Most Common Myths About Flossing

Posted Jul 2nd, 2019

Most Common Myths About Flossing

Our dentists recommend our patients brush their teeth at least twice a day, and floss once a day. But some patients choose to skip flossing for a number of reasons that are actually myths. Here, our Edmonton dentists explain why flossing is so important and why you should never skip it. 


Preventive oral hygiene is more than attending regular dental checkups. It's also imperative to practice daily oral health care routines at home. This means brushing and flossing regularly. 

Daily flossing is the best way to clean between the teeth and under the gum line. Flossing not only helps clean these spaces, it prevents plaque from building up so you can avoid damage to the teeth and gums.

There are many myths about flossing, which can cause people to skip this vital oral health care practice altogether. Here's our Edmonton dentists debunk those myths, and explain why you should never skip the flossing. 

Myth 1: You only need to floss when you have food stuck in your teeth.

Brushing alone won't remove bacteria in between teeth, which means only a portion of the tooth’s surface is getting cleaned. Even if you don't see or feel something stuck between your teeth, there is plaque building up that can only be removed by flossing to prevent issues like cavities, gum disease and bad breath. 

Myth 2: You can use mouthwash instead of floss.

Like brushing, mouthwash won't remove the plaque between your teeth. While mouthwash can be an effective addition to your oral health care routine, it should never be used as a replacement for flossing.

Myth 3: You can't floss because you have braces.

It may be harder to floss with braces, but it is still a necessary practice. With braces, gums are more likely to become inflamed, so flossing will help keep your gum line clean and free from plaque build up during your orthodontic treatment. Today, there are also alternative orthodontic treatment options, like Invisalign clear aligners, that can be removed for brushing and flossing to make the process easier. 

Myth 4: Your children are too young to floss.

It's never too early for kids to start flossing. In fact, the earlier they start the more likely it is for them to develop and maintain good oral health care routines into adulthood. If they are finding it difficult to floss on their own, try to encourage them and help them along the way. If your child is under 10 years old, you can do it for them. 

Myth 5: Your gums bleed when you floss, so you should stop.

If your gums bleed, this is usually a sign that you need to floss more often. Your gums could be bleeding simply because they’re not used to being flossed. The more you floss, the less your gums will bleed. If your gums are bleeding continually, then it could be a sign of gingivitis or gum disease, so be sure to share any concerns with your dentist. 

To learn more about flossing, or to schedule an exam and cleaning, contact our Edmonton dentists today. 

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