10 Reasons to Go to the Dentist on a Regular Basis
Dental care is essential in promoting overall health and wellbeing. That said, you should have regular dental checkups and treatment to promote dental health. As a general rule of thumb, regular visits to the dentist should occur every six months. Here are 10 reasons to go to the dentist on a regular basis.
1. Oral Cancer Detection
Oral cancer is a serious disease that affects many people and reveals itself in multiple ways. Nevertheless, oral cancer often goes unnoticed and undiagnosed until it becomes severe because people don’t know its early signs. Fortunately, regular visits to the dentist can help detect oral cancer before it becomes life-threatening.
A dentist is highly trained and experienced to detect dental cancer’s early signs and symptoms. They also have access to advanced tools and equipment necessary for detecting the disease. There is a high chance of detecting oral cancer if you go to the dentist regularly. Detecting oral cancer during its onset is vital in treating it before it becomes severe.
Your dentist will perform a biopsy test to examine your tissues if they have any suspicions that you may have oral cancer. If the biopsy test confirms that your oral tissues are cancerous, your dentist will conduct an endoscopy test to determine the severity of your cancer.
There are various treatment options for oral cancer based on the type of cancer detected, location, and severity. Radiation and chemotherapy are the most common treatment options. Drug therapy, immunotherapy, and surgery are other viable options that can be used to treat oral cancer.
2. Treat Bad Breath
Bad breaths can be common, especially if you don’t practice good oral hygiene or have bad habits that make your mouth stink. Luckily, mere bad breath can be easily eliminated by proper oral hygiene, avoiding certain foods, and using effective dental products.
However, a bad breath that won’t go away is a telltale that you might be having a serious underlying issue. The foul smell could result from mouth or throat infections like halitosis. It could also be due to bad habits like smoking tobacco, eating sweet, sticky, and hard food, drinking too much coffee, or imbibing a lot of beverage drinks.
Whatever the cause of your chronic bad breath, visiting a dentist regularly can help get rid of the issue. Your dentist can easily pinpoint the cause of your bad odor and provide amicable solutions to solve it.
Your dentist can also provide you with patient education that will help you avoid bad habits that might be causing your bad breath. In place of these bad habits, your dentist will recommend better lifestyle practices to prevent bad breath. Go to the dentist on a regular basis if you need help getting rid of your bad breath.
3. Gum Disease
Another reason to go to the dentist regularly is to diagnose and treat gum disease. Gum disease, also known as periodontitis, is a common gum infection that affects soft tissue. While the disease affects many people, it is highly preventable through oral hygiene.
The disease can occur when plaque forms on the teeth due to the interaction of sugary food with bacteria found in the mouth and tartar stuck on teeth and gums. While gum disease can affect all people, people with poor oral health habits, obesity, smoking habits, and those from a family with a history of gum disease are at a higher risk of developing the disease.
Gum disease is often characterized by gum swelling, soreness, and bleeding during its onset. Other signs can be bad breath, painful chewing, blood spitting when brushing or flossing, and pus between teeth and gums. If left unchecked, gum disease can significantly damage the jaw bone and cause teeth to loosen or result in teeth loss.
The gum disease treatment requires regular visits to the dentist office. The type of treatment used will depend on the severity of your gum disease. The treatment options could range from cleaning and medication to surgery. A regular visit to the dentist will help identify and treat gum disease early before it becomes extensive.
4. Missing Teeth
You need to go to the dentist regularly if you are missing one or more of your natural teeth. You could be missing one or more teeth because of an accident, injury, gum disease, tooth decay, or a genetic issue. Missing teeth can result in problems like sunken face appearance, bad smiles, chewing problems, poor speech, and eroding jaw bone. If left untreated, missing teeth can cause other severe issues in the long run.
Fortunately, there are multiple procedures that a dentist can do to replace your missing teeth. One of the most common procedures is getting dental implants. Dental implants look, feel, and function just like natural teeth. They can easily last for a lifetime if properly cleaned and maintained. The process of placing dental implants is quite long and complex as it involves removing any remaining parts of teeth and installing metal screws that anchor the implants. Next, your dentist will put a temporary crown on your implants until your permanent crowns are ready for placement. The implants also take some time to heal.
Another solution for missing teeth is using the implant-supported bridge. This treatment option is especially ideal if you are missing multiple teeth in a row. Unlike implants, only the teeth at the end of the bridge are installed into the jawbone using implants. The other teeth are left without screwing. An implant-supported bridge looks natural and is as effective as an implant.
Apart from implants and implant-supported bridges, a dentist can replace missing teeth with removable partial dentures. They are easy to put in and take less time. They are suitable for people missing a few teeth. Partial dentures are cheap and easy to repair or replace when damaged. Book an appointment and go to the dentist if you have missing teeth and need restorative dentistry.
