Routine dental exams and cleanings may not be appointments you exactly look forward to. In fact, many people choose to skip dental visits due to cost or fear of the dentist. But avoiding the dentist may eventually cost you more money and anxiety in the long run if you are diagnosed with cavities, gum disease or even oral cancer.
Keep reading to learn why you should visit your local dentist every 6 months.
Plaque, Tartar, and Cavities
Even dental patients with the most diligent oral hygiene routine will miss small areas of their mouth allowing plaque to accumulate on the teeth. Once this plaque builds up, it will turn into a substance called tartar, which cannot be removed from daily brushing and flossing alone.
Since excessive tartar can cause cavities and periodontal disease, professional cleanings are vital to remove the tartar before it becomes destructive.
As mentioned, excessive plaque and tartar buildup can result in periodontal disease (or gum disease). This infection in the gum line will cause swelling, soreness, tenderness, and bleeding in the early stage of gum disease.
This first stage of gum disease is called gingivitis. Regular exams can either prevent gingivitis from occurring or, if you are diagnosed with the first stage of gum disease, it can typically be treated before your bone structure becomes infected.
In later stages of gum disease such as periodontitis and advanced periodontitis, the fibers and bone of your teeth can become damaged and in severe cases will require the removal of teeth.
That routine cleaning doesn’t sound that bad now, does it?
VELscope Oral Cancer Screening
While some may think that oral cancer is rare and only is diagnosed in smokers, it is more common than you think – affecting almost 50,000 dental patients in the US. And, unfortunately, since there are no obvious symptoms in the earlier stages, many patients may not even know they are carrying the disease.
This makes those dental exams extremely important so that any signs of oral cancer can be detected as early as possible. The good news is, early-stage oral cancer is often easily treatable. All you need to do is schedule an exam every 6 months.
However, be sure your dentist includes an oral cancer screening as part of the exam. Specifically, ask the dental office if they provide a VELscope oral cancer screening.
A VELscope oral cancer screening is non-invasive, quick, painless and more importantly, necessary for your health. The VELscope uses a blue light to help differentiate healthy gums, from those showing otherwise invisible signs of precancerous and cancerous abnormalities.
Schedule Your Dental Appointment with a Macomb County Dentist Today!
If you find yourself avoiding your dental exams because of time, money is tight or you suffer from dental anxiety, here is something to consider.
Undergoing routine exams and cleanings will cost you less time, money and stress than fillings, gum disease treatments or oral cancer treatments will! Keep your smile healthy and happy by visiting your local dentist at least every 6 months.
If you do not have a regular dentist and you are looking for a dental office in the Macomb County area, call HPS Dental at (248) 652-0024.