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Top Ten Teeth Flossing Myths

teeth flossing

1.  Flossing can loosen dental work

Teeth Flossing cannot loosen your fillings, crowns, veneers, bonding or bridges.  Dental work that comes out after flossing already had something wrong.  

Floss didn't cause the problem it just helped identify it.

2.  If your gums bleed you should stop flossing 

It is not unusual for gums to bleed the first few times you floss.  

They are not bleeding because you flossed, they are bleeding because bacteria has been allowed to live, grow and cause gum inflammation. 

 If you have had your teeth cleaned recently and are flossing properly they should bleed less and less and not continue to bleed after the first week.  

There are some other reasons that gums bleed but inflammation from plaque is the most likely cause.

3. Flossing should always be done before brushing

It makes no difference if you brush and floss your teeth in any particular order or time of day.  Flossing everyday is ideal but any amount of flossing is better than none.

4.  It is not necessary to floss if you have braces

Braces are tough to floss around but when you have braces your gums are more likely to become inflammed.  

Flossing, Waterpiking or using an electric toothbrush is a good idea for those with braces.

Floss alternative for braces

5. It is impossible to floss if your teeth are too close together

I have heard this many times but have never seen teeth that are too close together to floss:)    

For extra tight contacts, try a different kind of floss

Some are tighter than others and an alternate way of cleaning between these super tight ones may be preferable.  If your teeth have suddenly become impossible to floss you may have a loose filling and should see your dentist.

6. It doesn't matter what kind of floss you use

Some types of dental floss remove plaque better than others and some types of floss are better for tight contacts or flossing around fillings or crowns.  

If you have trouble flossing, choose the type of floss that is easiest for you.

7.  You don't need to floss if you have crowns, caps or bridges

Teeth with crowns and bridges can still get cavities and gum disease and should be flossed regularly.   For flossing under bridges, floss threaders or super floss work great.

8.  Flossing is the only way to keep your teeth and gums healthy

Flossing is the best way to clean between your teeth and under your gums but there are some great flossing alternatives that work very well.  

A toothpick, WaterPik Flosser, Hydrofloss, or Sonicare electric toothbrush are good alternatives to dental floss.

don't hurt yourself

9.  It is impossible to damage your gums with dental floss

It is possible to cut into your gums if you don't keep the floss wrapped close to your tooth.

Floss can carve grooves or floss cuts in your gums.  

You may not be aware of floss cuts until your hygienist tells you they are there.  A simple adjustment in the way you floss will allow them to heal.

10.  You should look in the mirror while flossing

Looking in the mirror makes it harder to floss because everything is reversed, you can't see your molars, and you may get your mirror dirty:)  

You may need  mirror at first but once you learn the proper technique, then floss without a mirror.

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