Understanding The Importance Of Dental CheckupsJul 03, 2023
Dental problems, although rarely life-threatening, can still be serious matters. Not only can they be extremely painful, they can lead to facial disfigurement and open the door to various infections and diseases. Regular checkups offer the best form of protection against all types of dental problems. There are many reasons why we tend to ignore the need for regular dental checkups:
- The old stories about how painful dental treatments are, although no longer true, are still widely prevalent.
- Dental ailments may start slowly and we remain unaware of the developing problem, so we do not go to the dentist until the situation becomes serious and painful.
- We tend to take our mouths for granted. People often think that regular brushing of their teeth is enough to protect them from all dental conditions.
Oral hygiene is essential to good health and the self-esteem that comes from being confident in your appearance. The only way to protect your teeth and gums and keep them healthy is by regular dental checkups, which can, among other things, protect you from:
Oral cancer is an extremely serious medical condition and if not detected and treated in time, may become life-threatening. The earlier the condition is diagnosed and treatment begins, the more effective it is. Oral cancer, if diagnosed in the early stages, is effectively treatable and patients have an excellent chance of recovery. The symptoms of oral cancer may not manifest themselves in any tangible manner so a person may spend months with the disease becoming worse without even realizing that the problem is there. Only a dentist will be able to find the signs, confirm the diagnosis and advise on an effective treatment protocol. The only way this can be achieved is through regular dental checkups.
We all know that the buildup of plaque and tartar leads to tooth decay, but what most people are not aware of is that it can also cause erosion of the gum tissue. This is often the case when the buildup of tartar causes an infection to develop where the gum and tooth are connected. This condition, known as gingivitis, leads to the gum pulling away from the tooth and causing the tissue that attaches the gums to the teeth to break down. This is normally when the symptoms of soreness, swelling and bleeding appear. Along with the breakdown of gum tissue, the bone that holds that teeth in position may also start to break down. This is when teeth become loose and eventually fall out. Gum disease is treatable, but it can be a long process and the lost teeth will need to be replaced with artificial ones. Once again, regular dental checkups will enable the signs of gum disease to be spotted early so that treatment can begin before the condition becomes more advanced.
Even with regular brushing and flossing, there are going to be small areas of the mouth that are not effectively cleaned. These are the spots and spaces between the teeth where plaque builds up and over time, it hardens into tartar, which is very difficult to remove without dental treatment. This tartar causes cavity formation and the process is slow and a person will not notice or feel the development of cavities until the decay exposes a nerve or causes a tooth to break. During a dental checkup, the dentist will check for the development of plaque and tartar and do a cleaning that will remove them before the teeth are damaged.
Problems Under The Surface
A dentist may X-ray your teeth and jawbone as part of the checkup. This enables him to see below the surface and find any problems such as impacted teeth that are not visible to the naked eye. Damage to the jawbone either from an injury that does not have any tangible symptoms or due to the development of cysts or tumours can also be spotted. Here too, as with all medical conditions, the X-ray images will allow for any treatment that may be required to begin before the condition progresses to the stage of the patient feeling symptoms.
Stopping Bad Habits
Many bad habits can damage your oral health. Some of them you may be aware of, such as smoking, chewing paan or eating too much sugary food. There are other bad habits, often done unconsciously, that also cause dental problems. These include clenching the jaw, grinding teeth, biting nails, brushing the teeth too hard or using the wrong type of toothbrush. Drinking too much coffee or red wine can cause teeth to become stained. These and other habits cause problems that develop very slowly so that the effect they have on your teeth and gums is not noticed until the problem demands extensive treatment which could take up a lot of time, incur excessive costs and may have residual effects even after treatment. A dentist will spot these problems during a checkup and, if it requires treatment, begin the process. If it involves habits you will need to control, give you advice on how to go about it.
These are just a few of the common dental problems that we are all subject to but against which we can protect ourselves by ensuring that regular dental checkups form part of our healthcare regimen.
Good dental health is a cornerstone of physical and mental well-being. Besides the pain and discomfort that dental conditions can cause, the way dental diseases can affect your face and your appearance may lead to a loss of self-confidence that may have a negative impact on your professional, social and personal relationships. The basis of good dental health is regular dental checkups. Once you and your family start going to a dental clinic that has both highly qualified and experienced doctors and cutting-edge dental equipment and technology, you can be confident that your dental health is in good hands. Following the dentist’s advice on oral hygiene matters will keep your family protected and if any medical issues should arise, they will be spotted and diagnosed early so that recovery treatment can start early when it is most effective.
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