Your oral health is important for many reasons. Not only does a healthy, appealing smile improve your appearance and self-esteem, but it also ensures you can eat, chew, and speak properly. In addition, good oral health reduces your risk of dangerous infections, such as decay and gum disease. Unfortunately, you may not properly understand a few aspects regarding your oral health and dental care. Here are a few myths your dentist wants you to stop believing.
You Should Floss Each Time You Brush
Most people understand the importance of brushing their teeth. Also, you probably know you should floss as well. However, you may not realize brushing and flossing do not have to be done together each time.
Dentists recommend brushing your teeth twice a day, but flossing once per day is sufficient for removing plaque and food particles on and in between your teeth. You may think the more you floss, the better, but that is not true.
Excessive flossing can actually do more harm than good. The floss string or flosser tool can irritate the gum tissue if it is used too much, causing it to appear red and swollen. Excess flossing can also lead to swollen tissue that starts to bleed at times.
Consider brushing your teeth in the morning and brushing and flossing right before bed to ensure your mouth, teeth, and gums are healthy.
Wisdom Teeth Have to Come Out
Another common myth is that your wisdom teeth must be extracted. This myth is not true for a few reasons.
While surprising to learn, some people do not even develop wisdom teeth. On the other hand, many people will have wisdom teeth come in straight and simple, without any pain or complications. Extracting these teeth would just be unnecessary.
Your dentist will suggest extracting the wisdom teeth if they are causing you a good amount of pain and discomfort. If these back teeth are erupting in a misaligned, overcrowded manner that is affecting your other teeth or your bite alignment, they should be extracted.
White Teeth = Healthy Teeth
Finally, you may believe that the whiter your teeth, the healthier your smile is. Again, this is a myth that needs to be addressed.
Avoiding food, drinks, and habits that discolor your teeth is beneficial to your smile's underlying health. However, using whitening pastes and strips and undergoing whitening treatments whitens and brightens your smile without actually improving the health of your mouth, teeth, and gums.
These products and treatments will benefit the cosmetic appearance of your smile, but they will not improve the underlying health of your smile.