How often should you go to the dentist?
We all know that visiting the dentist is vital, but how often should you really go? We are going to discuss how often you should go to the dentist and why that is. People often push their oral health to the back of their priority list, when in reality, it is just as important as every other aspect of your health, if not more so. So, let’s answer the question “how often should you go to the dentist” to encourage you to book your next dental appointment!
So, how often should you go to the dentist?
On average, it is recommended that you visit your dentist and hygienist at least every 6 months. How often you should go to the dentist differs depending on your oral health, with some people needing to visit more often, so it is always best to follow your dentists advice on when to book your next appointment. Also, if you ever have any concerns between appointments, make sure that you call your dentist to get another appointment booked.
The sooner something can be treated, the less invasive the treatment and the cheaper the cost (we will look into further benefits below). So, it is always worth getting any concerns examined by your dentist between appointments if they arise.
Why should you go to the dentist every 6 months?
6 months is given as a guideline for how often you should go to the dentist as this gives the best chance of being able to identify any issues in time for them to be rectified relatively easily. This is also an opportunity for your dentist to keep an eye on any issues that may be developing, like wisdom teeth coming through or changes in your oral health and the causes of them.
When you see your dentist, you should also visit your hygienist, as they professionally clean your teeth, check that your oral hygiene routine is as thorough as it should be and they removed stubborn tartar. Removing tartar is really important, as although you can keep it to a minimum by brushing properly, using mouthwash and flossing, often it does still occur. When left untreated, this can irritate your gums, eventually leading to tooth loss and gum disease for many people. Again, 6 months between visits is around how often you should go to the dentist and hygienist, to make sure that any tartar that does build up can be removed within a safe time period.
Why visiting your dentist every 6 months is so important
Now we’ve got how often you should go to the dentist covered, we’re going to look into why it’s so important.
Your dentist can identify issues you might not be able to
Even if you think that your oral health is in perfect condition, there are so many issues that you might not be able to identify that your dentist can, or they are able to identify them much more quickly. This is why how often you should go to the dentist is so important, as there are more obvious symptoms of some issues that you will identify quickly, but others are much more subtle and sometimes you won’t be able to notice them until the issue is very severe and has caused a significant amount of damage.
These things include cavities that you may not see initially or plaque build up below the gum line that can cause gum disease. Very serious diseases like mouth cancer also often have very subtle symptoms, including lumps in the neck that you may not ever think is related to your oral health, whereas your dentist is highly experienced in being able to pick up on subtle signs. If this doesn’t highlight the importance of how often you should go to the dentist, not much will!
Treatment will be less invasive and more affordable
How often you should go to the dentist is also important in terms of the treatment itself, because when issues are identified quickly, the treatment will be less invasive and also more affordable. The more complex the issue, the longer it takes to resolve, the more difficult the procedure, the larger the cost and longer the recovery.
Often, oral health issues, when identified quickly, can be resolved with a simple procedure. So, the cost of visiting your dentist more frequently with a focus on preventative dentistry will overall be much more affordable than if you were to need invasive treatment as a result of infrequent visits.
They can see the impact of new diagnosis or medication
Another thing to consider when deciding how often you should go to the dentist is that they can see the impact of any new meditation you might be on, any damage chronic diseases may have caused or if any recent diagnosis you might have received have caused complications with your oral health. They can then help to minimise any further damage.
For example, certain medications can damage your teeth, causing inflammation, bleeding or ulcers. These symptoms can result in your gums becoming diseased, eventually causing tooth loss. Even if your new medication doesn’t result in symptoms as serious as this, your dentist can help to make you as comfortable as possible if you are experiencing issues.
Certain medical conditions can also have an impact on your oral health, such as diabetes, kidney disease, organ transplants, radiation from cancer treatment and Parkinson’s disease, to name a few. If you have had a recent diagnosis, or you suffer from any chronic diseases, then visiting your dentist every 6 months should be a priority.
Final thoughts on how often you should go to the dentist
We only get one set of adult teeth, so looking after them is essential, and one of the most important things you can do in order to make this happen is to visit your dentist! If you want to find out more about the importance of how often you should go to the dentist, or you would like to book in for a consultation, get in touch with us today and one of our friendly team will be more than happy to help!