Debunking common dental myths

In every industry, there is the risk that people get fed false information, and dentistry is no exception. There are many myths about your dental health that you have probably heard, and may even believe!

No, we aren’t talking about the tooth fairy (or bunny, depending on where you’re from). There are loads of fake facts that have been floating around the gossip mill for decades and they are influencing the way people take care of their teeth!

Below are three common myths about dental health, and the truth behind them.

Brush harder to remove extra stubborn plaque

It makes sense that people would assume that in order to clean a tough stain, one should put some elbow grease into the cleaning! This isn’t true when it comes to your teeth though. Firstly, the way that toothbrushes are designed is that the most effective part that actually cleans the teeth is the end of the bristles.

Brushing too hard or with a brush that’s too abrasive or firm, can harm your teeth and gums says Dental Health Partners. Too much trauma to the teeth can erode some of the enamel that protects the inside of the tooth from cavities and decay. 

If you brush too violently, not only will you not achieve the result you want, but you run the risk of injuring your gum. It could cause gum recession. 

The best way to brush is gently, making sure the end of the bristles are doing all of the work. Buy yourself a soft bristle toothbrush for extra comfort.

On that note, be sure to check what is in your toothpaste! Some whitening toothpaste contains Hydrogen peroxide. It is a common ingredient in whitening products and can penetrate and remove stains, but it also penetrates through the tooth enamel into the layer beneath, which is the more sensitive part of the tooth. 

If you overuse these products, it could lead to tooth sensitivity.

Flossing can make your gums bleed

Have you ever brushed your teeth, grabbed the floss and started polishing those hard-to-reach nooks and crannies, only to see red spots on the string?

Most of us have tasted that familiar metal taste and smelled that livery smell while flossing. And it can certainly be off-putting, but it isn’t the floss that’s at fault!

Bleeding gums are in fact only caused by inflammation. 

Your gums start to bleed when you floss because the bacteria and plaque get stuck in between our teeth where the toothbrush bristles can’t reach.  Because we don’t floss every day (even though we probably should) the bacteria build up over time and eventually will cause the gums to become inflamed, which will lead to bleeding.

Bad breath means you have gum disease

Bad breath can be caused by a number of things, although gum disease usually takes the blame. Bad breath is usually a symptom of an underlying condition that affects the stomach or throat.

It can be a sign of gum disease, but your dentist can determine whether that is why you have bad breath, says Hutto Hippo Family Dental. Other causes of bad breath include bowel obstruction, acid reflux or a digestive problem, which explains the common term “stomach breath”.

The best way to get the most factual mental health tips, tricks and information is to get it straight form a healthcare professional. Having dental insurance like Affinity Dental in your back pocket will make this easy and affordable. 

Like health insurance, dental insurance covers the cost of specific procedures, check-ups and emergencies, either in their entirety or to an agreed-upon percentage, depending on the type of plan you choose. In turn, the insured pays a monthly premium. Dental insurance policies help many people to budget effectively for the cost of major dental procedures.

As for Affinity Dental, there are three tiers of dental insurance available at different price points. Each of these options covers individual specialist work to various degrees. 

Adults and children need to visit the dentist at least twice a year, and these dental maintenance appointments can start to add up. Dental insurance will cover you for any additional treatments such as crowns, root canals or fillings, whether they are done at the dentist, or a specialist practice.  

Usually, a dentist will refer you to a specialist, if needed. 

If you need to find an Affinity Dental-approved dentist in your area, click here. 

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