Common Reasons Why Some People Just Don’t Floss

Everyone knows you need to floss your teeth to promote strong teeth, and especially strong gums. Although flossing isn’t everything when it comes to the health of your teeth, it does go a long way in cleaning the areas of the mouth that brushing cannot reach. Considering that flossing your teeth is the number one way to prevent tooth loss due to gum disease, why is it that almost every one can remember to brush at least twice a day, but some people just refuse to floss? Here’s a list of the top 5 reasons why.

  1. It hurts to floss. This is the number one reason people don’t floss their teeth. However, if you experience discomfort, bleeding from the gums, or swollen gums after flossing, you most likely already have gingivitis, the mildest form of gum disease. This means you need to floss more, not less.
  2. I can’t reach most of my teeth to floss them. Although it’s true some people have very small mouths that can make flossing difficult, it’s not impossible. Try using a dental stimulator such as Soft Picks or Stim-U-Dents. These are similar to toothpicks that allow you to use only one hand.
  3. I don’t have time to floss. One of the worst excuses there are. No one on earth is so busy that they don’t have 4 minutes a day to floss. If you can find time to style your hair, apply makeup, or perform any other personal grooming habit, you have time to floss.
  4. I don’t know how to floss. Flossing properly does take a little practice, but it’s not difficult. Begin with a piece approximately 18 inches long. Wrap most of the floss around the middle finger of your left hand (unless you are left handed, then use your right hand), then wrap the remainder around the middle finger of your right hand. Pull the floss tight and slip it between your teeth. When the floss reaches your gum line, bend it into a U shape and move the floss up and down your tooth. If you are still unsure, you can always ask your dentist for a quick demonstration, they will be only too happy to instruct you.
  5. I never get food stuck between my teeth, so I don’t need to floss. Even if you were lucky enough to never get food stuck in-between your teeth, this is still not a reason to never floss. Your mouth has millions of bacteria in it. While most are harmless, there is one called plaque, which lives off the sugars you eat. Plaque sticks to your teeth and wears small holes in your tooth enamel. When you floss, you remove plaque from your mouth, plaque that your toothbrush cannot reach.

Flossing is such an important part of your health. It prevents decay, keeps your teeth and smile looking young, prevents your teeth from falling out from gum recessions andhelps avoid expensive dental bills. Find the time, stop making excuses, and floss when you brush.

Zane Schwarzlose is a writer at Fahrenheit Marketing, an Austin web design firm. Zane is glad that he flosses regularly.