The Importance of Flossing: The Why & How

Flossing removes food debris and plaque between the teeth where your toothbrush cannot reach. Brushing alone only cleans about 60% of the tooth surfaces. We see more dental health issues in between the teeth so it is vitally important to thoroughly clean these areas each day.

Flossing is the best way to prevent cavities and gum disease between the teeth. Flossing removes plaque on the tooth surface, preventing the buildup of tartar and the acid-producing bacteria it contains. 

It isn’t just cavities that are prevented by regular flossing! Bad breath is caused by a combination of food debris between teeth decomposing and by-products of bacterial metabolism. Flossing can eliminate both of those causes.

One of the most startling reasons to keep your teeth healthy is the unique connection between oral and overall body health. Correlations between inflammatory diseases and inflammation in the mouth are well documented. There’s even a link between heart disease and poor oral health! Brushing and flossing go so much further than just keeping your teeth white.

Now that you’re convinced about the importance of flossing, it’s time to learn the proper flossing technique. To maximize cleaning in minimal time, be sure to:

  • Use clean floss for each tooth
  • Hug each tooth with the floss, making a C-shape
  • Glide the floss up and down the entire side of the tooth, including inside the small gap where the teeth meet the gums-Do not “saw” the floss.
  • Don’t forget to floss both sides of each tooth!


The debate over the effectiveness of flossing ends here. Flossing is an excellent way to remove food and debris left over after brushing, preventing plaque buildup, tartar buildup, and cavities. Along with brushing, flossing is the best way to avoid gum and tooth diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis and to help prevent cavities.

If you have questions about why or how to floss your teeth, contact Piper Family Dentistry at (727) 548-7100 to speak with one of our staff about your concerns. We offer a full range of dental services to meet your preventative and treatment needs.


I've been a patient of Dr. Piper's for the last 19 years so it's very obvious that I've been a very very satisfied patient. I had an excellent full check-up today with x-rays and everything was perfect. Perfect because I've been going consistently and following their experts on dental care, cleaning and good health! Bravo 👏 👏 👏
Deborah M.

Dr. Piper and staff are always very professional, I have been a patient for over 15 years, and happy about it. Just got my teeth cleaned and checked recently, Sandra is friendly and thorough, and the office felt very clean which is important.
Tom T.

Staff were fast and attentive, didn't wait long before I saw Dr. Piper. The office is clean and organized. Was a great decision to use this practice and will be visiting again. Not a single issue. Cannot recommend enough.
Ted M.

Thank you Sandra, for my teeth cleaning....I had a great experience, I do love getting my teeth cleaned! Piper Family Dentistry rocks...😁.
Deborah W.
Previous slide
Next slide

Google Reviews