The internet can be a wonderful tool to learn about an endless number of subjects. While the free access is great, there still must be a vetting process to determine what is useful information. This is especially the case when it comes to recommendations about your oral health. Many of the online trends don’t originate from dental professionals. As you continue reading, your dentist in State College shares the truth about 10 common dental myths!
#1 – Harder Brushing Results in Cleaner Teeth
While there are certain areas of life where applying a little extra “elbow grease” is helpful, this doesn’t apply when it comes to brushing your teeth. Applying too much pressure can damage your tooth enamel and leave you susceptible to sensitivity and cavity development.
#2 – Flossing isn’t Really Necessary
Despite your best efforts, brushing can only partially clean your teeth. To thoroughly remove debris and prevent plaque growth, you need to incorporate flossing into your routine. The malleable material is able to get into the tight spaces between your teeth to effectively protect your smile.
#3 – Chewing Sugar-Free Gum is a Substitute for Toothbrushing
While chewing sugar-free gum can help tremendously with maintaining adequate moisture in your mouth, it shouldn’t be misconstrued as being a form of dental hygiene. It only provides minimal help in removing debris from your teeth; thus, it can’t compare to the results achieved when using a toothbrush.
#4 – If Your Gums Bleed When You Floss, You Should Stop
When you haven’t flossed in a while, you can expect there to be some temporary bleeding when you restart. In most cases, this will subside after a couple of sessions. So you should neither be alarmed nor give up.
#5 – You Can Hide Poor Dental Hygiene from Your Dentist
If you’ve been slacking in the dental hygiene department, attempting to step-up your efforts just before a visit won’t cover up any previous negligence. Your dentist will notice such things as soft tissue inflammation, excessive bleeding and signs of plaque growth – all of which are common when there is poor dental care.
#6 – Candy is the Main Culprit of Cavities
Most people are aware of the potentially harmful effects of eating candy, as it’s known for contributing to cavity development. But it’s not the sole threat to your teeth and gums. The sugar found in candy is present in many processed foods, such as crackers, breads, pasta, pastries, dessert items and several others. If you choose to indulge in any of these foods, performing dental hygiene afterwards is of the utmost importance.
#7 – Tooth Sensitivity Always Means Enamel Wear
If you’re experiencing tooth sensitivity, it doesn’t always mean that enamel wear is the main culprit. In some cases, it’s the result of gum recession or the over usage of whitening products. If the latter is the cause, you can simply switch to gentler toothpaste to ease the discomfort.
#8 – Gum Disease Only Affects Your Mouth
Although gum disease starts in your mouth, it can certainly affect other parts of your body. The same plaque that develops between your teeth and beneath your gum line can eventually enter your bloodstream and cause serious health problems, such as clogged arteries, greater susceptibility to developing cancer and other issues.
#9 – The Whiter the Teeth, the Healthier They are
It’s only natural to desire a set of white teeth, but achieving that shouldn’t be misconstrued as representing good oral health. Although your teeth may be gorgeous in appearance, bacteria could be slowly wearing down your enamel to form cavities.
#10 – Dental Visits are Only Necessary if Something’s Bothering You
Instead of waiting on a problem to develop, it’s much easier to maintain regular visits with your State College dentist for cleanings and checkups. By staying on a six-month schedule, you can avoid a host of problems and have the peace-of-mind of knowing where your oral health stands.
As the old saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is better than 10 pounds of cure.” Taking a careful approach to your oral health will make a huge difference down the road!
About the Author
Dr. Chris J. Devlin earned his dental degree from the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine. Throughout his career, he has managed to stay abreast of the many changes in dentistry by taking several hours of continuing education in a host of treatment areas. Dr. Devlin helps his patients maintain the best oral health possible by providing a multitude of dental services at his private practice, and he can be reached for more information or to schedule a visit through his website.