When we are one of the many people that only seek dental attention in the face of an emergency or chronic tooth pain, we are doing our mouths a disservice. Whether this is due to a true dental phobia, or you have a disregard for the importance of dental health care, preventative dental health care is essential to long term oral and physical health and to keeping your natural teeth as long as possible. When we wait to see the dentist, we are putting our mouth at risk for serious issues and are usually the ones that require extensive and invasive dental procedures. On the other hand, when we see the dentist regularly, we are able to catch problems early on, allowing for easy and successful treatment options.
What does Preventative Care Mean?
At our regular dental checkups, there are simple procedures that can be completed to ensure the overall health of our mouth. This checkup includes more than a routine cleaning, but also allows the dentist to perform a full evaluation of our mouth to determine if any of the following issues are occurring:
- Tooth decay
- Gum disease
- Shifting teeth
- Abnormal tissue
These issues are easily spotted during a routine exam as well as with x-rays. Once the dentist has a baseline exam and x-ray of our mouth, it can be used to watch for any negative changes that occur, allowing the dentist to recommend the appropriate treatment right away.
Preserving your Health
When we avoid seeing the dentist every six months, we allow plaque and bacteria to build up on our teeth, eventually putting us at risk for gum disease, especially periodontitis. If we suffer from gum disease that goes untreated, we could also be putting our heart and lungs at risk for infection. Is it worth the risk to our physical health and wellbeing to skip these simple six month appointments?
During the routine appointments, the dentist can discuss our overall dental and physical health. The dentist looks at things such as our lifestyle, diet and oral hygiene habits. It is a time to discuss what we could be doing differently to enhance how we look and feel. Regular dental checkups are typically not painful and can actually prevent painful procedures from being necessary in the future. If it has been a while since the most recent dental checkup, today is the day to get started on the road to good health!