As doubts are raised over the benefits of flossing, how else can you keep your teeth healthy?

As doubts are raised over the benefits of flossing, how else can you keep your teeth healthy?

10th November, 2016

Flossing has long been considered a method to use to keep your teeth healthy. However, over the years, there has been more and more doubt cast over the effectiveness of this approach. Recently, the US government dropped the recommendation of flossing from its guidelines due to the fact that there is no scientific proof regarding its advantages. A lot of professors have also stated that more sophisticated trials are needed to determine whether there are any benefits to flossing, as it is still unproven. With that in mind, we decided to put together some other approaches you can follow to keep your teeth healthy.


  •          Use a straw – If you can avoid fizzy drinks altogether, great! If not, make sure you use a straw when you are drinking them. By doing this, the acid will bypass your teeth. You should still make sure you rinse your mouth out with water afterwards. This will help to limit the damage caused by fizzy drinks.
  •          Change your toothbrush regularly – It is important to change your toothbrush at least every three months if you are to maintain a high level of oral hygiene. Every time you use your toothbrush, you are transferring bacteria from your mouth onto the toothbrush. Thus, if you continue to use your toothbrush after a few months, it won’t be effective.
  •          Gargle apple cider vinegar – If you can manage it, you should gargle apple cider vinegar in the morning, after which you can brush your teeth as you usually would. This is beneficial because the vinegar helps to kill bacteria in your gums and mouth while also whitening your teeth and removing stains.
  •          Quit smoking – This may sound incredibly obvious, but it is so important, and, therefore, it is worth including nonetheless. Not only can smoking turn your teeth yellow, but also it lowers the blood flow to your mouth. This is very dangerous, as it will increase your chances of developing oral cancers and periodontal disease. Smoking will also lower your soft tissue and bone’s ability to heal if you have any type of dental treatment and surgery. Plus, who really wants to have stained teeth and bad breath in any case?
  •          Visit the dentist regularly – There are far too many people that do not go to the dentist on a regular basis. There are typically two reasons for this. Firstly, people do not want to spend money on a trip to the dentist. Secondly, people are nervous about going to the dentist. In regards to the former, if you spend a bit of money on regular check-ups now, you will save yourself a lot of money later down the line. In regards to feeling nervous, this is completely natural, and many people feel this way. However, your dentist will make you feel at ease.
  •          Nutrition – Of course, what you eat will impact the health of your gums and teeth. If you eat the right foods, you can ensure that your teeth are healthy for years and years to come. You need to eat foods that are low in starches and sugar, as this will reduce the acid that is produced. This is important because your mouth is filled with plaque and germs, which thrive on sugars and starches. These foods will attack your enamel and result in decay, which is why you need to remove the plaque.
  •          Consume important vitamins and calcium – Vitamin B complex is essential for protecting your teeth and gums from bleeding and cracking. Both Vitamin D and calcium are required for maintaining teeth and gum health. For maintaining healthy dental hygiene, you need a good dose of potassium, iron, iodine, zinc, and copper. However, calcium overall is arguably the most important. You can get it from dairy products, as well as broccoli and fortified orange juice.


These are simple yet effective ways to maintain healthy teeth. If you follow the advice mentioned above, you are bound to notice an improvement. Whether you floss or not is entirely up to you, but you should not rely on this alone to keep your teeth in good condition, as there is a lot of debate regarding how beneficial this really is.

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Alison Massey

Group Marketing Director

Now Health International

Alison Massey is a 15-year digital marketing veteran, who has spent the last seven years using social media to help expats and soon to be expats find out what to expect from a life overseas. An expat living in Hong Kong herself, Alison is the Group Marketing Director of Now Health, the award-winning international health insurance provider.

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