Fear or anxiety over a visit to the dentist is not uncommon. There are a lot of people who let that fear keep them away from regular dental checkups. Even for individuals who are not scared of the dentist, they don’t always keep up with their regular visits. They think if they feel fine, they can skip them. This couldn’t be further from the truth. As the saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
1) You notice your gums are bleeding when you brush or floss
If you have been putting off your regular dental visits, and you start to notice any of these symptoms, you need to make an appointment to see your dentist right away. These are all signs of an underlying issue.
Gums that bleed during brushing or flossing are not healthy gums. In fact, your gums should never bleed when you brush or floss at home. If you are noticing blood when you do either of these things, it is most likely a sign that you have gum disease. Your dentist can help get to the root of the problem and help get you set up on a treatment plan to return your gums to a healthy place.
2) You have constant dry mouth
Everyone will have dry mouth on occasion. The weather or things like excessive indoor heat use/indoor air conditioning use can cause this problem. There are also dozens of medications that list dry mouth as a side effect. While dry mouth may be a side effect that isn’t preventable, it still isn’t a good thing for your dental health. Your dentist can help you with some remedies to create saliva, so your dry mouth isn’t so prevalent. Saliva is the number one line of defense against tooth decay. You want to avoid dry mouth as much as you can.
3) You have a constant bad taste in your mouth
If you are maintaining your oral hygiene, you would think your mouth would be free of any and all bad tastes. If your mouth is free of disease and other issues, then that should be the case. But if there are any issues at all within your mouth, then the situation is entirely different. Gingivitis and gum disease can cause you to have a bad taste in your mouth. So can infections and other issues with your teeth. If you are brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash, but you keep noticing a funky taste in your mouth, it’s time to visit the dentist. Those with excellent oral hygiene habits shouldn’t have a constant bad taste in their mouths.
4) You have had previous dental work done.
No matter how good a dentist is, all dental work needs maintenance. That’s what regular dental checkups are for. Not only does your dentist check for any emerging issues, but he/she also makes sure any previous work is still in top-notch shape. If you have had previous dental treatments like fillings, crowns, root canals, etc. don’t skip your dentist checkups. You need to make sure all of that work is still in working condition. If it isn’t, your dentist can fix it then, rather than waiting for it to break, and then causing an emergency situation.
5) You are having pain and/or swelling in your tooth/mouth/gums/neck.
If you are experiencing pain anywhere in or around the area of your mouth, you need to make an appointment to see a dentist. Pain in that area can mean so many different things. Pain in your tooth could be anything from a large cavity to an abscess. But there is no question that any of these pains require a dental visit as soon as possible. Your dentist can figure out the exact cause of your pain and devise a treatment plan. If you ignore your pain, whatever is causing it will only get worse. You could end up in a situation where you need emergency care. If you have an infection causing mouth pain, you shouldn’t hesitate to seek treatment. Oral infections can spread to the brain or pericardium, causing a stroke or heart issues.
6) You are having trouble chewing food.
If you begin to experience troubling or discomfort when chewing food, you need to seek dental care quickly. Like so many other dental issues, this could mean so many things. But you can be sure it means something is off with your tooth or your bite.
7) You are pregnant
Not only does pregnancy put the body through numerous changes, it will also affect your teeth and gums. Any issues you had before pregnancy can be exacerbated. Pregnancy can also cause your gums to bleed. Contact your dentist if you notice anything that doesn’t seem right and don’t skip your regular checkups. Pregnancy hormones can cause countless problems for your teeth and gums.
8) You are a smoker/you use smokeless tobacco/you vape
While it is likely that your dentist will give you the “quit smoking” chat during a visit, tobacco and vape users must see their dentist. While vaping issues are primarily with the lungs, it is unknown what it can do to your teeth and gums. The effect on your teeth and gums from tobacco is well-known. Keeping up with your regular checkups, as well as going to your dentist if you notice anything out of the ordinary is vital for tobacco users. Your dentist is trained to spot signs of oral cancer, and early treatment is critical for beating that disease.
While keeping up with your regular checkups is the best way to catch things before they become issues, situations can still arise. Even in a person who religiously brushes and flosses twice a day! If you notice any of these symptoms, it is time to see your dentist. Don’t limit yourself to just things on this list. If you notice anything not typical with your mouth and gums, schedule a visit with your dentist. It’s better safe than sorry.
Book an appointment with Dental Expressions, your Dentist In Leawood Today!