Can Flossing Improve My Oral Health? Your Lincoln Dentist Weighs in

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You’re honest with yourself, so it’s not hard for you to admit that your oral hygiene has not been stellar. You know that you could be more consistent about practicing your daily routines but you’re wondering which ones are really necessary. For example, is it necessary to floss your teeth? Are the benefits real or has this hygienic practice been given more credit than it deserves for impacting oral health? This question will be answered by your Lincoln dentist as you continue reading>

Is Dental Flossing Important?

Before we address the “why,” let’s look at what flossing involves. It is the practice of using a very thin, string-like material to probe between your teeth and just under the gum line to remove excess food particles and bacteria. But still, are these functions important?

Here are two immediate benefits of flossing:

  • Removes harmful bacteria – The main enemy of your oral health is bacteria. These critters are always present in your mouth – some good and others bad. The latter multiply, though, when you eat foods – especially those high in sugars. They feed on the leftover debris and if not addressed, will form plaque and sink beneath the gum line into the pockets between your gum tissue and teeth. Unaddressed, this can lead to very serious issues like gum disease, tooth loss and even heart problems.

  • Helps to ensure fresh breath – Flossing also helps to freshen your breath by removing the bacteria that contribute to foul odors. This is because the areas between your teeth serve as perfect breeding grounds for bacteria, who love warm, tight spaces. So as the foods break down and convert to sugar and the bacteria begin to feed and grow, unpleasant smells provide warnings of the unhealthy developments that are taking place.

How to Maximize Your Flossing Efforts

To get the most out of your flossing efforts, there are two other practices that are of paramount importance to be involved in:

  • Brushing your teeth – The acts of brushing and flossing your teeth should be viewed like the interactions of a married couple, meaning the two go hand-in-hand. The latter removes intruders between your teeth and under the gum line while the former removes bacteria and food that collect on the teeth. It’s best to participate in both activities at least twice a day to ensure your oral health.

  • Visiting your dentist regularly – Just as important as maintaining excellent oral hygiene habits is visiting your dentist at least twice a year for cleanings and checkups. These appointments will help to reinforce your efforts at home and ensure that your great dental care is not done in vain, as your dentist will be able to detect any encroaching issues and address them before they manifest into bigger problems.

So now you’re ready to take your oral care to the next level by adding flossing into your regimen? And be sure to maximize your new and approved routine by scheduling a visit with your dentist in Lincoln today, so that your mouth, teeth and gums will be fortified for years to come.

About the Author

Dr. Craig P. Vacek earned his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of Nebraska, Medical Center College of Dentistry. In addition, he continues to participate in hundreds of hours of continuing education each year to ensure that he stays abreast of the latest advancements in the world of dentistry. A member of several professional organizations, Dr. Vacek practices at Vacek Family Dentistry and can be reached for more information through his website.