Dental floss is an important part of proper oral hygiene. It may come as a surprise to learn that according to the ADA, only 12 percent of Americans floss every day. The flossing concept isn’t a new one. Evidence found by researchers suggests that interdental cleaning has been practiced since Prehistoric times.
Researchers have found evidence of floss use in prehistoric times. Archeologists have found evidence that Neanderthals used toothpicks made from small sticks to clean between their teeth. Horsehair may have been used as floss as well.
In 1815, a New Orleans dentist, Dr. Levi Spear Parmly, began suggesting that his patients use a thin silk thread to clean between the teeth. The flossing idea caught hold and in 1882, unwaxed dental floss began to be massed produced. In 1898, the very first floss patent was granted to Johnson & Johnson. This floss was made from the same silk material used for silk stitches by doctors.
Because silk has a tendency to shred and its costs rose during World War II, nylon replaced silk as the primary floss material in the 1940s. Because floss was now made from nylon, waxed floss could be developed in the 1940s and dental tape in the 1950s.
Floss has continued to evolve since then. Gore-Tex material is used in some varieties of floss. Spongy floss and soft floss have been developed for sensitive gums. Floss picks, which simplify the process of flossing the back teeth and flossing with braces, have become quite popular.
Please contact [practice_name] today to learn more about flossing in [city], [state], and to schedule an appointment with our dentist, Dr. [doctor_name].