Using dental floss on our teeth is imperative to maintaining good dental health and a bright smile for life. But flossing is often an activity that goes overlooked, even by those dedicated to overall good health. Dentist in Coos Bay, OR Dr. Lori Lemire and her team encourage all patients to take the time to use dental floss on their teeth once a day.
The American Dental Association recently found in a study that as much as 48% of the adult population in the United States doesn’t floss their teeth regularly, and 10% neglect to floss at all. However, the importance of flossing regularly cannot be overemphasized.
Why Using Dental Floss is Important
Flossing is essential for good dental health. Plaque, that sticky yellow substance that coats our teeth, gets stuck in between teeth as well as in hard to reach crevices. This plaque wears away at our valuable enamel, the protective coating on teeth. This can lead to tooth decay and the development of gum disease, which effects the rest of your health.
It’s unreasonable to believe that a toothbrush – even used three times a day – can remove all of the plaque that gathers in those nooks and crannies in our mouths. Dental floss, which is flexible and effective, is the only way to remove that plaque before it builds up and destroys your smile!
Excuse #1: I’m Too Busy to Use Dental Floss
Consider for a moment all of the personal grooming that we do each day in the bathroom – brushing our hair, brushing our teeth, taking showers, and getting dressed, to name a few. Flossing takes only a fraction of the time as these other grooming activities, and only needs to be completed once a day. Once the habit is firmly set, it will fit right in with getting ready for work in the morning or for bed at night. Just start today!
Excuse #2: I Don’t See Food Between My Teeth
Although the toothpicks or dental floss come out when food gets stuck between teeth, that’s not its most important use. Dental floss cleans those hard to reach places where plaque has gathered, and plaque can be difficult to see in those tight areas. Common incidents of tooth decay happen between teeth where flossing needs to occur and toothbrushes can’t reach.
Excuse #3: Using Dental Floss Hurts My Gums
If flossing your teeth hurts or makes your gums bleed, this is an even stronger reason to make flossing a priority. Gum tissue hurting or bleeding during flossing is a sign of gingivitis, which is the precursor to gum disease (also known as periodontal disease). If allowed to progress, gum disease leads to tooth loss and extensive dental care, which can be partly prevented through flossing regularly.
Excuse #4: Flossing Takes Too Much Coordination
Flossing might seem uncomfortable or complicated, but it’s actually quite simple. If flossing your teeth is a problem for you or if you’ve never really learned how, we would love to help! Call Dr. Lori Lemire Family Dentistry at 541-267-6425 for your personal appointment!