Lets Talk About Floss
We have all had that moment when we finally decide to listen to our dentist, dig out the free floss they gave at the last checkup, and get to work. When performing this seemingly benign task, however, we discover an offensive odor. So, what’s going on here, and is this normal? Well, it’s not normal, but it’s very common. Professionally speaking, there’s not a person on the planet who hasn’t experienced this at some point in their lives.
If the floss smells bad, it means that food particles, usually meat, or some other type of fibrous organic material is trapped in the spaces between teeth and in the sulcus ( small pocket below the gum line). It’s been allowed to sit in this space for 24 plus hours and is rotting. What you’re smelling is a sulfur gas produced by this rotting process. Bacteria will eat the food, and produce toxins and sulfur gas.
Now here is the bad part
If you detect unpleasant smells it means that bacteria have caused an inflammation of the gums which then allows that bacteria to enter your bloodstream. This is very bad for your heart, brain, and lungs. Research now shows a strong relationship between oral hygiene and diseases of the body. Gums that bleed or an offensive smells is your body’s way of saying “ A Little Help Please”. If you’re going to the gym, eating clean foods and doing all the things that go with healthy living, allowing gum disease to persist is like trying to swim across the English Channel carrying a 50lb weight. Oral bacteria will stress your entire body, reduce performance and your ability to fight disease.
OK, so now you know why the floss smells, but what can you do about it? Well, plain and simply you must floss, preferably daily, but every third day at a minimum. While flossing can be a pain, maintaining clean teeth reduces bacteria, as well as bad breath and a host of other unsavory side effects.
Ready To Floss For Real?
Ok, those little wishbone floss thingies that come in a pack of 50…throw them away. They provide a false sense of security, and only serve to transfer bacteria from one place to another. It’s like a hard-bristled toothbrush; they make them because people buy them, but it’s not the way to go and you’d be hard pressed to find a dental professional that recommends them.
To eliminate bad breath and prevent gingivitis, do this just before bedtime:
Brush your teeth.
The type of toothpaste you use is irrelevant but how you brush is critical. I recommend the Grïppi toothbrush or MD Brush toothbrush which are specifically designed to target the areas below the gum line and break the cycle of mediocre brushing. You should ONLY brush in circles if advised to do so by your dentist which they will do if you have gum recession from brushing too hard. If you are brushing your teeth and it just doesn’t seem to be doing the job, it might be time to replace that old toothbrush.
Remember you’re trying to scrape the plaque off the sides of the teeth, so make sure to pull and push against the teeth as you slide the floss down in-between.
Brush with mouthwash
But this time instead of using toothpaste, use Listerine mouthwash. You’ll be brushing with a liquid so it will be running down your arm and making a mess. Once you spit, don’t rinse the mouthwash out. It will continue to kill bacteria for up to 5 hours provided you don’t rinse or drink anything. Don’t relax though, the bacteria will be back in 72 hours.