Growing up, we are often told certain things about our oral health that can stick with us. Unfortunately, many of these beliefs can be false and can lead to issues with our teeth. If we take these myths seriously, it can lead to expensive mistakes and damage to our dental health. Although it may seem harmless, some myths can harm oral hygiene.

Here are four popular myths about tooth decay and the actual truths behind them:

1. Tooth Decay Only Affects Children and Young People

Tooth decay is a problem that can affect anyone regardless of age. It is important to brush and floss your teeth regularly and visit the dentist for regular cleanings and checkups to maintain good oral health. Even if you take care of your teeth, you may still be more prone to tooth sensitivity, decay, and gum disease than expected.

Many medications can reduce the amount of saliva your body produces, leading to a dry mouth. This can cause many dental issues, such as cavities and gum recession. As we age, our gums naturally pull back from our teeth, making them more susceptible to decay and other issues. These issues can become more pronounced without enough saliva to keep our mouths clean.

2. It’s Okay to Lose Baby Teeth to Poor Oral Hygiene

Some people think caring for baby teeth is unimportant since they will eventually fall out anyway. However, taking care of baby teeth is important since the health of baby teeth can affect the growth and development of permanent teeth. If baby teeth are not taken care of, they may decay and fall out before they should, leading to the permanent teeth not growing in correctly and possibly needing braces.

Early childhood caries is dental decay that occurs before a person’s permanent teeth erupt. It is caused by poor oral hygiene and can lead to serious damage to the teeth, such as tooth and bone loss, pain, and tooth fractures. To prevent early childhood caries, it’s important to practice good oral hygiene from a young age and ensure that teeth come in healthy and fully formed.

3. Sugar-Free Gum Is Better for Your Teeth

Chewing gum without sugar can be just as detrimental to your teeth. Even though it doesn’t contain real sugar, it may contain artificial sweeteners and other chemicals that can lead to tooth decay. It is important to be mindful of your intake of sugary snacks but also be aware of the potential dangers of sugar-free options. Make sure to practice good oral hygiene to keep your teeth healthy and avoid the risk of decay.

4. Osteoporosis Does Not Affect Tooth Health

Osteoporosis is a condition that can weaken the bones in your body, including your jawbone. This jawbone weakening can harm your teeth as the jawbone anchors them in place. Furthermore, if you lose one or more teeth, the weakened jawbone may be further impacted. The health of your teeth and jawbone are dependent on each other, so it’s important to take care of both.


Understanding the facts about tooth decay is important to ensure proper oral health. The four myths discussed in this article have been debunked, and the actual causes of tooth decay have been identified. Tooth decay is caused by bacteria, not sugar, and can be prevented with regular brushing and flossing and visits to the dentist. Understanding the facts about tooth decay is the key to promoting good oral hygiene and preventing tooth decay.

Chelmsford Dental Specialists Group has been dedicated to helping patients improve and maintain their oral health for decades.  We offer a wide range of all-encompassing general dentistry, including crowns, dental implants, teeth whitening, and white fillings. If you want to get a dental cleaning in Chelmsford, we’ve got you covered! Get in touch with us to set an appointment!