When it comes to cleaning your teeth, brushing alone is not enough – this is why dentists will so frequently ask about your flossing habits! Brushing does not remove all the plaque because food can get stuck between teeth and form cavities there. Not only will flossing help your cavity-fighting efforts, it will also keep you safe from other threats like gum disease. Despite many benefits, so many patients still do not incorporate flossing in their dental routine. Continue reading to learn how flossing will ultimately benefit you and ensure a flawless smile!
Each tooth has five surfaces and the simplest way to understand them is that a toothbrush can only reach three (inside, outside, and crown) but not the other two, which are the sides that are in close contact with other teeth. Without flossing, food debris gets stuck easily in these spaces between the teeth and builds up plaque above and below the gums. This plaque then hardens and paves the way for many oral diseases, including gingival inflammation, and can also cause cavities in the affected teeth.
Additionally, a 2017 study shows that patients have a twenty percent higher risk of developing heart disease if you have preexisting gum disease. The initial understanding is that the bacteria buildup and inflammation in the oral cavity leads to narrowing of blood vessels, which then facilitates heart disease. Of course, the best way to prevent this kind of thing from happening at all is to fight it the best way you can, which is using dental floss to remove plaque buildup between teeth daily.
Flossing itself presents patients with an opportunity to regularly examine their mouth for abnormalities that they would not normally get from brushing. While getting between your teeth, take that time to look over your tongue and gums for any redness or swelling. There are other health conditions, including some cancers and HIV, that can manifest these symptoms in your oral cavity. Fortunately, while flossing, you will have ample opportunity to make sure that your mouth is still looking healthy.
Besides protecting your mouth from disease and enabling you to remain vigilant, flossing also has many other benefits, including dietary, if you brush and floss after each meal. The best time to floss each day is in the evenings to dislodge any food particles that still may be trapped between your teeth but making a habit of it after every meal will make snacking less likely to occur. Furthermore, many popular snack foods tend to get trapped between teeth and have high sugar content, such as raisins and other dried fruit, which causes problems that brushing alone will not help. Regardless of your diet, flossing regularly is sure to keep you and your mouth healthier.
Now that you understand the importance of flossing, you may be wondering what to do next. Experts recommend brushing at least twice a day for at least two minutes each time, as well as flossing at least once. Involve mouthwash in your routine as well, though it does not replace the need to brush or floss! Finally, see your dentist for a check-up every six months to preempt any significant dental problems and stay on top of your oral health.
If you do not regularly see a team of professionals invested in the health of your mouth, schedule a consultation with us at The Pampered Tooth online! We offer a wide variety of services to keep your smile looking its best, and we also keep patients feeling their best. Visit us today to stop cavities, avoid tooth loss, enjoy fresher breath, and experience better overall health!