IF WE CAN PREVENT PROBLEMS, SHOULDN'T WE?
When you get sick, you go to the doctors, and people seem to apply the same rule to the dentist. If your tooth hurts, or you see a problem, you go to the dentist. In the history of dentistry, this is how dental care worked, many dentists focused on fixing existing problems but took no preventative measures in dental care. As modern dentistry has developed, preventive dentistry has become crucial, which seems pretty logical, if we can prevent problems, we should.
But, our idea of the dentist hasn’t particularly changed; many people do not see the importance of going to the dentist if no problem seems present. Many people don’t realise that regular trips to the dentist help maintain good oral health, as well as being a preventative measure against oral health problems and diseases.
But why should we take oral health care so seriously?
CAN’T SEE ANYTHING WRONG?
Everything is not always what it seems. Well, it could be, but it could not. When you visit the dentist your dentist isn’t just looking at your teeth, they are looking at your gums, surrounding tissue in your mouth, including your tongue and throat. Dentists will also have a look at your bite, jaw alignment and neck as well as things going on beyond the gum line. Meaning, without being a dentist and having the proper facilities, you can’t really diagnose your teeth as “alright” because nothing hurts. Have you heard the term asymptomatic? Even if you have the oral health regime of a saint, through no fault of your own, you could still have an underlying issue like an impacted wisdom tooth.
Your dental health is affected not only by your own oral hygiene and regime but can also be affected by hereditary conditions or other diseases. Did you know that there is a link between diabetes and gum disease? This is one of the reasons it is so important to visit your dentist, as every assessment is individual and catered to you. If you want to find out how not going to the dentist can increase your chances of stroke, heart disease and more, have a look at our 5 pretty good reasons to get a check up – and regularly.
1. To reduce your chances of oral cancer.
Oral cancer can affect anyone! That means any age, any sex and anyone with or without teeth. This disease can affect your lips, mouth tissue, tongue or throat, and with 640,000 cases of oral cancer being diagnosed each year, makes it eleventh on the list of most common types of cancer. Oral cancer is life threatening and kills around 2,000 people a year in the United Kingdom. If oral cancer is caught early enough it can be easily treated. In a regular dental checkup, your dentist will look for signs of oral cancer, this is why it is paramount to have regular dental check-ups.
2. To reduce your chances of illness.
Studies have revealed that there is a direct link between your oral health and your overall health, such as oral health causing or increasing your risk of illness and disease. Poor oral health has been linked to cardiovascular and respiratory diseases.
3. To prevent gum disease.
Even if you clean and brush your teeth every day, twice… this doesn’t completely eliminate you from getting gum disease. For example, if you have an existing condition such as diabetes, you are actually more prone to gum disease. Heck, you can even be more prone to gum disease because it’s hereditary.
But the important thing is, by going to the dentist regularly you reduce your risk of gum disease. This is because your dentist can check the health of your gums, treat an inflammation or disease, and professionally clean your teeth for preventive care.
If gum disease is left to manifest, this cannot only cause tooth loss but it also increases your risk of heart attack and stroke.
4. Behind the scenes, x-ray vision.
At least once a year you should have a dental X – Ray. They are a lot more important than you think and can detect things from impacted teeth to destructive diseases. An x – ray pictures your mouth, jaw and throat. This enables a dentist to check for tumours, cysts, bone loss and more.
5. Tooth Loss
Poor oral health causes a buildup of plaque and tartar, which is filled with bacteria. This bacteria causes tooth decay as well as cavities, which will eventually lead to tooth loss.
Tooth loss affects us mentally as well as physically. Such as lowered self-esteem and inhibiting your ability to chew. If tooth loss is not managed through restorative dentistry, this could eventually lead to bone loss.
Do you suffer from tooth loss, find out more about dental implant treatment.
If you have an ongoing medical issue such as diabetes or heart disease, take regular medication or treatment such as radiation therapy, are pregnant or smoke, your oral health could be at a greater risk. This is because there is a range of factors that can have an adverse effect on your oral health. This is why it is so important to have regular check – ups with your dentist so that you can maintain good oral health.
Your oral health is as important as your overall health, and one is directly linked to the other. This is why we should take our oral health so seriously. Caring about our oral health is caring about our overall health, so pass it on!
Is there something else that is stopping you from going to the dentist? Are you scared to go to the dentist? Do you have a dental phobia? Here’s how we can help.