is both simple and effective for most people. Let’s take a look at some of the most common excuses people use to forgo flossing.
I don’t know how - Flossing isn’t tricky but some people are concerned about doing harm by flossing incorrectly. We can show you the correct way to floss or explore other available options.
I can’t get my hands into my mouth - Large fingers or having a medical condition that effects the hands can make flossing more difficult but not impossible. Floss holders or floss forks allow anyone to floss with only one hand.
I don’t have time – Unlike your morning shower, removing biofilm isn’t confined to the bathroom. Floss on the train, at the office, while dinner is cooking, in front of the TV in the evening….anytime, anywhere. Finding three minutes to clean between your teeth each day can save you hours in the dentist’s chair later.
It hurts to floss - Pain is a sign that you probably have gum disease (gingivitis), and it’s the main reason you must floss. If you floss once each day, your gums will stop hurting (and bleeding) in less than two weeks unless there is an underlying, serious problem that we need to address immediately.
Food doesn’t get stuck between my teeth - Flossing is about removing invisible, sticky, bacteria-laden plaque that leads to decay, gingivitis and tooth loss.
The floss gets stuck - If your teeth are too close together to use regular floss, try waxed floss or superfloss.
The floss frays - Usually a jagged crown or filling or a cavity snags the floss. That’s something that we can correct on your next visit.
However you choose to do it, removing biofilm is vital to maintaining a healthy mouth. If you still aren’t convinced, make an appointment to see us to evaluate your habits and gum health.