Do I really need to floss?

Do I really need to floss?

One question our dentists are asked every day is ‘do I really need to floss?’

So let’s look at why we floss. If you look at a 3D tooth it has 5 sides. 4 sides plus the top. Your tooth brush can reach the top, plus 2 sides of your teeth so with a good toothbrush you are able to reach 3 out of 5 sides of your teeth. So that’s 60% of your tooth. 

So even if you brush really well, you are still missing 40% of most teeth. The only way to reach the other 40%, or 2 sides of each tooth, is with an interdental brush or floss. There are a variety of interdental brushes available from brands such as Piksters, Colgate or other dental brands and they come in many different colours and sizes. Many people also choose to use either waxed or flavoured dental floss.

However you choose to clean the other 40% of your teeth it is important that you don’t miss it.

So the answer is, no you don’t need to floss everyday as long as you are using another interdental device to clean the 40% of your teeth that you cant reach with your toothbrush, but you have to clean it somehow!

Above is a little video the Australian Dental Association has put together on flossing and interdental devices.

So, now you know why the dentist keeps asking you if you floss! You should brush twice a day and floss at least once a day.