‘Flossing-Does it really not get rid of plaque?’- What are the alternatives?
Beechwood Dental in Bournemouth’s response:
The news this week has highlighted that recent studies in USA have revealed that dental flossing is not particularly great for you. Already at Beechwood Dental in Bournemouth, Boscombe we have had patients questioning us this week, so let me explain this further…
Flossing per se isn’t a bad process, as you’ve probably heard from your dentist or hygienist, it’s an efficient way to get rid of plaque that a standard toothbrush simply cannot reach.
Plaque is a major contributor to gum disease, it generates acids that cause cavities, irritates and inflames gums, and can eventually lead to tooth loss.
So you might be thinking what is so bad about flossing? It keeps all those nooks and crannies clean where bacteria like to create havoc, right?
So perhaps it is the methods that people use to floss?
Poor technique can result in pushing plaque and bacteria into spaces underneath the gums and allowing them to grow; leaving people unaware of the damage they are causing until it’s too late.
Scary stuff, eh?
Then there’s the bleeding… a lot of dentists say it’s okay to see a little blood, but is it really? If your gums are bleeding, it means you’re doing something wrong. You shouldn’t be slicing into your gums at all!
Sadly, flossing isn’t for everyone, some people really struggle with shoving something in between their teeth. Now these aren’t alternatives, but they can certainly help:
Anthony, the dentist and Elkie the hygienist at Beechwood Dental in Bournemouth, Boscombe offer alternative advice
- Use a strong, alcohol-free mouthwash.After brushing your teeth thoroughly, swill your mouth out with an anti-bacterial mouthwash. Mouthwashes that contain CPC (cetylpyridinium chloride) and essential oils are great at combating the bacteria that lingers in your mouth. It’ll also washes away any plaque you may have missed.
2. Invest in a high-powered toothbrush.
Electric toothbrushes can have some really great features; they can oscillate, vibrate, rotate or use sonic technology to effectively get rid of plaque. They don’t do all the work though, so be sure to continue brushing thoroughly, and replace the heads every four to six weeks as the bristles do wear down.
3. Use an interdental brush
These are small brushes that help clean in between the teeth where your normal toothbrush doesn’t reach and are useful if you have difficulty in flossing or have large gaps between the teeth.
4. Blast plaque away with a water jet.
To further help remove plaque in places your toothbrush and dental floss can’t reach, give this one a go. It’s especially great for people who wear braces, have complicated dental work, or gum disease.
5.Visit your dentist and hygienist regularly
So if you’ve got any qualms when it comes to flossing, there are alternatives… then again, it’s always beneficial to visit your dentist and hygienist every six months for an examination and periodontal clean.
And if you use all of these techniques? You can be confident that you’ll have the cleanest, most hygienic set of teeth around.
Don’t forget you can now also visit Elkie our hygienist without seeing Anthony our dentist first and choose from a menu of hygiene treatments at ‘Polish and Go’
If you’re after any more advice on this subject, or you’d like to book yourself in for an appointment, then simply give Beechwood Dental in Bournemouth, Boscombe or call on 01202 397074 or book on line at www.beechwooddental.co.uk