Preventive dental care is the foundation of a healthy smile. Your dentist uses the routine checkup as an opportunity to monitor your teeth and soft oral tissues for signs of problems like tooth decay and gum disease. You’ll also get a set of x-rays every year so that the dentist can detect any cavities hiding between the surfaces of your teeth and examine your jaw for signs of trouble.
When oral health issues are diagnosed early, they tend to be more easily treated with less invasive interventions. Your dentist can also minimize the damage caused by, say, a cavity that’s only had six months to develop versus one that’s been hanging around for a number of years. The former likely can be addressed with a small restoration (filling), while the latter may require a larger restoration or it may not even be possible to save the tooth, depending on the extent of the decay.
Prophylaxis – the professional dental cleanings that you receive from our experienced hygienists – is another important component of preventive care. Even patients who are tremendously conscientious about their home oral hygiene practices may not be able to reach every nook and cranny of their smiles. The dental hygienist can access those hard-to-reach places and use professional-grade instruments to clear away any excess plaque or tartar.
Preventive dental care is the foundation of a healthy smile. Your dentist uses the routine checkup as an opportunity to monitor your teeth and soft oral tissues for signs of problems like tooth decay and gum disease.
Some patients may benefit from additional interventions, such as sealants on surfaces of teeth that are particularly cavity-prone or fluoride treatments to strengthen teeth, as other efforts to boost their oral health.
Of course, a significant portion of your preventive dental care takes place in your home as well. We recommend that you brush your teeth at least twice a day, for two minutes each time, and floss daily in order to minimize the accumulation of plaque and tartar between your visits to the dentist. Patients who tend to collect more oral bacteria may also benefit from the addition of a mouthwash to their regimen. Our dentists can also give you pointers on your home routine whenever you come into the office for your regular checkups.
To learn more about recommended preventive dental care, contact Clement Family Dentistry and talk to one of our knowledgeable staff members. If it’s been more than six months since your last checkup, schedule an appointment as soon as possible.