A peek under the hood: Learn about our cutting-edge whitening system

You have probably come across different whitening brands before such as Zoom, LumaWhite and Opalescence. At Floss Bar, we are using a brand new system, Pola Office+. Many customers asks us about it, and if it really can be as good as the other systems considering its amazing price?

The short answer is yes, it is. We love Pola Office+ for a number of reasons: our whole team uses it, we believe it provides the same or better results in a more efficient and cost-effective way, it is also FDA approved. On top of this, you can book it with us for only $215.

Pola Office+ has three advantages over its competitors:

1. It is a stronger product

  • 37.5% hydrogen peroxide vs. 25% hydrogen peroxide max products
  • Using a higher concentration of the same chemical means the results will be equivalent or better

2. It is a faster product

  • A single session (all you need) is 32 minutes of treatment versus 45 minutes 
  • This reduces jaw pain and boredom, and allows us to provide more availability to fit your schedule

3. The company does not up-charge its kits to the dentist

  • The materials are significantly less expensive than those of the competitors but with equally high standards
  • Paying a fraction of the price for materials reduces our costs, so we can pass on the savings to you

As far as sensitivity, all of the chemicals used in whitening systems are strong. That is why you can only get them applied at the office supervised by professionals. Sensitivity is mainly a function of chemical, temperature, enamel quality of the patient, and how well we are able to cover the gums. Pola has the advantage of being a light-free system, which means it does not require a heat lamp during the process, which makes tooth sensitivity worse. This balances out the additional sensitivity which could have been caused by the chemical percentage being higher. As long as you are a good candidate and use sensitivity toothpaste, this should not be a problem.

At Floss Bar, assessing the new products on the market is something that enables us to stay cutting-edge. We hope you enjoyed taking a look under our hood!

Book your Pola whitening with us today!

 

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Tips from our dentists & hygienists: are you brushing too hard?

Our in-house expert dentist, Cathal Hayes, gives us his 5 best tips on how to brush better: 

Do you break a sweat in your daily oral hygiene efforts? To put it mildly, you shouldn’t! Your twice daily, two-minute tooth brushing routine (that’s right, a full 2 minutes, twice a day!) needs to be a finely skilled, thorough but sensitive endeavor. It is not an opportunity to make up for that missed gym class you signed up for but decided not to go to as it clashed with happy hour at your favorite bar!

Teeth are made up of a limited amount of hard tissue with the surrounding areas, your gums, made up of soft tissue. Both need to be brushed to keep them healthy but how do you do so in a manner that cleans and protects them over a lifetime?

Firstly, teeth whilst hard are not immune to wearing away if excessive force is placed on them on a daily basis. So, brushing too hard is both damaging to your teeth and gums and also unnecessary for maintaining good oral hygiene.

I recommend a medium bristled brush for most patients and a soft bristle for those who are already suffering from tooth wear for some reason or other. Manual or electric toothbrush is a personal preference. I love the electric ones as the smaller head allows you to get to the hard to reach places. But a normal, manual brush is fine as long as you put the effort in and don’t miss any spots.

Technique is key to tooth brushing. Avoid horizontal, back and forth scrubbing motions, and instead try and use a circular motion to you brushing. The aim is to sweep debris away from the gums where it accumulates, so always get right up to where you gum meets your tooth.

And don’t put too much force on the brush! A light grip on the tooth brush and less force than you use when writing with a pen is all that is needed.

Also consider when you are brushing! Acidic food and drink, like orange juice, softens the enamel of your tooth. Brushing after a glass of OJ means it is easier to do damage to your teeth. And this damage is irreversible! That’s the problem!

So, to summarize my top tips to avoid unnecessary tooth wear;

  •  Get the right toothbrush for you!
  •  Use Light force
  •  In a circular motion
  • Avoid acidic food and drink, 30 minutes before brushing
  • And always remember to visit your dentist and hygienist every 6 months as they will see clearly if your technique is correct or is any damage is being done!

Book your hygienist appointment with us to get you back on track!

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Meet Matthew - Startup co-founder, health advocate and Floss Bar patient

We caught up with Matthew Tamasi after he visited Floss Bar a few weeks ago to learn his best wellness tricks and how he keep himself and his teeth in shape! 

Floss Bar: Hey Matthew, tell us about about you and what you do? 

