Floss What You Got
Did you know that candy floss (aka cotton candy) was invented by a dentist? It sounds like it could be a conspiracy (or a really profitable-but-unethical business plan!) - you know: the dentist who ruins your teeth by selling you sticky candy only to fix them for you for an additional fee! We wonder if this is what people mean when they say 'circular economy' *ba-dum-bump*.
In all seriousness though, we're not here today to talk about candy floss. As a team of actually legit dental professionals, we are going to talk about 'regular' floss. You know, the one that's good for your teeth that nobody seems to want to do! How do we know this to be true? A few years ago, a news story kept circulating the interweb with one main message - that people didn't need to floss because the benefits were as well-researched as we would have wanted it to be (read one of the articles here). So popular media was basically telling people to ditch the floss 😳 and people on social feeds kept sharing this information - clearly in agreement. And according to a report by the Canadian Dental Association, about 28% of Canadians floss 5 times a week. Ummm, there are 7 days in a week...aren't we supposed to floss daily 🤨? Yup - we just checked (to be certain), the CDA recommends flossing daily for healthy teeth - read the free guide here.
If you want the short version of why you should floss, visit our previous blog post here.
Otherwise, if you really, truly, 100% hate flossing, here are a couple of other tools you can try in order to make the task a little bit easier.
1) Dental Tape
To be honest, dental tape is very similar to dental floss. But, unlike floss, which has a rounded shape (like thread), dental tape is wider and flatter (like tape), so some people prefer this over floss.
2) Dental Flossers
This one technically is 'dental floss' - but with an added plastic attachment so it's easier to hold. Albeit it takes a bit of practice, but this might be good for people with mobility issues who have trouble grasping regular floss.
3) Silicone Flossers
Usually made out of medical grade silicone, these can be stretched out to fit in between teeth. If you feel that 'regular' floss cuts into the gums because they're so fine, you may want to try a silicone version, which feels a little gentler.
If you are using braces or have something like a dental bridge, flossing can be awkward and tedious. But, Super Floss was designed for you. It has a 'threadable' end, which you can use to get underneath and between a bridge or navigate the areas where brackets and wires make it especially difficult to clean with a normal brush or floss.
5) Water Flossers
Water flossers - like its name suggests - shoot small streams of water in between your teeth, so some people use it instead of floss. Some dental experts say it is not as effective as regular floss - so it should be used in conjunction to regular flossing rather than 'instead of regular flossing'.
6) Interdental Brushes
These look like miniature versions of the brushes we use to clean baby bottles. They are designed to be small enough to fit in between teeth and the bristles help remove food debris from your mouth. They are also pretty helpful when the user wears braces.
While toothpicks may be useful in getting rid of larger pieces of food, it really is not effective at getting in between the teeth and doing as good job as regular floss. It can also irritate the gums and overall, probably the worst option out of this list (other than 'do nothing', of course!)
8) If in doubt, dance it out
YES, this is a joke and it is NOT a substitute for regular flossing :D. You might have more fun with it than regular flossing though. Interestingly, The Floss Dance wasn't invented by a dentist, but by a teenager. And it didn't become a dance craze until 2016. Still curious? Check out the instructions are how to dance The Floss here.
Flossing Tooth Giphy from https://giphy.com/