Mature woman smilingIn our Sandy Springs office I am often asked ‘how frequently I should floss’ or ‘is flossing really necessary’?  I am well known for responding, “You should only brush and floss the teeth you want to keep!”

Brushing and flossing your teeth are the two most important actions you need to do between visits.  The goal of brushing and flossing is to reduce or rid your mouth of harmful bacteria that adversely affect both your gums and teeth. Microscopic bacteria feed off the food particles left on our teeth and you need to remove them and their food source.

Bacteria produce acid from their feeding that eats into your tooth enamel creating cavities.  Additional toxins produced from bacteria forming plaque inflame and irritate your gum tissue. And finally, without proper care the bacteria produce sulfur compounds that create bad breath.

In the most recent studies, poor oral health can be linked to other health related issues that may stem from oral bacteria entering the bloodstream affecting other internal organs.  Regular brushing and flossing removes the plaque and the bacteria plaque contains. Unfortunately, many people think brushing alone is sufficient to rid the mouth of these bacteria.   But flossing is a key component to your good oral hygiene program.

If you don’t floss and allow plaque to eventually harden into tartar it can only be removed by your dentist.  Over time, failing to floss will result in gum disease, which if left untreated progresses to periodontal disease and then gingival recession, bone loss, loose teeth, and so on until ultimately your teeth are lost.

The American Dental Association recommends that you floss at least once a day, but in our Sandy Spring office I recommend once in the morning and once at night as the better protocol.  Again, only the ones you want to keep.  If we can be of assistance please contact us for a complimentary evaluation.

ZoAnna Scheinfeld, MS, DMD

290 Carpenter Drive, 200A

Atlanta, GA 30328


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