Dental Myths One

Dental Myths One

Thinking about Dental mythsThrough the many years of practicing dentistry I have heard many patients repeat the following dental myths and quotes. Some of these I hear almost on a daily basis from well-meaning patients who struggle to make sense of all the information that is presented to them. This is the first of a five-part series on common dental myths. Read them and hopefully you will learn from them.  They will help you make better decisions in the future.

Cavities Hurt

1-Cavities hurt. MAYBE. How can I have a cavity if I don't have any pain? Cavities hurt only they get deep enough to affect the nerve within the tooth. This point is well past the point when the cavity should be repaired. Small cavities mean quick, easy, lest costly and more predictable fixes. If you wait till you have tooth pain you will ultimately wind up with either a root canal or extraction. Don't wail till your teeth hurt. Regular visits to the dentist will help you avoid painful teeth. When cavities are caught early they can often be treated without any anesthetics and be still restored pain-free!

Bleeding Gums are OK

2-Bleeding gums are OK. NOT! When I graduated from  dental school I worked for a dentist who told his patients to brush their teeth until their gums bled. Unfortunately for his patients most of them wound up in full dentures. If you cleaned any other part of your body and it bled you would be concerned. Gums shouldn't bleed if they do you have gum disease! Gums bleed as a result of inflammation. Inflammation has been linked to systemic illness. Through this process gum disease has been linked to heart disease, diabetes and even cancer. Gum disease also cause tooth loss. More teeth are lost to gum disease then decay. So...bleeding gums are not OK!

You Lose Your Teeth as You Age

3- As you get older you lose teeth. NOT. You can and should keep all of your teeth until the end. In the early 1960s even some dentists believed this-now we know this is definitely not the case. Fix your small dental problems and you wont have big ones. This is important as longevity has been linked to tooth loss. Lose your teeth and the quality and quantity of your life will be affected. If you are interested, here is a link to an article on the subject.

Pregnancy Causes Tooth Loss

4-Pregnancy will cause tooth loss. NOT. Pregnant women can keep their teeth and gums healthy by keeping up with their regular dental visits. They can even get any needed dentistry done in the second trimester. Dental cleaning during a pregnancy will help prevent pregnancy gingivitis (swollen, bleeding  gums during pregnancy). Gum disease has been linked to low birth weight babies, so get your teeth cleaned!

You Need to See Your Dentist Twice a Year

5-You need to see your dentist twice a year. MAYBE. This idea started with a Pepsodent toothpaste commercial years ago. For some people twice a year works, but many patients need to see their dentist/hygienist up to four times a year.

Keep an eye out for our next post of more dental myths. You can subscribe to our blog as well. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment please call us today. Keeping your teeth looking great and lasting a lifetime shouldn't be a problem for you or your dentist.

Link to Dental Myths Two

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