Preventive dentistry is the routine of caring for your teeth and it should be important to everyone who wants to have their natural teeth for a lifetime. In the past, dentists spent most of their time fixing dental problems instead of preventing them. The emphasis of modern dentistry is to practice preventive dental care.
There are many forms of preventive dentistry, such as daily brushing and flossing along with regular dental check-ups and professional cleanings.
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends you have a dental exam every six months in order to maintain optimal oral health. This regimen is designed to ensure that your teeth are clean and healthy, to check for gum disease, enamel wear, and other diseases that can be detected through oral examinations.
Preventive Dentistry at Home
Preventive dentistry is the practice of caring for your teeth to keep them healthy; to do your best to prevent oral problems. Following are some daily habits everyone should incorporate in order to have healthy teeth and gums:
Brush Your Teeth Daily
The most important element of preventive dentistry is to brush your teeth daily with fluoride toothpaste for two minutes each time.
- Brush your tongue to help remove bacteria from your mouth. This also freshens your breath!
- Replace your toothbrushes every three months when the bristles begin to fray
Daily flossing helps to clean out the tight spaces between the teeth.
- There is a proper way to floss your teeth. If you’re going to take the time to floss, it is meaningful to know how to do it properly.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Eating a healthy diet helps protect your teeth by providing them with the nutrients they need.
- Limit your sugar intake, including simple carbohydrates.
- Drink plenty of water and milk, and avoid sugary soft drinks and energy drinks.
- Eat a varied diet of fruits, vegetables and dairy products rich in calcium and protein that will help you get the nutrients you need to maintain a healthy smile.
What Are the Benefits of Preventive Dentistry?
It may be tempting to neglect regular dental visits because we have such busy lives, but ensuring your teeth and gums are healthy will benefit your overall health for years to come! If you use proper dental care, you can reduce your risk of getting cavities, gingivitis, enamel loss and periodontitis, all of which may lead to tooth loss. Preventive dentistry can also reduce your risk of secondary problems caused by poor dental health.
In addition to reducing your risk for other health issues, practicing good preventive oral health can save you money. Even with dental insurance, the costs associated with poor oral hygiene can add up. While preventive dentistry may not completely eliminate your need for fillings, or root canals, it can go a long way in reducing your need for costly treatments due to neglect.
Visit Your Dentist
You should see your dentist every six months to check for any problems in the teeth or gums. Dental cleanings and exams allow dentists to identify problems and take care of them at the onset. Plaque and tartar can build up in a very short amount of time, especially if good oral hygiene is not practiced between visits.
Food, beverages and tobacco can stain teeth and if not professionally cleaned, can stain your teeth. Soft plaque can harden on the teeth and irritate the gum tissue and if not treated, plaque can lead to gum disease. That’s why regular dental visits are essential for the maintenance of healthy teeth and gums. People with a high risk of dental disease should see their dentist more often including women during pregnancy, smokers, diabetics and those with poor immune systems. In between those examinations, it’s important for you to do the homework to keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy.
Other Reasons Why Routine Dental Appointments Are Important
Early Detection of Dental Problems
Many dental issues, including gum disease, cavities and oral cancer, don’t usually cause pain or become visible until they are in advanced stages. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 50 percent of adults over 30 years old suffer from gum disease. Gum disease (periodontitis) can lead to tooth loss and allow harmful bacteria to spread to vital organs in your body. Health problems that may be linked to poor oral health are:
- Heart disease and Strokes
- Respiratory disease
- Premature birth and low birth weight in infants
- More than 100 cases of oral cancer are diagnosed in the U.S every day. Early treatment significantly increases the chances of a successful outcome.
Preventing Bad Breath
Bad breath (halitosis) can be caused by poor oral hygiene, gum disease or particles of food lodged in hard-to-reach places. Regular brushing along with professional teeth cleaning at your dental exam are the best way to prevent this problem.
Your smile says a lot about you and performs an important role as you interact with other people. Regular dental visits will not only help to keep your teeth and gums healthy but will give you the confidence to openly smile and associate with others.
Niles Family Dentistry; A Dentist For Your Whole Family
Take the first step of preventive dental care by scheduling an appointment with Dr. Ashley Niles today. Dr. Niles utilizes the most advanced dental technologies available and has the ability and expertise to provide treatment and services for the whole family. She also provides a wide range of dental services so you don’t have to go to numerous specialists, including:
- Crown and Bridge Work
- Endodontics (Root Canals)
- Implant Restorations
- Implant Retained Dentures
- Partial and Full Dentures
- Whitening and Bleaching
Located in Niwot, Colorado at 136 2nd Ave. Suite 101, Dr. Niles also provides dental care to patients in Boulder, Longmont and other areas of northern Colorado. Contact our office online or call (720) 744-0001 to make an appointment.
Everyone benefits from preventive dentistry, and impacts your overall health. Start now by calling Dr. Niles to begin caring for your teeth today!
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