No matter how well you clean your teeth and how often you visit the dentist, you may still not be fully aware of the difference between dental truths and myths. Some people are not brushing correctly, even though they believe they are. Others do their best to stay away from foods that cause bacteria and plaque, without really knowing all the foods that are included in that category.
By clearing up some misconceptions and providing you with some well established facts, this article will make you wiser about your teeth and thereby become better equipped to care for them.
1. Sugar and cavities:
Myth – Sugar is the source of all dental decay
Truth – All carbohydrates and starches can cause tooth decay. When foods like rice, bread, and potatoes mix with saliva an acid is produced that causes cavities.
2. Brushing your teeth:
Myth – The more you brush the better.
Truth – Frequent, harsh brushing can wear away at tooth enamel, causing the teeth to appear yellow or gray.
Myth – Frequent use of toothpicks will cause gaps between the teeth
Truth – Toothpicks do not widen gaps and can be used to serve the same function as dental floss. By rinsing your mouth after each meal and then using a toothpick to dislodge food stuck in hard to reach areas of your mouth, you will have done a lot to prevent tooth decay.
Myth – Children get more cavities than adults
Truth – Adults are just as susceptible to dental decay as children are, and maybe even more so. Adults who take certain medications are at an even greater risk for suffering from dental caries. For example, medications that make the mouth dry cause residue from food and drinks to stay on the teeth for longer periods than normal, because there is not enough saliva to wash the food away.
Myth – As a general pain killer, and one that is especially effective against headaches, aspirin will relieve your toothache.
Truth – Aspirin contains an acid that can further damage the gums by causing swelling and infection. For tooth and gum pain, take an ibuprofen-based pain reliever.
When caring for your teeth you must always keep in the mind that it is the sum total of a number of factors which determines the state of your oral health. What you eat, how you brush, and your state of general health all play a part in the condition of your mouth at any given time. Consultation with your dentist to discover the underlying causes for any decay you may have will be more productive than trying to sort out through the myriad of truths and myths about dental care that are circulating among your friends and relatives.
To learn more, contact a professional like Timothy G Mahoney DDS with any questions you have.