3 Common Misconceptions About Dental Care

Dental care is incredibly important, but many people don't visit the dentist as often as they should. With good dental care, you can prevent future pain and expensive procedures. If you would like to know more, check out these three misconceptions about dental care.

1. Only Some People Need Regular Cleanings and Exams

Regular brushing and flossing are essential for getting rid of plaque and reducing the risk of decay, infection, and gum disease. However, routine cleanings and exams are also important. Not only will the dentist remove any tartar, but they also monitor your oral health, looking for signs of future complications, including:

  • Orthodontia issues
  • Gum disease
  • Decay/weakening enamel
  • Tooth infection
  • Unerupted/impacted teeth

For older patients and those with signs of gum disease or gum irritation, the dentist may also recommend a deep cleaning to remove plaque and tartar from below the gum line. Other services at a cleaning/exam may include:

  • X-rays
  • Pocket measuring
  • Crown polishing

2. Fluoride and Sealants Are Only for Children

Many children get fluoride treatments to help promote strong enamel growth. However, fluoride can also help strengthen weakened enamel in adults. The fluoride can't regrow lost enamel, but by strengthening the enamel, the fluoride treatments can reduce sensitivity and the risk of decay.

Your molars may look flat, but they have a lot of grooves that easily trap food. Children may be more prone to this issue, especially if they don't brush properly. Sealants shield the molars from food and decay. While they are usually associated with children, adults who struggle with molar decay and cleaning may benefit from them too.

3. General Dentist Only Offer Preventative Care

Many general dentists also offer many restorative procedures like fillings and simple extractions. Some have advanced training, so they perform more advanced procedures like root canal treatment. However, for complex issues, your dentist may send you to a specialist like an endodontist, periodontist, and oral surgeon.

Many general dentists also offer some cosmetic care, including:

  • Teeth whitening
  • Dental crowns
  • Dental veneers
  • Dental bridges
  • Dentures

However, many may also offer more advanced cosmetic services like dental implants. Depending on your needs, they may even offer some orthodontia treatments like Invisalign. However, for traditional braces and/or bite issues, your dentist will likely recommend an orthodontist.

Routine dental care with your family dentist is one of the best ways to fight decay and gum disease. Even if you've never had a cavity, the dentist can help you spot possible complications before they arise. If you would like to know more about how a general dentist can help you, or if you would like to schedule an appointment, contact a family dentist today.