5 Things to Floss (Besides Your Teeth)


We’re going to trust that everyone follows the daily recommendation for flossing…this is a dental blog, of course!  That being said, perhaps you accidentally got the wrong flavor or waxiness of floss (there are so many options, after all!).  And now, there it is, staring you in the face every time you open up your bathroom drawer or medicine cabinet, taking up unnecessary space next to the floss that you actually use.  You hate to just throw it away…after all, you paid good money for it, it is still usable, and wasting is, well, not necessarily “the” thing to do these days.  Fear not!  You’d be amazed by some of the clever, off-the-wall uses for dental floss…we’ve narrowed down some of our favorites:

Cutting Soft Cheeses: It’s always frustrating cutting soft or crumbly cheeses, especially when they stick to the knife or you feel like you’re crushing the cheese.  Shimmy a piece of dental floss across the cheese, in a downward manner, and voila—perfectly sliced cheese.  Naturally, non-flavored floss works best for this, but this is perfect for goat cheese, fresh mozzarella, and blue cheese, to name a few.  Bonus tip—perfect for your next picnic, so you’re not having to haul around your arsenal of bulky kitchen utensils!

Supporting Climbing Plants: Trailing and climbing plants, such as cucumbers, tomatoes, roses, clematis, and ivy need a little help from their friends at times to do their thing.  Tying the plants to a trellis, chicken wire, fence, support stake, mail box, or anything else under the sun with small pieces of dental floss will do just the trick.  Since it’s delicate enough for your gums, of course it will be well-suited for persnickety plants…and, it’s hardly visible, making for much more aesthetic landscaping or gardening compared to using thick ropes or ties.

Slicing Cake: Another culinary success for floss!  As with using floss to slice cheese, non-flavored is ideal.  Of course, this will work best for cakes or cheesecakes that are out of the pan-- just gently “saw” with the floss across and downward, and your baked goods will be perfectly-sliced, just waiting to satisfy your sweet tooth (just don’t forget to brush afterwards!!!).

Hair Tie:  Those with long locks have undoubtedly at some point found themselves without a hair band or clip to pull back their hair…or even worse, only able to find a “regular” rubber band.  Although that would “work” (note the quotation marks), we all know how painful they are to remove, and the resulting hair damage.  Dental floss to the rescue, once again!  Simply pull your hair back and tie it with the floss, wrap around a few times for good measure, and knot it…your face will thank you for getting it out of the way, and your hair will thank you when you intentionally (and painlessly) slide it out later.

Floss Your Furniture:  Ever notice how those little cracks in your furniture where the various pieces come together seem to collect more “souvenirs” than you bargained for?  Just like brushing alone doesn’t clean the areas between your teeth, the same goes for just cleaning the surface of your furniture with products.  “Flossing” those areas of your furniture, like you would with your teeth, really will do the trick.  Naturally, this is more of an “every once-in-awhile” sort of thing (unlike flossing your teeth!), but at least you know it can be done now!

Article by
Columbia Dentist