Are you unknowingly damaging your teeth by following bad dental advice? Social media platforms and websites are littered with ineffective and downright dangerous oral hygiene tips. Sometimes, well-meaning people you know might give ineffective or harmful advice, too. This is why it’s important to discuss changes in your oral health or hygiene routine with qualified professionals.
Here we dispel common dental myths to help you protect your pearly whites.
Myth #1: “Natural” Oral Hygiene Tips are Always Safe and Effective
Bad advice packaged with claims of being “natural” from the Internet can seriously harm your teeth and gums. For example, brushing your teeth with activated charcoal isn’t wise. This compound is abrasive and can wear cracks in your tooth enamel, which increases the risks for worn dentition, tooth decay, and dental injuries. Activated charcoal can also irritate your gums thus making them more susceptible to infection.
Other advice might not be harmful but there is often no scientific proof to back its efficacy. An instance of ineffective advice is the practice of oil pulling, which involves swishing coconut oil around your mouth for 20 minutes or so.
Just because something is sourced from a “natural” material or was once a practice in ancient times, does not necessarily make it safer or better than ADA-accepted toothpastes, brushes, and other hygiene tools. Remember to always consult a degreed professional before adopting any kind of medical or dental advice from lay persons.
Myth #2: Vigorous Brushing Results in a Cleaner Mouth
Vigorously scrubbing your kitchen countertops might make them cleaner but rigorously brushing your teeth will not. When you brush your teeth, it’s best to let the bristles of your toothbrush and your toothpaste do the work instead of elbow grease. Remember to brush your teeth in soft, circular motions for about two minutes for a thorough clean.
Myth #3: Flossing Isn’t Necessary
Some products and people make claims that flossing isn’t necessary. This is dangerous advice to take. Flossing is necessary and even if you brush your teeth perfectly, you will still miss areas at the gum line and between teeth. Be sure to floss your teeth every day with an ADA-accepted dental floss or interdental cleaner.
If you have questions for our prosthodontist, call Dakota Prosthodontics and Implant Center to schedule a consultation.