How Important Is Flossing?

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We all know that dreaded ‘P’ word we hate to hear when we finally haul ourselves to the dentist. Plaque! 

The dental industry will tell you there are all sorts of ways to fight plaque, but the most effective way is one of the simplest: flossing. As the most fundamental and straightforward method, flossing is crucial to remember when looking to facilitate lifelong healthy habits. 

a woman flossing her teeth

Flossing targets the hard-to-reach spots where the plaque is most disruptive to our oral health.

Why Does Flossing Work?

So why is flossing the tried and true method for removing plaque and fighting gum disease? 

What makes it a contender year after year for the most valuable way to promote oral health against all the high-tech toothbrushes and dental tools? 

Simply said, flossing targets the hard-to-reach spots where the plaque is most disruptive to our oral health. By removing plaque from between your teeth and underneath the gums, you can dislodge bacteria and food particles from the exposed and hidden surfaces of your teeth, ensuring that plaque cannot develop. 

How Often Should I Floss?

You will meet plenty of doctors that say you should floss after every meal. But taking into account the increasingly fast-paced nature of our daily lives, flossing that often is not always possible. 

Instead, it is recommended to floss at least once or twice daily. Bedtime is always a great time to fight plaque from settling in the crevices and inner parts of your gums overnight. 

Does Flossing Reduce Heart Disease? 

You may have heard recent conversations in the news about how flossing can fight cardiovascular disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and maybe even stomach problems. 

Bacterial infections in the mouth can journey to the bloodstream, which, in turn, can adversely affect the valves of the heart. New studies show that bacteria in the mouth can even navigate to the nerve channels that may cause dementia and Alzheimer’s. 

How Can I Remember to Floss? 

Healthy gums do not bleed, and healthy teeth are free of any pain when brushed. 

If this doesn’t sound like you, it’s okay. There are plenty of ways to keep you on track. Here is a list of the few ways you can remember to floss regularly: 

  • Keep a journal or set reminders: It might sound unnecessary, but you would be surprised how confident you feel about your oral health once you have kept a steady log of how many times you brush a week. Completing goals can be rewarding, so making this a goal more tangible with the written word is all the more effective in boosting our self-confidence. 
  • Floss while showering: Those of us more environmentally conscious may have already shifted to brushing in the shower in order to preserve water, but adding flossing to the mix is an easy way to get your daily or one of your daily flosses accomplished. Remember to keep the floss in areas where you can see it, like the side of the shower, for easy access. 

Interested in Learning More About Oral Hygiene in Chicago? 

Remember that it is never too late to start flossing. For more information on oral hygiene, contact Dr. Fiss by filling out our online contact form or calling (312) 951 5230.