Though good oral health can be obtained in just minutes a day, what is done (or not done) can have a dramatic impact on teeth and gums. Given the many myths associated with dental care, consider the following, as explained by Everyday Health.
First, the harder you brush, the cleaner you’ll get your teeth. Though it sounds plausible, this is a common misconception. The fact is—brushing too hard damages tooth enamel and gum tissues. When tooth enamel begins to erode and gums begin to recede, individuals experience tooth sensitivity and a greater risk of developing cavities. Thus, dental professionals suggest using a soft-bristled toothbrush and brushing with gentle, circular strokes.
A second dental care myth is that flossing isn’t really necessary anymore. To be clear, dentists have not changed their beliefs about the importance of flossing, despite government agencies that are focusing less on the age-old oral health practice.
Third, chewing sugarless gum is just as good as brushing. While chewing gum does aid in protecting teeth and producing saliva, which washes away harmful bacteria and acids, it is not the same as brushing teeth. In fact, it’s not even close. As such, dentists continue to tell patients to brush twice each day for about two minutes.
As a fourth myth, if your gums bleed when you floss, it’s best to leave them alone. To debunk this common myth, consider why gum tissues bleed. In a majority of cases, bleeding happens when bacteria and plaque have nestled along gum tissues and caused irritation. Thus, when floss removes the plaque from gums that are red and/or inflamed, they tend to bleed. Ultimately, this means that a person needs to floss more regularly.
Finally, if you have gum disease, this is only a problem for your mouth. This misconception is one reason why dentists spend ample time educating patients about their oral health. The bottom line is, gum disease puts patients at an increased risk for multiple diseases, from diabetes to hypertension and even cancer. This is due to chronic inflammation.
Is It Time For Your Dental Checkup?
No matter what you believe about oral health, it is important to see a dentist regularly if you want to know the truth. At Grateful Dental, Dr. Leia Porcaro is a trusted dentist that provides patient-centered dentistry. It may be time for your dental checkup. Dr. Porcaro welcomes your call today!