While everybody knows how important it is to floss, most people don’t do it. In fact, surveys indicate that “only 35 percent of patients use dental floss, and only 2 to 15 percent floss daily.” Although flossing is very effective, many people simply refuse to do it.
Let’s face it, flossing isn’t a lot of fun. People give several reasons for not flossing. Recently there were widespread reports that flossing does not improve your dental health, but this simply isn’t true. People report the following reasons for not flossing:
Fortunately, there is a gentle and effective adjunct to flossing called oral irrigators.
Dental floss is referred to as an interdental cleaner because it removes debris from spaces between your teeth that a toothbrush can’t reach. It’s extremely important to keep the interdental region clean to help prevent cavities and gum disease.
Oral irrigators have been around for a while. The first oral irrigator was called the Waterpik, and it was invented in 1962. People often use the term Waterpik to describe oral irrigators, and they are also sometimes referred to as water flossers or dental water jets.
Whatever you want to call them, many people have discovered that oral irrigators can be an effective alternative to flossing. People prefer oral irrigators to flossing for the following reasons:
More than 70% of Canadians will develop some form of gum disease during their lifetime. Gum disease (also known as periodontal disease) is a serious infection which can threatens the health of your smile. Gum disease is caused by bacteria which feeds on the plaque and calculus in your mouth. Plaque is the gooey film that develops on your teeth after a meal.
Plaque that is not removed through brushing and flossing can harden and develop into calculus (also called tartar), the substance your dental hygienist scrapes of your teeth. It’s essential to remove calculus with an interdental cleaner to prevent gum disease.
It’s equally important for patients to learn the warning signs of this condition. While periodontal disease can be easily prevented, it remains one of the most common oral health issues facing Canadian adults.
The symptoms of gum disease include:
If you have any of the above symptoms, you should visit your dentist right away. The health of your smile could be at risk!
Many people with gum disease find it particularly painful to floss. Not only does it cause pain and bleeding, but it can aggravate the condition. As gum disease advances, the soft tissue begins to pull away from teeth, creating large pockets around the base of teeth where plaque and bacteria begin to collect.
For people who suffer from gum disease, studies indicate that water irrigators are “up to 93% better at reducing bleeding” and “up to 52% better at reducing” gum disease than flossing.
In order to protect your smile from cavities and gum disease, you should brush your teeth, rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash, and use an interdental cleaner like floss or a water irrigator every day.
It’s also very important to visit Dr. Jacobs for regular checkups. So why not give us a call and schedule your next appointment today?
Dr. Michael Jacobs
5955 Malden Road
Canada N9H 1S6
Monday: 9AM – 8PM
Tuesday: 9AM – 8PM
Wednesday: 8AM – 5PM
Thursday: 9AM – 8PM
Friday: 8AM - 4:30PM
Saturday: 9AM - 1PM