Photo: New York Post

You hear it all the time from the dentist: Floss daily to prevent gum disease and cavities, right? Except a recent investigation by the Associated Press reveals the benefits of dental floss are largely unproven. The AP looked at the most rigorous research conducted over the past decade, focusing on 25 studies that generally compared the use of a toothbrush with the combination of toothbrushes and floss. The findings? The evidence for flossing is “weak, very unreliable,” of “very low” quality, and carries “a moderate to large potential for bias.”

The Associated Press also found that manufacturers of dental floss are struggling to provide convincing evidence. Johnson & Johnson declined to comment the new research. Also, Procter & Gamble’s “proof” that flossing fights plaque and gingivitis, was deemed irrelevant in 2011 during a research review.

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H/T: Associate Press