New Year-New You

We dentists often get asked “DO I REALLY NEED TO SEE A DENTIST?”

YES.  There are reasons that you may or may not know:

Avoid Major Dental Work

With regular checkups, we dentists can spot early signs of decay at a stage when the damage can sometimes be reversed, which means you’ll avoid the dreaded drill. The tooth enamel gets broken down over time.  We dentists can detect it early and take steps to reverse that process with various fluoride products, so your tooth will go back to normal and you’ll avoid a cavity. You could end up saving time and money.

Protect Your Heart

More and more studies are showing a link between gum disease and serious health concerns, like heart disease and stroke.  Gum disease acts like a messenger that arrives ahead of other types of inflammation in the body. When your body is diseased, we can see it in your mouth.  With regular cleaning and checkups, we dentists and our hygienists can identify and treat gum disease in its early stages, or even prevent it from developing in the first place.

Keep Blood Sugars in Check

The relationship between diabetes and gum disease.  Gum disease can add to the challenge of controlling blood sugar levels.  If you have poor sugar control, it can make you susceptible to developing gum disease.  And if you have diabetes, make regular dental visits a top priority.

Now About Cancer…

Most people know about annual mammograms, colonoscopies and Pap smears to detect cancer, but many are surprised to learn that Dr. Cirka, Dr. Jeon, Dr. Smith provide an important cancer screening, too. When we ask you to stick out your tongue, we are looking for signs of oral cancer, such as a lump or a white or red patch of skin. This exam is especially important for those who use tobacco products or drink alcohol because they’re at higher risk of developing oral cancers. Regular exams can help catch these cancers early and give you the best chance of a successful treatment.

Grinding of Teeth and Treat Dry Mouth

Regular checkups are especially important if you’re taking a medication that causes dry mouth or even increasing grinding of your teeth at night as a side effect.  Saliva helps prevent tooth decay because it’s a source of natural remineralization.  Excessive pressure from grinding can break teeth, fracture fillings and increase your rate of having cavities.  Ask us if you are at an increased risk and how to protect your teeth as each person’s treatment is unique.

Get Completely Clean

You brush at home, so you don’t really need a professional cleaning, right? No matter how well you clean your teeth at home, it won’t replace the cleanings you get in the dental chair. That’s especially true when it comes to cleaning under the gum line, which is where bacteria and tartar can build up over time and increase your risk of gum disease.  The fine, detailed instruments in the hands of an experienced dental hygienist, will prevent you from developing gum disease.

Look Your Best

Stores and even online stores carry several kinds of teeth whitening strips, toothpastes and rinses, but you’re likely to get the best result from a whitening treatment at the dentist.   Over the counter whitening trays and gels can be harmful if used incorrectly. Some of those products actually strip off a layer of the teeth, causing sensitivity.  For whitening, it is best to ask your dental hygienist or dentist for their advice.

So PLEASE make a New Years Resolution and See Your Dentist 🙂


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