Just as you wouldn't ignore a persistent cough or an aching joint, you shouldn't overlook potential issues with your dental health. Unfortunately, for many reasons, patients can put off seeking dental care.
Be it fear of the dentist or simply not giving dental health the same priority as overall health, the result is the same. But you should be giving your oral health just as much attention.
When to Seek Dental Care
Twice-per-year regular dental checkups are recommended. But there are also certain signs that may signal an immediate need to see a dentist.
Persistent Tooth Pain
One of the clearest signals that it's time to see a dentist is persistent tooth pain. If you experience continuous pain or discomfort, even if it's mild, it's an indication that something isn't right. Tooth pain could be a result of cavities, an infection, or even an impacted tooth. Addressing this pain promptly can prevent it from worsening and can also help in identifying underlying issues that might be causing it.
Bleeding or Swollen Gums
While some might dismiss a little blood after brushing or flossing, it's crucial to take bleeding or swollen gums seriously. Often, these are early signs of gum disease or gingivitis. Left untreated, gum disease can escalate to a more severe condition called periodontitis, which can lead to tooth loss. Good dental hygiene and professional care can help address and prevent this.
Problems With Existing Dental Work
If you lose a crown, filling, dental implant, or other dental work, or if your dental work becomes loose or shows signs of other problems, call your dentist right away. It may seem minor, especially if it is not accompanied by pain, but when your dental work loses integrity, your teeth and gums may become susceptible to additional damage.
Bad Breath or a Bad Taste in the Mouth
If you've been facing chronic bad breath (halitosis) or a persistent bad taste in your mouth, it may be more than just that garlic-laden lunch you had. These symptoms can be indicative of gum disease, cavities, oral yeast infections, or even more severe conditions like oral cancer. A visit to the dentist can help identify the root cause and offer solutions.
White Spots on Teeth
White spots on your teeth can seem like nothing to be concerned about, but the reality is that they can be an early indication of dental decay. Decay happens when the enamel starts to break down, which can lead to cavities. Cavities, once formed, don't repair themselves and only grow larger with time. If you notice white spots or any other discolorations on your teeth, it's crucial to consult your dentist, and the sooner, the better.
Sensitivity to Hot and Cold
While tooth sensitivity can be due to various reasons, sudden and severe sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures might indicate a dental issue like a fractured tooth, a decayed area, or gum recession exposing the root. Addressing these issues in their early stages can prevent further complications and more invasive treatments in the future.
If You're Hesitant to Seek Dental Care
It's absolutely natural to feel apprehension or anxiety about visiting the dentist, especially if you're experiencing one or more of these symptoms. Remember, your feelings are valid and can even be common. We understand and are trained to ensure your comfort and address your concerns.
Is it Time to Make an Appointment?
If you've recognized any of the above symptoms or if it's been a while since your last dental checkup, make it a priority to book an appointment. Making an effort to be seen once you notice early signs that you need dental care may help you to avoid more serious complications later on.
Whether you are just starting to notice one of these signs and symptoms, or if it has simply been a while since your last checkup, contact us to book your next visit.