Visiting your dentist every six months might not be the most fun you could be having, but it is one of the most important appointments to keep. A regular dental checkup does more than just check for cavities and give you clean teeth; it provides your dentist with a chance to make sure you aren’t showing signs of any serious conditions. And if your smile is important to you, our cosmetic dentist in North Delta BC will be able to help you maintain it in tip-top condition.
Here are some of the most compelling reasons to visit your dentist regularly.
Checking for Oral Cancer
During screening for oral cancer, the dentist examines the inside of your mouth to look for any sign of sores, lumps or other tissue abnormalities. Usually, we use either an oral CDx brush to painlessly collect a few cells for testing, or a VELscope, which uses a blue light to identify any suspect tissues.
The dentist will also ask you whether you’ve experienced any usual sensations recently, such as difficulty chewing or swallowing, any lumps or sore areas in the mouth or problems affecting the tongue or jaw.
Any of these gives you a good reason for a dental checkup, to determine whether they are simply mild allergies or infections or something more serious.
Checking for Dental Plaque, Tartar and Cavities
Even if you’re meticulous about brushing and flossing twice daily, there are some parts of your mouth that are hard to reach and get missed frequently. Once plaque develops in an area it starts to build up, and that makes it harder to get rid of. After a while, it gets hard and turns into tartar, which eats away at your tooth enamel and causes cavities, which you only become aware of when the tooth is already decayed and starts to hurt.
By having frequent dental checkups and cleanings by our cosmetic dentist in North Delta BC, you can make sure any plaque is removed before it has time to do damage. A checkup and cleaning also cost less than having a filling or anything else you might need to restore a damaged tooth, so it’s worth it to come in regularly.
Checking for Signs of Gum Disease
Another problem with plaque and tartar is that they can also cause gum disease. Even the tiniest spot of plaque in a hard-to-reach corner can turn into tartar, decay the tooth and cause infection where the gum joins the tooth. Once this happens, the gum starts to pull away from the tooth and becomes gingivitis, which spreads to the other areas of your gum. Don’t wait until you start to see swelling and bleeding of the gums or your teeth begin to feel loose to get attention. A bi-annual dental checkup and cleaning will enable you to identify and remove these spots long before you reach this point.
Checking Under the Hood for Problems
One of the most important aspects of your six-monthly dental checkup is getting your mouth x-rayed, which helps our cosmetic dentist in North Delta BC to see what’s happening under the hood of your mouth, so to speak. X-rays enable us to identify problems like impacted teeth, bone decay, swelling or cysts under the surface of your gums or tumours that may be signs of cancerous conditions.
Most of these issues are impossible to spot without X-rays, and they don’t usually show symptoms until they are much further advanced. This is particularly important for older adults and those suffering from diseases like osteoporosis, which has a strong link to oral health. Keep your appearance in the best possible condition by getting treatment for any issues as soon as you identify them.
The Last Word
Your dental practitioner isn’t only concerned with filling and fixing your teeth. The whole reason for a regular dental checkup is to keep your teeth clean at a professional level, make sure your gums and mouth are healthy and look for any signs that could indicate other health concerns. Keeping your appointments might be a pain, but skipping them opens the door for oral health issues that can worsen very quickly, even if you don’t notice them.
As a leading cosmetic dentist in North Delta BC, we encourage you to schedule your first dental visit today, so you can start the process of maintaining good oral health and a beautiful smile.