How Much Can Skipping Flossing Really Hurt?

Dental-ExamDr. William E. DeWitt of DeWitt Dentistry in Elmhurst frequently treats patients with dental diseases that occurred due to poor dental hygiene. Many people unfortunately don’t realize the importance of flossing—some surveys show that as many as 80 percent of people don’t floss regularly. Some patients believe that flossing is optional, and that brushing twice per day is the only thing that really matters. But the truth is that flossing is mandatory for a number of reasons. Learn the potential consequences when you choose to skip flossing.

Why Do You Need to Floss?
There are deep spaces and crevices between the teeth that a toothbrush just can’t access. Toothbrushes are designed to clean the front, top and back surfaces of the teeth, but they don’t clean the sides very well. Floss is the best way to clean even the most hidden places in the mouth that harbor leftover food particles, plaque and film. Floss also helps you clean very close to the gumline.

Dental Disease Due to Lack of Flossing
Diseases and infection of the gums and roots of the teeth often happen to patients who don’t floss their teeth regularly for many years. Gum disease (periodontitis) affects over 47 percent of adults over 30, and it’s mostly because they neglect their dental hygiene and don’t understand the importance of flossing. Infected, swollen abscesses can happen in the area between the gum and tooth as well when a patient fails to floss.

Flossing Tips for Better Dental Health
There are simple ways to remember to floss your teeth after meals and before bedtime. First, purchase enough floss containers so that you have one in every room of your house—at the very least there should always be floss in the bedroom, bathroom and living room where you relax after eating. If you don’t like regular floss, keep an ample supply of floss picks nearby. The more you see floss around your house, the more likely you’ll be to use it.

Schedule a Checkup Soon
You and your dentist will be happy with the results at your next checkup if you take up the habit of flossing every day. Call DeWitt Dentistry in Elmhurst today at (630) 279-2121 to schedule your next visit.