General Question

KTWBE's avatar

What happens if you don't floss?

Asked by KTWBE (769points) November 9th, 2010

On the grand spectrum on nonflossage, does the consequence lean more towards “You have broccoli in your teeth” or towards “Why did all of your teeth fall out?” Is there even a consequence?

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22 Answers

CMaz's avatar


Well, before that. Your gum’s will recede.

Blackberry's avatar

Food hardens in your mouth over time…....It doesn’t just all disappear after drinking water or brushing your teeth.

erichw1504's avatar

Cavities and bad breath.

diavolobella's avatar

You will get deposits of plaque and bacteria, which will give you cavities and gum disease.

littlekori's avatar

Your gums will become very sensitive and unhealthy, which can lead to gum disease. Also the food will harden in between your teeth and cause cavitites.

skfinkel's avatar

I think it’s more on the “why did all your teeth fall out” side.

DominicX's avatar

A friend of mine got out of the habit of flossing for a while (but continued brushing). He ended up with lots of little cavities in the areas between the teeth, where floss would’ve helped. Ended up getting several fillings last summer. It’s better to just floss…

YARNLADY's avatar

I’m surprised your dentist hasn’t already told you about this. Mine showed me an animated video that explains all about it. You could probably find one on YouTube.

MrsDufresne's avatar

Periodontitis. (aka bone loss and gum recession) In order to reverse this, you will have to have pocket cleanings, which require shots, and pain killers for two days after.


deni's avatar

your teeth will rot. also usually you can see stuff between peoples teeth is they never floss. THAT IS DISGUSTING.

GeorgeGee's avatar

Assuming you brush your teeth, but don’t floss, you are more likely to have gum disease, cavities between your teeth, and bad breath as a result. But that depends a lot on your diet. Eskimos on a traditional diet of meat, fish and blubber had almost no tooth decay despite not brushing (Though I’m guessing you’re not an Eskimo).
Regular use of toothpicks is an alternative to flossing that works about as well. They not only remove plaque and food bits from between teeth, they also massage the gums, helping promote their health.

Aster's avatar

Imagine last night’s dinner, the dinner before that, your breakfast and lunch and tiny pieces of all those meals, sometimes including raw onions, wedged between your teeth. They rot. And give off odors. And they somehow cause tartar to form which turns into decay and gum irritation or disease. ewwww! Toothpicks are good if they don’t break off and if the teeth aren’t too close together where they won’t fit in there.
I wondered about this in regards to natives living in the deepest jungles and one night on tv I saw what they do. They have a certain plant or tree and they break off little twigs and use those to dislodge old food particles!
@DominicX beautiful girl !

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

One dentist once mentioned that if a person had to choose between brushing or flossing, the latter would be the optimal choice. The last dentist I went to said that if a person flosses and there is a bit of blood, then it is a sign of gum disease. If caught early enough, the gum disease can be treated, but any damage that has occured cannot be reversed.

AmWiser's avatar

Floss only the teeth you want to keep.

josie's avatar

You have germs that live in your mouth. You can’t get rid of them.
They form an organized biofilm.
It collects on anything in your mouth, including your teeth.
The germs live, die, rot and shit in your mouth and it is this filth that causes all disease in the mouth.
You cannot rid your mouth of the germs, you can only remove the biofilm from your teeth before it harms you.
Floss removes the biofilm in areas that a brush will not reach.
If you do not floss, you will have disease, to some extent or another, in your mouth.
And there is recent research that there is a link between disease in the mouth and cardiovascular and neurovascular disease.
Are you a gambler? Hope you win.

talljasperman's avatar

I only floss when I have something stuck in my teeth…after reading the posts I’m going to floss my teeth now edit… I flossed… now my gums are bleeding… So the answer to your question is if you don’t floss your gums become weaker and will bleed with slight contact.

Plucky's avatar

Flossing is extremely important for all the reasons above. In fact, flossing is more important than brushing ..ask any dentist.

LostInParadise's avatar

I was never told to floss when I was younger and ended up having extensive periodontal work. Now I floss once a day and use an electric toothbrush.

Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

You can get gingivitis. Simple as that, or some other gum disease. Flossing is important.

Poor dental health, in particular, not flossing, can lead to other health issues. One, of course, is loss of teeth. If the gums are not stimulated and the plaque is not removed, the gums can become diseased because of the bacteria causing plaque, and cause the teeth to loosen over time. It is not a pleasant prospect to lose teeth, it is a painful process that occurs over a period of years, usually one tooth at a time. The gums become swollen and painful, they bleed very easily, usually just touching a toothbrush to them will cause them to bleed, and the teeth become more sensitive, making eating and drinking difficult at times. Dentists want this whole unpleasant situation avoided, firstly through regular dental checkups and secondly, by regular flossing.

Paradox's avatar

Very nasty bacteria will form and start to eat away at your gums as well as give you bad breath. Dam I carry my floss in my pocket with me.

soft_fingers8's avatar

My dentist says just floss the teeth you want to keep.

dabbler's avatar

many excellent answers up already trending solidly toward Do It Do It Do It.
If the possibility of losing your teeth isn’t enough motivation consider also that the kinds of bacteria that infect teeth and gums can propagate to and seriously affect your heart and Kill You. Not exaggerating.

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