What You Don't Know About Your Teeth Can Hurt You

Do you really need teeth whitening?

At least once a day you’ve seen a commercial about teeth whitening. Suddenly if your teeth don’t sparkle like sunlight off a chrome fender you’re not pleasant to look at. This is nonsense of course but for those with dull, stained teeth a tooth whitener might be in order.

Most of the over the counter products work well and are safe in moderation. The whitening agents, for the most part, are hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide. Those ingredients work well at removing common stains on the tooth surface.

For more ingrained stains below the surface, whitening strips, pastes, and dental whitening trays are usually stronger but still considered safe.

To an extent.

Overuse or using more than the recommended amount can damage the teeth by making the enamel more porous and fragile. The acids in these products are not regulated and everyone’s teeth are different in some ways so what may be fine for one patient could be disastrous for another. 

Many of their bleaching agents can cause tooth sensitivity and in some cases the loss of enamel. So it is recommended that if your teeth are stained and need whitening it should be done in a dentist’s office by a qualified dental professional.

Another dental issue is whether silver amalgam fillings need to be replaced.

This topic has been debated for some time. The reason for this is that amalgam fillings contain mercury, a high toxic substance.

But there is more to this than meets the eye. Many scientists argue that although silver amalgam fillings do contain mercury, it’s molecular structure changes when mixed with the other substances in the fillings, rendering it harmless. It has been and continues to be the most commonly used, the least expensive, and in many cases more durable than any other filling substance.

On the other hand, some studies have shown that mercury does leech out over time, especially when eating and drinking hot fluids and foods. However, the majority of people have had amalgam fillings in their mouth since childhood and throughout their entire lives with no ill effects.

And so, the debate continues.

Another misleading statement is that sugar rots your teeth.

This needs to be put in perspective.

It is not sugar but bacteria that causes gum disease and tooth decay. Destructive bacteria is formed when you ingest carbohydrates. White sugar for example but vegetables fruits and grains are carbohydrates as well and can be just as damaging. Which is why brushing at least twice a day and using the Oral Breeze oral irrigator is highly recommended.

All Wisdom teeth DO NOT need to be removed.

In most cases, the Wisdom teeth are properly positioned and find their place among the other teeth with no discomfort whatsoever. But there are cases where the Wisdom teeth are not positioned properly which can lead to cysts, infections, and pain.

With today's digital imaging equipment your dentist will be able to tell in advance whether they need to be removed or are fine just where they are.