We live in a wonderful age of technology. We have a plethora of information literally at our fingertips. Unfortunately, it is sometimes difficult to know if what you find is accurate or not. This article will dispel some of the common misinformation that can be found in the world of quick and easy answers. Just the facts…teeth facts.
Lemon juice whitens teeth: The short answer is yes, but please don’t use it. The reason lemon juice works is because it is extremely acidic, and it effectively gets rid of tooth staining along with the top layer of your enamel! Obviously the risks outweigh the benefits on this one. It is important to note that any acidic foods can weaken and tear down your enamel, and losing this protective layer makes teeth more prone to decay.
Bleaching weakens teeth: Unlike lemon juice, bleaching only affects the pigmentation of the teeth. If you bleach your teeth too much you may remove an excess amount of pigmentation, and this can make your teeth take on a translucent appearance. Excess bleaching can also cause temporary tooth sensitivity and irritated gums, but it will not affect their health or strength.
Brushing is bad for bleeding gums: It seems to make sense that if your teeth are bleeding they need a break to heal, but this is not true. Gums generally bleed because there are plaque and food particles accumulating and causing irritation. Brushing will help remove the gunk and allow the gums to heal. Flossing for the first time can also cause bleeding. Your teeth will eventually get used to it and reap the benefits!
Aspirin placed on the gums will help a toothache: Aspirin is acidic and can actually burn your gums or cause an abscess to form. Please just swallow the aspirin to help your toothache.
Kids are a lot more likely to get cavities than adults: Sometimes true, but it doesn’t have to be. Thanks to the help of sealants, fluoridated water, and preventative care, childhood decay has decreased significantly in the past 20 years. Parents can give their kids a huge advantage by getting sealants placed, teaching them good oral hygiene, and getting them in for regular checkups.
If you have a cavity you will know it: This is a big, bad myth. Cavities do not generally cause symptoms until the decay has advanced and begun damaging the nerve. Regular checkups are important because small cavities are caught early before leading to damage that may need a more expensive procedure such as a root canal.
Sensitivity in teeth means you have decay: Some people just have hypersensitive teeth. Sensitivity could also be caused by gum recession, the need for a root canal, cracked or broken teeth, or decay.
Clenching and grinding don’t cause damage: These two culprits are one of the most destructive things you can do to your teeth. Extended pressure can damage, crack, or fracture your teeth. Crowns and root canals are often needed to fix the tooth structure and treat traumatized nerves.