Matthew: I am someone who recently overcame health issues stemming from heavy metal poisoning. This experience steered me onto a path of wellness where I'm constantly trying to improve myself physically and mentally. I am now the co-founder of a superfoods company, SUTRA, that provides healthy, vibrant and tasty alternatives to traditional caffeinated beverages. 

Floss Bar: What is your home teeth cleaning routine like? 

Matthew: I brush my teeth twice daily, and use floss/mouthwash daily. I do not use any whitening products. 

Floss Bar: What did you have done at Floss Bar and how was your experience? 

Matthew: I had a teeth cleaning. It was super efficient. I filled all of my forms out online beforehand and was in/out of the dentist's office within 45 minutes.

Floss Bar: How often do you generally go to the dentist or hygienist? If it's less often than once a year, how come? 

Matthew: I'm admittedly bad seeing a dentist or hygienist regularly. This was my first cleaning in two years. I've worked for startups for the past few years and my dental insurance coverage wasn't great, and I didn't want to pay out of pocket. 

Floss Bar: What are your best wellness tips for a busy person? 

Matthew: Give your mind a chance to unwind from the unavoidable stressors of a busy life. I recommend setting aside ten minutes every day to meditate. Headspace is a great app for beginners to this approach. 

Floss Bar: Favorite healthy food spots in NYC? 

Matthew: Sweetgreen is my favorite option for a healthy meal. All of their produce is locally sourced and free of additives and pesticides. Not only is it healthy, but it tastes delicious! 

Floss Bar: What is your go-to home cooking recipe? 

Matthew: Marinate wild-caught salmon in grass-fed ghee and organic lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Bake for 15 minutes at 400 degrees. Place over organic kale sautéed in olive or avocado oil, fresh minced garlic and lemon juice. 

Floss Bar:  Favorite exercise routine? 

Matthew: I do a combination of heavy weight-lifting, HIIT and yoga each week. My favorite HIIT class as of late is Rumble Boxing. I go once a week and find that it's an amazing full body workout and keeps my heart rate elevated throughout. 

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Did you overdo it this Thanksgiving? Here is our 5-step teeth survival guide 

Dentists and hygienists generally recommend avoiding sticky, sweet or acidic foods as they can break down your tooth enamel and cause cavities.  

But Thanksgiving is all about food, wine and pies! We all know that avoiding sweets simply didn't happen during the holidays.  Life is about balance and occasional indulgence, so do your thing. But know that it is best for you to take some extra care of your teeth after a weekend of goodies. 

Floss Bar's 5-step guide to repair your teeth after a Thanksgiving full of treats:

Here's what to do:

1.  Clean up:  Start with one heck of a brush and floss. Do not brush too hard, but do spend extra time on those back molars and your tongue. Use a non-alcohol mouthwash, always, swooshing for 45 seconds minimum.

2. Ease up on the desserts: Reducing sugar intake should be one of your first priorities after the holidays. Not just to shed the pounds! The harmful bacteria in your mouth feed off sugar and use it to create acids that wear down your teeth and inflame your gums.

3. Water, water, water. Make sure to sip alkaline our neutral mineral waters to offset acid attacks on your teeth.

4. Saliva to the rescue. Focus on eating foods that stimulate saliva flow such as vegetables and fruits. Our saliva is mineral-rich and helps combat the acid in our mouths after too much of the good stuff.

5. Calcium, baby. Opt for dairy snacks such as cheese and yoghurt as they are packed with calcium and phosphates that helps strengthen your teeth and neutralize acids that can cause decay.  

Could use some extra help? Just sit back and we will do step 1 for you with a Floss, Polish and Go!

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Tips from our dentists & hygienists: how you floss like a pro

A step to step guide

A common question we get at Floss Bar is, how often you should floss? Andrew Kocaturk, one of Floss Bar’s hygienists recommends flossing once a day, preferably at night before bed to clean out your teeth after the day. Think about it, most of us have 3 meals per day and often snacks in between, a lot of food will pass your teeth throughout the day and let’s face it, some of it will get stuck between your teeth. 

Flossing daily will also prevent a buildup of plaque. Plaque can not only lead to cavities and damage enamel, it can end up far worse if left to advance. When plaque is not taken care of with regular flossing and frequent visits to your hygienist, it can develop into tartar, gum disease and other pretty horrible things… 

Lets do the C- Shape people! 

