Everyone knows it is important to take care of your teeth. You know you should brush your teeth, floss every day, and see your dentist. Yet somehow, dental care is often misunderstood.
Here are some common dental myths about caring for your teeth and what you need to know to stay healthy.
Myth #1 – If My Teeth Don’t Hurt, I Don’t Need to See My Dentist
Your dentist will recommend that you book a visit once every six months for a regular check-up and cleaning. This is because your dentist can keep an eye out for potential problems and prevent them before they occur or get worse.
Not all dental problems cause pain and not all can be seen in your bathroom mirror. Most cavities happen in your back teeth and can start very small. This can be treated and even reversed if caught early. Cavities are not always painful, but untreated they can lead to a tooth fracture, damaged nerves, a tooth abscess, or result in the loss of the tooth.
Myth #2 – If Your Gums Bleed, You Should Stop Cleaning Your Teeth.
Bleeding gums are a sign of gum irritation and could be a sign that you need to do a better job of cleaning your teeth. In some cases, it can be a sign of gum disease. You should continue to clean your teeth by brushing and flossing every day and see your dentist as soon as possible.
Myth #3 – If You Use Mouthwash, You Don’t Need to Floss
This is not true. Mouthwash helps kill harmful bacteria that can cause tooth decay, but it cannot clean in between teeth and remove food particles and plaque. Dental floss gets between teeth and below the gum line to clear away particles that brushing cannot reach.
Myth #4 – Your Child Doesn’t Need to See the Dentist Until Age 3.
Dentists now recommend that your child has their first dentist visit when they get their first teeth. Your dentist can do a checkup and look for signs of tooth decay or other potential problems. They can also help teach your child how to brush and floss correctly. These early visits also help your child get used to the dentist and remove any fear for future visits.
Myth #5 – You Need To Brush Your Teeth Right After You Eat
False – It is recommended that you wait at least 30 minutes after eating before brushing your teeth. This is because brushing immediately after eating can cause excess enamel wear. The real purpose of brushing your teeth is to remove plaque, not food from your teeth.
Myth #6 – Sugar Causes Cavities
Sugar itself does not cause cavities. Sugar feeds bacteria, which produces acid that if ignored can eventually wear away at your enamel and cause tooth decay. If you do eat sugary foods, be sure to brush your teeth and rinse your mouth with water so the bacteria doesn’t have a chance to grow.
Myth #7 – If You Have a Filling, You Don’t Need Any More Treatment
If you’ve treated your cavity with a filling you may think that you don’t need to think about it any further. The fact is that fillings are designed to last a long time but will not last forever.
It is also possible to have tooth decay under, or behind, a filling so it is important to take care of your fillings through regular cleanings and checkups at Simcoe Smile Dental.
Myth #8 – If Your Teeth Are White They are Healthy
Your teeth may look the picture of health in the front but problems can occur where you might not be able to see. Often problems occur in molars at the back of your mouth. There the enamel could be weak and you could have a buildup of plaque that is difficult to see from the front.
Dental issues are not always easy to see. Problems with the gums lie under the surface and can only be detected by dental experts.
The best advice is to take care of your teeth and gums and see a Cosmetic Dentist in Guelph regularly for checkups. Your dentist can give you the best advice for dental care and make sure you know the facts.