There are a lot of myths out there and when it comes to dental health – you should believe everything you hear. Obtaining research from reputable sources helps separate the dental facts from myths. Here is a breakdown of the top 5 dental myths:
1. Fluoride is Poison
While ingesting fluoride in excess can cause negative side effects, swallowing small amounts of fluoride from toothpaste or tap water isn’t dangerous and helps prevent cavities. In fact, a review published in 2014 in the “Journal of the American Dental Association” reports that in most cases, young children ages 2 and older that swallow a pea-sized amount of toothpaste daily won’t exceed the optimal daily dose of fluoride. However, ingesting excessive amounts fluoride can cause white spots to appear on teeth, enamel damage, pits in teeth, bone pain, and bone fractures.
2. The More You Brush the Healthier Your Teeth Will Be
Brushing your teeth twice daily often helps prevent cavities and tooth decay, but brushing too often or too vigorously can cause damage to your teeth, recede your gum lines, and cause tooth sensitivity. Brushing in the morning and at night and chewing sugar-free gum between meals are good ways to keep your teeth healthy without potential damage from excessive brushing.
3. Tooth Decay Can’t Be Reversed
It’s possible to reverse early signs of tooth decay, such as white spots on your teeth, according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. To help reverse tooth decay before a permanent cavity forms, brush your teeth twice daily with fluoride toothpaste, use a fluoride mouth rinse, and limit sugary foods and drinks in your diet.
4. You Can’t Restore Enamel Once It’s Gone
Harsh brushing and eating lots of acidic or sugary foods can cause damage to the enamel of your teeth. However, you can restore enamel by using restorative fluoride toothpastes and mouthwashes, and adopting a healthy diet. Strengthening weak spots in the enamel of your teeth is just as effective for cavity prevention as preserving the original enamel.
5. Weight Loss Affects How Dentures Fit
Weight loss seems like a logical reason to seek tighter-fitting dentures. However, while weight loss often means you’ll have to wear smaller clothes, it likely won’t affect your dentures. A paper published in 2011 in the “Journal of the Canadian Dental Association” reports that no credible evidence exists to support replacing or relining dentures after weight loss.