Do You Really Need To Floss? Yes!

Detail shot of woman clenching teeth

A beautiful smile does a lot for you. Studies show that smiles make us more attractive, lower stress, elevate our mood and make us look younger! But, what have YOU done for your smile lately? Nearly 50% of adults 30 years old or older have periodontal disease (like gingivitis or the more advanced periodontitis) in the U.S., and that number spikes to 65% in adults 65 years old or older. Gum disease is both preventable and reversible if you take the time to show your gums a little bit of extra love daily. That love looks like flossing.

READ: 5 Oral Symptoms You Should Not Ignore

I know, it’s the hygiene chore most of us love to hate. In 2015, an American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) survey showed that 27% of U.S. adults lie to their dentist about how often they floss their teeth, with 15% saying they’d rather wash dirty dishes than floss. We know we’re supposed to do it, but make every excuse not to. 

Dr. Wayne Aldredge, President of the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP), spoke with BlackDoctor.org about gum disease and the best steps to prevent it. You’ll be flossy in no time!

BlackDoctor.org: Why do you believe people resist flossing in the first place? 

Dr. Aldredge: Many people falsely think that flossing is too time consuming or just not that important. Flossing is not the most fun thing to do, but it is one of the most essential things people need to do to live a healthy lifestyle.

Poor oral hygiene, such as not flossing or brushing twice daily, is a primary cause of periodontal disease, which is commonly referred to as gum disease. Having healthy gums and a great smile starts with flossing. While periodontal disease is mostly preventable, treatable and in many cases reversible, an alarming number of Americans are affected as a result of not properly caring for their gums.

The American Academy of Periodontology launched the Love The Gums You’re With educational campaign to help people make the connection between healthy gums and a healthy smile. Taking care of your gums shouldn’t be an afterthought – they are the foundation of good oral health and support the sparking white teeth and smiles we all aspire to have.