Healthy mouths chew more easily, are less prone to sensitivity and are less likely to need fillings in the future. Good oral hygiene always starts at home, but preventative dentistry at the clinic is just as important.
Regular check-ups with your dentist are necessary for good oral health. We recommend you visit your dentist every 6 to 12 months.
Regular check-ups help spot the earliest signs of tooth decay and gum disease, allowing these problems to be sorted before they escalate into anything serious. Your dentist can also help you understand how to take care of your teeth. This can differ between patients, making personalised advice invaluable.
Patients who don’t attend regular check-ups only tend to visit their dentist when they experience dental pain or sensitivity. It’s important to say that while some dental problems can’t be prevented, many can (such as gum disease and tooth decay).
If you leave it too long between check-ups, you may develop an issue that requires immediate action such as a root canal to save a tooth or an extraction if the tooth is too far gone. The underlying causes of most dental issues, like decay, gum disease and worn enamel, are identifiable at an early stage. If these can be identified and treated early, the need for an intrusive treatment like an extraction is greatly reduced.
What to expect?
During a check-up your dentist will examine your teeth, gums and mouth, ask about your dental hygiene and ask about your diet and lifestyle.
If your dentist identifies any problems with your teeth, gums or mouth, they will recommend a treatment. This may be something as simple as a scale and polish to remove tartar build up, or a filling or root canal.
As part of your check-up, it is common practice for your dentist to take an x-ray of your mouth. This is necessary to establish what your tooth looks like under the gum, allowing your dentist to see any bone loss or disease.
You can think of a check-up as an assessment of your oral health, from which your dentist will establish the health of your mouth. Because leaving problems causes larger problems (for example, mild decay turning into a cavity) your dentist will recommend a time to book in your next appointment based on what they see. This may be sooner than 6 months if your teeth and gums are at risk of future problems.