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There are so many myths and so much misinformation about how best to take care of our teeth and gums, that it’s sometimes hard to know what is true about oral health care. Misconceptions persist about dentistry which may affect your overall oral health. See how well you answer the following questions and identify some common myths.

How often should I brush my teeth?

People often think they should brush their teeth after every main meal.  Dentists recommend that you brush your teeth twice a day to ensure good oral hygiene.  Dentists recommend brushing your teeth after waking up in the morning and before going to bed at night as the ideal times to brush your teeth. This includes waiting 30 minutes after you eat so that you will not weaken or damage your tooth enamel while brushing.

Should I rinse my mouth right after I brush my teeth?

Most people rinse their mouth right after brushing their teeth. Dentists recommend that you wait a little while to rinse your mouth after brushing to give the fluoride from the toothpaste a chance to help prevent tooth decay.

Is sugar the main cause of tooth decay?

Sugar is a leading contributor to tooth decay but not the only culprit.  Foods high in starch (such as potato chips) also produce bacteria that erodes and damages teeth.  It is not just the amount of sugar and starch that you consume, but how long food and drink stays in your mouth before swallowing that may lead to tooth decay.

Is fruit juice a better choice than soft drinks to help keep my teeth healthy?

Soft drinks and energy drinks continue to be a leading cause of tooth decay. Drinking fruit juice is not necessarily the wiser choice since these products contain similar amounts of sugar and acidity.  Maintaining a healthy diet low in sugar will lower your risk of tooth decay and gum disease.

Is exposure to fluoride dangerous for your health?

The use of fluoride to help prevent tooth decay for people of all ages has been deemed safe and effective after many years of extensive research on the subject. The levels of fluoride in local water systems, toothpaste and other dental products are safe and go a long way to helping to maintain good oral health.

Should I only visit the dentist when I have a problem?

You should always have regular visits to your dentist and not wait until you have a toothache or develop other symptoms.  Your dentist is able to find and treat problems early to help prevent more extensive treatment in the future.  During your visit, the dentist will help keep your teeth and gums healthy with a professional cleaning to remove plaque.  This lowers your chances of having tooth decay or gum disease.

Dr. Melchers and his experienced staff are here to address all your oral health care issues. Contact us today at info@oldmtpleasantdentistry.com  to see how we can best meet your dental care needs.