The Nightly Grind
Everyone you work with knows that you had a salad for lunch today; there’s a piece of spinach stuck between two of your front teeth. Or maybe you had some popcorn in the afternoon and a piece of corn kernel got stuck between your molars. It could be that your teeth are very close together and the toothbrush just can’t get between them well enough to clean the plaque off. Whatever the cause, flossing is important and for more than just cosmetic reasons.
Can’t I Just Brush?
When you brush your teeth well, the bristles sweep away particles of food left from your meals and the sticky bacteria that feeds on it. You can get those bristles around the front, back, and chewing surfaces of your teeth, but no matter how hard you try, you can’t get between them.
Floss does. You’ll need to glide it over the front and back of the space between your teeth in order to remove the plaque and prevent cavities.
Preventing decay isn’t the only thing that flossing does, it can also helps prevent gingivitis and gum disease. Because bacteria feeds on the remains of your lunch and burrow down into your gums, there’s no way for your toothbrush or toothpaste to reach those areas enough to clean them thoroughly.
Symptoms of Gum Infections
When gum pockets go uncleaned, the bacteria begin to eat whatever they can: plaque, the roots of your teeth, the ligaments connecting your teeth, and even the bone. While all this is happening, you may experience swelling or bleeding of your gums, infected gums, loosening teeth, root surface cavities, bad breath, and pain. But of course, all this can be prevented by flossing every day.
Periodontal health is important for your whole body, and is tied to heart disease, infertility, diabetes, and a host of other conditions. Flossing is a small step that can help prevent these terrible health issues from taking their toll. If you don’t know where to start, Dr. Jamsheed at Encino Dental Studio can help you get back on the road to excellent dental health.
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