In addition to hearing dentists say “Open wide,” the other thing you’ll often hear us say is “I’ll see you again in 6 months.”
And this leads to one of the questions I often hear: “Do I really need to visit the dentist every 6 months?”
Yes. You do.
During your regular dental check-ups, your teeth are cleaned to help prevent gum disease. When plaque and tartar have a chance to build-up, they can eat away at the tissue of the gum. If this issue escalates, it can cause the tooth to begin to pull away from the gum and lead to breakdown of not only your gums but also the bone that holds your teeth in place. Your best option is to have your teeth cleaned regularly to prevent this issue entirely.
Also, your dentist can check for problems that you may not see or feel. Many dental issues don’t become visible or cause pain until they are in more advanced stages. And finding something late often means more drastic measures are needed to fix the problem. This means that your mouth and your bank account could be feeling the effects of your delayed dental visits.
Really, just think about the dental problems that you could encounter and how finding the problem early will be easier — and cheaper — to fix. Cavities, gum disease, oral cancer etc. These are all things where regular visits allow your dentist to find early signs of disease and begin treatment before things get worse.
In addition, if you have a pre-disposition to oral issues you might need to visit your dentist more often than every 6 months. This includes things like if you’re pregnant, a smoker, diabetic, have gum disease, a history of cavities, or a weak immune system. If any of these conditions sound familiar to you, be sure to talk to your dentist about more frequent visits.
So, the next time your dentist says “I’ll see you in 6 months,” just tell your dentist that you’ll be there, and that you promise to floss every day.
For more information, be sure to visit me or my staff at one of the three locations shown below, go to my website at ModernFamilyDentalCare.com, or watch my Dental Minute video series.