Despite the fact that we have teeth almost from the time we are born, many people have wild misunderstandings regarding oral health, says OKC dentist Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS. Do you believe these common myths?

Myth: A harder toothbrush is better because it removes more plaque.

The OKC dentist says this is one of the most common beliefs regarding dental care. However, a soft bristled toothbrush is actually better for the teeth and gums. Soft bristles won’t damage enamel or irritate gums like a harder brush.

Myth: Baby teeth don’t matter.

Of all the misinformation out there, this one is by far the most dangerous. According to the OKC dentist, baby teeth are vital to the proper formation of a healthy adult mouth. They not only act as placeholders for adult teeth, but also guide those teeth into their permanent position. Another major mistake parents make with their child’s baby teeth is believing they aren’t being exposed to excess sugar, which can actually hide in fruit juices and other “healthy” foods.

Myth: I’m not a teenager anymore. I can’t get braces.

Again, not true. Braces have historically been reserved for the “awkward phase” of the teen years but adults are perfectly able to straighten a crooked smile with braces or advanced orthodontic technologies. As a leading OKC dentist, Dr. Johnson offers Invisalign® to teen and adult patients wanting to change the position of their teeth.

Myth: The whiter the teeth, the healthier the mouth.

No doubt bright white teeth are beautiful, but healthy teeth come in a range of shades, says the OKC dentist. Sometimes, teeth may be stained from the inside, where no amount of in-office or over-the-counter bleaching gels will help. Children taking certain antibiotics before the age of eight may experience internal browning of otherwise perfectly functional adult teeth. This kind of discoloration can only be covered with veneers or crowns.