Dental Misconceptions

During medieval times, people believed they could cure a toothache by driving a nail into an oak tree. Silly, right?

Today’s Misconceptions Are Different!

There are still some crazy ideas out there about teeth—ideas that have very little to do with the facts.

Have you ever fallen for one or more of these modern misconceptions? Most people have.


Misconception #1 – Cavities Are Only Caused By Sweets

Technically, cavities are caused by carbohydrates interacting with bacteria on your teeth to create acid by-products. Carbohydrates include sugars, but cavities can just as easily be caused by crackers, potato chips, and bread!


Misconception #2 – Children Are More Prone To Cavities Than Adults

  • Kids are NOT inherently more prone to decay… They’re just not as good at brushing! Teach your child thorough brushing techniques—helping them out until they’re dexterous enough to do a good solo job.


Misconception #3 – My Teeth Are Fine If I Have No Pain

  • Decay can eat clear through your enamel and dentin before some people feel it at all! Catching tooth decay early typically allows more of the tooth to be saved, and can spare you added discomfort and expense. That is why it is important to see us regularly so we can detect early cavities and fix them.


Misconception #4 – If My Gums Bleed I Should Stop Flossing

  • Actually, that’s a really bad idea. Bleeding gums are often the first sign of gum disease. This happens when bacterial infections inflame your gums due to a lack of efficient cleaning! Sure, floss gently if your gums are sensitive. But be thorough and extra diligent!


Misconception #5 – After Dental Work Is Done On A Tooth It’s Stronger Than Ever

  • Not always the case. One of the biggest risk factors for decay is having had it before. Dental crowns and fillings are awesome but not perfect. They have nooks and crannies where bacteria can hide—especially as the restorations age. The lesson to be learned? Have your teeth checked regularly to make sure all is going well.


Remember, our greatest weapon against tooth decay is knowledge. Let us know if you have any questions about any of the ideas above, or any of your own that we haven’t covered yet.

Dr. Christakos


Michael Bulger