There are so many myths and misconceptions regarding dental hygiene, it can be difficult to sort fact from fiction. Proper tooth care involves regular professional care as well as some real effort on your part. Check out these five common tooth care myths and get a handle on your oral health today with help from Retainers Direct.

Myth #1: You Only Need A Retainer If You’ve Had Braces

Everybody’s teeth shift over time, even if you haven't had braces in the past. While a retainer can’t reverse the shifting, it can help stop any future shifting. So, whether you’ve had braces or not, you can take control of your own oral health to stop your teeth from moving by using a proper retainer. Today's industry standard for preventing unwanted tooth movement is clear orthodontic retainers. Retainers Direct ships custom-made clear retainers straight to your door, making it easy and convenient to prevent your teeth from further shifting. And our products are the same as those used by board-certified orthodontists. In fact, they’re actually made under the supervision of one.

Myth #2: You Should Brush After Every Meal

While brushing your teeth right after you eat or drink can get rid of bacteria before it attacks your tooth enamel, it can also negatively affect your tooth enamel. Confusing, right? Here’s the rule of thumb: If you’ve eaten anything acidic, you should avoid brushing your teeth for at least 30 minutes. For example, brushing too soon after eating foods containing citric acid can actually damage the enamel.

Myth #3: Hard-Bristled Toothbrushes Clean Your Teeth Better

This is a very common misconception. It may seem like a hard-bristled toothbrush would clean your teeth more effectively and almost act like floss, but it actually can be too tough on gums and enamel. While the type of bristles that are right for you will depend on your specific oral care needs, you should always opt for a soft-bristled toothbrush. If you have sensitive teeth or even signs of enamel erosion, your dentist may suggest that you use a toothbrush with extra-soft bristles. Make sure to look for the “ADA Seal of Acceptance” label which deems the toothbrush (and toothpaste) both safe and effective by the American Dental Association.

Myth #4: You Should Stop Flossing If Your Gums Bleed

Stopping flossing is the opposite of what you should do when your gums bleed. Bleeding gums means you should be flossing more because it's a sign that your gum line and spaces between your teeth are not as clean as they need to be to stay healthy. Bleeding is often caused when plaque or food is not properly removed and can actually be a sign of gum disease or gingivitis. You should be flossing and brushing your teeth at least twice a day in order to prevent gum disease. And make sure to mention any gum bleeding to your dentist at your next cleaning.

Myth #5: Teeth Whitening Of Any Kind Will Damage Your Teeth

Teeth whitening used to be much more of a risk, but today it’s extremely safe (if you do it right). Technological developments have evolved in both over-the-counter and in-office treatments. As long as you follow the packaging or your dentist’s directions, tooth whitening is quite safe. Just avoid using tooth-whitening bleaches more often or for longer than recommended. Research has shown that these products have been found to wear away microscopic amounts of tooth enamel, which can ultimately increase tooth sensitivity and even cause tooth decay. The longer you whiten during each session, the more at risk you’ll be for tooth sensitivity. For a safe and convenient teeth whitening method, try Retainers Direct’s proven teeth whitening kits. There's even an option made specifically for those with already-sensitive teeth.

Let Retainers Direct Help Make Healthy Teeth A Reality

Ready to start taking control of your own tooth care? Learn more about how to buy your custom retainers or whitening kits from Retainers Direct.