Clearwater Periodontist Weighs in on Flossing Chemical Exposure Concerns

Share Article

Clearwater Periodontist Dr. Todd Britten has been approached by patients concerned about chemical exposure related to using certain types of dental floss. He assures patients that the American Academy of Periodontology continues to recommend daily flossing for gum health, while understanding the risk of PFAS in products they may use daily, while considering possible alternatives.

Flossing Dangerous?

"This is not a reason to tell people, "don’t floss,” but that as we learn more about this research, it may come down to using safer products."

Dr. Todd Britten says he and his staff try to keep up with the most recent scientific studies in order to accurately address concerns brought to him by his patients. A recent news report highlighting a study that showed concerns over certain types of dental floss has been brought to his attention by patients in his Clearwater, Florida practice. Dental floss harmful studies (source: Harvard.edu) The study showed possible elevated levels of PFAS in the bloodstream of those that used a certain kind of floss than those who didn’t. PFAS exposure has been associated with cancer, colitis and thyroid disease.

Dr Britten stresses that this is not a reason to tell people, "don’t floss,” but that as we learn more about this research, it may come down to using safer products. "In this study," Britten said, "Researchers analyzed the chemical makeup of 18 types of dental floss. Six tested positive for fluorine, an element that they said indicates the presence of PFAS compounds."

Dr. Britten explained that PFAS compounds are used in the manufacture of many consumer products, including Teflon and nonstick cookware, water-proofed shoes and clothes, carpets, upholstery, and some kinds of food packaging. Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) have become a daily part of human life. They are water- and greaseproof substances are present in many products — from fast food containers to certain types of clothing.

In his periodontal practice in Pinellas County, Florida, Dr. Todd Britten stresses that he recommends unwaxed, woven or string floss over any of the waxy type of flosses for good oral health. The waxy flosses, he states, leave behind a film of bacteria that should be removed while flossing. Dr. Britten states that he stands by the American Academy of Periodontology's recent statement on dental floss and chemical exposure, recommending "daily flossing as one part of a regular oral hygiene routine." The AAP also states, "Future research is needed to determine why and how PFAS may enter the bloodstream. Until then, consumers are encouraged to understand the risk of PFAS and to explore possible alternatives to the products they use daily."

Britten Periodontics & Implant Dentistry is a periodontal practice offering patients personalized dental care in implant dentistry in Clearwater, Florida. Dr. Todd Britten offers sedation dentistry, which can be very helpful for those needing advanced treatment, suffer from PTSD or have a fear of the dentist. For more information, visit http://www.brittenperio.com

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Todd M Britten
@britten_todd
Follow >
Visit website