If you knew of one thing you can do every day that takes less than one minute, costs mere pennies, and can help you live a healthy life, would there be any reason why you wouldn’t do it? Of course not. And yet, that's exactly what happens every day when the majority of Americans fail to floss their teeth. Why is flossing so important to practice daily? Here are 4 aspects of flossing to keep in mind.
Flossing and fresh breath
Let's start at the beginning: flossing daily is a standard part of a healthy oral hygiene routine. It cleans tiny food particles out from between teeth, which prevents those particles from fermenting or rotting and turning into a leading cause of halitosis, or bad breath.
This is a strong reason to make daily flossing a habit: it will help you reduce or eliminate an embarrassing and frustrating problem that can cause social problems and affect your self esteem. But, it goes further.
Flossing and tooth decay
"it will help you reduce or eliminate an embarrassing and frustrating problem..."
Those same tiny bits of food that floss removes become hotbeds of bacterial activity if they remain in your mouth. After all, the environment is perfect for bacteria: warm, moist, with ready access to sugary energy every time you chew something.
Those bacteria lead to an accumulation of plaque and tartar, and as they feed and grow, they're constantly producing an acidic substance that attacks your teeth. They can also zero in on a weak spot in your tooth's enamel, creating a cavity and opening the tooth to severe infection or decay if left untreated.
If you've ever had a pounding toothache due to untreated tooth decay, the concept of daily flossing become much more important.
Flossing and gum disease
Gum disease, also known as gingivitis, is a painful and potentially dangerous disease in which the gums become inflamed and can get infected. In severe cases, it can lead to tooth loss and mouth ulcers.
When food particles wedge themselves down deep between teeth, continual chewing action and routine movement can cause the food to get lodged at or below the gum line. Then, what was once able to be easily removed via floss has become a source of severe irritation and even infection in the gum. While gingivitis and its effects are bad enough, failing to floss can take you one step further too.
Flossing and your overall health
The same non-flossing consequences that can cause gingivitis can progress even further than that. As well illustrated in the infographic below (created by ADT Security), gum disease can quickly and dangerously travel throughout the body, doing tremendous damage along the way. Serious life-threatening illnesses like heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and more have all been attributed to gum infections that were not effectively treated.
Once again, if you could avoid these problems by investing just one minute a day in thoroughly flossing your teeth, is there really any excuse not to do so?
If it’s time for your next dental cleaning or you have a dental issue that needs attention, it doesn’t have to hurt your budget. In fact, you can actually save on dental care for less than $10 a month. Find out how dental discount plans can help you save 20%-50% off the cost of your dental services.
For more interesting oral health instruction, learn more here.