Can My Dentist Really Tell if I Haven’t Been Flossing?

Posted Sep 8th, 2017 in News

Can My Dentist Really Tell if I Haven’t Been Flossing?

While you may be able to “fool” your dentist for a short time after you stop flossing consistently, he will eventually be able to tell.


The more important question is, is the short term benefit of not “getting in trouble” with your dentist worth the long term negative effects that comes with poor oral hygiene?

If you have not been flossing as consistently as you ought to be lately, your dentist and hygienist may not be able to tell straight away. Especially if you start flossing again about a week before your appointment, you may be able to fool your dentist because it take around a week of regular flossing for the gums to stop bleeding when they’re cleaned.

And if you are young and healthy, and have a good diet (which of course has an impact on your gum health), you can also decrease the outward signs of not flossing that a dentist or hygienist would notice for a time.

However, you wouldn’t be able to fool them forever.

Think of it this way: it’s very much like what would happen if you stopped consistently exercising and eating a healthy diet. At first, the the negative impact of your more sedentary lifestyle and junk food based diet may not be obvious. You would continue to look, and even feel, more or less the same as before for a few weeks or even months, if you’re lucky.

But these lifestyle changes would catch up with you eventually. So too will not flossing.

At the end of the day, the foundation of good oral health is prevention, not treatment. Making good oral hygiene a part of your daily routine will prevent problems from developing in the first place. If you don’t let the problem develop in the first place, then you’ll never have to deal with it.

What will happen?

Especially if you’re also not brushing regularly as well, infrequent flossing allows the bacteria already present in the mouth to increase in numbers and colonize.

In short, eventually tooth decay and gum disease will begin to take hold in your mouth. Your dentist will then certainly be able to tell your oral hygiene routine is lacking!

In the end, we’ll leave you with these questions: What are the actual benefits of fooling your dentist into thinking you’re flossing regularly when you’re not? Doesn’t that seem a bit silly? Why not just floss regularly instead?

Flossing only takes at most a few minutes a day, and can save you a lot of grief in the long run. Contact our Surrey dentists today for advice on proper flossing technique and gum disease prevention.

From Our Team

  • It is our commitment to provide you with dental care that will enhance not only your oral health, but also the quality of your life. We are pleased to offer a complete range of dental services at our Surrey location, in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.
    - Dr. Anna Rosenczweig

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