Why flossing is so important for oral health: Common misconceptions

While we all want our teeth to look their best, there are more serious reasons why it’s important to maintain good oral hygiene. As well as keeping your teeth and gums looking their best, the importance of flossing and brushing is understated for your overall health and well-being. 


The simple act of flossing is too often overlooked when in reality it plays a significant role in your oral health. As well as helping you achieve that fresh, clean feeling, regular flossing prevents plaque buildup between teeth – reducing the risk of cavities, gum disease, and even more serious health issues like heart disease and diabetes. 


So, if you’ve ever questioned whether it’s a big deal if you skip flossing, join us as we delve into the importance of this small but mighty step in looking after your oral health, as well as debunk common misconceptions surrounding flossing.

The Importance of Flossing

Flossing often gets sidelined, but while brushing your teeth is crucial it can’t reach all the nooks and crannies where plaque and food particles hide. This is where flossing comes in, as by sliding floss between teeth and along the gum line, you’re able to remove stubborn plaque and debris that your toothbrush can’t reach. 


Not only does this help prevent gum disease, but eliminating the bacteria responsible for inflammation and infection also significantly reduces the risk of cavities. When left unchecked, plaque buildup can lead to decay and tooth loss. Incorporating flossing into your daily oral care routine alongside brushing will give you that thorough clean you need to preserve your radiant smile for years to come.

Common Flossing Mistakes

Despite flossing being a well-known element of daily oral health care, many people are falling victim to common misconceptions and flossing errors that will likely undermine how effective it is. One of the most typical mistakes is believing that flossing aggressively is better when in reality being too forceful can damage gums and even cause bleeding. 


Another point of confusion is that flossing only needs to be done when something is stuck between your teeth. In truth, any reliable dental checkup will confirm the importance of flossing every day to remove plaque.

Effective flossing technique

The proper technique for flossing simply involves gently sliding the floss between each tooth, curving it around the base of each tooth in a C shape, and removing it smoothly for a thorough cleaning. Remember, flossing should never feel painful. Once you master the right technique and floss every day, you’re guaranteed to reap the full benefits of this quick yet powerful practice.

Choosing the Right Dental Floss

Choosing the right materials can make a significant difference in your oral hygiene routine, yet many people are unsure where to begin when it comes to flossing. When selecting the most suitable floss for your needs, consider factors such as comfort, effectiveness, and any specific dental concerns you may have like sensitivity or orthodontic appliances. 

Waxed floss

  • Glides more easily between teeth, making it suitable for tight spaces.
  • Less likely to fray or break during use.
  • Varieties come in various thicknesses to suit different tooth gaps.

Unwaxed floss

  • Ideal for wider gaps between teeth.
  • Provides a more tactile sensation, allowing users to feel debris being removed.

Flavoured floss

  • Makes flossing more enjoyable, and may encourage regular use.
  • Available in a variety of flavours like mint or lemon, catering to different tastes.

Dental tape

  • Wider and flatter than traditional floss, making it suitable for individuals with sensitive gums or braces.
  • Provides a broader cleaning surface for efficient plaque removal.

Floss picks

  • Convenient for on-the-go use.
  • Ideal for individuals with dexterity issues.
  • Usually comes with a versatile built-in toothpick.


Experiment with different options until you find the one that works best for you, and remember, the most important thing is to floss regularly for optimal oral health.

Flossing Tips for Better Oral Hygiene

Incorporating flossing into your daily oral care routine doesn’t have to feel like a daunting task. Here are some practical tips to help you make flossing a fast and seamless part of your daily routine:

  • Schedule it: Set aside a specific time each day dedicated to flossing, such as after brushing your teeth in the morning or before bedtime.
  • Keep floss handy: Keep floss or floss picks in places where you’re likely to see them, like next to the sink, or on your bedside table.
  • Technique matters: Use a gentle sawing motion to ease the floss between your teeth, then curve it into a C shape to hug each tooth and remove plaque effectively.
  • Be consistent: Aim to floss at least once a day to prevent plaque buildup, ideally flossing after each meal.
  • Find what works for you: Experiment with different types of floss and flossing aids to find the ones that suit your preferences and make the process more convenient. Keeping a regular habit and tackling the task with patience will lead flossing to become a simple and rewarding habit that delivers a healthy smile.

Look After Your Smile By Flossing 

Flossing isn’t just about how beautiful your smile will look or how bright your teeth are – it’s a crucial step in maintaining optimal dental health and overall well-being. Today you have taken the first step in dispelling common misconceptions and embracing the importance of flossing – now you can work towards significantly reducing the risk of gum disease, cavities, and other oral health issues, all with the help of some floss!


Remember it’s all about consistent oral care, so make it a habit to floss daily and schedule regular dental checkups so you can reap the rewards of a healthier, happier smile.

Improved oral hygiene with Tandara Dental

If you are struggling to master flossing or have existing issues with gum disease or tooth pain, the experts at Tandara Dental in Perth are here to help. With longstanding expertise and personalised care for each patient, our friendly dental practitioners can help you with everything from regular checkups to root canals.


Take the first step towards a brighter future for your smile, and book a dental check-up with the helpful team at Tandara Dental today.

About The Author

Tandara Dental

Tandara Dental

At Tandara Dental Centre in Gosnells, we’re happy to discuss all of your care options with you, so that you can choose the one that’s best for your smile. Contact us today to schedule!