Debunking Common Myths and Misconceptions About Teeth and Oral Health
There are so many myths about dental hygiene and caring for oral health. Rather than deal with rumours or whispers, we like to look at the facts here at Dental Avenue Maroubra. Unfortunately, many of the misconceptions about oral hygiene can have adverse effects on your health.
If you want to learn more about how to really take care of your oral health, this article is for you. We’ll look at some common misconceptions about oral hygiene and provide you with the necessary advice.
Everybody’s Gums Bleed Sometimes
While it’s true that many people experience bleeding gums occasionally, don’t accept this as normal. In rare cases, you might use a toothbrush with much harder bristles than you’re used to. This may result in some blood in your mouth while brushing, but you can usually identify the exact cause – your toothbrush.
A trip to the dentist is essential for all other blood in your mouth. If your gums are bleeding, it could be a sign of periodontitis or gingivitis. These serious dental problems can be painful and expensive to fix, so if you notice your gums bleeding, book an appointment with your dentist in Maroubra as soon as possible.
If My Teeth Don’t Hurt, I Don’t Need a Dentist
It’s certainly good if you don’t experience tooth pain or other dental concerns. But on the other side of the coin, neglecting regular dental checkups can lead to problems down the track. You should schedule regular dental checkups to ensure minor problems don’t get worse. At least once a year is recommended to ensure small issues can be identified early.
In addition, regular dentist visits for dental cleaning are also crucial. No matter how well you brush and look after your teeth at home, you need proper dental cleaning to remove all the plaque and tartar that settles on your teeth. Dental cleaning can prevent nasty issues like gum disease or tooth decay, so you should never neglect this part of your oral health routine.
Sugar-free Drinks Won’t Hurt My Teeth
It’s a common misconception that choosing sugar-free food and drinks means your teeth won’t be damaged. Sugar-free drinks are indeed better than those loaded with sugar, but this is still a bit of a myth.
The sugar in fizzy drinks mixes with bacteria to create an acid. This acid erodes your tooth enamel and can lead to cavities. So, you’d think removing the sugar means you can drink as much as you want with no tooth damage. Unfortunately for the sweet tooths out there, this is wrong.
Sugar-free drinks often contain sweeteners or other products that have the same effect on your mouth as sugar does. Many drinks are acidic, especially fruit juices, so these should be consumed in moderation.
Fluoride is Bad for You
Have you heard the zany theories that fluoride is bad for you and that our governments are slowly poisoning us through our water supply? In Australia, at least, this myth has been thoroughly debunked. Fluoride helps to prevent tooth decay, and that’s why so many dental experts recommend using it.
The water supply in most of Australia even includes fluoride to help protect our teeth, so it’s a little odd that people would think we’re all being poisoned by our water supply. Most types of toothpaste also contain fluoride.
However, we should note that there is a condition called fluorosis, which essentially means over-exposure to fluoride. You wouldn’t want to consume excessive amounts of fluoride because it can be toxic, but drinking tap water and brushing with fluoride toothpaste makes you extremely unlikely to experience any negative side effects.
Bad Breath is Only Caused By What You Eat
Most people would have experienced being in close proximity to someone with bad breath. You’ve probably even had it yourself at some point. Bad breath often gets put down to the foods we eat, and while this is definitely true in some cases, it’s not the only reason for bad breath. Eating garlic, for example, often leads to ‘garlic’ breath, but this is fleeting.
More persistent bad breath is often a symptom of a dental condition. Bad breath is also known as halitosis and can be caused by sinus infections, poor oral hygiene, other infections in the mouth and more. Of course, your diet contributes to your breath, particularly if you smoke tobacco or consume alcohol, but a dentist should certainly examine persistent bad breath.
Teeth Whitening Damages your Teeth
This myth is half-true and half-false. It is correct that certain unsafe teeth whitening practices can damage your teeth. Also, excessive teeth whitening procedures (especially when performed incorrectly) can harm your teeth. But when done responsibly and professionally, you shouldn’t have any concerns.
The issue is many people buy a teeth-whitening kit off the shelf without consulting a dentist. The kit itself may be perfectly safe, but if your tooth enamel is already damaged or you have other oral health concerns, you can still go wrong. That’s why you should always speak to your trusted dentist before considering any teeth-whitening procedures. They can advise if your mouth is suitable for treatment, recommend approved products and even perform cosmetic procedures for you.
Need a Welcoming Dentist in Maroubra?
Dental Avenue in Maroubra offers a range of dental services to ensure the ongoing health of you and your family. If you’ve got children who are scared of the dentist, don’t worry because we’ll make them feel right at home. Our caring dental professionals handle everything from regular checks and cleaning to more complex dental procedures and everything in between. Contact our friendly team today to book an appointment.