Often, people hear stories or folklore and assume they are true. Old wives’ tales about feeding a cold and starving a fever or eating carrots to help your eyesight were seen as fact for years until medical research proved otherwise. Dentistry is not exempt to these concepts. See the real truth about the following myths:
Myth: Toothpick use will widen gaps between teeth
Truth: Designed to dislodge food particles stuck in between your teeth, commercial toothpicks won’t cause any problems. Just make sure you don’t poke your gums with the pointed end.
Myth: Medication cures a toothache
Truth: While pain relievers can ease the pain, you need to have the decay removed and the tooth filled to “cure” your toothache.
Myth: Worms can cause tooth decay
Truth: Dating as far back as 5000 BC, the idea of tooth “worms” was used to explain why teeth develop cavities. In actuality, build of plaque and bacteria in your mouth weaken enamel, which leads to decay.
Myth: Brushing longer and more often helps your teeth
Truth: Currently, most dentists recommend brushing twice a day for two to three minutes. Too much brushing or brushing too hard can damage enamel and lead to tooth sensitivity.
Myth: Tooth extraction always hurts
Truth: Dentistry has come a long way, so getting a tooth pulled shouldn’t create much pain. With modern sedation options, the extraction process is fairly straightforward. Impacted teeth may cause more issues, but anesthesia can help keep patients comfortable.