Flossing - Critical or Unnecessary?
- A. Vandiveer Strait, BA, DDS, FAGD
For you or anyone who wants to keep their teeth and better than that, keep them healthy, FLOSSING is ESSENTIAL!
Brushing and flossing have the same purpose in effective oral hygiene home care. The purpose of both is to enable you to loosen and make possible the elimination of bacterial plaque from your teeth. It is important for you to understand two things:
- Only bacterial plaque can cause you to get decay and/or gum disease!
- Bacterial plaque is adhesive, it CAN NOT be removed by rinsing or irrigation.
Since you cannot brush between your teeth effectively nor can you clean well along the gum line or under the gums between the teeth. flossing is the ONLY method that can be effective in doing this. This means with NO flossing you WILL get dental disease, either decay or gum disease, or both.
According to the Waterpik company traditional flossing is not necessary and you can just use a “Waterflosser”. A giant outpoint is: If that was true then you would not have to brush your teeth either. I do believe however, most people’s flossing technique is poor, laborious and ineffective. After evaluating traditional flossing using your fingers to hold the floss of thousands of patients I am absolutely convinced flossing by holding the floss with your fingers does NOT work, especially in the back of the mouth.
However if you use and you are properly instructed in using a specific floss holder and floss combination you can be very effective and efficient. At Wilton Dental Associates we have spent 30+ years evaluating and perfecting the preventive Home Care products and techniques we recommend and teach you as a patient to use. We know what works and what does not work based on the elimination of the Causative dental disease causing bacteria which we confirm and monitor using a Phase microscope. The proof of this is that for all of our patients who use the techniques and products we recommend and are confirmed as effective, 95% Never get any new Dental Disease! And you can TOO!
As a Bacteriologist, a Periodontist, and a Preventive Dentist the idea that you can use an irrigation device to eliminate the need for flossing is a terrible joke on the health of the general public. However, for you or anyone who wants to keep their teeth healthy an irrigation device like a Waterflosser/Waterpik has an important place in oral hygiene and in preventing dental disease.
What Waterpik has show with their research is that the Waterflosser/Waterpik helps REDUCE plaque and reduce inflammation, BUT they never showed any research comparing the Waterflosser/Waterpik to the combination of “proper” Brushing, flossing, and “Waterflossing”. If that was done I am certain it would show the same results we have gotten. The research we have done comparing hundreds of patients who brushed, flossed, and used a Waterflosser/Waterpik compared to some who only used a Waterflosser/Waterpik or compared to some who brushed and used a Waterflosser/Waterpik showed a dramatically better result when all three were used together. And the secret is also not WHAT you use, but HOW you use it. In our office the BEST RESULTS have been accomplished by using one specific Electric Toothbrush along with one specific Floss Holder and one specific type of Floss, along with one specific model of the Waterflosser by Waterpik. We also have found that a Specially trained Dental Hygienist acting as an Instructor and Coach can improve the patients results dramatically. In many cases patients who had a history of continuous dental problems and who’s home care could be demonstrated to be ineffective when judged using a Phase Microscope were improved so that they not only demonstrated 100% effective elimination of the disease causing dental plaque from their teeth, but in addition had no new dental disease year after year since they changed what they were doing.
If you really want to have a healthy, beautiful smile for a lifetime you need a team who will provide the technology and support to achieve this, who have the goal of eliminating the cause of dental disease and who GUARANTEE results.
See our other blogs and call Wilton Dental Associates now!