Most people experience some kind of dental problem at one point or another. Regardless if it’s a pain, a toothache, or a cavity, it can be tough to go through such a routine problem. But what happens when you make dental mistakes? Unfortunately, accidents can happen to the best of us. Here are common dental mistakes.
Not Replacing a Missing Tooth
There are many reasons why people do not replace their missing teeth. Some may be afraid that they will be uncomfortable with their new dental crown or bridge, while others may not want to spend money on cosmetic dentistry. However, many risks are associated with not replacing your missing tooth, including:
- Your bite can become unbalanced due to shifting bone structure in the jawbone where the root was once located.
- The remaining teeth may shift outwards because of a lack of support from neighboring teeth.
- You risk damaging other healthy teeth by chewing on them too much; and finally.
- You risk losing all remaining teeth within ten years due to gum disease and/or bone loss around the socket area.
Skipping Dental Checkups
When you don’t go to the dentist, you’re missing out on a lot of preventative care that can help keep your teeth and gums healthy. Some people don’t go because they think it’s too expensive or inconvenient to schedule an appointment. Others are afraid that they won’t be able to afford any treatment. But the truth is that dental insurance can cover a lot of the cost of your checkup, and even if you don’t have coverage, it’s worth it to pay for your checkups so you can catch problems early on.
If you don’t go for regular checkups, you’ll likely wake up one day with a toothache or an abscess (a pocket of pus). When this happens, it’s best to see a dentist immediately so they can treat the problem before it worsens. If left untreated, an abscess can spread bacteria into your bloodstream through your bloodstream. This could cause sepsis (blood poisoning), which can be life-threatening if not treated quickly.
Changing Your Toothbrush Too Infrequently
It’s important to change your toothbrush every three months or sooner if you notice the bristles beginning to fray. This is because the bristles become less effective at removing plaque and stains, which can lead to oral health problems. The bristles of a worn-out brush are also more likely to cause damage to gums and soft tissue during brushing.
Changing your toothbrush too infrequently also exposes you to germs that can cause mouth infections, such as streptococcus mutans (the most common bacteria involved in causing cavities). These bacteria live on your toothbrush and can be spread if it isn’t properly cleaned after use.
Dental floss is a small piece of nylon thread that can be used to clean between the teeth. It is one of the most important tools in preventing gum disease and tooth decay. Flossing also helps keep your gums healthy, which can help prevent them from shrinking away from your teeth.
Not flossing regularly can lead to tooth decay, gum disease, and even bad breath. If you don’t floss every day, food particles will get stuck in between your teeth and under your gums, where they can cause irritation or infection. This also increases the likelihood that you will develop cavities between your teeth because you are unable to clean out this area effectively with just brushing alone.
Without flossing, you will develop tartar on the gum line. Tartar forms when plaque combines with saliva and hardens into a crusty substance that only dental floss can remove effectively. Tartar buildup causes inflammation of the gums (gingivitis), which can lead to bleeding, swollen gums, and loss of bone around the roots.
Using Your Teeth As Tools
Your teeth are very important. They can help you eat, speak, and smile. But your teeth shouldn’t be used as tools. The most common reason why people use their teeth as tools is to open things that they can’t find a tool to open. It might be a bottle or a jar. It might even be something like a piece of paper or plastic wrap.
Using your teeth as tools can cause damage to the enamel on your teeth, which is the hardest part of your tooth. It will only cause small chips in the enamel if you’re lucky. If you’re unlucky, it will cause cracks and chips in the enamel that will lead to cavities and other problems later on down the road when those cracks get worse and turn into holes.
Brushing Too Hard
Brushing too hard can cause damage to your teeth and gums. When you brush too hard, you can wear away the outer layer of enamel on your teeth, which makes them more susceptible to cavities.
Brushing too hard also causes gum recession, which leads to sensitive teeth and exposed roots. If you have sensitive teeth or exposed roots, they’re more likely to crack or chip when hit by something like a piece of food.
Brushing too hard while flossing or using interdental cleaners can also cause damage to your gums and jawbone. If you have sensitive gums or exposed roots in between your teeth, it’s even more important not to brush too hard. These areas are more prone to bleeding when damaged by brushing pressure.Brushing too hard is one of the dental mistakes you should avoid.
Eating Too Much Sugar
Eating an unhealthy amount of sugar can lead to cavities and tooth decay, which causes pain and can make eating difficult. The bacteria in your mouth thrive on sugars and starches, so they use this food to produce acid when they digest it. The acid attacks the enamel on your teeth, which lowers their pH level. As this process continues over time, the protective outer layer of enamel begins to wear away, exposing the softer dentin beneath it. Once this happens, you’ll have a cavity, which a dentist can only fix. If untreated, cavities can become painful or even fatal if they go deep enough into the tooth’s pulp chamber (which contains nerves and blood vessels).
Using the Wrong Fluoride Toothpaste
There are many types of fluoride toothpaste on the market, and knowing which one is best for your family’s dental needs can be confusing. Fluoride is a mineral that strengthens tooth enamel, helping to prevent cavities and decay. Fluoride also helps remineralize teeth that acid attacks have weakened. If you don’t have enough fluoride in your diet or water, it can be difficult to keep your enamel strong enough to resist decay. The amount of fluoride varies from brand to brand.
Some brands contain as little as 250 parts per million (ppm), while others contain over 1,000 ppm of fluoride. That difference can significantly affect how well your teeth respond to the treatment. Using too much fluoride can cause fluorosis, a discoloration of tooth enamel caused by too much exposure to high fluoride levels during childhood when teeth are forming. Fluorosis is often seen when children drink large amounts of fluoridated water over long periods or swallow too many fluoride supplements.
Dental mistakes can be embarrassing, painful, and expensive. Here are some of the most common questions asked regarding dental mistakes.
Should I floss before or after brushing?
It’s best to floss first before you brush. Flossing can dislodge food particles stuck between your teeth, which can then be brushed away.
Do my dental habits affect my overall health?
Yes. You may not realize it, but oral health is closely linked to general health. The bacteria in your mouth can affect other body parts, including your heart and kidneys. Gum disease is associated with premature birth, low birth weight, and pre-eclampsia during pregnancy. Pregnant women should visit the dentist at least twice during pregnancy for preventive care.
Is it safe to use baking soda as toothpaste?
No. Baking soda is abrasive and can wear down the enamel on your teeth over time. It also does not contain fluoride or antibacterial agents in toothpaste, so it’s not as effective at preventing cavities and gingivitis.
Will too much fluoride stain my teeth?
Yes, it can. Taking too much of the mineral will stain your teeth and make them look yellow. If you have a history of fluorosis in your family, then you need to avoid fluoride. Fluoride-containing products are found in toothpaste, mouthwash, and supplements.
Does consuming soda harm my teeth?
Soda is highly acidic and can wear down your tooth enamel over time if you consume it frequently. To prevent damage to your teeth, drink water instead of soda whenever possible.
How do I know if I’m brushing my teeth too hard?
Brushing too hard can cause gum recession and damage the enamel on your teeth. Try using a soft-bristled brush, and make sure to brush gently.
How often should I visit the dentist?
The frequency of your visits is based on your individual needs. While some people can get by with a visit every six months, others may need to see their dentist every three months or even more often.
You might think you’re doing all the right things to ensure a healthy mouth and teeth. But those little dental mistakes can cost you if you’re not careful. So read up on these common dental gaffs, stay informed, and prevent them before they happen.