Every child’s worst nightmare is hearing that they have a cavity. In fact, every parent’s worst nightmare is hearing that their child has a cavity. A trip to the dentist should never demand stress or fear, however, there are many misconceptions about cavities. Regardless of what you know or don’t know, prioritizing your dental health remains important. With that in mind, it makes perfect sense that you wish to know all you can about cavities. People are taught from an early age about avoiding cavities. Considering their importance in the education of dental health, learning all you can about cavities can only assist you in having the perfect teeth.
However, considering the amount of misinformation out there, there is still plenty left to be learned. Rather than continuing on uncertain about what information is true and what information is false, read through here to find out the common myths and facts regarding cavities.
Common Myths & Facts Regarding Cavities
Myth: Sugar is the primary cause of cavities
We all heard it when we were children. All that sugar is going to cause you to get cavities! Kids are often banned from having candy or other sweets to avoid getting cavities. However, that ban displays a misunderstanding of how cavities work. Cavities stem from bacteria in your mouth. The bacteria produces acids that cause cavities, spots in your teeth that your toothbrush or floss cannot reach.
Fact: Sugar is a primary cause of cavities
We understand if you are now wondering how it can be a truth and misinformation, but let us explain. The primary cause of cavities is bacterial acids, as previously stated. However, those bacterial acids stem from a number of different foods. One of those foods is sugar. Sugar helps decay the teeth, especially in sugary drinks. Drinking a soda, for example, is an act in asking for cavities. Other foods that cause cavities include carbohydrates of any kind. Rice, potatoes, bread, and even fruits and vegetables cause cavities. You might want to leave the fruits and vegetables part out when you tell your kids, though.
Myth: Children are more likely to get cavities than adults
Parents tell their kids all the time to brush their teeth and floss to avoid damage to the teeth. However, parents must be on watch themselves as well. Adults are just as likely to suffer from dental damage as kids are. In fact, there has been a recent decrease in the number of cavities suffered by children in recent years. As that number declined, the number of cavities in adults climbed. For adults, one area to keep an eye on is medication. Some medications make the teeth more prone to decay, and adults take medicine more often.
Fact: Treatment Stops Tooth Decaying
Tooth decaying stops once you receive treatment. A trip to your local dentist for a filling will prevent any further damage to your dental health. Dentists do not advise you to seek treatment for your decaying teeth for no reason. However, maintaining strong, healthy techniques to ensure the work the dentist did was not all for nothing remains important as well. Teeth can start to decay again if they are not treated properly. Another way teeth can decay again is if you cannot reach the teeth with your toothbrush or through flossing. However, the initial treatment does work to stop the decaying.
Myth: Sensitivity in the Teeth Means Teeth Decaying
Perhaps your teeth feel particularly sensitive or painful. The assumption, be it about your own teeth or your children’s, is that you have a cavity. However, this does not always prove to be the case. Your teeth can be sensitive for numerous reasons. Hypersensitive teeth exist as one possibility, while issues with the gums, or a concern with the surface of the root could loom large as the cause for the sensitivity. In such a case it is important to see your local dentist to get to the bottom of the problem. Diagnosing yourself with a cavity is an act in taking a wild guess, one in which the professionals can help you out in instead.
Fact: Grinding Your Teeth Can Cause Cavities
While grinding one’s teeth is one of the most common signs of anxiety, the more you can do to help yourself the better. Grinding your teeth can create gaps in the teeth, and gaps in the teeth can create cavities. It’s an unfortunate situation where anxiety and/or stress can actually cause a physical problem, but it’s a situation that must be understood and treated seriously. The more you grind your teeth, the greater chances of creating a gap exist. Once the gap is created, there is a large possibility a cavity forms as a result. Working to avoid grinding your teeth goes a long way towards avoiding creating your own cavities accidentally. In the end, fewer cavities means less anxiety anyway. No one complains about less anxiety.