Taking care of your dental health is simple.
Brushing, flossing and going to the dentist for routine appointments are easy ways to ensure your dental health stays in great shape. Despite the simplicity of effective dental care, there are several long-standing myths that can harm the health of your smile.
These dental myths are passed from generation to generation and will end up harming oral health over time. Dr. Del Kovacevic debunks the most common dental myths.
Revealing Facts From Fiction
Did you know that people believed that kissing a donkey would help to relieve a toothache in the middle ages? Although this seems ridiculous today, there are still plenty of myths that continue to be passed on. Some of the most common dental myths include:
A White Smile Means Great Oral Health
A study from the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry reported teeth whitening as the most popular treatment. While we often associate a white smile with good oral health, the two are not mutually exclusive.
Teeth should be on the whiter side, but the degree of whiteness will vary from person to person. It’s important to remember that someone can still have healthy teeth even if they don’t have a vivid white smile. It’s also possible for patients to have poor dental health with teeth that appear bright white. That is because whiteness doesn’t indicate infections or cavities.
Brushing Harder Removes Plaque More Efficiently
More isn’t always better, and this sentiment rings true when it comes to brushing your teeth. Many patients can mistakenly apply too much pressure while brushing their teeth. In truth, aggressively brushing your teeth will harm your dental health more than it will help.
Adding excessive pressure when brushing can irritate the gum tissue and damage the outer protective layer of the tooth, known as the tooth enamel. Without your tooth enamel, you are more susceptible to several dental ailments including tooth decay, tooth fractures and more.
Brushing is More Important Than Flossing
According to a survey from the American Dental Association, Americans need to make some improvements to their dental hygiene habits. While the survey found that 30% of the population isn’t brushing enough, flossing habits are even worse with 6 out of 10 Americans not flossing once per day as recommended.
Many patients believe that brushing their teeth is more important for dental health than flossing them. In reality, brushing and flossing are both critical to having a healthy smile. Brushing removes plaque and food particles from the surfaces of teeth, and flossing removes bacteria from in between teeth.
It’s essential to include both brushing and flossing in your daily routine to enjoy a healthy, disease-free mouth.
You Should Avoid Brushing or Flossing Bleeding Gums
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly half of all Americans 30 years and older have some form of periodontal disease. Swollen, bleeding gums are a tell-tale sign of dental health troubles and are the beginning signs of gingivitis, the early form of gum disease.
There are some patients that believe that brushing or flossing can further irritate bleeding gums, but it can actually help improve your oral health! Gum tissue becomes red and swollen due to bacteria build-up. In order to avoid bacteria build up, patients should increase their attention to brushing and flossing.
You Don’t Need Dental Appointment if There’s No Pain
Visiting your dentist every 6 months is essential for maintaining a healthy smile. At your routine appointments, you’ll have a thorough cleaning and examination. This allows for your dentist to spot any potential problems early on.
Unfortunately, some patients may not keep up with routine visits and instead, wait until they feel pain to visit their dentist. We strongly encourage our patients to visit us before problems become apparent. In the end, routine appointments and preventative measures are far less costly and painful than waiting until a dental problem develops.
Baby Teeth Are Going to Fall Out So They’re Not Important
Good oral hygiene habits develop during childhood and will continue into adulthood. To set your child up with a lifelong healthy smile, teach them a proper dental hygiene routine.
Parents can mistakenly teach their children that baby teeth are not important because they’re going to fall out anyway. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. The baby teeth are important for various reasons, including:
- Holding the space for permanent teeth growing under the gums
- Helping speaking skills
- Helping children chew properly
- Setting the foundation for a lifetime healthy smile
Contact Dr. Del Kovacevic In Greensburg, PA
There are plenty of dental myths that are passed on from friends and family, or from inaccurate online sources. Learning the truth behind these dental myths can help patients truly understand their oral health and properly care for their smile.
If you’re interested in taking the next step to take care of your dental health, contact our office here in Greensburg, PA. We offer dental services ranging from family dentistry to cosmetic treatments. Contact our office to schedule your appointment with Dr. Kovacevic and his talented staff today!