When it comes to dentistry, a patient’s mouth is an accurate reflection of the state of their oral and overall health. Lying about how frequently you floss or smoke tobacco products can significantly undermine your dentist’s diagnosis, as inflamed gums can be a sign of leukaemia and not just a gum disease caused by a neglected oral hygiene routine. It is important to maintain an honest and professional relationship with your dentist to receive the best possible treatment. Here are four white lies that you should stop telling your dentist:
Lie number 1: “I seldom drink acidic beverages.”
Most cold drinks – including sodas and lemonade – contain acid that eats away at the tooth enamel. Refraining from sipping on acidic beverages, or rinsing your mouth with water after you have consumed an acidic beverage, can eliminate any sugar and acid that might linger on your teeth and erode the enamel.
Lie number 2: “I don’t smoke.”
Tobacco stains are a real give away. There are a lot of reasons not to smoke, and the list of long-term side effects goes on and on. One side effect of smoking is that tobacco products increase your risk of developing all types of cancer, including mouth, throat and lung cancer.
Lie number 3: “I floss every day.”
Flossing removes plaque from below the gum line. If you fail to floss every day, your gums could become inflamed, which is the first sign of gingivitis (gum disease). The only way to prevent gum disease is by flossing at least once a day, using gentle up-and-down motions to dislodge any food particles that are stuck between teeth.
Lie number 4: “I don’t grind my teeth at night.”
Although this may not always be a lie, because you won’t necessarily know if you are grinding your teeth while sleeping (a condition known as sleep bruxism), there are a few tell-tale signs that you are a tooth grinder. These signs include headaches, jaw and muscle pain, and should not be ignored. You may need a night guard to prevent damage to your teeth and enamel.
For a dentist who you would never feel the need to lie to, contact Corné Smith Dentistry your family-friendly dentists in Claremont, Cape Town