If you’re careful about maintaining good dental health, then you may already be familiar with the importance of sticking to a schedule of regular dental visits and cleaning appointments. For instance, routine professional care is needed to keep harmful plaque and tartar at bay, which prevents harmful oral bacteria from damaging your teeth and gums. In addition to bacteria-related issues, though, your dental checkups also help you prevent a wide range of issues with your oral health, making the visits vital to the long-term health and integrity of your smile. By attending regular dental visits, you can avoid these potential oral health problems.
Severe cases of dental disease
Plaque and tartar are byproducts of harmful oral bacteria that cling to your teeth and gums. While your toothbrush and floss can help you control most plaque buildup, even small spots of plaque can calcify into tartar. When it remains long enough, tartar can lead to issues like tooth decay and gum disease. Dental checkup appointments help your dentist spot signs that such issues have developed so Dr. Fondriest can treat minor dental problems before they become more severe.
Left untreated, tooth decay will advance and spread. Once a cavity reaches the sensitive inner pulp of your tooth, a more invasive procedure known as a root canal will need to be performed. This invasive treatment requires the complete removal of the inner nerves and blood vessels that are found inside your teeth. Some cases of tooth decay may even require tooth extraction. By scheduling twice-a-year visits to our Chicago dental practice, you can forgo these uncomfortable procedures.
Gum disease is a leading cause of tooth loss. Your dental checkups will include routine dental cleanings that remove plaque and tough patches of plaque that cause periodontitis. Gum disease is also unsightly. Often, patients with even mild forms of tooth decay live with unpleasant symptoms like swollen or bleeding gums. Following your dental cleaning, you can enjoy a more attractive smile.
Problems with your bite function
As your dentist examines your teeth and gums, he’ll also examine the alignment of your teeth and jaws and how well your bite functions. Discrepancies in these areas can lead to increasingly worse problems like bruxism and TMJ disorder, which could also lead to increasingly more severe tooth wear and damage. Once Dr. Fondriest diagnoses the cause of your malocclusion, he can recommend an effective treatment. These treatments may include adjusting a prosthetic or undergoing orthodontic treatments. If you are found to have TMJ disorder, the condition can often be treated using a safe and effective night guard. The custom oral appliance correctly positions the jaws and prevents your teeth from coming into contact at night.
Chronic conditions like headaches
When your bite suffers from an imbalance, or when you develop bruxism or TMJ disorder, one of the common symptoms that results in chronic headaches and migraines. If you don’t realize that you have a bite dysfunction, then these headaches can seem unexplainable. However, your dentist can help you find an explanation, as well as an appropriate treatment option, during your next regular dental visit. Earaches are another potential side effect of bruxism or TMJ disorder. The sensitive inner ears are located near the jaws, which makes them susceptible to complications that originate in the TMJs.
What Happens During My Regular Dental Visits?
Dental cleanings and exams are typically performed during one convenient visit to our Chicago dental practice. Often, these checkups can be completed in under one hour. There are two basic parts fo a dental check: an exam and dental cleaning. Dental cleanings remove plaque and tartar from the base of your teeth. This is typically done using a special tool that is designed to scrape tough deposits of tartar from your teeth.
Once all of your teeth have been cleaned, a special rotary tool will polish the front of your teeth. Dental cleanings are not adequate to treat mild to advanced forms of gum disease. If you suffer from advanced periodontitis, you may need to under a restorative treatment called deep cleaning.
Dental exams are a quick and straightforward way for Dr. Fondriest to examine the health of your teeth and gums. Part of this exam involves a visual examination that is performed using a gloved hand. Dr. Fondriest will look for signs of tooth damage, gum disease, or potential signs of other diseases. If any minor oral health problems are found, they can be treated then. More serious dental problems will need to be treated at a later time.
Regular dental visits offer a great time for you to ask Dr. Fondriest any questions that you have. If you have experienced oral pain or discomfort in the weeks or months leading up to your visit, please let a member of our dental team know.
Learn About the Benefits of Regular Dental Visits
Regular dental visits are a form of preventative dentistry. Our office believes that prevention is preferable to treatment and that early treatment is preferable to performing invasive procedures. Most forms of dental insurance cover most or all of the costs associated with dental checkups. Questions about insurance coverage? A member of our dental team will be glad to contact your dental insurance company for you.
Good hygiene matters to your dental health, but to catch issues early or spot signs of things you can’t prevent, you also need to stick to a regular schedule of professional dental checkups. To learn more, schedule a consultation by calling Lake Forest Dental Arts in Lake Forest, IL, at 847-234-0517. We also proudly serve residents of Chicago and all surrounding communities in the Chicago Metro area.