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Everything You Know About Flossing Is A Lie

Your dentist won't be happy.
PHOTO: Peter Buckingham

Thanks to the Associated Press, we can all stop feeling guilty for ignoring every dentist who's ever nagged us about flossing, because guess what? "The evidence for flossing is 'weak, very unreliable,' of 'very low' quality, and carries 'a moderate to large potential for bias.'" In other words, it doesn't do shit for our teeth.

Extensive research about flossing has never been done, so it's absurd to claim that flossing can prevent cavities and gum disease. If it makes you feel better, flossing has been proven to slightly reduce gum inflammation, which COULD have some effect on lowering the risk for gum disease, but again, nothing has been proven. 

On the other hand, Wired is arguing that we shouldn't skip this step when it comes to our daily dental routine. Many dentists are aware that there's no real evidence behind the benefits of flossing, but continue to urge their patients to do it. Why? Because even though the benefits haven't been proven, they also haven't been disproven. There needs to be a longer study done on flossing, but the "the problem is you can’t follow people at home and make sure they’re flossing correctly or flossing when they should be.” Plus, doing a study that big and for that long could cost up to $10 million, and nobody's willing to fork that kind of cash over. 

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So it's ultimately your call: to floss or not to floss?

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