Ask a General Dentist: What Happens If You Do Not Floss?

general dentist family dentist Buford, GAFlossing is one of the most important steps in daily oral hygiene, but so many people skip it! General dentists urge all their patients to floss at least once a day to ensure that their teeth and gums stay healthy. Going without flossing can cause serious oral health problems that may be impossible to reverse. Learning about the importance of flossing and what can happen if it is regularly skipped is important. While it is necessary to consult with a general dentist about specific concerns regarding oral health and flossing, the information provided here provides a brief overview of what you can expect when flossing is skipped.

Ask a general dentist: What happens if you do not floss?

It is important to floss! Below, you can find out what may happen if you do not.

Plaque or tartar

When the spaces between the teeth are not cleaned out through flossing, plaque can form. Plaque is a bacteria-infested film that coats the surface of the teeth. It typically forms when brushing or flossing is skipped.Tartar is the hardened version of plaque. General dentists have to scrape tartar from teeth once it has hardened; patients are not advised to do so because it can pose enamel risks. In the long term, when flossing is not done regularly, the plaque between teeth will turn to tartar.

Bad breath

Another thing that can occur when flossing does not take place is bad breath. Food that gets stuck between teeth can usually only be removed through flossing. If these food particles are not removed, they will likely cause an unpleasant smell. Because plaque and tartar both contain bacteria, the entire mouth usually suffers. The bacteria will build up between the teeth and release an unpleasant odor, causing bad breath.

Gum disease

If patients go without flossing for a long time, they are likely to form gum disease or periodontal disease. When this occurs, a general dentist is unlikely able to treat it. Instead, the patient will have to visit a gum specialist, otherwise known as a periodontist.


Although the gums are mainly affected by not flossing, so are the teeth. When there is left-behind food or bacteria in between the teeth, cavities may form. General dentists often find cavities in between teeth, which can be a direct result of not flossing. 

The importance of flossing

It is necessary to floss on a regular basis, which is at least once a day. General dentists urge patients of all ages to floss to ensure good oral health. Going without flossing can put patients at risk of plaque buildup, which can turn into tartar. Long-term tartar can cause gum disease or cavities, both of which can result in the need for tooth replacement.If you have further questions about flossing, then reach out to our team today. Our general dentists can provide more information on the importance of oral hygiene. Give us a call or stop by our office!Request an appointment here: or call North Atlanta Center for Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry at (770) 932-1115 for an appointment in our Buford office.

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