What Does Flossing Actually Do for You?
Going to the dentist for a checkup not only secures that your teeth, tongue, and the rest our your mouth are in good health, but it’s also a way for your dentist to ensure you’re doing what’s necessary to maintain your oral health on your own. One of the things a dental hygienist has to discuss with patient after patient is flossing. So why is flossing important to your health?
“Experts say that brushing without flossing can leave almost 35 percent of the teeth’s surface unclean and prone to various oral problems like bad breath, plaque build-up and gum diseases.”
Never Go a Day Without Flossing
While brushing your teeth might give you that freshly clean sense of feeling, just brushing is not enough to truly cleanse your pearly whites. Brushing gets the top layer, but not what’s beneath the surfaces. Those bristles can’t get between every single tooth, which commonly leaves food particles, and bacteria behind. That’s why it’s essential for you to floss top to bottom every day, and your dentist can definitely tell if you don’t.
To learn more about how flossing helps your health refer to Does Flossing Benefit More Than Just Oral Health?
Make Sure Your Toothpaste Isn’t Fluoride Free
Do you ever think about the ingredients in your toothpaste? So many consumers look for teeth whitening, but there is a greater purpose your toothpaste might be missing.
“Dental health experts worry that more people are using toothpaste that skips the most important ingredient — fluoride — and leaves them at a greater risk of cavities.”
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry’s Stance
American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) encourages appropriate amounts of fluoride in toothpaste and to use such toothpaste twice a day for all children. Research has shown evidence that fluoride reduces cavities which is particularly important in young brushers. You want your kid’s teeth to be healthy from childhood to adulthood and that’s why we recommend the use of fluoride toothpaste for all children.
To learn more about fluoride toothpaste refer to Experts question benefits of fluoride-free toothpaste.
Are You Brushing the Right Way?
Just brushing your teeth isn’t enough. You have to make sure you’re brushing your teeth the right way.
“Despite most of us thinking that we’re brushing our teeth correctly or flossing frequently enough, dentist visits are often full of surprises. Irritation, cavities, gingivitis ― the list of our maladies goes on and on.”
Proper Dental Hygiene
Your oral health is dependent on your dental hygiene routine. That means brushing twice a day—morning and night, for at least a couple minutes. You also need to make sure you’re not brushing too hard or too softly. Brushing should not hurt so make should you’re applying a gentle amount of pressure. Finally, it’s vitally important to make sure you’re brushing every part of your teeth. Not just top and bottom, but front to back, and don’t forget about the side facing your tongue.
To learn more about the proper brushing technique and what area you’re most likely to miss refer to You’re Probably Forgetting To Brush This Part Of Your Teeth.
A Link Found Between Chronic Gum Disease and Alzheimer’s Disease
Researchers have discovered a link between periodontitis, more commonly referred to as long-term gum disease, and the mental deterioration disease, Alzheimer’s.
“People with chronic gum inflammation for 10 or more years were 70 percent more likely than people without periodontitis to develop Alzheimer’s disease.”
Good Dental Care Is Important to Your Overall Health
While they are not sure if chronic gum disease is a risk factor or may actually be a partial cause to the development of Alzheimer’s, any sort of connection is troubling. This recent revelation should be an eye-opener to show people of all ages just how important dental care is. No matter how young you are or old you get, proper dental hygiene is important to prevent gum disease. Make sure to brush your teeth at least twice a day, floss daily, use mouthwash, and scrape your tongue to ensure your pearly whites stay healthy for years to come.
To learn more about this study and the link between periodontitis and Alzheimer’s disease refer to Long-Term Gum Disease Linked To Alzheimer’s Disease.
Don’t Ditch Your Dental Floss
Recently, the dental industry was rocked by reports that flossing your teeth may not be as important as dentists make it out to be.
“The AP report looked at five analyses of 25 studies in total that compare the use of a toothbrush with the combined use of a toothbrush and floss. The reviews found that evidence supporting the health benefits of flossing is “very unreliable” and of “very low” quality. Other studies cited by the American Dental Association and American Academy of Periodontology as proof of the benefits of flossing used outdated testing methods, lasted for too short a time, or studied too few people to be deemed reliable.”
Keep Flossing For Now
You should be reminded though that this doesn’t show evidence that flossing isn’t essential to your daily oral healthcare routine. It just tells us that not enough time has been spent researching the subject of flossing. At the end of the day, it’s important to remove that extra plaque and leftover food particles clinging to your teeth and gums.
To learn more about the debate over flossing refer to Sorry Haters, But You Can’t Stop Flossing Your Teeth Just Yet.
DIY Teeth Straightening Can Cause Irreversible Damage
There’s a new trend in the oral health world—teens are attempting to straighten their teeth at home without the advice of a professional. These kids are using household items such as rubber bands or paper clips to get a straight smile and skip the orthodontist altogether.
“Orthodontists are warning parents and patients of the dangers in the recent trend of at-home teeth straightening techniques, saying that in some cases these do-it-yourself braces can cause irreparable damage to your teeth.”
An Orthodontist Should Be Your First Call
Orthodontists are now having these teenagers come into their office and after surveying the damage have to explain that the effects cannot be reversed. Things such as rubber bands can actually proceed up into the gums and kill the root of a tooth. The kids can even lose teeth which can cost anywhere into the five-figure range to replace—much more than the price of proper braces. Bottom line—when it comes to teeth straightening, always seek professional help.
To learn more about this dangerous trend refer to Orthodontists warn against uptick in DIY teeth straightening.