It’s no surprise that a survey conducted by U.S. News found that only 30 percent of the population flosses daily. While it only takes an extra minute or two to do after brushing, it can seem like a huge hassle when all you want to do is get to bed. However, without daily flossing, harmful oral bacteria can accumulate in your mouth and cause common oral health problems like cavities and gum disease. Read on to learn about how flossing is a vital part of maintaining healthy teeth and gums.
Why Shouldn’t You Ditch Your Dental Floss?
There are several clinical studies on how flossing can ward off gum disease. That’s why the American Dental Association recommends flossing every day to keep teeth and gums healthy. Brushing and flossing regularly helps reduce your risk of gum inflammation, irritation, and bleeding, which are all signs of early gum disease, or gingivitis.
When food debris is left between teeth, it can attract harmful oral bacteria that release waste in the form of enamel-eroding acid and toxins. Because it’s wedged in hard-to-reach places, flossing is the only way to remove it. While it may seem like an additional, unnecessary measure to take, it’s an important step to control the number of harmful oral bacteria in your mouth.
How is Flossing Beneficial to Your Health?
One out of two Americans has gum disease, even though it’s an easily preventable oral health problem. This is a bacterial infection of the oral tissues, which causes them to become swollen, tender, and inflamed due to the accumulation of toxic bacteria below the gumline. If the problem is left untreated, it can lead to chronic bad breath, receding gums, and even tooth loss. Additionally, the same toxins that cause gum disease have been linked to the development of other health issues throughout the body, such as heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and premature birth.
Researchers believe that the toxins that cause gum disease can invade your blood stream, travelling through your body and causing inflammation in other areas, such as your heart. Because flossing has been proven to drastically reduce the risk of gum disease, it can also help you avoid serious additional health problems.
You’ve Got Nothing to Lose
Both The American Academy of Periodontology and the American Dental Association recommend flossing every day to maintain your oral health. While there isn’t a massive amount of research available on the benefits of routine flossing, many dentists have seen a clear positive effect that it has on their patients. They find that people who floss every day have healthier gums, and the act can even reverse early-stage cavity formation.
Flossing has been proven to benefit your oral health. Because you only get one set of pearly whites in your lifetime, it’s important to do everything you can to keep them healthy and strong. You can do this by maintaining a great at-home oral hygiene routine and regularly visiting your dentist for preventive care.
About the Author
Dr. Reza Modarres chose dentistry as a profession because he wanted to be able to alleviate his patients’ pain and be able to make them proud of their healthy smiles. As a periodontist, he has completed advanced additional training. He has also completed a general practice residency, where he gained a wealth of experience by performing treatments such as tooth extractions, bone grafts, and implant treatments. For questions or to schedule a routine checkup and cleaning to keep your smile healthy, visit Ellicott City Smiles’ website or call 410-465-3224.