• Importance of Regular Dental Check Ups

    Importance of Regular Dental Check Ups

    Any dedicated car buff will tell you that the key to keeping your rolling pride and joy in top form for the long haul is to adhere to a regular service and maintenance schedule. So, it should come as no surprise that the very same attitude is important when it comes to the care and longevity of your teeth. The message is simple: Regular dental visits are important!

    Dental professionals have said for decades that it’s important to visit your dentist at least once every six months. The health of your gums, and the teeth imbedded in them, can alter dramatically even in a time period as short as six months. By keeping to a regular check up schedule potential issues can be headed off before they escalate into major problems.

    There are essentially two parts to a regular dental visit: A check up is typically the first part, while a thorough cleaning is part two.

    During the check up portion your dental professional will check your mouth for such obvious issues as cavities and to determine if there is plaque or tartar visible on your teeth. A sticky layer of bacteria, plaque can harden into tarter if not removed. While plaque is soft enough to be removed with regular flossing and brushing, the same isn’t true for tartar. Once tartar has formed scraping with dental tools is typically the only way to remove these unsightly deposits. If not removed plaque and tartar can build up on your teeth and can cause oral diseases, which will require even more extensive procedures to deal with at a later date.

    If not removed Tartar and Plaque can lead to oral diseases

    Checking on the health of your gums is another part of a typical dental check up. The dentist will use a special tool to measure the spaces between your teeth and gums. Typically healthy gums will have shallower spaces than those where gum disease is evident. On average when there is some evidence of gum disease the space will become deeper.

    During the examination your dentist will also likely check your tongue, throat, face, head, and even your neck. A visual inspection will provide clues to any other potential problems such as a physical swelling which could be a sign of something more serious, such as oral cancer.

    The cleaning portion of the visit is the more hands on of the two sessions. While regular brushing and flossing can remove lightly adhered plaque, the removal of more stubbornly attached tartar will require your dentist to use specialized tools to chip the material off. This procedure is referred to as scaling.
    Once the scaling has been completed, and the plaque and tartar have been removed, the dentist may chose to use a form of gritty paste to polish the teeth. Polishing will help remove any surface stains left behind by the tartar. It also cleanses more thoroughly than can be achieved using a regular toothbrush.

    The last step in a dental cleaning is a complete flossing to remove any trapped material.
    If during the check up cavities are located, a subsequent visit will have to be scheduled to deal with the problems. Normally fillings are not done during a check-up and/or cleaning session.

    So what can you do to ensure a good visit to your dentist? You only have one set of teeth, so regular brushing and flossing are an excellent way to keep your teeth and gums healthy between visits. Dental professionals recommend brushing your teeth twice a day, and that you floss at least once every day. When brushing a soft toothbrush is recommended, as is the use of a tooth paste that contains fluoride. The use of a mouthwash is also recommended. Not only does the rinse help to remove plaque and bacteria it also freshens your mouth and your breath.

    Regularly maintaining your mouth, teeth and gums is even more important than the scheduled maintenance of your classic Chevy. You want both your mouth and your car to serve you uneventfully for a long time. Visiting your dentist twice a year will help ensure your teeth last you a lifetime.

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