Common Dental Myths and Misconceptions

Common Dental Myths

There are many different treatment options for a healthy smile, and it isn’t easy to generalize what works best. However, there are several common misconceptions that many people have regarding oral health that could lead to unintended problems if they aren’t addressed. At Sloan Creek Dental, we have your best interests at heart, and this guide can help you avoid some common dental myths about your oral health.

Myth - Tooth loss is influenced by genetic factors.

Some people believe they are destined to lose their teeth due to family history, but this is not the case. Tooth loss is absolutely preventable. In most situations, tooth loss is primarily due to poor oral hygiene and dental problems such as cavities. When cavities go untreated, the result can be tooth loss.

Myth - Sugar Causes Cavities

The simple answer: no. Sugar itself does not cause cavities, but it can contribute to the bacteria that cause tooth decay. Bacteria feed on sugar and produce acid—which is what damages your teeth when you eat food or drink beverages that are acidic. To avoid this kind of damage, brush your teeth twice a day with proper brushing techniques and use fluoride toothpaste. Flossing is also important, as it helps remove food particles from between your teeth where you can’t brush them effectively. And don’t forget to visit the dentist every six months for regular checkups and cleanings!

Myth - Bleeding Gums Are Normal

Bleeding gums are not normal, and you should contact your dentist to get an exam to see how they can help put a plan in place for healthy teeth and gums! In general, bleeding gums can be caused by inflammation of the gums. This can be due to excessive plaque buildup, the onset of gingivitis, or gum disease.

Myth - The harder you brush, the cleaner your teeth will be

No, brushing harder doesn’t clean your teeth better. In fact, it’s more likely to damage your teeth and gums. Here’s why: Brushing too hard can wear down the protective layer of enamel on your teeth, exposing the sensitive dentin underneath. And that can lead to sensitivity and pain. In addition, brushing too hard can cause gum recession—when the gums pull back from the teeth—which makes the roots of your teeth more susceptible to decay.

Man Brushing Teeth

Myth - You don't need to floss every day

False – Flossing is an important part of your oral health routine. Flossing isn’t just for your teeth. It can actually help you keep your whole body healthier. Here are some benefits of flossing.

  • Flossing helps prevent gum disease, which can lead to heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer.
  • Flossing also gets rid of bacteria that cause bad breath.
  • Flossing removes food particles that can get stuck in the area between your teeth and gums. This is where bacteria love to grow!
  • Flossing helps to remove plaque, which is a sticky film that forms on teeth and can lead to cavities and gum disease if left untreated.

Myth - Chewing Gum Is Like Brushing Your Teeth

Chewing sugarless gum is an excellent way to freshen your breath, but it’s not meant to replace regular brushing and flossing. If you’re looking for a long-term solution for bad breath or want to keep your teeth clean and healthy, chewing gum is definitely not enough. But if you’re looking for an easy way to get rid of bad breath right away—or if you just want to freshen up after lunch—chewing gum might be just what the doctor ordered!

Another benefit to sugarless chewing gum is it is shown to help reduce plaque. This is because chewing gum stimulates saliva production, which helps to wash away food debris and neutralize acids that cause cavities. It also helps to remove plaque from the teeth. However, chewing gum does not replace brushing or flossing—it’s best to use them all!

Myth - White Teeth Are Healthy Teeth

Not all white teeth are healthy. Whitening teeth can make them look better, but it won’t necessarily make them healthier. Teeth begin white and can become discolored over time due to staining or damage. Whitening your teeth may leave the underlying cause of discoloration unaddressed. If you notice your teeth aren’t looking as white as before, speak to your dentist about why.

Myth - Kids don't need to brush their baby teeth

Yes, kids need to brush their baby teeth (also known as primary teeth). The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children brush their teeth at around two years old with an age-appropriate toothbrush and toothpaste.

It’s important to make sure your child is brushing their teeth for at least 2 minutes twice a day. This is the most effective way of removing plaque from the surface of the tooth and keeping it healthy.

Brushing baby teeth isn’t just about cleaning them—it’s also about teaching your child how to care for their adult teeth (permanent teeth) as they grow up.

Myth - Loss of tooth enamel cause sensitivity

When you lose enamel on your teeth, the dentin underneath becomes exposed and sensitive. This makes it painful for you to eat certain foods or even brush your teeth without experiencing discomfort. It also weakens your teeth so that they’re more likely to decay if they’re exposed to bacteria in plaque or acids found in acidic foods like fruit juice or soda pop.

If you’re experiencing tooth sensitivity, it could be due to a number of different things. For example, some people experience it because they grind their teeth (bruxism) while they sleep or because they use an abrasive toothpaste. Don’t hesitate to talk to your dentist if you’re concerned about your symptoms.

Myth - There’s No Need for an Exam if I have no Oral Health Concerns

Dental checkups should be a part of your and your family’s regular health routine. Even if you don’t notice anything wrong, it’s best to still schedule checkups because keeping your teeth healthy can prevent bigger problems in the future. The sooner you catch problems with your teeth, the easier it is to fix them.

Myth - Oral health is not connected to the rest of the body

When it comes to oral health, there’s a connection with your general health. A mouth full of cavities and periodontal disease (gum disease) can lead to bacteria entering the bloodstream and causing heart disease, diabetes, cancer, or other illnesses. Click here to learn more about how your oral health is linked to your overall health.

Myth - Dental implants require special care

No, dental implants do not require special care. As with regular teeth, dental implants need to be brushed twice a day and flossed once daily. You should also visit your dentist biannually to make sure that your dental implants are still in good health.

Myth - Charcoal Toothpaste Is Better

The American Dental Association (ADA) has not found any evidence to support the safety or effectiveness of charcoal toothpaste, which may actually harm teeth and gums.

Sloan Creek Dental is Here for Your Dental Care

As your local family dentist near the Allen and Fairview area, we are here to help you with any questions or concerns that you might have about keeping your smile healthy. If you have any questions about other oral health myths, feel free to contact us and we’ll be happy to help with your oral care routine. To schedule your appointment, contact Sloan Creek Dental, and our friendly staff will be happy to assist you. You can reach us at our Fairview, TX dental office to schedule an in-person consultation with us today – 972-468-1440

Our dental office is located in Fairview, Texas, and our patients visit us from across the surrounding areas, including Allen, Plano, McKinney, and Lucas.