Two words sum up the importance of regular dental exams: Early detection.
Many patients do not realize that dental problems often lack symptoms in early stages. By the time you feel pain, unnecessary damage may already have occurred and you may need advanced restorative dentistry to keep further damage at bay.
Fortunately, regular dental exams allow early detection of problems and help you avoid unnecessary damage to teeth and gums. Modern dental techniques allow dentists to identify oral issues before they reach an advanced stage, when corrective steps may be more extensive and expensive.
How often should you have a regular dental exam?
For most people, a dental exam every six months is optimal. However, everyone is different. The dentists at Chrisman & Wyse Cosmetic & General Dentistry, serving Peoria, Champaign, Decatur, and Bloomington, can recommend an appropriate timeline for dental exams based on your lifestyle, health, and the condition of your teeth.
A person with a healthy mouth and good oral hygiene habits, including flossing and avoiding tobacco products, may be able to get by with an exam every six months.
But at the other extreme are people who have multiple risk factors. Unfortunately, some people are genetically more prone to cavities. Others take medications that cause dry mouth and increase their chances of tooth decay. People with added risk factors may need careful monitoring and require checkups three or four times a year.
Why Regular Dental Exams?
Whether you are interested in your health or your wallet, regular dental exams provide the protection you need for both. The reasons why regular dental exams are important:
- Catch Problems Early. Many dental problems, such as gum disease or cavities, go undetected by patients until they reach an advanced stage. However, a dentist has the tools and training to detect problems in early stages, well before a patient knows there is a problem.
- Prevention. Preventing damage is always better than making repairs. Regular checkups allow dentists to catch dental problems before extensive damage has occurred. Prevention is important because, unlike bones that repair themselves, your teeth and gums do not regenerate. Any damage is permanent.
- Save Money. Early detection and treatment of oral problems is less expensive and less invasive than dealing with advanced dental problems. That’s a win-win scenario. For example, early treatment of gum disease may require only a cleaning to halt the disease. However, if gum disease goes undetected, surgery may be required. Regular checkups help you avoid expensive complications.
We understand that time and money are at a premium these days. But regular dental exams save you money in the long run by helping you avoid more costly treatments for advanced dental problems.
Remember: Many dental problems lack symptoms until they reach an advanced stage. Even if your teeth “feel fine,” you should have them examined by a dentist who has the technology and skills to detect problems before extensive and costly damage has been done.
If you have not had a regular dental exam in the last six months, please contact us for an appointment.