Your dentist cannot be with you every morning and night to ensure that you are maintaining your oral health. Their only chance to check the health of your mouth is when you come in for your regular, six-monthly dental check-up and clean. That is why they are so important! Not only does the treatment thoroughly combat plaque build-up, it also allows your dentist to assess the health of your mouth and ensure that there are no issues.
Dr Paul Trembath advises his patients on when to come in for their check-ups and cleans, on each individual case. As a rule, you should visit your dentist every six months. However, each patient’s oral health and history is different. Some patients are more predisposed to oral health conditions such as gum disease or oral cancers than others. These particular patients may require a check-up and clean more frequently, to ensure their oral health is maintained.
Preventive dentistry can ensure we treat the dental issues early giving you the best possible outcome. Would you rather a simple filling now, or a complex root canal treatment in a few years? We know which one we’d prefer!
After your appointment, the team will recommend and schedule a date for your next visit. This depends on your prior and current oral health and could be anywhere from three to six months down the track.
Why are regular dental check-up and cleans so important?
Prevent gum disease
Gum disease is caused by harmful bacteria in plaque, which is largely caused by poor oral hygiene. In your check-up and clean, your dentist will remove plaque and tartar build-up on the teeth and throughly clean all areas of your mouth, which can greatly decrease your chances of gum disease. Similarly, your dentist can assess the overall health of your mouth.
Detect problems early
If you are in the early stages of an oral health issue, like gum disease or dental decay, your dentist will be able to catch the problem early and prevent it from worsening. From there, an appropriate treatment can be planned and executed.
Plaque and tartar build-up on the teeth can contribute to yellow and worn-out appearing smile. In your check-up, your dentist will remove this build-up, as well as polish your teeth, to leave them looking and feeling great.
Regular dental check-ups now will end up being far cheaper than a complicated procedure in the future. Prevention (that is, actively maintaining your oral health and regularly visiting your dentist) is better than the cure (which may be an expensive and complicated procedure!).
You can talk to your dentist about problems you may be experiencing
At your check-up and clean, it is advised that you talk to your dentist about what you are experiencing in your mouth, so they can get to the root cause of it. This might include something like tooth sensitivity.
For more information on your six-monthly dental check up and cleans, contact us today.
Having regular dental check-ups and cleans can offer benefits to not only your oral health, but your whole body health as well.
Some of these benefits include:
- You will be able to keep your natural teeth. Built up plaque can cause gingivitis which is the early stage of gum disease. If gingivitis is left untreated it can advance to the severe stage of gum disease, periodontitis. As this oral disease progresses, bone loss can occur.
- Maintain your sparkly white smile. Having regular dental cleans can remove the surface stains left my highly pigmented foods like blueberries, and some drinks like red wine and coffee. Some lifestyle choices can cause surface stains like smoking.
- Prevent Halitosis (bad breath). One of the most common reasons for bad breath is when sulphur-producing bacteria that live on the surface of your tongue and throat, break down proteins at a high rate. This causes odorous volatile sulphur compounds (VSC) to be released from the back of your tongue and throat. Ensure your breath stays minty fresh by brushing and flossing daily between dentist visits.
- Care for your overall health. Recent prominent dental studies have linked gum disease to stroke and even cardiovascular disease. These studies are still in their infancy however, but you can potentially lessen your risk by maintaining a good oral hygiene routine.
Achieving healthy teeth and gums is fundamental to your wellbeing.
A dental check-up is the best way to prevent or manage oral health problems. A comprehensive dental check-up and clean may involve:
- X-rays to check for problems beneath the surface like disease and decay.
- An examination of your teeth and gums to search for problems above the surface like oral cancer, disease, cavities, decay or trauma.
- A comprehensive clean involving a special instrument called a hand scaler or an ultrasonic dental instrument to provide deep cleaning above and below the gum line. This helps to remove plaque, calculus and tartar build up in the hard-to-reach places.
- Polishing to further remove any plaque and help to eliminate stains.
- Discussion to determine where your oral hygiene habits might be falling slightly short, whether further treatment is needed (i.e. A filling in the case of a cavity being detected) and to have any questions you may have answered.
A comprehensive check-up and clean generally takes around 30-40 minutes to complete.
When conducting a dental check-up and clean, your dentist is thoroughly checking your mouth for anything that may be causing problems, or that may cause problems in the future. The check will start using a small, round mirror and a light and enables the dentists to clearly see all parts of the mouth. To check for gum disease and other problems, the dentist may look for things like loose teeth, damaged or inflamed gums, plaque or the presence of bacteria that cause bad breath.
They may gentle prod teeth and gums to check for things like cavities, and to have a look at their foundations to ensure that they can determine whether gum disease is present. Some areas of the mouth may have a build-up of calcium deposits on the teeth, called calculus or tartar. If left untreated the gums can become inflamed around the calculus area. Your dentist will use a small scaling machine to remove this.
Scaling is the part of the check-up that involves the removal of plaque and calculus build up on the teeth. This is done suing a small tool called a hand scaler or an ultrasonic dental instrument. Calculus is a calcified build-up that cannot be removed by brushing and flossing alone. It is caused when the plaque left on your teeth is calcified by the minerals in your saliva.