Preventative Dentistry

Have you ever wondered why your dentist and the Australian dental association recommend you see the dentist every six months? It is easy to think we don’t need to see the dentist if our teeth are in good condition. Dental examinations are not something you should make when you have problems, your dental six-monthly examination is more than just a check-up and clean, it is a critical part of preventive health care.

There are many reasons why it is so important to see your dentist at least twice a year, here are 5 of our favorite reasons why you should see us on a regular basis:

  1. Regular dental exams help protect not just your oral health, but also your overall general health. For example, signs and symptoms of some systemic diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and diabetes, might show up in the mouth first. If during your visit the dentist finds indications of disease, we will suggest that you see your doctor for further investigation.
  1. There is more to the dentist than just teeth and during your dental visit, your dentist will look for mouth, head and neck cancer. This is one of the most important things we do as a dentist. To do this we feel for any lumps and bumps on your head and neck as well as checking for any white or red patches in the mouth. Usually, during this check, we do not find anything unusual however if anything is picked up at early stages it could potentially save your life.
  1. Dentist plays an important role in identifying problems such as sleep disturbances (sleep apnoea, snoring) by identifying these problems at the early stages we are able to help our patients have a healthy lifestyle.
  1. After your head, neck and joints have been thoroughly examined your dentist will look inside your mouth and not only look at your teeth for signs of decay, holes, cracks and the health of your gums, but also evaluate your risk of developing other oral problems.
  1. Your routine dental examination can also include counselling about diet, tobacco products, general health, sleeping habits and other lifestyle factors that can affect your oral and general health.

After your comprehensive exam, your dentist will discuss all their findings of your oral health, including the risk of tooth decay and gum disease and other potential dental or oral health problems. You will also be guided with tools and techniques on how to prevent and avoid future problems. If there is any treatment needed it will be explained in detail and future appointments may need to be organized, to carry on the necessary treatment. In some cases, your dentist may need to refer you to see a specialist for more complex dental treatment.

So next time you think “but nothing is hurting do I really need to go to the dentist?” Remember prevention rather than intervention and there is definitely more to the dentist than just teeth.

If you are looking to schedule your first adult dental exam or you are looking for a new dentist call us to book a comprehensive dental examination.