Flossing Debate: Is It Really Useful?

Flossing Benefits - Dentist Pineville, NC

Benefits of Flossing | Pineville, NC Dentist | Royce Family Dentistry

The Teeth Flossing Debate

Questions have been raised about flossing within and outside of the dental community. One side of the conversation consist of questions from the patients, like “Is flossing really that useful?”, “Does flossing actually spread bacteria around the mouth?”, “Should I continue to floss or just quit altogether?”.

While the other side of the conversation consists of dentists who are ardent supporters of flossing and researchers who have their doubts. Read more below about the flossing debate.

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The majority of dental professionals and the American Dental Association still recommend flossing. As a matter of fact, in a statement issued in January 2019 the ADA concluded that “recent media coverage and a single study had raised unwarranted concerns about the safety of dental floss and the practice. Yet, the data included in the study is insufficient”. They concluded their statement with a recommendation that people continue the practice of flossing for the sake of optimal dental health.

Should You Quit Flossing?

Flossing daily is helpful for getting rid of food remnants and plaque in between the teeth. It allows you to reach those areas where your toothbrush cannot.

People who include flossing in their oral care routine have better overall dental health. This is because flossing helps to remove the food source for the bacteria that naturally exist in the mouth. It is a preventative measure to combat enamel erosion, infection and even worse conditions.

If the main goal with flossing is to dislodge not only food but also plaque from your teeth then it’s purpose is fulfilled. Plaque is a biofilm of bacteria on the teeth. Flossing helps to loosen plaque in areas where there is a buildup before it can become tartar. When plaque is left undisturbed, your mouth becomes the perfect place for bacteria to thrive. The result is acid produced by bacteria that causes enamel erosion. This can potentially lead to intense pain and tooth loss.

Flossing is not The Problem

What is evident is that the act of flossing is not the problem. However, questions remain around the ingredients that are used in some dental floss such as the waxed type. Even with ingredient concerns being raised, the ADA and the CDA still recommend that patients continue to floss daily.


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Call the friendly staff at Royce Family Dentistry at 704.275.5442 to schedule a visit with Dr. Ogletree today. We can provide regular cleaning and exams as well as x-rays to ensure quality overall oral health.