Myths or misconceptions are a natural phenomenon that occurs when people across the globe state their individual opinions and perceptions to each other. When these distinctive thoughts (not backed by factual knowledge) are shared around the public sphere, an element of fiction is born. As a result of this, the difference between fact and fiction becomes widespread.
So is the case of dental myths. It is important to note that there are many dental myths and theories, that can provide you with the wrong information on your dental health. Due to the lack of knowledge in oral health care, you may display a receptive attitude towards false news, instructions, and information.
If these myths about dental care are not debunked on time, they can potentially cause problems to your teeth and gums.
We need to be able to differentiate fiction from fact, especially in the world of dentistry. This is because the health problems that arise from improper dental care, can put you at risk of getting diagnosed with oral cancer.
Let us check out some of the common dental myths or misconceptions and debunk them.
Myth #1: “Brushing your teeth aggressively makes them cleaner”
This is one of the most-heard dental myths. People often believe that by brushing their teeth hard, they can improve the discolouration of their teeth, and make them cleaner. However, this is a false assumption. In reality, if you brush your teeth too hard, it can cause your tooth’s enamel to erode.
In addition to this, it can also impair your gum health, causing them to bleed or swell over time. By brushing your teeth aggressively, you will also subject yourself to receding gums, and the dental complications associated with it.
Thus, our dentists at Micris Dental Clinic recommend you to:
- Reduce the pressure you imply on your teeth while brushing them
- Opt for a soft-bristled toothbrush
Myth #2: “Flossing is an unnecessary dental care routine”
First of all, no! Flossing very much plays an important role in maintaining your oral hygiene. How?
Sometimes, the food particles can get stuck between the teeth. When this happens, brushing may prove ineffective because it cannot clean those narrow spaces between our teeth.
Thus, both brushing and flossing are necessary for the maintenance of good oral hygiene, and the preservation of your teeth and gums. By clearing out the debris stuck between your teeth, flossing can help eliminate the risk of bacteria build-up, which may eventually cause tooth decay, cavities, and gum diseases.
Myth #3: “Sugar leads to Tooth Rot”
Is the fear of tooth rot stopping you from consuming your favorite sugary foods?
Well, you won’t have to worry about this problem anymore, because it is a myth.
That’s right. Sugary foods or beverages by itself does not cause any harm to your teeth. However, the real culprit in this situation is you. This means that the probability of tooth rot depends solely on how long the sugar remains in your teeth.
Hence, if you lack the requisite dental etiquette of brushing and flossing twice a day, then your teeth may be prone to the risk of tooth rot. Consequently, the tooth may get decayed from the plaque produced by the rot, which can lead to an array of problems like abscesses or gum diseases.
Therefore, if you depict a negligent attitude towards dental hygiene, then you may need to say goodbye to your favourite sweets and snacks ☹
Myth #4: “Avoiding the dentist while pregnant is advised”
In the fear of being exposed to radiation emitted from X-rays, many women tend to avoid a visit to their dentist. However, these misconceptions are wrong and need to be changed. Since the amount of radiation used by dental X-rays is minimal, they will not expose you or your fetus to harmful radiation.
You need to visit the dentist and always get your regular dental check-up. Don’t let pregnancy stop you from preserving your oral health. At Micris Dental Clinic, our team of dental experts is trained and well-equipped to provide adequate dental care to our pregnant patients.
Since pregnancy affects your oral health to many different degrees such as exposing you to the risk of cavities or pregnancy gingivitis, now is the time you need to remain proactive in maintaining your oral health.
Myth #5: “Chewing gum is a suitable alternative to brushing”
Did you know that some people consider chewing gum an acceptable substitute for brushing their teeth?
It’s true. Many people claim to believe that by chewing gum, they can get their teeth cleaned, and eliminate foul breath. They consider this as a speedy solution to cleaning their teeth when they are pressed for time.
However, this claim is far from the fact. Chewing gum cannot offer any ounce of benefit that comes from brushing your teeth. Thus, our dentists suggest that you should always make time to brush your teeth before heading for the day.
