Myth: If you notice your gums bleeding, stop brushing and flossing immediately.
Truth: When brushing and flossing, bleeding can be a sign of plaque build up. Removing the plaque is essential to oral health, and the bleeding is simply the affect of the plaque being removed. The more time spent avoiding plaque in the first place, the less often gums will bleed from brushing and flossing. If bleeding continues to occur repeatedly, despite proper oral hygiene practices, it is important to consult the dentist to monitor if there are issues with plaque or other problems.
Bottom line: Gums will bleed from brushing and flossing when you try to wash away plaque – and that is okay and healthy.
Myth: Using a harder toothbrush cleans teeth better.
Truth: A harder bristled toothbrush can end up causing damage to tooth enamel. With a hard toothbrush, spending too much time on teeth cleaning can end up doing a great deal of harm. With a soft bristled toothbrush, more time can be spent on actually cleaning teeth. Soft brushes are able to better remove plaque and tartar build up, without destroying the tooth enamel. With hard bristles, and even medium bristles, you can end up causing your teeth to feel more sensitive due to the erosion of the enamel. This ends up leading to oral health problems, rather than working to solve them. If you have a reason to believe a harder bristle is better for you, take it up with your dentist and find out their perspective on the subject.
Bottom line: A soft toothbrush promotes oral health, not a hard toothbrush.
Myth: If my teeth look and feel good to me, I do not need to see a dentist.
Truth: The dentist is about both problems and prevention. Your teeth require constant attention throughout life, despite how teeth look and feel. Attending your dentist regularly is the key to avoiding issues in the future. While you may not see any issues yet, you may end up causing yourself greater dental issues in the future. As well, there may be issues lurking that cannot be seen or felt. Problems do not develop overnight. Oral hygiene problems can start with a simple issue with plaque and tartar build up that can go unseen in daily life. The dentist is able to recognize issues that are not visible to those without a working knowledge of dentistry.
There are different risk factors that can end up leading to serious problems. These risk factors can include use of tobacco, alcohol, and diet choices. No matter what your lifestyle choices are like, keep attending your dentist on a regular basis. You never know for sure if any future issues are developing.
Bottom line: While teeth look and feel okay, future problems can be developing. Only the dentist is able to make informed decisions about dental health. Attending your dentist regularly is important, no matter how teeth seem to look and feel.