There are a lot of myths and misconceptions as to what’s required to keep your teeth and gums healthy. You only need to spend a few minutes each day taking care of your dental health but listening to some of these common myths could cause irreversible damage. We’ve looked at some of the more common myths.
Myth 1: Brushing Harder Will Get Your Teeth Cleaner
The truth is that brushing your teeth too hard or using a hard-bristled toothbrush could wear away your tooth enamel and even your gums, harming your teeth and certainly not helping get them any cleaner. You don’t need to brush your teeth hard to get them thoroughly clean as it is more a matter of technique. Instead, use a soft-bristled toothbrush and ask your Bowmanville dentist if you need help in perfecting your daily dental routine.
Myth 2: You Don’t Need to Floss Every Day
It is tempting to think your toothbrush can clean all your tooth surfaces, but its bristles cannot reach in between your teeth. If you fail to floss regularly, these surfaces remain uncleaned, allowing plaque and impacted food to build up, significantly increasing your risk of gum disease and tooth decay. Dentists can always tell when people floss regularly because their gums are far more likely to be healthier and stronger! Flossing is quick and effective and makes a real difference, but if you aren’t sure how to floss, ask your hygienist after your next dental cleaning in Newcastle.
Myth 3: Chewing Sugar-Free Gum Can Replace Tooth Brushing
There are some benefits to chewing sugar-free gum after meals, but it certainly cannot replace tooth brushing and is nowhere near as effective. Chewing gum stimulates saliva flow, helping to wash away excess food particles, old skin cells and bacteria. Saliva helps to reduce acidity in the mouth and gum containing xylitol offers some protection against oral bacteria, but you still must brush your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes each time!
Myth 4: If Your Gums Bleed, Leaving Them Alone Will Let Them Heal
Although brushing your teeth and gums very hard might make them bleed, gum infection and inflammation is a far more likely cause. When you don’t brush and floss properly or frequently enough, plaque bacteria build up in the mouth, infecting and inflaming your gums, so they become more fragile and likely to bleed when brushed. Leaving them alone is probably the worst thing you can do. Instead, make an appointment to see a dentist in Clarington who can check for signs of gum infection, a condition called periodontal disease. Early signs of a gum infection are often easily treated with a dental cleaning and an improved oral hygiene routine, and the inflammation is entirely reversible. Ignoring your bleeding gums increases the risk of the disease worsening, and it could eventually cause tooth loss or even affect your overall health.
Myth 5: If Your Teeth Feel Fine, You Don’t Need a Checkup
It is time for your regular checkup and cleaning, but your teeth feel just fine, so why bother going? Common dental problems like the beginnings of tooth decay or gum disease will frequently cause few, if any symptoms, but this is the optimal time to receive treatment. Your dental checkup in Courtice will detect any small problems at a stage when they are usually quicker and cheaper to treat. If you wait until you develop unpleasant symptoms, treatment is likely to be lengthier, more invasive and costlier. Preventative dental care is always the better option and will save you money and protect your teeth in the longer term.
Are you overdue for a dental checkup? Call West Bowmanville Family Dental now, and don’t wait until something feels wrong.