Did you know that 42 percent of Americans want to see their dentist more often? It’s true and it highlights a disturbing trend in oral healthcare – people aren’t visiting their dentist enough. There are a lot of potential culprits (it’s estimated that 20 percent of people in the U.S. suffer from serious dental anxiety), but today we’re looking at just one. A seemingly simple question like “how often should I visit the dentist” reveals a world of misunderstanding about oral hygiene. Find out the answer, and why regular dental checkups are so important, today with Florida Dental Solutions!
How Often Should I Visit the Dentist?
So, how often should you visit the dentist? Once a year, at least according to the New York Times. Dentists have stressed the importance of biannual preventative visits for decades and, while this is still a good general guideline, the average person is okay with an annual dental checkup.
There is one important caveat to this though. If you have gingivitis (gum inflammation), periodontitis (gum disease), or any other chronic dental condition, you should stick to visiting the dentist every six months.
What to Expect During a Dentist Visit
Your routine dentist visit doesn’t have to be the stuff of nightmares. In fact, the entire process is simple. It’s called preventative dentistry for a good reason! Your dentist’s goal isn’t to perform a root canal or any other complicated procedures, but rather, to get a quick snapshot of how your mouth is doing.
You can expect the following during a dental checkup:
- Your dentist will perform an examination that checks for cavities, gum disease, or any other potential concerns
- They will clean your teeth – scraping beneath your gumline and often polishing your teeth with fluoride
- They will discuss your oral hygiene habits and offer practical advice
- They may also order X-rays for your jaw
Why Regular Checkups are Essential to Oral Health
Now that we’ve answered the question “how often should I visit the dentist” and looked at what happens during a routine dental checkup, let’s turn our attention to the benefits of regular dental care.
The most important benefit of routine checkups is that your dentist will be able to identify any possible problems well ahead of the time they become actual problems. Something as simple as seeing your dentist annually, or every six months, can be the difference between keeping or losing a tooth.
Another perk you can expect from regular dentist visits is a decreased chance of developing bad breath (halitosis). Contrary to popular belief, bad breath isn’t caused by eating certain foods. Rather, it’s the result of food particles sticking to your teeth and gums and causing plaque (bacteria) to build up. Regular dental checkups will minimize your risk of developing bad breath.
Finally, you can expect to get early warning signs of mouth cancer. Remember, your dentist isn’t just checking for tooth decay. They’re also examining all parts of your mouth –teeth, gums, tongue, lips, inner cheeks, and under your tongue. Any of these areas can develop cancerous growth and trust us, you want your dentist to notice them as soon as possible.
Get Your Next Check-up at Florida Dental Solutions
Have you scheduled your routine dental checkup yet? No? Then it’s time to give us a call. To schedule an appointment, call us today at (954) 362-4102 to book an appointment at South Florida’s premier dentist!