Why is it important to make appointments for regular checkups with your dentist?
You may think that your mouth and teeth are healthy, especially if you aren’t currently experiencing any pain or symptoms of trouble. But that’s not necessarily true––you might be experiencing the early stages of a problem that can only be caught by a dental professional.
The American Dental Association recommends scheduling a cleaning and general checkup appointment with your dentist every six months. The last thing you want to do is avoid going to the dentist for years on end, allowing small problems to develop into serious issues.
During a routine checkup, we generally look for signs of gum disease, broken teeth, tooth decay, loose teeth, and damaged fillings. We also check your tongue, neck, face, mouth tissue, throat, and jaw for certain problems. We usually take x-rays and perform a cleaning as part of our checkup process.
So you know that regular checkups are important. You’ve probably heard it from your dentist many times. But what exactly makes these checkups so vital?
Reason 1: Prevents cavities from developing into more serious issues. Your dentist can catch certain problems like tooth decay and cavities in the early stages, before they manifest into something larger and more serious. When they first start to develop, cavities are often microscopic. You can’t see them and you can’t feel them yet. But the earliest signs of a cavity can be discovered by a dental professional, and the problem can often be fixed rather quickly and painlessly.
Reason 2: Plaque and tartar removal keeps your teeth healthy. Cleanings are vital to the health of your teeth. They allow your dentist to remove plaque and tartar which, when allowed to build up, can irritate your gum tissue. If left for excessive amounts of time, soft plaque buildup can even lead to gum disease.
Reason 3: Prevents gum disease. Gum disease is often painless and can go unnoticed for a period of time unless certain telltale signs are discovered by a dental professional. Routine checkups allow your dentist to catch early stages of gum disease, which can lead to serious pain and discomfort if left untreated.
Reason 4: Helps you keep your overall health in check. Taking care of your teeth is essential to caring for your overall health. A number of studies––including this one by the American Dental Association––have shown that dental hygiene is closely linked to heart health. A routine dental checkup can also reveal signs of vitamin deficiencies, diabetes, cancer, HIV, and other health problems that may have otherwise gone unnoticed.
Reason 5: Saves you money. Catching the early signs of a cavity is a much simpler and more affordable problem to fix than a tooth that is in later stages of decay and must be fixed with root canal therapy. Similarly, a filling that is in the beginning stages of decay is simpler to fix than a filling that requires removal and complete replacement. The costs of visiting your dentist twice per year are very small compared to the amount of money you’ll save by preventing more serious problems from developing.
Don’t wait for the pain to start to go to your dentist. Preventative dental care is vital to your overall health. Make sure to visit your dentist every six months in order to catch the early stages of certain issues and prevent serious problems from developing.
A.L.F. Family Dentistry in Scranton, PA caters to cowards. There’s no need to fear your regular checkups! We strive to create a comfortable and friendly environment for all of our patients. Call us at (570) 346-9904 or click here to make an appointment for a routine checkup and cleaning with Dr. Orlandini and keep your teeth healthy.