Ask the Dentist with Dr. Mark Burhenne

Episode #85: Do we need scientific proof for flossing?

April 17, 2023 Dr. Mark Burhenne - Functional Dentist
Ask the Dentist with Dr. Mark Burhenne
Episode #85: Do we need scientific proof for flossing?
Show Notes
In today’s episode, Dr. Staci joins Dr. B to discuss the misinformation about flossing spread online by social media influencers. They explain why social media algorithms can be incredibly harmful, the destructive nature of clickbait and fearmongering, how studies against flossing measure up to the truth, and the positive results Dr. Staci has witnessed in her own patients who floss regularly.  Our doctors then explore exactly what social media influencers say about flossing, the vital information they’re conveniently omitting, why our hosts are irked by the iteration that flossing causes bleeding, and how some influencers use their large fan base in a highly irresponsible way. Dr. Staci’s advice is simple: Please floss! And she warns against accepting medical advice that hasn’t referenced any credible sources. Finally, we look at the Bristle Health study confirming the benefits of flossing, why Dr. B thinks that flossing is a no-brainer, and the transmissible nature of bacteria and other factors you must consider when making decisions about your oral health.  

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Dr. Staci and Dr. B discuss the misinformation being spread online about flossing [00:52]
  • Why social media algorithms are more harmful than helpful [01:22]
  • The perils of clickbait and fearmongering [01:45]
  • Assessing the studies that go against flossing [01:57]
  • What Dr. Staci has witnessed in her patients who floss regularly [03:03]
  • The (wrong) things social media influencers are saying about flossing [03:49]
  • The vital information that influencers are omitting [05:59]
  • Why Doctors B and Staci are irked by the statement that “flossing causes bleeding” [08:07]
  • How it’s utterly irresponsible to use a big following to spread misinformation [09:02]
  • Dr. Staci’s professional advice: Please floss [10:11]
  • Talking about the Bristle study that confirms the benefits of flossing [11:00]
  • Water picks as a great alternative to flossing [13:30]
  • Dr. B gives his take on why flossing is a no-brainer [14:14]
  • Why you need to also consider the transmissible nature of bacteria [15:39]
  • A quick summary of what we’ve covered in this episode [18:33]

How to Submit Your Question:

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Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:
Bristle Research: The effect of flossing on the oral microbiome
‘How to clean the back of your tongue
Bristle Health
Slate Electric Flosser
Ask the Dentist Shop | Floss
Dr. Staci Whitman
Follow Dr. Staci on Instagram @doctor_staci
Follow Dr. Staci on Twitter @doctorstaci
Follow Dr. Staci on Facebook @doctorstaci
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