7 Common Dental Myths -Tooth or Fiction?

Quite often what we hear is NOT true but we still tend to believe! Often, it becomes so hard to discern from what is fact and what is not.

Like everything else, dental advice can be a chock-full of wrong information. Here are a few common dental myths that we hope to bust for you.

Myth 1): The more you brush, the healthier your teeth will be

Over brushing can wear the teeth down due to the abrasive property of toothpaste and medium and hard toothbrushes. In between the ‘twice a day’ brushing regime, one can

  • Rinse the mouth with water after eating.
  • Chew sugarfree gum.

These are both good ways to avoid plaque buildup.

Myth 2): If your gums are bleeding don’t brush or floss the teeth

Regular brushing and flossing is needed to remove plaque buildup, which causes gum disease. Bleeding is a sign that something is not right. Professional dental cleaning may be required if the bleeding persists, but in the meantime continue to brush and floss your teeth.

Myth 3): Dental x-rays are unnecessary

It is necessary to have dental x-rays taken periodically, to detect tooth decay and other problems which can occur in-between the teeth, under existing fillings and under the gums.

Dental x-rays need not to be feared! The radiation dose is very small and almost negligible when we use digital radiography.

Myth 4): Teeth whitening is harmful and damages our teeth.

Teeth whitening done professionally by a dentist causes NO damage to the teeth and gums. In fact professional teeth whitening is extremely safe and the results predictable.

Temporary sensitivity and redness of the gums – both of which can occur after teeth whitening – are very normal and short lived.

Myth 5): Dental treatment should be avoided during pregnancy.

A dental check-up is recommended during pregnancy and regular procedures like cleaning and fillings are fine. Local anaesthesia is safe during pregnancy.

In fact it is often more important to get your gums cleaned during pregnancy, due to the risk of pregnancy gingivitis and therefore there is an increased need to care for gums.

Myth 6): Women lose a tooth for each child they have given birth to.

Hormonal changes while pregnant can exaggerate bacteria in the mouth and cause bleeding gums or gingivitis. Tooth loss, however, is unlikely with a thorough and regular cleaning regime and check-ups during pregnancy.

Myth 7): You always know when you have a cavity or hole in your tooth.

While it is true that a hole in your tooth (also known as a cavity) can be painful and sensitive, it is also true that sometimes you don’t feel any pain at all.

This can be a problem, especially if the cavity is left to become larger and then encroach upon the nerve (the pulp) inside the tooth.

Hence we recommend having regular dental checkups and dental x-rays in order to detect holes and cavities before they become a problem.

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