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5 Misconceptions About Oral Health

Maintaining good oral health is as simple as brushing and flossing two to three times a day and scheduling regular cleanings with a dentist. There are, however, a few misconceptions about oral health that have cropped up over the years that might be leading you or your loved ones astray.

Myth #1: The More Sugary Treats You Eat, The Higher the Risk of Cavities

There is no direct correlation between the amount of sugar consumed and the probability of getting a cavity. While it is true that sugar coverts to acid which erodes the tooth enamel, the quantity of sugar eaten is irrelevant. Eating one cookie is just as damaging as eating two cookies where tooth decay is concerned. The key to avoiding cavities is brushing and flossing on a daily basis, particularly after consuming sugary foods.Oral Health

Myth #2: No Pain Means Healthy Teeth

Tooth pain is usually a pretty indication that the teeth or gums are suffering from some kind of ailment that needs medial attention. In which case, no pain should mean that everything is happy and healthy, right? Not quite. In the early stages of tooth decay, pain is usually not a symptom because the decay has yet to reach the nerve under the tooth. This is why regular check ups and cleanings are an absolute must. During a regular cleaning, dentists have the opportunity inspect the teeth and gums for any sign of an impending health concern.

Myth #3: If the Gums Begin to Bleed, Stop Brushing

As mentioned earlier, bleeding gums is often an indication of poor oral hygiene. It may seem logical to stop brushing at the first sign of blood, but in reality the best course of action is to continue brushing and follow up with flossing. With regular and proper oral care the gums should cease bleeding.

Myth #4: Tooth Sensitivity Indicates Decay

Not all tooth pain is a result of decay. Occasionally, other health issues like a sinuous infection or environmental factors can cause temporary tooth sensitivity. Discuss options– like toothpaste for sensitive teeth with a dentist– to discover a possible solution.

Myth #5: Bleeding Gums is Nothing to Worry About

Given the earlier tidbit on bleeding gums it might be tempting to shrug off bloody gums as nothing to be concerned about. On the contrary, though bleeding gums can be a sign of neglected oral care, depending on how long proper care has been neglect it could be an indicator of a more serious health problem like gingivitis. If bleeding gums persist or the gums are tender to the touch, see a dentist immediately.

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Our governing College, Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario (RCDSO) has advised dentists that they strongly recommend that all non-essential and elective dental services should be suspended immediately. Public safety is our number one concern. We need to put our patients’ interests and the safety of the community, first. Ontario has declared a state of emergency, and the Canadian government is strongly urging all Canadians to practice social distancing.

Dental hygiene services in a time of a "pandemic" are not considered emergency or essential services. Our College has advised that we postpone all appointments for Hygiene scaling/cleanings until further notice. We may however, be open for EMERGENCIES. We ask that you call one of our offices to schedule this, and to be pre-screened.

What is the definition of an essential service?

In dentistry, a “true emergency situation” includes oral-facial trauma, significant infection, prolonged bleeding or pain which cannot be managed by over-the-counter medications.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, we are here for you and want to help. Please call our offices to speak with one of our representatives who will be able to screen and advise you accordingly.  CONSULTATIONS OVER THE PHONE will be available with the Doctor, if needed.

This strong recommendation to suspend non-essential services, is being followed in interest of the public, our patients and our Team. We all need to act in a socially responsible manner. The College will revisit this recommendation in the first week of April. We will continue to keep you up to date.

Stay safe, and healthy.

Drs. Jim Argyropoulos, Robert Polese, Ari Voudouris & Associates