As you know, two days ago I was interviewed by LBC Radio, regarding whether or not flossing is good for you. As I’ve said before, I think flossing is absolutely vital in maintaining a good oral hygiene, especially if you’ve had work done and have implants.
You can listen to the interview here or, if you can’t, you can read it down below!
For decades, dentists have recommended flossing as an essential part of oral hygiene. But how useful is it really? Well, an investigation by the Associated Press revealed that there is insufficient proof to back up this claim. The US Department for Health and Human Services and Agriculture admitted in a letter that the benefits of flossing had never been properly researched. Well, a British dentist at the University of Birmingham, Damian Walmsley also said there was only weak evidence to suggest that flossing is beneficial. But in a statement released earlier this week, the American Dental Association vigorously defended flossing, saying it was an essential part of taking care of your teeth and gums.
So, what do we make of this? Should we all say: “Brilliant, I don’t have to floss any longer!”, or not? Well, Dr. Miguel Stanley, one of the world’s leading speakers in advanced dentistry, joins us.
Miguel, thank you very much for talking to us. What do you make of this news from America?
Well, first of all, I think it’s a really interesting topic and I completely disagree with that statement. I think it’s quite a dangerous and reckless statement, regardless of the results of the investigation.
And let’s just understand one thing: what is the sample of the study? What are the demographics of the people that were involved in the study, how many people were involved in the study, what was their social and economic status? So many things need to be understood in terms of the study for us to understand the results!
So do you think they’re being completely irresponsible in what they’re saying?
Well, I think that before… I mean, this came out in the Guardian yesterday, a highly respected newspaper that’s read by millions of people in the world and, of course, people will be very attracted to the fact that they can read the headliners that say, you know, “Don’t floss!”.
I’ve been practicing dentistry for 18 years and I can say if you have all your teeth in your mouth, you’re a healthy adult, you brush regularly and, you know, you don’t have a lot of gaps in between your teeth, you’ve had no dental care whatsoever and you go for regular checkups, then if you don’t floss for months on end I don’t think that you will have any massive problems.
But what about people that do have a lot of dental work in their mouth, that have a lot of extensive treatments, that have bad oral hygiene, that have issues with maintaining a good hygiene at home, where flossing is part of a daily habit that actually obliges them to spend a little bit of extra care, that could end up saving them hundreds of thousands of pounds over their lifetime, not to the mention saving the NHS hundreds of millions of pounds over the years. So I think that they really should be a little bit more careful in saying a statement like this.
Well, that’s interesting! The British Dental Association put out a statement today saying that small interdental brushes are best for cleaning in between the teeth, where there is space to do so. They say flossing is of little value unless the spaces in between your teeth are too tight for the interdental brushes to fit without hurting or causing harm.
I agree with that but let’s spin it on its head. If you don’t have space in between your teeth, then you have tight contact point like, I would say, the majority of the adult population. When there is little space in between your teeth, then an interdentl brush is, of course, of no consequence and flossing of maximum consequence.
So it depends on what side you’re looking at this problem. If you have spaces in between your teeth, then the interdental brush is of huge value. If you don’t, then flossing is of huge value.
Miguel, thank you very much indeed. That was Miguel Stanley, one of the world’s leading speakers on advanced dentistry.
- Speaking with LBC Radio Station right now!
- Should you be flossing? Yes, you should!
- Can a devitalized tooth hurt? Check the answer here.
- May we all find peace for our future in this world!
- Going to NYC in a few weeks for the DentalXP Implant Summit!