A big part of maintaining healthy and strong teeth and gums is having the right information about how to care for them properly. This can be made difficult, though, by the maze of do’s-and-don’ts that are online. How can you determine what is correct and what should be discarded? Your dentist in Harker Heights makes it easier by weighing in to dispel 5 common myths regarding dental health. Read on to get the expert advice you need!
Myth #1 – It is Dangerous to Undergo Teeth Whitening
If you’re like most people, then you’d rather have a set of gorgeous and white teeth than to settle for stains or discoloration. That’s made possible with professional teeth whitening. However, there is a myth circulating that it’s not safe.
The reality, though, is that when you receive treatment from a dentist, you have nothing to worry about. That’s because measures will be taken to protect your soft tissue and to ensure that the bleaching agents are applied in a safe manner.
Myth #2 – If Your Teeth are White, They are Healthy
While white teeth are preferable, a desirable appearance doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re healthy. In fact, your choppers can be gleaming brightly, yet underneath there can be oral bacteria growing and silently causing havoc.
Thus, before having your teeth whitened, it’s best to receive an oral examination. Therefore, if there are any problems lurking, your dentist can correct them before they morph into even greater issues.
Myth #3 – Brushing Your Gums Makes Them Bleed
Can vigorous toothbrushing make your gums bleed? Yes. However, that’s not always the cause. In many cases, the culprit can be gingivitis, which is the first stage of periodontal disease (the infection of the gum tissue). Thus, if you’ve noticed gum bleeding, you shouldn’t hesitate to reach out to your dentist to schedule a visit.
Myth #4 – You Can Soothe a Toothache by Placing Aspirin on Your Gums
Some sources recommend placing aspirin directly on the gums to help to soothe a toothache. While this may seem to work “on paper,” the reality is that it offers minimal help. This is mainly because aspirin is better absorbed when it’s ingested. So to prevent any gum irritation and to receive some temporary pain relief, be sure to only swallow the recommended dosage of aspirin, and to immediately schedule an emergency dental visit.
Myth #5 – Sugar is the Source of Cavities
A common misconception is that sugar is the cause of cavities. This is only partially true. The real problem is that bacteria love sugar, and when there are leftover particles from either eating or drinking, these acidic organisms flock to the area where the sugar remains. As the bacteria feed on the debris and begin to digest it, caustic fluids are released that can cause enamel (the outer layer of the teeth) erosion.
Here’s where dental hygiene plays such a big role. If you commit to brushing and flossing your teeth after eating sweets or drinking sugary beverages, you’ll have a better chance of keeping the possible adverse effects at bay.
Work with an Expert Dentist
A final way to dispel any mistruths about your dental health is to set up a preventive care visit with your dentist, which will include an oral examination and cleaning. While you’re there, you’ll also be able to ask any questions you have, so you’ll no longer have to guess or depend on unreliable sources. So seize the moment by scheduling an appointment today!
About the Author
Dr. Melinda Duncan earned her dental degree from The University of Tennessee Health Science Center. She takes pride in helping her patients be as healthy as possible by providing preventive dental care at Market Heights Family Dental, and she can be reached for more information through her website.