Do You Really Need to Floss Your Teeth?

General-DentistryIt’s common when checking your teeth for your dentist to ask about your daily brushing and flossing habits. While most folks brush their teeth daily, many neglect to also floss their teeth just as frequently. Flossing your teeth is beneficial, just like brushing your teeth, and can further help sustain healthy teeth and gums. From children to adults, flossing is very important for maintaining your dental health.

Fighting plaque is one of the key reasons you’ll want to floss your teeth. This soft, sticky film made out of millions of bacteria sticks to your teeth and can cause gum disease, an infection of the gum line. By flossing, you break apart solidifying bacteria and remove them from hard to reach spaces like the areas between your teeth. By removing this film, you further reduce the risk of disease. Flossing also helps prevent cavities. The bacteria in plaque will use sugars to break down your enamel and cause holes in your teeth, also known as cavities. Regular flossing will help stop cavities from forming quickly.

Got bleeding gums? Flossing can fix that too! Bleeding gums are a sign of an infection in the gum line. Most people will notice bleeding when they rinse their mouths out or on the floss thread while flossing. Keep brushing your teeth and flossing even if your gums bleed a little. By doing so, you will be removing the bacteria that is infecting your gum line and reduce bleeding overtime. Floss thread is made to be able to reach into the nooks and crannies between teeth and scrape the gum line of bad bacteria. Children may initially struggle to floss correctly, so if you are a parent, supervise your child and make sure they’re cleaning all of the hard-to-clean spots in their teeth.

It may be surprising, but flossing could reduce your risk for heart disease. Studies have shown links between poor dental hygiene and the increased risk of heart disease, respiratory illness, and even arthritis. Maintaining gum health will help you keep the rest of your body healthy. It is also recommended for pregnant women to floss daily, as poor dental hygiene has also been linked to premature and low-weight birth.

Not sure your dental hygiene habits are really helping your teeth? For 20 years, Smile Center Dental has been meeting the dental hygiene needs of families throughout Central Texas. Schedule an appointment with us today so we can help counsel you on your daily dental needs.

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