Long into adulthood, some people have an irrational fear of going to the dentist. In fact, a report by the Surgeon General’s office shows that 4.3 percent of Americans are so afraid of making that trip to the dentist’s office that they simply don’t go. And all too often, they’ve got a slew of excuses backing up their angst. Trouble is, most of those excuses are based on pure bunk. Here are a few of the most common myths that may be keeping you from protecting your dental health.
- Brushing is bad for bleeding gums: While it might sound logical that if your gums are bleeding, brushing would only irritate them, the opposite is actually true. Bleeding gums are a sign that plaque and food particles are accumulating along your gum line, which makes your gums irritated and inflamed. Remove the gunk and the bleeding will stop. Brush twice a day and after meals, holding your toothbrush with the bristles at a 45-degree angle toward your gums. Floss daily as well to remove particles that toothbrush bristles won’t reach. And schedule a regular professional dental cleaning.
- Bad breath just means you’re a bad brusher: Truth is, bad breath may be far more than a dental hygiene issue. It can signify serious illnesses too, including certain cancers, diabetes, heart or kidney failure, digestive or respiratory conditions or even sleep disorders. A trip to the dentist can help determine if your bad breath is something regular brushing and flossing can handle or if it’s a sign of something more serious.
- All you need for tooth pain is an aspirin: There’s an old wives tale that simply placing an aspirin pill directly on an aching tooth will relieve the pain. Oh, it only it were that simple. Aspirin works by stopping the production of prostaglandins, molecules that send pain messages from an injured spot in your body to your brain. And that happens only via your digestive processes. Placing an aspirin on your aching tooth is not only ineffective for pain relief, but is also potentially harmful, as it can cause an acidic chemical burn to your gums and lips.
Don’t let a debunked myth keep you from getting the dental care you need. Call 614-808-1700 to schedule an appointment with Grove City Dental today.