One of the biggest misconceptions individuals have when it comes to maintaining a bright, beautiful smile is that they can do it on their own. Many believe that brushing twice a day and flossing is enough to maintain good oral health.
However, there is a reason why the American Dental Association (ADA) recommends you visit your dentist at least once every six months. Your dentist can help identify any oral problem that you may not.
It isn’t just that, you need to visit a dental clinic every six months for the following reasons:
Reason 1: Getting your teeth professional cleaning
It doesn’t matter how thorough you are when brushing and flossing, there are spaces in between your teeth you just won’t be able to reach. Plaque finds a way of building up in such spaces. Once it does, it is nearly impossible for you to get rid of it on your own.
If you continue without a dental checkup, the plaque will form into tartar. Tartar is harmful to your teeth because it starts to create holes when left untreated. Making your teeth vulnerable to cavities and then decay, says Dr. Remal Patel, an experienced dentist in St. Petersburg FL.
During a regular checkup, the first thing the dentist will do is look for plaque buildup and suggest you get your teeth professionally cleaned. Not only will they clean hard to reach spaces between your teeth but also clean the gumline.
Reason 2: Identify gum disease
Gum disease is a silent oral problem that many individuals have but continue to ignore. As plaque forms on your teeth, it makes its way down into your gum line. This causes numerous problems for your oral health including gum disease.
Gum disease must be caught at its early stages so it doesn’t result in any loss of teeth or more major problems linked to your overall health like cardiovascular disease. Gum disease starts as gingivitis, the symptoms of which are mild, including on and off pain and swollen, bleeding gums. It is common for patients to ignore these symptoms or avoid going to the dentist because they think it will be expensive.
You should see your dentist at the sight of the slightest symptoms linked to gum disease. But it should never have to get to that. With regular dental checkups, your dentist will be able to identify if you need to take additional measures to avoid gum problems and guide you on how to do that.
Reason 3: Help detect oral cancer at an early stage
Like any other type of cancer, oral cancer is not easy to detect at its early stages. Like most disorders, the sooner you detect it, the better chances you have of fighting it. Dentists specifically look for any signs linked to oral cancer during every checkup. If they notice the slightest of abnormalities, they can screen for oral cancer with a VELscope oral screener that can detect dead tissues in your mouth caused by tutors. The exam is non-invasive and doesn’t take much time.
Regularly visiting your dentist can help catch oral cancer at its early stages. Setting you up to successfully combat it.
Reason 4: Detect oral problems that are not visible to the naked eye
A checkup also consists of an x-ray of your teeth and jaw. Through the x-ray images, the dentist can see beneath the surface of your mouth. This can help them identify problems such as impacted teeth, jawbone damage, bone decay, cysts, and tumors. You wouldn’t be able to detect these problems without the help of an x-ray.
Reason 5: Identify bad habits and keep them in check
The dentin, the outermost structure of our teeth, are strong but can wear down with time and if a lot of pressure is applied to them. Bad habits such as chewing on ice, grinding your teeth, and constantly chewing on your nails are harmful to your teeth. As your dentist examines your teeth during a checkup, they will identify if you need to take better care of your teeth and identify such habits, so you can work on getting rid of them.
You must take your oral health as seriously as your physical and mental health. To do that, you have to visit your dentist at least once every six months. This gives your dentist the chance to identify any underlying oral problems that you may have, treating them on time. It also ensures that you maintain good oral health and get rid of plaque through professional cleaning, not allowing it to develop into an oral problem.