Myth-Buster: 5 Oral Health Myths Dispelled

There are a lot of myths out there surrounding oral health—like, for instance, the idea that it’s totally safe to whiten your teeth with hydrogen peroxide or that DIY braces are just as effective and safe as the real thing. While some myths may have a kernel of truth, you could experience serious oral health issues if you don’t fact check what you hear first. Today, we’re debunking a few of the biggest myths surrounding oral health so you can protect your smile.

Fact Or Fiction?


    1. You don’t need to see your dentist unless it’s an emergency.

    1. Pregnant women shouldn’t be concerned about bleeding gums.

    1. Cavities in baby teeth are no big deal.

    1. Sugar free drinks are healthier for your teeth.

    1. Your overall health isn’t impacted by your oral health.

1. You don’t need to see your dentist unless it’s an emergency.  

Answer: False

            If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?

            Not so much.

            While you might not think that your teeth are showing signs of problems, your dentist can see things you can’t. Through x-rays and other dental equipment, as well as their expertise, they can detect problems long before the average person would notice something was wrong. They can see a cavity building long in advance, put a watch on it, and urge you to be more diligent in caring for that area so that you don’t incur the cost of having a cavity filled later on. Dentists don’t just treat problems, they also work with you to prevent problems before they can happen in the first place. It’s important to see your dentist for regularly scheduled appointments approximately every six months.

2. Pregnant women shouldn’t be concerned about bleeding gums.

Answer: False

            The hormones involved in pregnancy can result in gums that are sensitive and inflamed. Known as pregnancy gingivitis, this phenomenon is due to plaque that builds up on teeth and irritates your gums. It’s perfectly common for women who are pregnant to experience gums that are red, sore, and bleed.

On the other hand, this doesn’t happen for every woman, so it’s good to do a self-evaluation if this happens. Are you fully following proper oral hygiene habits, even while pregnant? This would include:


    • Brushing twice a day for at least two minutes each time

    • Flossing at least once a day, or cleaning once a day with an alternative tool such as a water flosser or interdental brush

    • Mouthwash, if desired

Pregnancy is no time to slack on proper oral hygiene—good oral health will benefit you and your baby! It will also help prevent gingivitis from developing into gum disease later on. 

3. Cavities in baby teeth are no big deal.

Answer: False

It’s natural to not feel too alarmed at the prospect of cavities in your child’s baby teeth. After all, they’re just going to get replaced by adult teeth. But in reality, this mindset can be highly detrimental to your child’s healthy development. The truth is, childhood oral health plays a huge role in adult oral health. Healthy kid smiles make for healthy adult ones.

For one thing, cavities and tooth decay in baby teeth can affect how adult teeth develop under the gums. Another factor to consider is just how crucial it is for children to learn good oral health habits at an early age. They’re more likely to continue these habits as they get older, so stress the importance of oral health early on to protect their smile. If you give your child a good start when it comes to making wise oral health choices, you’ll be setting them up for a lifetime of beautiful smiles.

4. Sugar-free drinks are healthier for your teeth.

Answer: False

We all know that sugar is no friend to our teeth. Surprise, surprise: the bacteria in our teeth enjoy sugar as much as we do! A diet high in sugar will contribute to mottled, decaying teeth. But while sugary options are bad, sugar-free alternatives aren’t necessarily better.

This is because sugar-free options still contain acid and carbs that damage your teeth. Just like sugar, they combine with bacteria and saliva to create plaque. Instead of sugar-free drink options, try a healthier option like:


    • Water (plain or sparkling)

    • Milk

    • Unsweetened tea

You can even dilute fruit juice that already has low sugar content for a refreshing summer drink. There are many creative ways to stay hydrated that are less harmful than the tooth-killers of both sugary and sugar-free sodas, energy drinks, and sports drinks alike.

5. Your overall health isn’t impacted by your oral health.

Answer: False

This is perhaps one of the most dangerous lies anyone can swallow about oral health. It’s just not true! The fact is, your oral health and overall health are closely related. Moreover, your oral health is usually a good indicator of your overall health. This is because your teeth, gums, and other parts of your mouth aren’t an isolated part of your body. What’s happening in your mouth can have a huge impact on the rest of your body and vice versa.

Just think of gum disease and diabetes. As it turns out, the two are closely intertwined. Diabetes can lead to gum disease. But according to MouthHealthy, a publication of the ADA, “Research suggests that treating gum disease can help improve blood sugar control, slowing down the progression of your disease.” Positive oral hygiene can have the opposite effect, restoring your health instead!

From gum disease and diabetes to general hygiene, the health of your mouth matters. If you need help telling the difference between fact and fiction when it comes to oral health, please contact our office today! We would be happy to help you schedule your next appointment.

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About Our Team

Our team has over 30 years of combined experience in the field of dentistry and a passion for educating our patients on the importance of good dental hygiene. To learn more about them, please visit our team page 

Our staff is dedicated to making sure that your entire experience is the best it can possibly be. Whatever your needs are, our team is trained to listen and offer the best advice and guidance in choosing the services that best meet your needs. 

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