Why Should I Bother Flossing?

African American Black man flossing teeth(BlackDoctor.org) – We know, we know, you don’t like to floss. But here’s a little secret: it’s not that high up on anybody else’s list of favorite things to do either. But, every six months, your dentist probably lectures about the importance of flossing. And you probably just ignore him or her.

“There is no instant gratification with flossing — that’s the problem,” says Alla Wheeler, RDH, MPA, associate professor of the Dental Hygiene Program at the New York University School of Dentistry. “Patients don’t think it does anything.”

Why Should I Bother?

Why? Because flossing does about 40% of the work required to remove sticky bacteria, or plaque, from your teeth. Plaque generates acid, which can cause cavities, irritate the gums and lead to gum disease. “Each tooth has five surfaces. If you don’t floss, you are leaving at least two of the surfaces unclean,” Wheeler explains. “Floss is the only thing that can really get into that space between the teeth and remove bacteria.”

Floss – An Overlooked Fountain of Youth?