So how do you floss like a pro? Let Andrew be your guide: 

1.    Slide the floss in between two teeth and create a C shape around one side 

2.    Move the floss back and forth up to the top of the tooth, and repeat on the other side.  

3.    Repeat these steps with each tooth, moving to a clean section of floss each time.

Want a live demonstration? Book a floss with us today! 

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The State of Dental Care in America

The US dental industry is booming. It’s worth $120 billion dollars. Multiple technologies are making dental care more much more effective. This is great news. People are getting better implants, stronger restorations, finer diagnostics, you name it. We are able to do much more today than in the past.

But… only the people who actually make their way into the chair on a regular basis are getting the good, albeit expensive, results. The problem is that most of us never make it routinely, and a large pocket of us wait until the last moment where an issue that seemed cosmetic or low priority becomes REALLY painful. 

So, if we look ACROSS America, regardless of innovations so far, the actual statistics on dental health continue to remain poor.

Here is how poor they actually are:

  • Over 80% of Americans have gingivitis, a preventable condition which causes our gums to swell and bleed and for us to walk around with open wounds as we eat, speak, kiss our loved ones, bite our finger nails, etc.

  • Our mouths have over 500 species of bacteria, which can enter the bloodstream through these wounds and cause damage over time to our pancreas, heart, lungs, immune system, and even unborn children. Remember, your mouth is the largest funnel for intake of all the harmful parasites in your environment.

  • It’s much more serious than the bad breath you can smell. Regular dental hygiene has been statistically shown to add 6.5 years to your life.

Given these risks, why aren’t we going?

Two key reasons: price and availability.

  • Dental costs have been rising at over 3x the rate of inflation (5.6% a year). The price of a simple routine cleaning that we all need every 6 months or more, is higher in major cities than the weekly food budget for a family of four. The $150 average doesn’t even include the x-rays. This means that for a family of four on an annual basis basic dental care costs over $1000.

  • Insurance should help, but 50% of us don’t have it for dental, and 30% of those lucky insured people don’t even show up. Fear of sharp objects aside – it’s pure math. Insured Americans generally work full time, and the average full-time worker in America works 47 hours a week. That’s a lot. And the average American dental office is open for 33 hours a week. Guess how much those hours overlap? A ton. We don’t have time to leave work. So even the insured are going far less than 2x a year. I haven’t even mentioned the uninsured, 50% of which aren’t showing up to get the care they need.

  • As a result, 1 in 6 Americans experienced an expensive dental emergency in the last year, and the health risks continue.

The vicious cycle isn’t going to be fixed by a new kind of toothbrush, a better x-ray machine or Invisalign. It’s going to require a huge shift in usable supply – hours that suit our lifestyle, prices that don’t break the bank, awareness of how bad it really is and how difficult it shouldn’t be to get the preventative dental care you need.

Book your appointment with Floss Bar today.

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Lessons from a Female Entrepreneur in a Male Dominated Industry

You walk into a dental office and what do you see? I bet that most of the time, you see the name of a male dentist on the door, around age 50, and all-female support staff inside: female receptionists, female dental assistants, female dental hygienists, etc. 

Whatever the reason, the fact is that a dental office is a man’s world. I have even heard male dental students having dreams of running their own string of dental offices and coming in a couple times a week to check on “the ladies.” And I don't blame them. It’s engrained, evolutionarily speaking. Even I, as a female, have thoughts of how cool it would be to have an office filled with men I control. Human nature.

But imagine being a 26-year-old female entrepreneur, trying to tell well-established 50-year-old male dentists that you have a plan to change their industry. Those beautiful souls who are truly open minded to listen to you are slim pickings, my friend. You remind them of their rebellious teenage daughter, their younger sister, one of those rude millennial Groupon patients, a door to door make-up saleswoman, or a detached Ivy league snob who thinks she is a know it all. Either one isn’t great. Good luck on the sell.

Or worse, they relish the power dynamic. To be clear, this rarely happens, but it does. They have something you want (their cooperation and business). So, they wonder how far they can push your “dedication” to your business. It would be illegal to make a move on their employees or their patients, but you just walked in off the street and so you are fair game, “little lady”. Your “big dreams” will require… “hard work"...

Personally, none of that really phases me. Being an odd ball gets me the conversations in the first place. Weird situations are to be entirely expected and prepared for. You are kidding yourself if you think they are outrageous or once in a lifetime.

Here are tips I recommend to female healthcare entrepreneurs on how to deal with them gracefully:

1) Bring out the pant suit. 

