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10 Misconceptions about Oral Health

Couple smiling at one another before brushing their teeth

Dentistry has existed since 7000 B.C., making it an ancient practice. Since then, groundbreaking discoveries in technology and techniques have advanced the profession to where it is today. Because so many techniques are tested daily, it is easy to lose track of which are true, and which are false. To ensure that we care for our teeth in the best way possible, here is a list of 10 misconceptions about oral health. 

#1 – Charcoal Toothpaste 

Using charcoal for toothpaste is not a new practice. Using charcoal for toothpaste dates back to 27 B.C., when Romans combined charcoal powder, crushed bones, oyster shells, and bark to form a paste to brush their teeth. Fast forward to the present day, you can find charcoal-infused toothpaste on the shelves of almost any convenience store. Although people have been using charcoal as toothpaste for centuries, it doesn’t mean it’s any better than regular toothpaste. Studies show no evidence that charcoal is effective or safe to use. Charcoal is an abrasive substance that can cause more harm than good, potentially removing the enamel from your teeth. 

#2 – Unnecessary Check-Ups 

“My teeth are clean. I have no cavities or sensitivity, so I don’t need to visit the dentist.” Wrong! Even if you are taking excellent care of your teeth, it is important to visit the dentist at least once every six months. During these visits, your dentist can check for underlying issues you may not know about, like gum disease or oral cancer. Regular visits are great, not just for cleaning and whitening but also to deal with any issues that may arise. 

#3 – Brushing Harder Is Better 

Brushing hard may seem like a great idea to eliminate plaque buildup and stains, but it is not beneficial. When you brush aggressively, you risk damaging the enamel on your teeth and causing your gums to recede. It is best to gently brush your teeth with a soft bristle brush in circular motions for about two minutes twice a day.  

#4 – Going All Out Before a Dentist Appointment 

Deciding to go all out with your oral hygiene the night before your dentist appointment will not give you the results you think it will. Your dentist can tell what your oral routine looks like by looking at your teeth. If you do not take care of your teeth regularly, you will form a buildup of plaque and tartar on your teeth, which will be a tell-tale sign to your dentist if you take good care of your teeth. It’s best to stay consistent with your oral routine to ensure you are taking the best possible care of your teeth. 

#5 – Sugar Causes Cavities 

Although sugar can cause cavities, it is not the sole reason you get them. When you digest sugar, bacteria is formed. That bacteria will, in turn, eat away at your enamel if left untreated. To eliminate the chances of bacteria, make sure to floss and brush your teeth in the morning and at night. 

#6 – Tooth Loss Is Genetic 

Unlike other health-related issues, losing teeth is not genetic. Some hereditary issues can be passed down, such as gum disease and oral cancer. However, actual tooth decay and cavities are all based on your daily habits. If you do not take care of your teeth, chances are you are going to experience dental issues. However, if you do, you can expect to have little to no problems. 

#7 – You Don’t Need to Floss 

Flossing is a critical piece in a good oral hygiene routine. To ensure that your teeth are cleaned thoroughly, you must clean all sides of your teeth. The only way to do this is by flossing between each tooth. Flossing is great for removing stuck food and plaque. 

#8 – White Teeth Mean They Are Healthy 

You do not need to have pearly white teeth for them to be healthy. It is normal to have stains on your teeth from different foods and drinks you have consumed over the years. If you want white teeth, talk to your dentist about their teeth whitening options. 

#9 – Kids Teeth aren’t Important Since They Are Losing Them 

“Kids lose all of their baby teeth by 12, so there isn’t any reason to take care of them.” Yes and no. Children tend to lose all their baby teeth by 12, but you still want to care of them. Teaching your kids how to properly brush and floss their teeth will set them up for success. The way that kids take care of their baby teeth can have an impact on the growth of their adult teeth. Start oral hygiene routines when they are young to have the best outcome. To learn more about oral hygiene for kids, check out our blog about best practices for children.  

#10 – Teeth Whitening Is Damaging 

Getting your teeth professionally whitened by your dentist will cause no damage to them. However, over-the-counter whitening options can lead to damaged teeth and gums due to the ingredients used and improper techniques. If you do not want to risk the state of your teeth, it is best to go the professional route. 

Don’t Believe the Myths! 

With so much information being spread around, it can be difficult to decipher what is true and what is false. That is why it is crucial to do your own research before attempting a new technique. If you are still unsure after doing some research, contact a professional dental practice like Southpoint Quality Dental, where we can steer you in the right direction.

Office Closure

Happy Holidays From Southpoint Quality Dental!

Our offices will be closed on Friday, May 17th.
We will be open as normal on Monday the 20th. Have a great weekend!