Your dentist is trained to identify potentially dangerous problems which can seem invisible to the naked, untrained eye
The most common reason people visit the dentist is because they’re in pain. However, there are many other problems which don’t cause pain which can be twice as detrimental to your health in the long run.
These problems are why it’s so important to visit your dentist every six months. Check-up and follow up appointments are not a ploy to see you more often, it’s a vital appointment to keep your smile and body healthy.
Here are five subtle problems which you aren’t likely to spot at home
1. Gum disease
Gum disease begins with inflammation of the gums (gingivitis) which can progress to full periodontitis (severe gum disease). The initial stage of gum disease is not always noticeable as people may not feel their gums are sensitive or may not notice that they have other symptoms of gum disease like redness.
2. Oral cancer
Most dentists will perform a visual oral cancer check during your general check-up. This will involve looking for lesions, discolouration of the soft tissue and other lumps which could be found to be oral cancer. What you may think is a skin tag or an ulcer may actually be potentially dangerous and if left untreated could even become terminal.
Cavities only become noticeable to patients when they are painful, which often happens when it’s too late to treat them with a filling. If you have cavities assessed and treated in their early stages it is likely that you will only require a fissure sealant to prevent further damage. If left untreated then you will require a filling and possibly a root canal depending on the extent of damage. Fillings and root canal treatments are also more expensive than a fissure sealant and clean.
4. Signs of grinding
Many people do not notice that they grind their teeth, especially if they live alone. If you do grind your teeth it’s important to know that this can erode your enamel which can in turn cause significant sensitivity. Your enamel also does not grow back which means you will require bonding or even crowns to restore the appearance and function of your smile.
It’s important to receive treatment for night grinding as soon as possible – which is usually treated with a specially made night appliance (mouthguard) to stop you from pressing your upper and lower teeth together.
5. Tartar or lack of oral hygiene
While you may be brushing your teeth every night there is a high chance that you may not be brushing properly. If you fail to brush and floss properly then you may not be getting rid of plaque which can affect the appearance and health of your teeth and mouth. The worst side effect of neglecting your oral hygiene is gum disease which is a domino effect of excess bacteria in the mouth.
The process from bacteria to gum disease
Please note that tartar can only be removed by your dentist with special tools. This is only stage two of the road to gum disease so it’s important that you intercept this condition in your general check-ups before it progresses.
Millennium Dental Mosman is happy to offer a free cleaning to patients that recommend their friends.
Book a dental check-up online. Or call us on 02 8766 0409