Optimize Your Oral Health with Regular Dental Check-Ups and Cleaning
Everyone knows that regularly scheduled dental checkups and cleanings are one of the keys to maintaining healthy teeth and gums, along with the bright smile that comes with them. The question, though, is: what constitutes “regularly?”
ADA’s Position on Frequency of Check Ups
Interestingly, the American Dental Association (ADA) does not hold a clear-cut position on frequency of dental appointments. The association’s most recent statement on the issue, presented in 2013, says that “the frequency of [consumers’] regular dental visits should be tailored by their dentists to accommodate for their current oral health status and health history.” Other health organizations and dental schools have taken the ADA’s lead on this by issuing similar statements.
Overall, regularly scheduled dentist visits allow your dentist to find oral health problems, such as cavities, gum disease and oral cancer. They also serve to provide your teeth a deep cleaning that clears plaque and tartar that you may not be able to eliminate with brushing and flossing. Naturally, the more frequent the scheduled visits, the better the chance of spotting problems early. Also, more frequent professional cleaning means less plaque and tartar build up, which in turn reduces the risk of gum disease and gingivitis.
Benefits of Regular Check Ups
A lot can happen in a year, so a dentist that tracks your oral health on a regular basis can better gauge changes to your teeth and gums, diagnose emerging problems early, and construct a treatment plan to resolve any such problems before they can cause possible long-term damage.
Cavities and tooth decay generally develop slowly and often present no easily visible signs. Because the damage to teeth and enamel accelerates the longer cavities and decay develop unchecked, the sooner the problem is addressed the easier the dental fix. In some cases, frequent examinations can be the difference in fixing a cavity or other decay with a simple filling versus the need for a crown, root canal or tooth extraction.
Professional dental cleaning removes the buildup of plaque and tartar that no amount of personal oral care through daily brushing and flossing can address. In particular, such cleaning removes plaque and tartar build up along and below the gum line, where it poses the greatest risk to healthy gums. And an added benefit to more frequent professional cleanings is that they help keep your smile bright and breath fresh.
Some People Need Even More Frequent Check Ups
While deciding on whether to schedule regular cleanings is a personal decision to be made by you in consultation with your dentist, people considered at especially high risk of dental disease may need to see their dentist even more often. Those considered at high risk include:
- people with active gum disease
- people with high incidence of cavity formation
- people with excessive plaque build up
- people with weak immune systems
- pregnant women
Island Tower Dentistry has an excellent track record of maintaining the oral health and bright smiles of its Marco Island patients. If you would like to see what the team can do for your oral health and smile, contact us today at 239-394-1004 to make an appointment!