Did You Know?

Is There A Rule About How Often You Should Floss?

To Floss or Not To Floss

There’s this nagging question at the center of oral hygiene debate. How often should you floss? Some people floss three times daily, others, whenever they remember. Others, only a few times after a dentist visit, then forget all about it.

In the 2015-2020 version of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the government removed its recommendation for daily flossing. Before this, the Associated Press asked the Agriculture and Health and Human Services for their evidence that flossing was actually beneficial. The government acknowledged the effectiveness of flossing had never been researched, as required.

However, the American Academy of Periodontology quickly responded saying flossing is an important part of daily oral hygiene. They admit that studies are generally lacking, but in the absence of quality research, patients should continue to include flossing as a part of their daily hygiene. Later, the ADA released a statement saying that flossing is an essential part of taking care of teeth and gums.

What do you have to know about flossing?

Flossing helps to remove food particles and bacteria from between teeth and along the gum line. Gingivitis may result when bacteria builds up and forms plaque. Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease that can develop into periodontitis. When left untreated, periodontitis can lead to tooth loss. Dentists see bleeding gums, a high rate of cavities, bone loss, and bad breath in people who don’t make flossing a habit.

According to oral-health experts, no matter what the science says or doesn’t say, food particles would remain in between your teeth even after you brush. If you floss after you brush, then the debris you took out would not create future problems. It is hard to believe that flossing is not beneficial. Flossing may not be ‘essential’ as suggested, but it definitely is important in maintaining dental and periodontal health.

Ideally, flossing is every time you brush your teeth, at least twice a day – morning and night – and maybe after lunch, too. We should brush and floss after every meal to make sure there is no food or bacteria accumulating between the teeth. Other experts advice at least once daily. Flossing is only effective, however, if you do it correctly. The bottom line is, when combined with brushing, flossing every day is a great way to keep your mouth healthy.

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Finding Flossing Advocates in Lynnwood

We at Lynnwood Song Dental encourage interdental hygiene via the use of flossing instruments. Lynnwood dentistry believes in the importance of this routine in attaining optimal oral health.