Wondering, “Why do I need to go to the dentist every six months?” An Aldershot Dentist Explains
Do you know that you should be visiting your dentist every six months to keep your teeth and gums healthy? By vising the dentist twice per year, you are not only improving your oral health, you are also taking care of your entire body. There have been numerous studies proving the link between oral health and overall wellbeing. Heart disease and even diabetes can have symptoms that first appear in the mouth. At Dentistry at LaSalle in Aldershot, we believe in the importance of regular dental care.
Having a healthy smile is an important component of overall wellness. The good news is regular dental care can be easy and straightforward if you remain proactive. One of our goals at Dentistry at LaSalle is to empower our patients to make oral care a priority to avoid expensive restorative work in the future. Extensive dental work can become costly very quickly. It is much less expensive to be proactive and take care of your teeth with routine dental care rather than waiting until there is an issue to seek treatment.
Cavities: A common dental health problem
Cavities are one of the most common dental health problems. Also called dental caries, or decay, cavities are damaged areas on the enamel that eventually develop into holes. If these holes aren’t treated, they will continue to get larger and impact the deeper layers of the tooth. Eventually, they can lead to severe pain, infection, and tooth loss.
Cavities can be caused by several factors, which include excess bacteria in the mouth, overconsumption of sugary foods and beverages, frequent snacking, and poor oral hygiene.
Routine dental exams and cleanings every six months along with proper oral hygiene at home are your best ways to prevent cavities.
What happens during a regular check-up?
During your visit, your dental team will ask you about any symptoms that you have been experiencing. You’ll want to mention if you’ve noticed the following:
- Toothaches (either persistent or spontaneous)
- Tooth sensitivity
- Pain when eating or drinking things that are hot, cold, or sweet
- Brown, back, or white stains on the surface of the teeth
- Pain when biting or chewing
Next, you’ll receive a thorough examination to check for physical signs tooth decay. The dentist will also evaluate your mouth for signs of gum disease. This is important, because when gum disease is caught early, it is highly treatable and can be reversed. If gum disease is left untreated, it can become an invasive issue that can result in tooth loss and the need for surgery and expensive restorations.
Your mouth will also be examined for any signs of oral cancer or diabetes, and we will evaluate your bite and jaw movement for TMJ.
Once the physical exam is over, your entire mouth will receive a thorough professional cleaning to remove any plaque or tartar that brushing alone has not removed. Plaque and tartar can accumulate on the teeth quickly, and if left there they can lead to decay, gum disease, and tooth loss. Once the cleaning is complete, your teeth will be flossed, and you will be given information on how to keep your teeth clean at home between visits. Proper home oral hygiene is a vital component of oral health.
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Tips for good oral hygiene at home:
- Brush your teeth at least twice each day. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against the teeth and gums. Make sure to brush all surfaces of the teeth, the tongue, and the cheeks.
- Floss the teeth every day. Take about 18 inches of floss and wrap the ends around the index fingers. Gently pull the floss back and forth between the teeth and go up and down to get all surfaces of the teeth.
- Limit snacking between meals and rinse out the mouth if you can’t brush your teeth after eating.
Staying proactive about your oral health through six-month dental exams is a great way to stay healthy and catch any potential issues early while they are still minor and easily treated. If you are near Aldershot, call Dentistry at LaSalle today at (905) 481-9078.