Have You Fallen For These Common Oral Health Myths?

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There are many commonly held beliefs about dentistry and oral hygiene that are contrary to fact, but if we’ve grown up believing them, it can be hard to question this knowledge. Here we’ve laid out a few common oral health misconceptions, so you can learn the facts and take better care of your mouth!

MYTH: Baby Teeth Aren’t Important

Many people treat “baby teeth” (the teeth that a child has before their adult ones grow in) as disposable and not as important as “grown up” teeth. This misconception is as damaging as it is incorrect! Cavities in baby teeth can lead to tooth loss earlier than would naturally occur, causing the adult teeth to grow in crooked or misaligned. It is also vitally important to instill good health practices in children, so teaching them to brush and floss as soon as they can will help foster those skills for later in life. A child who does not learn to take care of their teeth will likely become an adult who does not take care of their teeth.

MYTH: Oral Health Does Not Affect My Overall Health

Perhaps it’s because we see a separate doctor for our teeth that many people seem to believe oral health is different or “not as important” from the rest of their physical health. In reality, your mouth is completely connected to the rest of your body and its health impacts your overall health. Sufferers from periodontal disease can often see the impacts on their overall health, for example, because when the bacteria enters their blood, it can lead to complications with heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.

MYTH: Brushing Twice A Day Is All I Need, No Matter When I Do It

While brushing your teeth at least twice a day is incredibly important, the time of day you do so is also crucial. Brushing at night right before bed, and in the morning right after waking, are the best times to brush. Brushing before sleep ensures that you clear your mouth of food particles that have accumulated through the day so they don’t fester and grow bacteria overnight. Bacteria eventually lead to cavities as well as bad breath. The morning is an important time to brush because our mouths produce less saliva while we sleep, so even with an evening brush, bacteria is still able to grow. While a twice daily brush is adequate to keep your mouth healthy, adding a brush after indulging in sugary snacks or after meal times can step up your defenses against bacteria and tooth decay.

Education is the best defense against making poor health choices! It is important to trust your dentist and learn what you can about your oral health in order to keep your mouth and body healthy.

If you have more questions about your mouth health or would like to learn more about a misconception you may have held, call Hinsdale Dental today to schedule your next appointment!

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