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Pearly Whites: Irish dentists debunk 3 oral care myths and misconceptions

As we know, looking after our teeth and good oral care is really important and something we should be a lot more conscious of. 

While there is a huge range of oral care advice available online, much of it is nonfactual and can often be misleading. Not to mention there's been many myths and misconceptions about oral care, which have been doing the rounds for generations.

That’s why we were so pleased to hear from Dr. Lisa and Dr. Vanessa Creaven, certified dentists and founders of oral care company Spotlight Oral Care, who have debunked some of the most common, and dangerous, oral care myths and misconceptions out there.

  1. Bleeding Gums Are Normal and Nothing to Worry About 

Myth - Bleeding gums when brushing your teeth are caused as a result of gum inflammation. Gum inflammation is definitely abnormal and is not indicative of a healthy mouth. Bleeding gums can be a sign of a number of oral issues, such as gum disease, bacterial infections which can lead to gingivitis, and a buildup of plaque. 

Dr. Lisa and Dr. Vanessa recommend scheduling an appointment with your dentist if you become aware of bleeding gums. If left untreated, it can lead to chronic bleeding, receding gums and even tooth loss. 

  1. Flossing is Unimportant 

Myth - According to Dr. Lisa and Dr. Vanessa,  flossing should be an essential part of everybody’s daily routine. The importance of flossing is often underestimated. It plays a key role in not only good oral health but also in a person’s overall health. 

50% of the fillings a person receives in their lifetime start between the teeth at the point where the toothbrush can’t reach. This is the reason that flossing down into the debris between the teeth is so important. The dentists encourage flossing before you brush your teeth in order to dislodge any food built up between the teeth.

Dr. Lisa Creaven, Dentist and Spotlight Oral Care Founder, commented on the misconception and reluctance to floss; ‘When it comes to flossing, there is no particular ‘correct way’ to do it. We often see patients who are reluctant to floss once they see blood! It’s important to note that this is normal at the beginning and the more regularly you floss, the less chance you have of experiencing bleeding gums.’ 

  1. I Should Only Visit the Dentist When My Teeth Hurt 

Myth - Similarly to many other health issues, until your oral care issue is of serious concern, symptoms or signs may not be evident. Dr. Lisa and Dr. Vanessa recommend scheduling semi-annual dental visits in order to keep on top of your oral health. 

Waiting until you experience pain or swelling is inadvisable, as at that stage, long term damage may already have been done. The longer oral issues go untreated, the more difficult they will be to treat.

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