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Necessity of Regular Dental Exams and Cleanings
Good daily brushing and flossing habits are essential to keeping your smile clean and healthy. Regular dental exams and cleanings are just as important, however. Even though many individuals only visit their dentists twice a year, this checkup offers valuable insight into their dental health and a chance to treat signs early before they develop into more serious dental conditions. Researchers have linked typical dental health conditions with your overall health, which means taking care of your teeth is just another part of taking care of yourself.
At a dental exam, your dentist will typically closely examine your mouth, teeth and gums to look for any signs of issues, such as gum disease, worn or damaged filling, broken teeth, cavities, loose teeth and mouth sores. Dental X-rays will be taken as well if needed. Examinations of your head, neck, bite and jaw movements will help your dentist better identify issues that could be preventing you from enjoying optimal dental health. In fact, you could be experiencing bite abnormalities that may increase your risk of experiencing TMJ disorders, bruxism, headaches and associated problems without being aware of it.
A professional cleaning will also be performed at your biannual exam. Your dentist or dental hygienist will thoroughly clean, polish and floss your teeth to remove any plaque and tartar accumulation and leave them fresh and shining. Your dentist may take this opportunity to recommend products, techniques or regimens that can help you enhance your dental hygiene or reduce plaque and tartar formation. If you have been diagnosed with any dental health issues, he or she will discuss a treatment plan with you.
Treatment plans are designed to address your unique dental health concerns. Dental health issues can affect your overall health and impact the function and appearance of your smile. Oral bacteria can travel from infected gums to your arteries and increase inflammation throughout your body, which can increase your risk for diabetes, pregnancy issues and even dementia. In some conditions, dental health complications can indicate certain other health conditions, such as osteoporosis, vitamin or nutritional deficiencies or digestive issues.
The American Dental Association suggests that most of us receive a dental checkup every six months. Some may be more susceptible to dental health complications than others, however, which means that they need more frequent checkups than others. Smokers, pregnant women, diabetics and those with a history of tooth decay or gum disease should talk with their dentists about the best checkup schedule for their needs.
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Date: Mon, 4 Mar 2013 -
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