Can I really toss my floss?

I recently read a Drudge Report that linked to an article from the British newspaper The Guardian about flossing. To make a long story short, it basically said that there’s little proof that flossing makes a difference when it comes to preventing gum disease and tooth decay. I hate flossing and I’m very inconsistent about using it, so I would rather just not do it at all. Please say this article is true. It would make life so much easier! — Anastasia Anastasia, Ask any dentist and they will tell you plain and simple that the article is utterly ridiculous. In fact, there is strong evidence from multiple scientific studies that proves flossing helps prevent both gum disease and interproximal tooth decay. To further that case, dentists can tell whether or not you have been flossing just by looking at your gums and can even predict how long it would take to get the inflammation under control with daily flossing. For most patients, that is just a couple of weeks. This article plays more of a word game to try and sway readers. For instance, it states, “A major review last year concluded: ‘The majority of available studies fail to demonstrate that flossing is generally effective in plaque removal.’” It all but admits that there are studies that demonstrate the benefits of plaque removal, however, it’s not a majority of studies, or rather, it’s not a majority of the studies that were available to the person that made this comment. Your best advice? Don’t get caught up in a game of words… and don’t “toss your floss!” Your teeth...

Looking for a dentist who will do CEREC crowns on my front teeth

I want to get CEREC crowns on my front teeth – particularly because I can get them done in one day and skip those ridiculous temporaries you have to wear. My current dentist does CEREC, but he’s told me that he won’t do them for front teeth. He never really explained why, so I am just assuming that he wants me to go the more expensive route of regular crowns. If he’s not going to do it, I can surely find another dentist who will do them for me, right? — Tony   Tony, You’re right that CEREC crowns are an ideal choice to save time and shorten up the number of visits, but when it comes to the front teeth, the focus should be on aesthetics. It sounds like your dentist likes CEREC, but he also knows that they might not be the right choice for your situation. Making crowns look natural takes time and work – especially to get the color and opacity right. The lab will make restorations look as natural as possible by adding layers or porcelain, shading and glazing. CEREC are made from a single block of material and simply trimmed to the right shape. They work just fine for back teeth where they blend in. If you want a beautiful and natural-looking result, trust your dentist’s recommendation of standard lab-made procelain crowns. A few weeks in temporaries is better than a lifetime with front teeth you don’t like. If you want to try and speed up the process, ask if the lab can put a “rush” on them. Be prepared to pay a...