Oral Health Blog

Why Do Dentists Say to Floss After Brushing, Instead of Before?

Yes, professional teeth cleaning is necessary for optimal oral health. Incorporating a water flosser into your routine complements professional cleanings, ensuring thorough plaque removal and promoting healthier gums and teeth.


Many people wonder why dentists advise flossing after brushing rather than before. In this article, we'll explore the reasons behind this recommendation and shed light on why flossing after brushing is crucial for maintaining optimal oral health.

1. Removing Loose Debris and Plaque

  • Brushing as Initial Cleaning: Brushing your teeth before flossing helps to loosen and remove large food particles and plaque from the surfaces of your teeth. This initial cleaning allows for more effective flossing by clearing away loose debris and making it easier to access the spaces between your teeth.

2. Enhancing Effectiveness of Flossing

  • Flossing as Precision Cleaning: Flossing after brushing allows you to focus on the areas between your teeth and along the gumline where a toothbrush may not reach effectively. By removing plaque and food particles trapped in these tight spaces, flossing helps prevent tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath.

3. Maximizing Fluoride Benefits

  • Fluoride Retention: Brushing with fluoride toothpaste provides protective benefits for your teeth by strengthening enamel and preventing decay. Flossing after brushing allows the fluoride from toothpaste to remain on your teeth longer, enhancing its effectiveness in combating cavities and strengthening tooth enamel.

4. Dislodging Plaque and Bacteria

  • Removing Residual Plaque: Flossing after brushing helps dislodge any remaining plaque and bacteria from between your teeth and along the gumline. This thorough cleaning process reduces the risk of plaque hardening into tartar, which can lead to gum inflammation and periodontal disease if left untreated.

5. Stimulating Gum Health

  • Gentle Stimulation: Flossing after brushing stimulates the gums and promotes blood circulation, which is essential for maintaining gum health. Healthy gums are crucial for supporting the teeth and preventing gum recession and tooth loss.

6. Incorporating a Comprehensive Oral Care Routine

  • Completing the Routine: Flossing after brushing is a crucial step in a comprehensive oral care routine that includes brushing, flossing, and rinsing with mouthwash. By following this sequence, you ensure that your teeth and gums receive thorough cleaning and protection against dental problems.


Flossing after brushing is recommended by dentists because it maximizes the effectiveness of both brushing and flossing in removing plaque, bacteria, and food particles from your teeth and gums. By incorporating flossing into your oral care routine after brushing, you can maintain optimal oral health and enjoy a bright, healthy smile for years to come. Remember, consistency is key, so make flossing a daily habit to reap the benefits of a healthy mouth.


The content in this article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Always consult with a healthcare provider before making any changes to your health regimen. The author and publisher do not take responsibility for any consequences resulting from the information provided in this article.