5 Common Myths About Tooth Loss
With such easy access to information these days, most people have no issue researching and finding what seem like suitable and accurate answers to their questions. But in this information age, not everything we come across online is true. When it comes to our dental health and understanding tooth loss, we want to debunk those myths and understand the facts.
Whether you’re facing tooth loss or are following through on a New Year’s resolution towards long-term health, let’s look at those common myths about losing teeth.
Myths About Tooth Loss That You Should Be Aware Of
Myth # 1: Tooth loss is just part of getting older.
Though your dental enamel definitely starts to thin as you get older, it doesn’t mean that tooth loss is inevitable or has to be part of your future. You can avoid tooth loss through prevention and early treatment. For example, understanding your risk factors for periodontitis or tooth decay can help you keep a closer eye on your oral health. When you know what to look for, you can take the appropriate steps to protect your teeth and prevent tooth loss.
Myth # 2: You don’t need to brush your teeth as often when you get older.
This is one of those odd myths that seems to surface from time to time. Though you may need to take steps to protect skin that tends to become more sensitive as you get older and may bathe or wash your hair less frequently, when it comes to your mouth, daily attention is still necessary. No matter what your age, you should brush your teeth for two minutes with a soft-bristled toothbrush at least twice a day. And, you should ensure that flossing and using a fluoridated mouthwash each day remains a part of your daily oral health regimen.
Myth # 3: If you brush and floss every day, you won’t develop tooth decay or tooth loss.
Unfortunately, though brushing, flossing, and using a dental rinse every day is critical to your oral health, it doesn’t mean that you are immune to potential tooth decay. There are a variety of health conditions and autoimmune conditions that can make it more challenging for your body to fight off the bacteria that contribute to tooth decay. These illnesses can leave you more prone to gum disease and dry mouth too. Plus, as we get older, we’re more prone to trips and falls too, meaning that a knocked-out tooth is more of a possibility.
Myth # 4: Tooth loss doesn’t happen to healthy people.
Though we mentioned above that tooth loss can be more likely for those with various illnesses, that isn’t to say that you won’t experience tooth loss at all if you’re healthy. Even people who are generally in good health can experience tooth decay. So, don’t assume that if you are living a healthy lifestyle or you’re free from other illnesses, you can forego a solid oral health routine. You still need to visit the dentist every six months. Your oral health is directly linked to your overall health, so make sure that as you take care of the rest of your body, you take care of your mouth too.
Myth # 5: Empty spaces in your mouth are no big deal.
Whether you have a gap in your mouth due to previous tooth loss, tooth extraction, a knocked-out tooth, or any other reason, those empty spaces can lead to other problems down the road if not handled quickly. If those gaps aren’t dealt with, they can lead to consequences.
- Misalignment of the remaining teeth
- Trouble biting, chewing, or swallowing food
- Increased risk of tooth decay or periodontal disease
- Extra bacterial growth and plaque build-up from misaligned teeth
- Gingival inflammation due to food impacting on unprotected gum between the teeth
Thankfully, there are various cosmetic and restorative dental treatments to take care of those empty spaces. And to that end, tooth loss doesn’t need to mean the end of the world for your smile. Typical treatments include dental bonding, porcelain veneers, bridges, and dental implants. There’s no reason to feel embarrassed about tooth loss or gaps between your teeth. The key lies in what you do about it!
Have you experienced tooth loss or do you have missing teeth?
If you have missing teeth and want to do something about your tooth loss, there is no time like the present to reach out to your dentist to discuss options. And if you live or frequent the area near Wayland, Michigan, Bruce Sexton, DDS can help.
Request an appointment today and see how we can help you prevent tooth loss down the road, or help you regain the smile you’ve lost due to missing teeth. We look forward to hearing from you.