Brushing and flossing your teeth at least twice a day is recommended by our dentists. There are several flossing myths that we frequently have to dispel for our patients. By debunking common myths, our Winnipeg dentists explain why flossing is so important and why you should not skip it.
Preventive oral hygiene is more than attending regular dental checkups. It's also imperative to practice daily oral health care routines at home. This means brushing and flossing regularly.
Daily flossing is an effective way to clean between the teeth and under the gum line. Flossing not only helps clean these spaces but also helps prevent plaque from building up so you can avoid long-term damage to the teeth and gums.
There are many myths about flossing, which can cause people to skip this vital oral health care practice altogether. Here are Winnipeg dentists debunk 5 of these common myths and explain why you should never skip flossing between your teeth.
Myth 1: You only need to floss when you have food stuck in your teeth.
Brushing alone will not remove bacteria from between the teeth, so only a portion of the tooth surface will be cleaned. Even if you don't see or feel anything stuck between your teeth, plaque is forming and can only be removed by flossing to avoid cavities, gum disease, and bad breath.
Myth 2: You can use mouthwash instead of floss.
Like brushing, mouthwash won't remove the plaque between your teeth. While mouthwash can be an effective addition to your oral health care routine, it should never be used as a replacement for flossing.
Myth 3: You can't floss because you have braces.
Although flossing is more difficult with braces, it is still a necessary practice. Because your gums are more likely to become inflamed while wearing braces, flossing will help keep your gum line clean and plaque-free during your orthodontic treatment. Alternative orthodontic treatment options, such as Invisalign clear aligners, are now available that can be removed for brushing and flossing to make the process easier.
Myth 4: Your children are too young to floss.
It's never too early for kids to start flossing. The earlier they start the more likely it is for them to develop and maintain good oral health care routines into adulthood. If they are finding it difficult to floss on their own, try to encourage them and help them along the way. If your child is under 10 years old, you can do it for them.
Myth 5: Your gums bleed when you floss, so you should stop.
If your gums bleed, this is usually a sign that you need to floss more often, not less. Your gums could be bleeding simply because they’re not used to being flossed. The more you floss, the less your gums will bleed. If your gums are bleeding continually, then it could be a sign of gingivitis or gum disease, so be sure to share any concerns with your dentist.