Popular dental myths
November 20, 2013
Brushing, flossing and twice a year checkups are standard for good dental oral health. Check out the most popular widespread dental myths and learn the real facts:
Myth 1: If You Have A Cavity, You'll Know It.
This a big myth. Once a cavity starts, it doesn't repair itself. The pain associated with cavities comes when tooth decay is more advanced and causes damage to the nerve. Allowing tooth decay to advance can lead to the need for more extensive procedures such as root canals. This is why regular dental checks are so important to maintaining good oral health.
Myth 2: You Don't Need To Take Care Of Children's Baby Teeth Or Worry About Cavities In Baby Teeth.
Even though your children will lose their baby teeth naturally, poor dental hygiene can lead to health problems that cause teeth to fall out too soon. Baby teeth hold the space for permanent teeth and losing a tooth prematurely can cause problems with bite or improper development of your child's permanent teeth, which may require orthodontics later on. In addition, if cavities are left untreated in baby teeth, they can develop into serious pain and abscesses.
Myth 3: Kids Are A Lot More Likely To Get Cavities Than Adults
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With the help of sealants, fluoridated water, and preventive care, decay in school-aged children has actually been significantly reduced in the last 20 years. However, there has been an increase in cavities in senior citizens. Many medications cause the dry mouth and reducing salvia, and lack of saliva means that the mouth is cleansed more slowly. Saliva is vital in fighting tooth decay because it helps neutralize acids and helps prevent food from sticking to your teeth.
Myth 4: Sensitivity in teeth means you have decay
Tooth sensitivity could just mean you have hypersensitive teeth, or you have gum recession that's exposed some root. You also could have a cracked or broken tooth or could need a root canal. Always tell your dentist if you are having tooth sensitivity so that your teeth can be examined and rule out the possibility of any serious problems.
Myth 5: Placing aspirin next to a tooth will help an aching tooth.
Swallowing aspirin is what help reduce toothache pain. Placing an aspirin beside an aching tooth can actually damage or burn the soft tissues in your mouth, causing an abscess.
Myth 6: Sugar Is The Prime Cause Of Cavities
Acid produced by bacteria in your mouth is the cause of cavities. These bacteria are triggered to make acid when you eat anything with carbohydrates and sugar is a carbohydrate. Anywhere bacteria can hide that you can't reach with your toothbrush or floss is a likely place for decay. It isn't the amount of sugar you eat; it is the amount of time that the sugar has contact with your teeth.
Myth 7: You Only Need To Visit Your Dentist When You See A Problem.
If you see or feel a problem with your teeth you should visit your dentist immediately. However, if you do not notice any problems with your teeth, you should still schedule a checkup with your dentist ever six months. In many cases, your dentist will notice problems long before they become obvious to you, hopefully preventing them from becoming serious.
Remember to brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, and floss and rinse daily. Call your dentist to schedule a consultation for your specific dental needs.