Going to the dentist is one of the best and most important things you can do to maintain or improve your oral health. While some patients may be more excited about their dentist appointments than others, many still question how often they should see their dentist. If going to the dentist is not your favorite activity, it may help to know some of the reasons why it’s important to still make your regular appointments with your family dentist. 

Why is it important to see a dentist? 

Even people who brush and floss their teeth every day still need to go to the dentist. Going to the dentist is also a preventative measure. Your family dentist and oral hygienists are trained to spot and examine issues that you may not discover yourself. For example, many oral hygienists and dentists are the first people to spot oral cancer for patients, and because further complications may be preventable or treated more easily when they are caught in the early stages of diagnosis, routine visits to the dentist can make a big impact on the timeline of care. 

Visiting your dentist regularly can allow them to help you find easier solutions in the interest of saving you time, money and discomfort in the future. Your family dentist can also help you prevent a wide range of dental problems that may arise, and worsen when left untreated. Seeing your dentist on a regular basis is one of the most critical components of maintaining good oral health. 

When should I make my dentist appointments?

Generally, most people should see their dentist twice a year, but some may need to visit their dentists more frequently than that. Everyone has different needs for their dental care, so the frequency in which patients should visit their family dentist often depends on the state of their overall oral hygiene, medical conditions and habits. However, your family dentist knows your needs best, so you should rely on their advice and expertise when wondering how often you should make your dentist appointments. But, if in doubt, twice a year is usually recommended. 

Does everyone need to go to the dentist?

Even though it’s safe to say everyone needs to go to the dentist, many patients have different dental needs and may need to see their dentist more often than twice a year. So, who should see their dentist more often? Those with a higher risk of dental disease or other health conditions. Sometimes, people who fall within this category may need to see their dentist every three months or more. Others who should consider going to the dentist more regularly include women who are pregnant, those who smoke, have diabetes, gum disease, weak immune responses or patients who are cavity prone. 

Although, this is not a comprehensive list. There are a variety of additional reasons why people may need, or want, to see their dentist more frequently than twice a year. If you ever notice changes in your mouth or teeth that are concerning, don’t hesitate to make an appointment to see your family dentist sooner than your next dental appointment. 

What happens during a visit to the dentist?

Routine visits to the dentist usually consist of two parts: the cleaning and the check-up exam. The goal of the cleaning part of your visit is to remove plaque and tartar that is built up on your teeth. Your hygienist may also polish your teeth during this stage of the appointment to remove surface stains and plaque. 

During the check-up portion of your appointment, your dental professional will examine your mouth for any areas of concern. Sometimes this is done with x-rays which are often used to check for cavities. Another key aspect of the check-up is examining your gums which is often done by checking the depth of the spaces between your teeth and gums. Your dentist will also look for other signs of concern around the areas of your mouth, face and neck. 

How should I care for my teeth between dental visits?

Between your dental appointment, you should brush your teeth twice a day, floss once a day and be sure to use a toothpaste that contains fluoride. Using mouthwash in tandem with brushing and flossing can also help to control plaque and bacteria; plus it can help keep your breath fresh too. 

Keeping this routine in mind allows you to maintain the best oral health possible in between dental appointments. If you have any questions about what you should be doing to help keep your teeth and gums healthy at home, or if it’s time to make an appointment to visit your Olathe family dentist, please feel free to call us at 913-782-7227 or contact us today. We always aim to provide our patients the best dental care possible.