We have all been told about the importance of brushing and flossing. Yet, myths still abound when it comes to taking care of our teeth and gums. Here are some common misconceptions about oral care:
- You should brush vigorously. Many people assume that brushing harder is better. In fact, the opposite is true: brushing too aggressively can wear down enamel and contribute to receding gums. Gum recession creates gaps where harmful bacteria can build up and cause infection. To help keep your brushing at safe levels, consider investing in an electric toothbrush.
- Sugar increases the risks of cavities. Sugar can certainly take a tool on tooth enamel, but there is no direct correlation between sugar consumption and cavity formation. Daily brushing and flossing are your best defenses against the development of cavities and gum disease.
- Bleeding gums are not a problem. Although a bit of blood may seem like a minor issue, it could indicate gingivitis (periodontal gum disease).
- Poor oral health only affects the mouth. Quite the opposite: research indicates that periodontal disease may increase the risk of stroke and contribute to the development of other health conditions. If pregnant woman has periodontal disease, it can affect the unborn baby’s health. Why? The bacteria that is released in the bloodstream can make it to other organs.
- If you do not feel pain, your teeth are fine. Pain occurs when the decay has progressed enough to reached the nerve. Regular check ups can help detect the earlier stages of decay.
- Tooth sensitivity always indicates decay. A sensitive tooth could point to another problem. If you feel pain or discomfort, do not ignore it: have the tooth examined immediately.
- Braces work best on younger patients. Actually, many adults have benefited from orthodontic treatment. Today there are more treatment choices than ever–especially for those concerned about aesthetics. “Invisible braces” such as Invisalign are a comfortable and convenient alternative to traditional braces.