Common dental myths have been passed down through generations. They have become so ingrained in our culture; it is hard to know the difference between fact and folklore. But without the right knowledge, your dental health may be at risk.
Common Dental Myths
- White Teeth Are Healthy Teeth. Not necessarily—the natural hue varies from person to person, and teeth grow darker with age. Bright, white teeth may still have infection or decay between teeth, or below the gum line. Whiter teeth do not indicate healthier teeth. Teeth discoloration is often linked to poor oral health, but it is not always true.
- Bleaching will Damage Teeth.Teeth whitening procedures have grown in popularity in recent years. Advanced dental technology has allowed for faster, safer bleaching treatments. Before 1990, bleaching agents were highly acidic and would break down teeth enamel. Today’s methods employ materials with a neutral pH that is much safer for the whole tooth structure.
- Eating Sugar Causes Tooth Decay.Yes, sugar is not good for teeth, but it is not the damaging culprit. Mouth bacteria survive on processed sugar. What really causes cavities and decay is the combination of sugar, bacteria, and acid. However, if you avoid sugar and do not have good oral hygiene habits, you will still be at risk for tooth decay and gum disease. If you eat sugar often, you will be more prone to developing cavities.
- Rubbing an Aspirin on Gums Will Ease Pain.Placing an aspirin on an infected tooth may alleviate discomfort temporarily if the pain stems from the gums. However, if the problem is with the tooth structure, the analgesic would need to be ingested. Relief will only be achieved if the medication reaches the nerve in the tooth root through the bloodstream. Overuse of oral gels or topical aspirin can lead to burn-like symptoms on the gums.
- Floss Isn’t Necessary.Many people avoid dental floss. They brush their teeth but skip flossing every day even though this step is just as important to your oral health. By neglecting the floss, you leave about 33 percent of your teeth surfaces unclean. Plaque bacteria hide and flourish in those hard to reach places that you can’t get to with a toothbrush. By not flossing daily, you increase your risk of tooth decay, pain, cavities and gum disease.