Silicon Valley entrepreneurs do not wear suits. They get made fun of if they do. But you are not in Silicon Valley and that culture does not exist in healthcare yet. So, you cannot look like this is a normal day at the computer. Minimum professional dress is slacks and a belted cardigan. Dark blue/black/white/gray. Throwing in a collared shirt is a good step up, even if no jacket. Be taken seriously.

2) Slow down and maintain your poker face

You are going to get questions about risk, more so than vision. You are going to get questions on what qualifies you to know anything about this, versus what you have learned along the way. You can boil inside about the state of society all you want, but knowing how to LOOK unphased is a must. How you get there is your personal journey. You can fake it: cognitive behavioral therapy, lasers that zap the capillaries in your face so you can’t blush, a fidget toy under the table, whatever, I have tried it all. The worst you can do is speak faster or match the intensity of the questions coming at you. The worst. If you are getting flustered – pause, breathe, look pensive, say “one moment” and jot down notes on your note pad. Have the self-respect that you talking slowly does not imply you are wasting their time, as the time spent together is an investment. The more deliberate your words versus rambling, the easier to gain trust and increase comprehension.

 3) Let them know; “ladies are pimps, too”... 

Here’s a big one. Many women refuse to work with people who come on to them. I actually don’t. It means they find you interesting and are willing to bare their emotions, which is much easier to work with than indifference or ambiguity. Egos are very fragile, and so if you want to work with the players, you have to play the game. You can’t out right offend them or ignore what they just said or go on a pedagogical rant about how their daughter would feel if people responded to her in that way. Acknowledge it, smirk, roll your eyes, stare them down, and say that in another life absolutely, but right now you have enough men in your life as well as someone you find special (even if you don’t have any of that). This way you gave a reason to say no they could understand, complimented them back, created some mystery, maintained your power, and can keep going. Obviously if they get aggressive get away, but it’s usually not the case. A shared witty moment goes a long way.

It’s certainly harder for us, but it is not impossible. The business landscape is getting better for women, but it is far from perfect. So don’t sulk and wait – adapt, shine, and go reach your potential.

Eva Sadej, Founder & CEO of Floss Bar

Eva Sadej, Founder & CEO of Floss Bar

What is the "Floss, Polish & Go"?

Have you ever had the power to test drive a dental office?

We haven't. It's hard to commit to a procedure that is $99 and up. Who knows if it is worth it. We can tell you it's awesome all we want...but will you really believe it?

At Floss Bar, we stand behind our mission of quality. convenience and innovation. That's why we are letting you test drive us. At no cost.

Come meet our hygienists team and get cozy with some music. Let us show you proper flossing technique, polish you up, give you a shot (of mouthwash!) and a little bag of goodies, and set you free to get on with your evening. Everyone needs some pampering and a touch up sometimes.

Book you free gift now on our Booking Page. Ignore the fee by putting the hashtag #testdrive. You'll be able to walk-in without an appointment later as we scale :)

Love,

Floss Bar Team

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Coffee Breath...Is it Really Just the Smell?

Coffee is, without a doubt, the most popular drug in the world. In the US alone, a total of 700M cups are consumed in a single day.

We at Floss Bar love coffee. Yes, it stains your teeth. But if it gives your morning energy and is a great warm beverage to share with your colleagues. If you like it, we will not stop you. We want you to love life and do the things that enable a productive lifestyle.

We do, however, care about coffee breath. Did you know coffee breath is not just the smell of coffee…It’s the smell of the bacteria eating the sugars in your mouth…Laced with coffee. If the smell of coffee and coffee breath were exact…Would you actually choose the coffee flavored ice cream at Baskin Robins? We wouldn’t.

So how does your lovely coffee, a sterile beverage we would hope, become a special platform for bacteria? It’s because the chemicals in coffee slow down saliva production. The saliva in your mouth usually sloshes the bacteria around, disrupting it. But with coffee, the lack of saliva creates a perfectly undisturbed environment for the 500 species of bacteria which already exist in the mouth to multiply as rapidly as possible.

Not a great picture.

To offset the effects of coffee, just get your regular dental care and, if possible, up your game on what you normally do – eat more fruit which can help clean off stains in the interim, drink water to clear your palate, and brush after.

Bacteria grow exponentially...So the more bacteria you start with, the more you end up with, and the smellier you become. It’s that simple.

On the go? Book our signature Floss Polish & Go for a quick 15 minutes refresh! 

 

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