flossingThis time last week I was at the dentist for my bi-annual floss lecture teeth cleaning.

I’m one of those odd people who actually kinda likes going to the dentist.  I enjoy the squeaky-clean feel of my teeth after I leave.  I’m pretty much good with the good ole tooth doctor as long as it’s not x-ray day.  I loathe x-ray day.  They cover you with body armor, shove stuff in your mouth, then flee the vicinity like they know a hangry lion is lurking around the next corner and they’ve left you there, weighed down by the metal vest, to become breakfast so they can save themselves.

This visit marked something new for me.  I was straightforward in the response to question of whether or not I floss.  In the past I’ve answered with a noncommittal “sometimes” or “when I can” or “I need to be better.”  Last week I just came out and said no.  I’m not a flosser.  Just like I’m not a ninja.

Unfortunately, I had a new hygienist and she did not take kindly to my candor. As a direct result of my failure to tell a white lie I spent the majority of the visit holding a hand mirror and being told all the ways I am failing my gums. “See here? Bad. And here? Also Bad.”

At some point I began singing, “Bad, bad. Really, really bad” to myself.  Who knew a trip to the dentist could magically transform you into a Michael Jackson music video?

And – to add insult to injury – some cruel person has invented a teeny tiny camera that they can put in your mouth to take pictures with.  So, in addition to the hand mirror of shame, my viewing of the Today Show was interrupted by images of my teeth on the big screen.

Here’s something to note, you don’t want to see your teeth and gums on the big screen.  It’s too much information. Just trust me on this.

And in the event that I get a bunch of comments from flossers on this post shaming my non-flossing ways – allow me to defend myself. I have a toddler. She can be found clinging to my legs and screeching when I brush my teeth. Can’t it be good enough that I am able to brush my teeth twice a day? Can’t the Gum Gods give me a little flossing grace period?  I use a fancy electric toothbrush! Can’t that count for something?

If you’ve made it this far, you’ve now suffered through around 400 words on flossing.   To which I say: Have higher standards, Dear Reader.

And don’t forget to floss.  Or at least have the good sense to lie about it.


(Mom, if you’re reading this I am JUST KIDDING.  My gums are TOTALLY FINE and all the orthodontic work you and dad paid for is totes not going to waste. Promise.)

9 thoughts on “Is Everyone Else Flossing?

  1. Laura

    I was just having this conversation with my mom the other day! I said, “Come on! Nobody flosses! Why do they even ask? They know I don’t floss, what do they want me to say??” And it turns out, SHE TOTALLY FLOSSES!!! Like, every day, with fancy floss! So weird!

    1. Kelly Post author

      There is such a thing as FANCY FLOSS? I mean. The only floss I own is what I take home from the dentist.

      1. Laura

        They do! It’s like a reusable thing, like a toothbrush but with string instead of bristles.

  2. Haley

    I am sooo guilty of this offense and dread answering that question!! I am all about the vague, noncommittal answers….”I try,” “I do my best,” when we both know that I clearly do not, and know that I’m not fooling anyone by refusing to admit my evident shortcoming in dental hygiene. And this is definitely why I dread going to the dentist. I love leaving with clean teeth (how could you not!) but fear the inevitable guilt trip…

    <3 Haley @ http://www.beautyinthischaos.com

  3. Tricia

    I try to get my husband to floss all the time! I read somewhere one time that really flossing is actually more important than even brushing, so I definitely make sure to floss twice a day. Now, I am WAY overdue for a dentist appointment. I better schedule!

  4. karyl henry

    I used to lie every time! And then that just got tiring, so I fessed up. Thankfully my hygenist didn’t get mad at me. I would be so mad if she did! I have a couple friends who are hygenists and THEY give me grief, but that’s okay. Around Christmas I started making a concerted effort to floss twice a day. I’m still going pretty strong, but do miss a day here or there. And for me, that’s a HUGE accomplishment

  5. Ali

    Lol… you are hilarious. I was dying through this. I definitely don’t floss, and always ho-hum my way through the question. I am very sorry your Today Show segment was interrupted with a close up of your non-flossed teeth. It sounds terrifying. But flossing is for real off the table – us mommas with toddlers – yeah, we can barely brush our teeth twice a day.

  6. Amy

    My husbands family flosses religiously! All the siblings in law got together and discussed how odd it was that they all felt the need to floss!!! Their parents did something right…I’m with you – I don’t floss!

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