Why Do We Keep Asking You To Floss?
Just about everyone that comes for their dental checkup expects to hear the same question. Are you flossing your teeth every day? Patients know that we recommend flossing daily; however it is just not that easy. Why is it that we remember to brush our teeth at least once a day, but we don’t floss? Part of the reason is because the immediate benefits of flossing aren’t noticed or are uncomfortable.
At first your gums can bleed and be sore, this is due to the bacteria that live in between your teeth. Bacteria cause inflammation which leads to sore gums when flossing. It takes some time to get rid of that bacteria, and feel the benefits. Flossing is kind of like stomping on an ant hill in your yard. The ants are going to rebuild, but the more often you stomp on the hill the more likely you are to stop them. So flossing daily is like stomping on that bacteria “ant hill” in your mouth.
Once you start to form a flossing habit your gums will feel better, you will even start to notice when you haven’t flossed and desire that clean feeling. One great way to remind yourself to floss is to simply place a sticky note reminder on your bathroom mirror, to prompt you.
We all know flossing prevents cavities, prevents gums disease, and keeps you teeth and smile looking as young as you are. But there is more: Research has shown that the benefits of flossing are good for our overall health. Gum disease has been linked with heart disease that can lead to heart attack or stroke. Gum disease has also been linked to diabetes, respiratory illnesses, osteoporosis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
So when you come in: know that we are not just asking you to floss; we are asking you to do something great for you. Start flossing today, and see the difference it can make.