Common Dental Myths That Scare Patients Away
I think almost everyone hates going to the dentist. I have had a few patients who were completely reluctant to enter my clinic at all. Writhing in pain but still reluctant to enter and visit a dentist.
Who would have thought that dentists were so scary? However, you cannot really blame patients as they have heard so many horror stories about dentistry and the nasty dentists; that the profession has a bad reputation!
Let us take a closer look at what patients commonly believe to be facts about dentistry!
Myth # 1- Cleaning your teeth at a dentist makes your teeth loose
Fact- Not really, but let me explain.
à Brushing your teeth is good to keep your teeth clean but it is not enough.
à Saliva or spit inside your mouth contains hard salts of several minerals, which are deposited on your teeth.
à These gradually accumulate and then start extending under the gum support of teeth slowly loosening the teeth in the process.
à Eventually it’s only the bridge of hard deposits, which is holding the teeth in place! However, if you do leave it in, ultimately you loose your teeth!
Solution- Get your teeth cleaned every six months to remove these deposits and you could have your teeth for a long, long time.
Precautions- You will feel that your teeth have become slightly loose and you will have sensitive teeth for a few days after the cleaning treatment. However, that is normal and will settle down in a few days
Myth #2- Brushing too hard can damage your teeth!
Fact- very true
à Teeth have the hardest covering found in the body called as enamel.
à However, if you use wrong brushing techniques, and a hard bristled brush, then you will scrape it off causing shallow saucer shaped depressions called as erosion cavities!
à Once the outer covering of enamel comes off, the tooth loses it warm blanket of insulation! Then even slight change in the oral environment of warm, cold, even acidic and sweet changes can cause an uncomfortable electric shock like sensation!
à Use a soft bristled brush and apply very light pressure!
à Learn a good brushing technique. For example instead of sideways scrubbing try a round motion which is much better and keeps the teeth cleaner.
à If you have, sensitivity then get in touch with a dentist and you might have something called as erosion cavities. These are found at the lowest part of your teeth where the tooth meets the gums. You can either have these filled, or ask your dentist for alternatives.
Myth #3– If you place an aspirin next to your aching tooth, it stops the pain!
Fact- Of course not! If that happened, dentists would be useless right? Although aspirins are good to control pain; you need to eat them not place them on your gums!
à Any type of dental pain signifies a serious problem. Don’t wait for the pain to start but get regular dental check ups every six months to catch any early problems.
à If you are having serious pain, then try placing a cotton ball with a few drops of clove oil near the tooth. But not too much as this may aggravate the problem too.
Myth #4- Is bleaching good for the teeth?
Fact- Bleaching is done to whiten teeth. If done properly, then the procedure is very effective and the effects look good too.
à If you do want to get your teeth whitened, then please do get in touch with an experienced dentist to do the procedure. There are several precautions which have to be taken in consideration like old restorations, gum conditions, tooth health etc before the procedure can be started and you do need expert advice. Other wise you will land up with a patchy looking appearance and sensitive teeth.
à Over-the counter whitening products are good too but be careful to follow instructions to the letter!
The Bottom Line
Any dentist will do his or her level best to make sure you are comfortable during treatment. If at any time, you have doubts about the procedure and the treatment process, talk to your dentist and make sure you know exactly what is being done. If you have heard of dental myths about the procedure you are going to be doing, ask the dentist about these myths and make sure you are complete reassured before you start the treatment. I hope these few tips do help you out in your understanding of dentistry, next week I will be adding a few more myths to help you out. So do keep in touch!
This article was guest authored by Preston Menezes, a health expert in the field of dentistry and clinical research. She is also a guest contributor for www.canadabaydental.com.au.