5 Common Myths About Flossing

Our dentists recommend our patients brush their teeth at least twice a day, and floss once a day. There are actually a lot of myths about flossing that we often need to clear up for our patients. Here, our Steinbach dentists explain why flossing is so important and why you should not skip it by debunking common myths.

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.

Cleaning under the gum line and in between teeth is easily accomplished by using dental floss every day. To prevent long-term harm to the teeth and gums, flossing not only helps clean these spaces but also works to stop plaque from accumulating.

Numerous flossing myths exist, and they may lead people to completely forego this crucial oral health care procedure. Here, our Steinbach dentists dispel five of these widespread misconceptions and explain why flossing between your teeth is always important.

Myth 1: You only need to floss when you have food stuck in your teeth.

Only a portion of the tooth's surface is cleaned by brushing alone because it is unable to remove bacteria from in between teeth. Even if you don't notice or feel anything between your teeth, plaque is still accumulating and can only be removed by flossing to guard against problems like cavities, gum disease, and bad breath.

Myth 2: You can use mouthwash instead of floss.

Mouthwash, like brushing, will not remove plaque between your teeth. While mouthwash can be a useful addition to your oral health regimen, it should never be used in place of flossing.

Myth 3: You can't floss because you have braces.

It may be harder to floss with braces, but it is still a necessary practice. With braces, gums are more likely to become inflamed, so flossing will help keep your gum line clean and free from plaque build-up during your orthodontic treatment. Today, there are also alternative orthodontic treatment options, like Invisalign clear aligners, 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 children to begin flossing. In fact, the earlier they begin, the more likely they are to develop and maintain good oral health care routines into adulthood. If they are having difficulty flossing on their own, try to encourage them and assist them along the way. If your child is under the age of ten, you can do it for them.

Myth 5: Your gums bleed when you floss, so you should stop.

If your gums bleed, it is usually an indication that you should floss more frequently, not less. Your gums may be bleeding simply because they aren't used to having their teeth flossed. Your gums will bleed less if you floss frequently. If your gums are constantly bleeding, this could be a sign of gingivitis or gum disease, so talk to your dentist about your concerns.

To learn more about flossing, or to schedule an exam and cleaning, contact our Steinbach dentists today. Or find a location near you.