Regular dental visits are essential because they allow your dentist to identify oral health problems in a timely manner. They also help prevent many common oral problems, such as gum disease, from occurring in the first place. To get the most out of your next dental visit, follow these three simple tips.
Tell your dentist about your concerns
Keep your dentist informed about any problems related to oral health, including:
• Bleeding when you brush your teeth. Bleeding gums is a symptom of gum disease. Gum disease is treatable at all stages, but treatment is most effective during the early stages.
• Pain or sensitivity. Tooth pain or sensitivity when eating hot or cold foods and drinks can be a sign of a cracked tooth, a broken filling or a cavity.
• Sores that will not heal. Sores that do not look or feel right, or will not go away, may be a sign of mouth cancer. Early detection is crucial, as mouth cancer is easier to treat in its early stages.
• Grinding your teeth at night. Tooth grinding and jaw clenching is common, particularly at night. Over time, it can wear your teeth down, making them more susceptible to problems such as cavities.
You should inform your dentist about these problems before he or she examines your dental health. Do not wait for him or her to ask you.
Provide an accurate picture of your medical history
Let your dentist know about any medical conditions you are experiencing and any medicines you are taking, even if they seem unrelated to your oral health. Certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease and osteoporosis, and certain prescription medicines, such as those used in the treatment of allergies, depression and high blood pressure, can increase your risk of dental problems. An awareness of the conditions affecting your body and the medicines you are taking can help your dentist to treat certain problems related to your teeth and gums. In turn, your dentist may be able to identify diseases affecting other areas of your body based on the health of your mouth.
Find out about the ways in which you can keep your mouth healthy
Ask your dentist about the best ways to keep your teeth and gums healthy in between your dental visits. Dental health is a constantly changing field and new products and services are making maintaining good oral hygiene easier than ever before.
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