Getting your teeth cleaned by a family dentist is an important part of having healthy teeth and gums. However, most people who get their teeth cleaned do not think too much about the appointment. To take a more proactive approach to dental health, patients should ask certain questions about keeping the teeth and gums in tip-top shape.
Questions to ask to improve dental health
A dentist wants to assist with any dental issue and is generally happy to answer any related questions. These can be asked before, during or after the appointment.
1. How are flossing and brushing techniques?
It maybe has been a while since learning how to brush or floss properly, and some people get into bad habits without even realizing it. Since daily routine plays a crucial part in the health of the teeth, gums and mouth, it is a good idea to ask the dentist if at-home care is paying off or if there are any improvements that can be made.
2. Are there any early signs of gum disease or tooth decay?
Along with the cleaning, a typical appointment includes a basic dental exam so that any issue can be caught early on. Although a family dentist should make the patient aware of any potential problem, it is easier to have the conversation when the patient proactively asks questions about the results. If gum disease is seen early on, it can be completely reversed, and even early signs of tooth decay can prevent more serious problems if dealt with right away.
3. Is there a higher risk for any conditions?
Genetics and lifestyle can play a big part in oral and overall health. If there is a family history of a certain condition, the dentist can evaluate other factors and tell patients if they are more prone to the condition.
Along with genetics, other risk factors include smoking, poor nutrition, stress, pregnancy, obesity, teeth grinding, menopause, age and socioeconomic factors. A patient who is at higher risk may need to visit the dentist more often or change their lifestyle to reduce the chances of dental issues.
4. Is there anything more to do at home for better oral health?
Dentists get a lot of information from an exam, X-rays and teeth cleaning, and they may have specific advice based on the condition of the teeth and gums. Patients should discuss daily routines and ask if there is anything more that can be done. Perhaps extra flossing, more prudent mouthwash use or a night guard can help improve the condition of the mouth.
Having healthy teeth and gums is important for people’s dental and overall health. A family dentist is able to determine during the cleaning appointment if there are additional things that can be done at home to improve things or reverse the early signs of a dental condition. Do not be afraid to ask questions to be more informed.
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