The Importance of Flossing – Here are the Facts!
For years, you have heard about the importance of flossing. You should do it at least once a day (preferably twice a day). A recent article on CBC News, however, contradicts what you have been told and may be driving you to question the benefits of flossing daily. The article states that there is no strong proof that flossing your teeth offered any medical benefits. This article stems from another article offered by the Associated Press in the United States based on a review published in the 2015 Journal of Clinical Periodontology. Both articles say that the effectiveness of flossing (to prevent gum disease) has not been sufficiently researched.
While the CBC News article concludes that studies have failed to demonstrate the effectiveness of flossing, other professional groups have cited their own studies as proof that flossing is indeed beneficial. Regardless of the argument that is currently on, most dental professionals agree: flossing and brushing are a must.
Flossing: Yes or No? The Experts Say, “Yes, Absolutely!”
Media outlets have been contacting the Canadian Dental Association (CDA) and British Columbia Dental Association (BCDA) since the publication. The BCDA has already confirmed in separate interviews and released a statement that they support the use of floss and encourage daily flossing. In fact, on BCDA’s website, YourDentalHealth.ca, you will find information that emphasizes the importance of flossing – including: magnified images of dental floss in action, a printable tip sheet, a video about the importance of flossing and a video showing you how to properly floss.
While the CBC News article states otherwise, dentists in Victoria, BC, as well as the rest of the country, agree that flossing is important. You should floss your teeth once a day, because plaque is not removed with brushing. Once plaque is allowed to harden and calcify, it becomes tartar. Flossing can also help reduce the likelihood you will contract gum disease or cavities.
Here are five reasons to keep up with flossing:
- Flossing makes brushing more effective. Brushing will remove food particles and some plaque, but it cannot reach in between teeth; where plaque likes to hide. Only flossing can reach into those tights spaces between your teeth and remove plaque build-up.
- Flossing protects your gums from plaque and tartar buildup, which can lead to puffy, reddish and inflamed gums (known as gingivitis).
- Flossing may save you money, especially when you consider the cost of dental treatments and having cavities filled.
- Flossing has been shown in extensive research to remove unhealthy bacteria from the mouth, which goes beyond discoloured teeth and bad breath. It may help prevent heart diseases, respiratory illness and even diabetes associated with severe forms of gum disease.
- Flossing will limit how much tartar build-up a hygienist has to remove at your next cleaning; which in turn, means a faster, more comfortable visit.
Visit a Victoria Dental Clinic for Your Check-Up
Now that we have established the importance of flossing, it is important to remember that you still need annual (or preferably bi-annual) visits to your local dentist. Brushing and flossing can only do so much; and a professional can help catch early signs of gum disease, cavities, and more.