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The Hazards of Chewing Gum and Other Myths

Myth: Chewing gum is bad for you.

Fact: As long as it’s a sugar-free variety, chewing gum is good exercise for your jaw, cleanses the mouth, and stimulates saliva. However, If your jaw hurts while chewing, you may have issues with your TMJ (jaw joint) or with the muscles associated with chewing and you should stop chewing gum.

Myth: Professional teeth cleaning once a year is enough.

Fact: Teeth should be professionally cleaned between 2-4 times a year. Tartar cannot be removed with brushing and is a cause of pyorrhea or gum disease. Removal of tartar requires professional dental cleaning. 

Myth: Dental X-rays are dangerous.

Fact: Routine dental X-rays are safe. They produce an extremely low amount of radiation. Digital X-rays, such as those used at Ridgway Family Dentistry, require the absolute minimal amount of X-ray to capture images of your teeth. However, if you are pregnant, let us know.

Myth: Bleeding gums are normal.

Fact: Healthy tissues do not bleed. Just as bleeding skin would indicate a problem, so do bleeding gums. Bleeding gums can be a sign of gum disease and can contribute to serious systemic diseases. Myth: Dental insurance covers all dental costs. Fact: Except for some HMOs, dental insurance usually only covers a portion of the total cost of care. Whether you purchase dental insurance independently or through an employer, inquire what your coverage entails. Also, ask if you are allowed to see a dentist of your choice or are required to visit dentists exclusively from a pre-determined insurance list.


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