How Important is It to Floss Every Day?

Diane Goettel

Most dentists will tell you that it is important to floss every day and there are good reasons for this. One of the most important is that clean teeth are healthy teeth. Flossing on a daily basis is a preventative measure that can help to ward off serious dental health problems such as cavities and gingivitis and can also help to keep the breath fresh. Unfortunately, toothbrushes cannot clean between the teeth. While there are many models that can do a very good job of cleaning the surfaces of the teeth and getting into as many nooks and crannies as possible, the bristles simply can't access the very tight spaces between the teeth in the same way that dental floss can.

Flossing regularly is part of a good oral hygiene routine.
Flossing regularly is part of a good oral hygiene routine.

One of the main reasons that dentists ask their patients to floss every day is because they know that their patients eat every day. This may sound a bit silly, but the fact is that eating causes food particles to wedge between the teeth. Human jaws are incredibly strong and can deliver enough force to get food particles between many of the teeth during just one meal. When food particles are left between the teeth they can cause tooth decay. Those who don't floss every day put themselves at a greater risk for this sort of decay.

Flossing may help prevent gingivitis.
Flossing may help prevent gingivitis.

There are some people who say it is unnecessary to floss every day to have healthy teeth and gums. These people usually assert that flossing every few days is sufficient. For those with sensitive gums, it may be painful to floss every day, so flossing just a few times a week may be necessary. Many dentists will agree that flossing two or three times a week is much better than not flossing at all. The same dentists will also assert that, to take care the best care of one's teeth, it is important to floss every day.

There are a number of ways to get regular flossing into one's daily routine. Some people keep dental floss next to their couches or on their bedside tables. This reminds them to floss their teeth while they are watching a program before going to sleep at night. Some people stick a note on the bathroom mirror with a message such as "Don't forget to floss!" written in bold letters. Others bring dental floss with them to work and floss every day after lunch.

Most dentists recommend flossing every day to clean beneath the gum line.
Most dentists recommend flossing every day to clean beneath the gum line.

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Discussion Comments


I think water flossing is definitely the way to go. Itis painless and effective and, in my opinion, removes more food debris left behind by brushing, than normal flossing.

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