Statistics from National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research show some startling data.
- 26% of adults 20 to 64 have untreated decay.
- Adults 20 to 64 have an average of 3.28 decayed or missing permanent teeth and 13.65 decayed and missing permanent surfaces.
- 8.52% of adults age 20 to 64 have periodontal disease.
Now you might wonder – What happens at a dentist checkup?
- The Dentist will check if your tooth is clean and does not have cavity layers on it, as cavity is the main reason for tooth decay.
- The dentist will also check for plaque and tartar on your teeth. Plaque is a clear, sticky layer of bacteria. If it’s not removed, it can harden and become tartar. You cannot remove tartar with brushing and flossing. If plaque and tartar build up on your teeth, they can cause oral diseases. Hence they will give your teeth a thorough cleaning.
- The dentist will carry out any necessary treatments, tests or teeth x-rays they feel you require at that moment depending on the situation.
- Ask about your lifestyle and provide any advice on diet, smoking, alcohol and teeth cleaning to help improve your oral health
Importance of a regular dental checkup
1) Keeps your teeth clean and healthy
Brushing and flossing your teeth cannot always clean your teeth properly as plaque and tartar are hard to remove; only a dentist with his dental instruments can remove those from your teeth. Teeth cleaning is done while checkup. Clean and healthy teeth ensure that your smile will remain good for longer time.
2) Preventing bad breath
Bad breath is estimated to affect 1 in 4 people globally. Un-cleaned and unhealthy oral hygiene may also lead to bad breath. Bad breath can be caused by poor oral hygiene, gum disease or particles of food lodged in hard-to-reach places. This kind of problems can be addressed and prevented by regular dental checkups. Chronic Bad breath (also known as Halitosis) is the third most common reason that people seek dental care, after tooth decay and gum disease.
3) Early detection of dental problems
Regular check up will ensure you are not having any dental problems. With regular check up the dentist will get to know the dental problems before the problems get more serious and become in-curable.
4) Look and Feel Better
During checkups the dentist removes the plaque and tartar which you can’t clean through brushing and flossing. This makes you feel fresh and clean. This also makes your smile more enhanced and you feel confident.
5) Maintain overall wellbeing
Oral health also ensures your overall health, as poor oral health may lead to cardiovascular disease, Diabetes, Respiratory Infections and health issues. Regular checkups ensures the detection of the problems on early stages and an experienced dentist will have in-depth understanding of all this and will help you keep healthy for a long period of time.
6) Avoids teeth loss
If plaque is stuck to your tooth for a long time it destroys your bone that supports your teeth and starts eating the roots of the teeth. A thorough cleaning during your dental checkups and regular brushing and flossing will help you avoid teeth loss.
Benefits of dental checkup
Regular dental visits for a check-up and professional cleaning play an important part in oral healthcare, lets understand the benefits of regular dental checkups.
1) Protect teeth from Cavity, Plaque and Tartar
Regular dental cleanings prevent tartar from damaging teeth or creating holes, which is how cavities are created. Cavities does not give warning signs most of the times as they form, only resulting in a small ache once the tooth is already decayed. Once the damage has been done, you will have to go back to the dentist to have cavities and other tooth problems filled and fixed. This can all be avoided with regular cleanings that take care of plaque and tartar before it becomes destructive.
2) Gum disease check
Plaque and tartar not only cause tooth decay but also damage the mouth gum tissues. Tartar buildup causes an infection after few period of time, where the gum is connected to the tooth, this makes the gum pulled away from the tooth. The infection caused is known as gingivitis and as it progresses the tissue that attaches gums to the teeth breaks down.
Once this is noticed its official that you are suffering from gum disease, and at this point is the where you will notice swelling, bleeding or soreness in your mouth.
Along with the gum breakdown, gum disease also causes a breakdown of the bone that supports the teeth to remain in place. It is common to see at this point that the teeth looses or starts falling out and drastic treatment methods will have to be taken by a dental specialist.
This results into multiple appointments and will also cost you cut to your pocket. Your time and money can be saved by periodical checkups as suggested by your dentist.
3) Keeping bad habits in check
There are many bad habits that can cause oral problems and this can affect your body too. Bad habits such as chewing ice, biting your nails, clenching your jaw, grinding your teeth, eating particularly sticky or hard sweets, brushing your teeth too hard, drinking coffee and red wine, and of course smoking are all noticed and advices are given by the specialist accordingly.
When you regularly visit for dental checkup, the dentist can check for the effects of your bad habits on your teeth and advise you according to the seriousness of the effect on your teeth.
4) Oral Cancer Detection
Oral cancer is the biggest problem you can face if no precautions are taken. But this is not an in-curable problem if it is detected at early stages when it is treatable. An experienced Las Vegas Dentist near you who is highly trained or has enough practice can easily recognize these signs and symptoms, which is only detected if regular checkups are performed every six months or so. Recognizing oral cancer in its early stages is the key in treating it successfully, and while you may not notice oral abnormalities, your dentist will.
5) Detecting problems that are under the surface
While check up if the dentist observes any abnormality an x-ray of your teeth and jaw bone is taken. X-ray allows dentist to look at the abnormality that naked eyes cannot see. Problems can include impacted teeth which are growing teeth that are blocked from pushing through the gum line, as often seen in wisdom teeth.
Dental x-rays can reveal abscesses or cysts, bone loss, cancerous and non-cancerous tumors, decay between the teeth, developmental abnormalities, poor tooth and root positions, problems inside a tooth or below the gum line.
Especially with destructive diseases that show little to no symptoms but progress quickly, up-to-date x-rays and bi-annual checkups are the best way to keep on top of your health.
On an average, it is advisable to see your dentist twice a year. Others might need more visits depending on the circumstances and their oral health conditions. People with a high risk of dental disease like smokers, diabetics or people with periodontal disease might need to visit every three or four months. So it’s best to consultant with your dentist and schedule regular visits as required.