5. Regular Cleaning to Eliminate Plaque, Tartar, and Cavities
There are certain areas that regular brushing and flossing can miss. When this happens, plaque can build up on your teeth. When plaque is not eliminated, it solidifies and turns into tartar, which is highly difficult to remove without help from a dental expert. Tartar often causes cavities by eroding teeth and forming holes in them. Cavities are normally treated by filling the holes or removing the entire tooth if severely damaged.
Going to a dentist regularly can help you avoid developing plaque, tartar, or cavities. A dentist will clean your teeth, gums, and tongue and eliminate any plaque or tartar that might be forming on your teeth. Going to a dental clinic for dental cleaning is cheaper than getting a filling or replacement.
Aside from eliminating plaque, tartar, and cavities, regular dental cleaning has other benefits as well. Your dentist will remove stains on your teeth, allowing them to become white and brighter. A dental cleaning can prevent gum disease and other oral diseases attributed to poor oral hygiene. A dentist may also identify dental issues like broken fillings, fractures, gum disease, and other problems during professional dental cleaning. Early identification is effective in finding early solutions and making financial preparations for further dental treatment if necessary.
6. Head, Neck, and Lymph Node Checkups
A dentist doesn’t necessarily deal with dental health alone, although that is their primary area of expertise. Your dentist can also check your head, neck, and lymph nodes for swelling, lumps, and other issues, more so if you are getting a complete exam. Your practitioner will inform you that you might be having other health issues if they identify any abnormalities in these areas.
Lymph nodes, which are located just below the jawline, should be normal without swellings and lumps at all times. Swollen nodes usually go unnoticed because they are painless. A dentist will examine your nodes by sweeping their hands down your neck. Swollen lymph nodes could be a sign of severe underlying issues like cancer, ear infections, sinus infections, and autoimmune diseases, among other diseases.
Failure to go to the dentist for regular appointments puts you at risk of having diseases turn severe under your watch. Go to the dentist for these checkups to help identify abnormalities that can act as cues for other diseases.
7. Get Dental Hygiene Education
While cleaning teeth seems like a common routine, not all people know how to conduct proper dental hygiene. Most people clean their teeth only once a day. Some never floss, and others use the wrong items to brush, floss, or clean their teeth. Poor dental hygiene may lead to serious dental issues as time progresses.
One way to learn how to do dental hygiene properly is to go to the dentist for dental hygiene education. If you have kids, visit family dentistry for more dental hygiene insight. A dentist will provide you with all you need to know about dental hygiene.
As a general guideline, you should brush your teeth two times a day or after every meal. The brushing should be regular and not aggressive. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Replace your toothbrush every three months. Floss your teeth once daily and use a dental mouthwash to rinse your mouth. Also, see a dentist every six months for professional dental cleaning.
8. Look for Other Dental Problems Through X-Ray Imaging
When you go to the dentist, your practitioner may scan your teeth and jawbones using an X-ray imaging machine to look at the state of different parts of your mouth. Your dentist will use X-ray scanning to check your teeth roots, jaw bone, the status of developing teeth, detect cavities, and inspect the general health of your jawbone and teeth.
X-ray images enable your dentist to identify any dental issues that may not be visible to the naked eye. Such problems could include impacted teeth and unexplained mouth pain. The X-ray image could also help your dentist identify jawbone problems, swelling, jawbone decay, and tumors that cannot be seen without imaging.
Since some of these conditions progress under the radar and have no symptoms until they become severe, seeing a dentist every six months for X-ray scanning will help identify them. Identifying these dental issues as soon as they start developing is important for finding treatments to restore your dental health.
9. Get a Good Smile
Teeth can make or break your smile. Missing teeth can make your lips thinner and cause your cheeks to sink in, thus distorting your smile. Besides missing teeth, root canals issues crowded teeth, spaces between teeth, and malocclusions like an overbite, underbite, or crossbite can also misalign your teeth and damage your smile.
Your dentist can provide solutions to these dental issues and give you a new, beautiful smile. Concerning missing teeth, your dentist can replace them using implants. Since implants act like natural teeth, they blend naturally with your jawbone and stimulate its regeneration. Aligned teeth and a normal facial appearance will make your smile bright as ever.
Additionally, your dentist might remove some of your teeth if they are overcrowded and align them properly using braces. The same can be done to treat any type of malocclusions you may be having. Properly aligned jaws and straightened teeth will naturally improve your smile.
10. Save Your Teeth
There can be a time when your pulp is damaged. Pulp damage may be caused by severe decay due to an untreated cavity, too many dental procedures on the same teeth, deep chips or cracks, or an injury to your teeth.
When this happens, go to the dentist to help save your teeth. Your dentist may do a root canal to remove the damaged pulp. A root canal procedure involves four main steps: administering anesthesia, removing the pulp, applying antibiotics to prevent reinfection, and temporary filling using soft material to fill the gap left by the procedure. The sealants protect the canal from damage.
Go to the dentist if you have any of these reasons or more. Book an appointment with your dentist today for a checkup or treatment.