The American Dental Association recommends that patients floss their teeth once a day. Yet the vast majority of people skip daily flossing and some do not floss at all. At Charleston Center for Cosmetic and Restorative Dentistry, Dr. John F. Rink encourages patients to start flossing every day, if they don’t already. In this blog post, we explain why flossing is so important to your dental health, and discuss proper flossing techniques. During your next general dentistry exam, we can go over the importance of flossing with you in person, as well. Contact our Charleston, SC practice today to schedule an appointment with us.
Flossing removes plaque that has built up along the gum line and between the teeth, areas that are more difficult to clean with a toothbrush. Plaque is made up of food particles and dental bacteria, which form a sticky film on the teeth. When plaque is first formed, it is a soft substance that is easily removed with brushing and flossing. However, when plaque is allowed to remain on the teeth for more than 24 hours, it hardens into tartar. It typically requires special dental tools, such as those used during a professional cleaning, to remove tartar.
Plaque and tartar contain millions of bacteria, which release acids as they feed on the sugars and starches in your mouth. These acids slowly erode the hard and soft tissues of the mouth, causing serious dental problems such as tooth decay and gum disease.
Patients that do not floss daily typically have a build up of plaque and tartar along the gum line, between the teeth, and on the back teeth. As a result, these patients are at an increased risk of developing gum disease and cavities.
In addition to increasing the risk of cavities and gum disease, failing to floss on a daily basis can result in chronic bad breath.
When you do floss, it is important to do it properly. Here are some tips to help you thoroughly remove plaque and tartar when flossing:
To learn more about the importance of flossing, contact Charleston Center for Cosmetic and Restorative Dentistry today.