Day after day I get the same excuses for not flossing. “My fingers are too big”, “I forget”, “My fingers are too small”, “I’m on a liquid diet”, “I’m too tired”, “It hurts my gums”, “My dog ate my floss”. Sound familiar? The bottom line is, if dental and health professionals didn’t think flossing was important; we would stop asking you to do it.
Flossing not only removes food particles but it also and more importantly removes the harmful bacteria and plaque that cause dental disease. Bacteria is the #1 reason people get cavities, have bleeding gums and lose their teeth. And if that isn’t bad enough, bacteria affects our heart health and other life threatening conditions.
Even with all the excuses in the world, I’ve found patients are more likely to floss when they understand how to do it correctly. By flossing correctly, bacteria is reduced and our health improves.
Below is a quick tutorial on becoming an efficient flosser. If we commit to the action of flossing daily for about a month, the habit will be created and NOT flossing will feel wrong and gross.
Dental professions do realize some people can’t floss due to arthritis or other functional and/or coordination problems. Let them know and together create a plan that will work better for you. Here is a list of devices, suggestions or other interdental aids that won’t replace the benefits of flossing but will be better than doing nothing.
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