As with any topic, there’s a lot of misinformation about dental care. While many myths are harmless, some can cause you to neglect or even damage your teeth. That’s why the Boise dentists at Summit Dental Group want you to know what’s true and what’s false.
Baby Teeth Are Not Important
One common myth is that baby teeth are not as important as permanent teeth. However, baby teeth serve a very important function as place-holders in growing mouths during the early years of development. Not only do they help maintain proper structure of the mouth, they also provide a guide for permanent teeth when they grow in. Not only that but cavities in baby teeth can cause pain and discomfort in toddlers and young children.
It’s Important to Brush Immediately After Eating
While the Boise dentists at Summit Dental encourage patients to brush and floss at least twice a day, it’s not always a good idea to brush immediately after a meal. Acids created by food can leave your teeth at a weakened state right after you eat. That’s where saliva comes in. Saliva helps to correct high acid levels in your mouth while washing away leftover food particles.
Even soft-bristled toothbrushes can damage your teeth when your enamel in a weakened state. After you eat, it’s best just to let saliva do its job. However, it’s important not to forget to brush altogether. Simply wait 30 minutes after eating to allow your mouth to recover from the acid assault. That being said, don’t forget to brush at least two times a day for at least two minutes each time.
People Inherit Cavity-Prone Teeth
People often assume that just because their parents didn’t have any Boise dental health problems that they won’t either. On the other hand, people who don’t take care of their teeth often blame their dental problems on their family history. While there is some merit when it comes to the small genetic influence in determining your susceptibility to tooth decay, nearly all cavities are 100% preventable.
Candy is the Only Thing Bad for Your Teeth
This may come as a surprise but starchy foods like crackers and potato chips may actually be worse for your teeth than candy. The reason for this is because starchy foods are more prone to stick on your teeth. While the sugar from fast dissolving candies can be washed away with water, chips and crackers stick to your teeth and are harder to dissolve.
Chewing Gum is Just as Good as Brushing
While chewing sugar-free gum after eating can be beneficial it’s certainly no substitute for brushing and flossing your teeth. The only way to truly clean your teeth is by brushing and flossing at least twice a day for two minutes each time.
Brushing or Flossing is Bad for Bleeding Gums
All too often, people assume that brushing or flossing is bad for bleeding gums. Your Boise dentist on the other hand, disagrees. Bleeding gums are caused by inflammation due to food particles that are trapped in between the teeth and gums. This results in a buildup of plaque that irritates sensitive gum tissue. If you have bleeding gums, it’s important to gently brush and floss your teeth using a soft bristled toothbrush. However, bleeding gums should never be considered “normal”. Bleeding gums should always be examined by your Boise dentist to rule out any possibility of gingivitis or gum disease (periodontal disease).