Chewing gum can only help to combat bad breath. Also, they can help encourage the production of saliva in your mouth and wash away any acid residue or sugar build-up on the surface of the teeth (i.e., prevent tooth decay).
Myth #6: “You need to visit the dentist only when there is something wrong with your teeth”
No! You need to visit the dentist irrespective of the state of your current oral health. Even dental anxiety is not a valid reason to put off getting regular dental check-ups. These ideologies will ultimately put you at risk of being unaware of your oral health. This lack of awareness will deter you from taking the appropriate preventive measures to protect your teeth and gums.
Regular dental check-ups are your only source of preventive care when it comes to dentistry. Therefore, our oral experts suggest you visit your dentist at least once every six months. By making routine dental check-ups a part of your lifestyle, you can easily avoid complex dental issues and the torment associated with them.
Myth #7: "Diabetic patients do not require any special dental care"
Did you know that diabetes and oral health are interrelated to each other?
One of the main reasons why many people believe the contrary, is because they lack knowledge and awareness in this area. Your oral health is connected to the health functions located in different parts of the body such as the pancreas, kidney, and even the brain.
It is also a fascinating truth that the majority of dysfunctions or diseases we have, stem from the mouth, such as dementia, or in this case, diabetes. Thus, our dentist highly recommends people with diabetes continue their timely visits to dentists.
By disregarding the same, you can be easily prone to the risk of gum diseases, or other periodontal diseases. If you are diagnosed with diabetes, dental care becomes more of a priority for you, since there is a significant correlation between your gum health and your blood sugar levels.
Myth #8: “Teeth Whitening treatments can damage your enamel”
It is confounding to know that many people still believe teeth whitening to be the major cause of enamel erosion. This myth accurately depicts the lack of awareness and knowledge people have about dentistry.
Well, let us debunk this myth. Although cheap, over-the-counter, at-home teeth whitening treatments can harm your teeth and gums, professional teeth whitening procedures have the opposite effect on your dental health.
This means that the whitening gels, or the bleaching agents used by dental experts at an In-office treatment, are of superior quality, and thus, will not erode the enamel of your teeth. When performed under the supervision of a dentist or a dental hygienist, teeth whitening treatments can be quite easy, safe, and effective.
It all depends upon the type of teeth whitening procedure you decide to pursue.
Myth #9: “Gum diseases are rare, and when they do arise, they only impact the mouth”
According to the studies furnished by the South African Dental Journal, more than 50-90% of adults across the globe suffer from gingivitis. This fact easily counteracts the false claim or the misconception that gum diseases are rare.
Since periodontal diseases encompass both gingivitis and periodontitis, they can affect a wider set of adult populations around the world. Some of the risk factors for gum diseases include smoking, specific medications, alcohol consumption, demographic factors, and systemic diseases.
However, it is important to understand that most of these diseases such as diabetes or cardiovascular diseases start from the mouth since it is the primary entryway to the rest of your body. Thus, there is a profound connection between gum diseases and other health problems.
Myth #10: “There is no difference between a regular dental cleaning and deep cleaning.”
Even though they may appear to be identical, they are completely different dental procedures from a semantic perspective. Let us first understand what deep cleaning is.
When gum diseases progress in your mouth, and cause tooth loss or halitosis, then you may require deep cleaning. The goal of this treatment is to prevent any further damage to your bones or gums.
On the other hand, regular dental cleanings refer to the professional cleaning of your teeth i.e., to remove the layers of plaque and tartar build-up on the surface of your teeth, and above your gum line. These treatments help to prevent gum diseases and even treat benign gingivitis.
Thus, with distinctive functions, both regular dental cleaning and deep cleaning are different from each other.
Hopefully, by debunking these dental myths, we have shed some clarity on your perceptions. With this knowledge, you can now make wise and informed decisions on your oral health. Self-awareness is the key to avoiding dental problems in the future.
Call us right away if you have any more queries or worries regarding your oral health.
Our team of dental specialists will be more than happy to cater to all your dental needs and problems.