Dentists recommend flossing once a day and brushing twice a day. But there are many myths being spread about flossing, and our Newmarket dentists debunk some of them here today.
There is more to preventive oral hygiene than just attending routine dental checkups and cleanings. An important part of having good oral health is brushing and flossing regularly at home.
Flossing every day is an effective way for you to remove plaque and food particles from between your teeth and under your gum line and keep them from building up in the first place. This also helps you prevent long-term teeth and gum damage.
Lots of myths are going around about flossing, which can influence some people to skip this essential step of their oral hygiene routine. In this blog, our Newmarket dentists debunk 5 of the most common flossing myths and express the importance of flossing your teeth every day.
Myth 1: You only have to floss when there is food stuck in your teeth.
Brushing alone won't remove bacteria in between teeth, which means only a portion of the tooth’s surface is getting cleaned. Even if you don't see or feel something stuck between your teeth, there is plaque building up that can only be removed by flossing to prevent issues like bad breath, gum disease, and cavities.
Myth 2: You can rinse with mouthwash instead of flossing.
Mouthwash (like brushing) can't clean away the plaque that is hiding between your teeth. While mouthwash could be a valuable part of your daily oral care routine, you shouldn't use it as a substitute for flossing.
Myth 3: Because you have braces you can't floss.
It may be more challenging to brush your teeth if you have braces, but it is still a critical practice. Your gums have a higher chance of becoming inflamed if you have braces, so flossing can help keep your gum line clean and free from plaque build-up during your orthodontic treatment. Today, there are also alternative orthodontic treatment options, like Invisalign clear aligners, that can be removed for brushing and flossing to make the process easier.
Myth 4: Your children are too young to floss.
It's never too early for children to add flossing to their routine. Actually, the earlier they begin flossing the more likely they will be to develop and carry good oral health care practices with them into their adulthood. If your kids are finding it challenging to floss by themselves, try to encourage them and help them along the way. If your child is under 10 years old, you can do it for them.
Myth 5: You should stop flossing when your gums bleed.
If your gums bleed, this is usually a sign that you need to floss more often, not less. Your gums could be bleeding simply because they’re not used to being flossed. The more you floss, the less your gums will bleed. If your gums are bleeding continually, then it could be a sign of gingivitis or gum disease, so be sure to share any concerns with your dentist.