You probably have the basics of dental health down pat: brush twice daily and floss every day.  But you may have some notions you think are helping or at least not hurting your dental health that are actually nothing more than myths.  Read on to sort out the truth from fiction when it comes to your dental health.

Myth #1: Sugar Causes Cavities

Let’s start off with a complicated myth.  You’ve probably heard that sugar causes cavities, but that’s not exactly true.  Rather, sugar provides fuel for bacteria, who need sugar in order to survive.  It’s the bacteria and the acid created from their consumption of sugar that causes cavities.  So, while sugar doesn’t directly cause cavities, eating a lot of it and not brushing and flossing it away provides fertile ground for cavity-causing bacteria!

lees summit dentist dental health Myth #2: Flossing Is Just a Bonus

Do you really need to floss? You may think flossing is just dental extra credit, but the truth is flossing reaches areas that a toothbrush simply can’t.  In fact, almost a third of the tooth surfaces in your mouth are unreachable with a toothbrush.  Flossing also keeps your gums healthy, which in turn supports good tooth health.  So don’t skip flossing — it’s a vital part of your dental care routine.

Myth #3: Bad Breath Equals Poor Dental Hygiene

It’s true — if you don’t brush and floss your teeth, you’re going to be at high risk for bad breath.  But here’s the important flipside: bad breath can be a symptom of many other diseases, from a cold or flu to diabetes, acid reflux, and even liver or kidney problems.  If you have good dental hygiene but are still experiencing bad breath (and can’t blame it on having had garlic bread at your last meal), then it might be time to see your doctor.

Dental Care by Dr. Steve Irwin DDS

Following your dentist’s advice and keeping up to date with your twice-yearly check-ups will go a long way toward helping you stick to the facts for keeping your mouth healthy.  With more than 30 years of dentistry, Dr. Irwin has the knowledge and experience to help you achieve the best dental health.  For more information or to schedule an appointment, call us at 816-347-9933.