There are lots of myths surrounding dental care and treatment. Inaccurate information may make you feel confused and anxious, wondering if some daily habit is destroying your teeth. In times like this, it’s good to seek out expert knowledge. Los Angeles cosmetic dentist Dr. Shervin Louie is here to put an end to these dental misconceptions and misinformation.
Myth #1: Sensitive Teeth are Signs of Dental Decay
FICTION. When you experience tooth sensitivity, it does not necessarily mean that you have a decaying tooth. Tooth sensitivity can have multiple causes, such as gum recession that exposes the tooth’s roots. You may just have naturally sensitive teeth. If you do, then it is advisable that you visit a professional dentist like Dr. Louie who will perform an examination and establish the exact cause of your tooth sensitivity. In the case of a gum recession, a filling can be done to cover the exposed root.
Myth #2: Bleeding Gums are Normal and should not be Brushed
FICTION. If you have not established a flossing habit, then your first time flossing may make your gums bleed. This is normal and your gums will build up a tolerance if you continue. But in any other case, bleeding gums are not normal. They may be a sign of gingivitis. The good news is that this condition can be treated.
There is also a misconception that bleeding gums should not be brushed and should be allowed time to heal before they can be cleaned again. But the bleeding is itself a result of not brushing. Gums that have not been brushed enough tend to develop bacteria around and beneath them that irritates the gum and makes it bleed. Regular brushing will help get rid of all the bacteria.
Myth #3: More Sugar Means More Cavities
FICTION. Whereas it is true that cavities are a result of bacteria breaking down sugary substances into harmful acids that corrode your teeth, it is not true that more sugary foods will necessarily result in tooth decay. The important factor is the amount of time that sugary substances stay on your teeth. The longer they stay, the more the chance of cavities and decay. For example, if you drink soda through a straw, the liquid bypasses your teeth and does not contribute to decay. But if you eat a bar of chocolate and allow the sticky reside to coat your teeth, cavity formation is greatly accelerated. It is always advisable to brush your teeth or rinse your mouth with water after every meal and especially after eating sugary foods.
Myth #4: Dental Problems Lead to Bad Breath
FACT. While many factors contribute to bad breath, from the last food you ate to even what time of day it is (“morning breath” is a real phenomenon), bad teeth do lead to bad breath. Many people with bad breath resort to using breath fresheners and mouthwashes, which is treating the symptoms rather than the cause of the problem. Daily brushing and flossing will significantly reduce bad breath. But if it persists, you should visit a professional like Dr. Louie to see if you have any serious dental issues.