Dental Myths: Fact or Fiction

dental model of teeth - dental myths debunked

Misconceptions surrounding dental care are common and it is important to know what the facts are to keep your teeth healthy for life. Maintaining dental health can be simple, as long as you follow a daily routine and get regular check-ups at your dentist. Now let’s dive in deeper and set the record straight about dental care tips and whether they are tooth or false.

1. Chewing gum replaces brushing your teeth.

Gum actually does remove food that is stuck in your teeth, but this does not mean you can stop brushing your teeth twice a day. Chewing sugar-free gum is sometimes recommended by dentists to temporarily clean your mouth by removing loose food particles. When you chew gum it also helps produce saliva which aids in washing away those bad acids from foods and drinks. Sugars that stay on your teeth for a long period of time can cause cavities, which is why dentists recommend we brush twice daily. Remember that sugars are snuck into many of the foods we eat – so even if you try to avoid desserts and candies, the sugar in processed foods can also harm your teeth over time.

2. You don’t have to visit the dentist if nothing hurts.

This may be one of the biggest misconceptions out there and is very important to set straight. When it comes to dental issues, most of the time pain is not felt in the beginning stages whether it be a cavity or gum disease. Pain and discomfort often arise when the problem is bigger, resulting in root canals, extractions and other more involved procedures. The best way to keep your mouth healthy is by scheduling regular, bi-annual check-ups and teeth cleanings with your dentist.

3. Flossing is a personal preference.

Recently, daily flossing was removed from the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, but, that doesn’t mean flossing should be forgotten. In fact, most dentists still recommend their patients floss regularly because it is an effective practice in removing food stuck between teeth and reducing plaque. The buildup in those hard to reach places can only be removed by floss in many cases, and the removal of that buildup can prevent cavities. Gum disease can also be caused by the buildup and plaque that remains in between our teeth. When flossing, if your gums bleed, that is because they may be inflamed which is a sign of gum disease. Dentists recommend you floss daily to help prevent gum disease and in fact, the bleeding and irritation will decrease overtime with regular flossing.

To schedule your dental appointment, contact local Newburgh, NY dentist Dr. Michael Koumas.

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