The Importance of Routine Dental Checkups & Cleanings
Routine Dental Checkups & Cleanings Are an Important Part of Preventative Dentistry.
Preventive dentistry includes services provided by your dentist to reduce the likelihood of contracting oral health conditions that can end up being more expensive to treat and uncomfortable to experience if left unchecked.
The most common, and important, preventative dental procedures are exams and cleanings. Due to the importance of routine cleanings, and checkups, many dental plans do cover them with little to no copay. A dental exam typically includes a thorough cleaning by a dental hygienist or dentist.
During the exam portion, the dentist will use a metal probe and angled mirror to examine the teeth, gums, and tissues for any issues. They will check for warning signs of cavities in the teeth and any swelling, redness or sores with the gums and tissue. The dentist will feel your jawbones to make sure your bite is aligned and no issues with the joints. They will also look for signs of jaw clenching, such as worn grooves of the teeth. X-rays may be taken to detect any problems not visible to the naked eye.
The cleaning will remove plaque and deposits by scraping above and below the gum line. The hygienist will floss your teeth and use a mildly abrasive polish to shine, smooth and get rid of any unwanted residues or particles on the teeth. This will leave the teeth smooth, making it harder for plaque to latch onto.
If your dental health is important to you, and you want to keep your smile looking its best, consider the following benefits of bi-annual check-ups and cleanings:
The main reason for regular check-ups and cleanings is to avoid tooth decay and cavities. Cavities are formed when acids in the mouth wear down, or erode, a tooth’s outer enamel layer. Bacteria in the mouth feed on sugar and starches from food and drinks to create these acids. Over time, this acid can cause harmful buildup on the teeth. A professional dental cleaning can remove this buildup and leave the patients teeth smooth. When teeth are smooth, they are less likely to attract harmful bacteria.
Gum Disease & Tooth Loss Prevention
If left unchecked, your mouth can develop gingivitis (a mild form of gum disease causing irritation and inflammation), or more serious gum infection, periodontitis (periodontal disease) which leads to early tooth loss. Once gum disease has developed into periodontitis, it cannot be cured, only slowed through treatment. The damage done, by periodontitis, to your teeth and gums may be impossible to reverse without extensive dental work and treatments.
Boost Your Overall Health
Studies have shown a strong tie between gum disease, heart health and even type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease (See Harvard Health Study & this study). The body’s immune response to gum disease (inflammation) can contribute to health problems, especially atherosclerosis. Regular check-ups and dental cleanings can reduce the odds of gum disease, inflammation and the possible heart attack, stroke, blocked blood vessels or other life-threatening medical conditions associated it.
You deserve the best smile. Keeping your teeth stain-free and a healthy shade of white can help you look better and feel more confident. A healthy smile can be an excellent indicator of your state of health.
Many insurance plans have a low or no copay for dental cleanings and exams. Insurance companies understand that regular preventative dental care can greatly decrease the chance of expensive procedures later. Even for patients without insurance, or whose insurance does not cover regular cleanings, may benefit by paying out-of-pocket for regular care. Investing more in your dental health through preventative dental care can keep you and your family healthy and cut heavy costs in the long run. Avenue Dental offers numerous payment, financing options, as well as in-office dental plans that help make preventative dental care more affordable.
Dental cleanings and exams are an important part of preventative dental care. Avoid tooth decay, cavities, gum disease and other health issues.
If you have any questions about dental exams, cleanings, insurance coverage or other preventative dental services, please contact us.