When is the best time to find a dentist? The answer is right away — and for a multitude of different reasons. First and foremost, the state of American dental and oral health is not good, and it’s not going to get any better unless people of all ages make an effort to do something about it. A good start is choosing a reliable family dentist, visiting dentist offices at least twice per year, and clearing up some common misconceptions about dental hygiene and teeth cleaning. Here are just a few of the most common myths about your health and your teeth.
Myth: There Isn’t A Right Way And A Wrong Way To Store Your Toothbrush
All over the world, just about all adults have at least one cavity — or more. Not to mention, children and teens are missing 51 million school hours owing to illnesses that can be traced back to poor dental health. Part of the problem is a general lack of knowledge. Although the best dentists recommend brushing at least twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste and regular flossing, practicing good dental hygiene does not stop there. Americans also need to carefully store their toothbrush. You should always keep toothbrushes in an upright position, and rinse with hot water after using them. Never let your toothbrush touch someone else’s. It’s also necessary to replace toothbrushes every three months, or after you have been sick. If you fail to do these things, bacteria can (and will!) buildup and lead to more cavities, more dental decay, and ultimately a greater chance of periodontal disease.
Myth: It’s All About Your Teeth
In the U.S., 178 million Americans are missing one tooth. Before it comes to choosing between implants and bridges, there are plenty of preventative measures you can take. First, know that it’s not just about keeping your teeth clean. It’s about keeping your entire mouth clean — and that includes your gums. Drink plenty of water to flush out remaining food particles that may get stuck in the gum line, and avoid microbead toothpastes. These toothpastes will be off shelves in a few months. For now, the small beads can get lodged in your gums and cause inflammation and/or infection.
Don’t wait. Find a dentist now. Take action to carefully clean your teeth and gums, and make certain that you are using a clean and sanitary toothbrush.