Monthly Archives: October 2014

Floss Away Your Fossilization: How Flossing Increases Life Expectancy

How Flossing Increases Life Expectancy

Flossing is fundamental for good oral hygiene and is always recommended by your dentist, yet many people are guilty of neglecting this important daily habit.

Overlooking the value of a simple strand of floss is an easy mistake to make in an era of high-powered electronic toothbrushes, laser whitening, and tongue scrapers. With so many high-tech gadgets available to give you a futuristic clean, the humble minty string can get lost in the shuffle. As far as dental care technology has come, however, there is still no viable alternative to this simple, yet important task.

Quite simply, there are many benefits of flossing as it cleans the inner surfaces of your teeth and gum-line that other forms of oral care cannot access. It isn’t complicated to learn how to floss and takes no more than 5 minutes to complete.

Not flossing is akin to leaving a third of your mouth unwashed, and those who do floss have been proven to enjoy a longer life expectancy. 


The Importance of Tooth Flossing

Flossing daily is a vital step in the prevention of gum disease, and can be an aesthetic life-saver when stubborn spinach or broccoli becomes lodged between your teeth. What may surprise people is that it plays a very important role in protecting your heart.

When you floss, you are effectively scraping harmful bacteria away to prevent it from inflaming your gums. When left to fester, this bacteria is allowed to enter your system and accumulate in your arteries. Plaque formation here can lead to clogged arteries.

Furthermore, gum inflammation signals your body to trigger an immune response which can narrow the arteries.


Reduce Bacteria with Flossing

Estimates on the exact length of time that flossing can add to your life vary. An exact figure is impossible to generate considering the myriad of variables that one must account for when calculating life expectancies.

However, doctors and dentists agree that reducing your body’s exposure to bacteria and limiting its immune response can result in the addition of anywhere between 6 and 9 years to your life.


Make Flossing a Daily Habit

Flossing should not be overly time-consuming, but it should be a daily habit after brushing your teeth each night. A couple of minutes each day will grant you a longer life, and the process is really quite simple.

Remember, when it comes to intensity, less is more – if you are too aggressive cleaning your teeth it could actually draw the gumline back, ironically increasing your risk of gum disease. 

Assisting Your Teeth with Remineralization

Maintain Healthy Teeth Through Remineralization

Teeth are strong on the outside because of the mineral bonds of enamel, it is the strongest substance in the human body. Even though it is the strongest, enamel can be corroded by acids and carbohydrates from food, beverages, and bacteria that flourishes in your mouth. 

Tooth decay is associated with the loss of enamel because the layer that covers teeth is worn down and can no longer protect them as effectively. Saliva has cellular compounds that help heal teeth, and the proteins in your saliva work to remineralize enamel. Enamel cannot be re-grown but saliva works hard to re-harden it.

Without remineralization, your teeth would be soft and would not be able to chew or break foods down. Even though saliva helps the battle against bacteria, sometimes the bacteria wins and leads to plaque, cavities and tooth decay. Enamel can be worn for many reasons including poor oral hygiene and a diet with high sugar or acid intake.

Achieve Strong Teeth with these Simple Steps!

  • You can brush with toothpaste that contains fluoride in it. Fluoride is a compound used in toothpaste to help resist and reduce tooth decay. Your dentist can give you a fluoride treatment to help restore the enamel during your visit, however, you should be brushing a minimum of twice a day for the best results. 
  • Teeth whitening kits are available at drugstores and contain calcium peroxide to help increase calcification. This is a simple at-home method you can try, and you can use these kits quite regularly.
  • If you chew gum on a regular basis, make sure xylitol is an ingredient listed. Xylitol helps prevent plaque from building up and restores alkaline levels in the mouth which reduce bacteria. Consistent use of xylitol helps to increase the protective factors of your saliva resulting in mineralization of enamel 
  • You can also assist remineralization by eating healthy, nutritious foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, and plain yogurt. Try to avoid sugary snacks that have high acidity because these foods will eat at the enamel much faster.
  • Water is important for hydration and avoiding xerostomia (dry mouth). Water helps to wash away food or debris left in your mouth while at the same time keeping your saliva levels high. Saliva is almost 100% water, so it is important for optimal oral health.