The Flossing Flurry

The United States government has been recommending daily dental flossing since 1979, first through the office of the Surgeon General, and then through the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

But this year, the Guidelines dropped the recommendation to floss. Entirely.

What gives?

According to a report from the Associated Press, after interviewing officials at the Department of Health and Human Services, the evidence for flossing every day is “weak”. The news wire reported this after also looking at 25 recent studies on flossing.

So why the big push to floss?

One reason, among many, is that dental floss is now a $2 billion business world-wide. And they have their lobbyists busy marketing the marvels of mint-flavored floss.

So, is it actually dangerous to floss?

No. According to Dr. Neal Anderson, of the National Dentistry Association: “While more research needs to be done in this area, there’s no doubt that flossing is still a valid tool in the war against dental caries and gum disease.”

So don’t throw that roll of floss away.