No one gets to have a perfect, beautiful smile without some effort and commitment.
This could mean maintaining good, oral hygiene routines at home, straightening misaligned teeth, repairing damage, teeth whitening, and any number of other cosmetic procedures.
One of the most critical elements of maintaining a beautiful smile, though, is your regular visits to your general dentist in Northport.
Children and adults need to have a professional checkup and deep cleaning every six months to keep their gums and teeth healthy.
Unfortunately, far too many people consider these regular visits something that is “nice to have” but not a necessity. Even though they are aware that postponing dental care could end up causing more problems in the future (and cost more, too), it is still too easy for too many people to put off these regular appointments.
So, to answer the question in the title, yes, you do actually need to go to the dentist every six months.
Now, let’s take a look at why you should, and what you can expect at each appointment.
What Does the Checkup Cover?
The first thing we’re going to look at in your checkup is the health of each tooth and if there are any cavities that need immediate attention.
Then, there are a lot of other things we need to look at, including:
- Any signs of periodontitis, gingivitis, and oral cancer
- Cracked or chipped teeth
- Fillings that should be replaced
- Abnormalities in the bite or movement of the jaw
- Any unexplained pain
- Teeth that are coming loose or starting to shift
Essentially, this exam will provide the knowledge we need to make the best recommendations for your dental treatments.
A Deep Cleaning
While your at-home routines are critical to maintaining a beautiful smile, there will always be places where bacteria and food particles can hide from your brush and floss.
A professional cleaning will remove all the unwanted buildup from your teeth. We can get rid of the tartar and then polish your teeth before applying fluoride if necessary.
We may recommend different levels of cleaning, depending on your current needs. If you’ve been keeping up with your at-home brushing and flossing, you’ll probably only need a standard cleaning. If, however, you’ve procrastinated your regular visits your Northport dentist, then you might have a bit more buildup which will require a deeper cleaning (possibly a full-mouth debridement).
Preparing for Your Visit
At-home preventative care is the best way to ensure that your regular visits go quickly and smoothly. Make sure you are keeping up with your brushing, flossing, and rinsing while at home. And, if you have any questions about which foods and drinks may be staining your teeth, we’ll happily consult with you on the best hygiene practices.
Sticking to The Routine
Wouldn’t it be great if nothing ever impeded our efforts to maintain a healthy smile? Unfortunately, too many things can get in the way of your routine checkups.
There are, however, a number of things you can do to ensure you never miss another dental appointment.
- Use your favorite calendar apps. You already use your phone for everything else, so set yourself two reminders in your calendar. The first is a reminder to set your appointment, and the second is a reminder to go to the appointment.
- Keep our contact information in plain sight. Whether you stick our card to your refrigerator or keep it written on the family whiteboard/pinned to a corkboard, seeing that information on a regular basis will help keep the importance of these visits fresh in your mind.
- Set your appointments to coincide with the changes in seasons. This way, when it turns to spring, you’ll know it’s time for a “spring cleaning” of your teeth. Getting cold? Time to check on shape of your teeth. Warming up? You’re going to want amazing teeth this summer. Once you establish this habit, it will be much easier to stick with it through the years.
It Isn’t Always Easy
The pandemic had an effect on just about everything we normally take for granted. As more people started working from home, their daily dental hygiene routines were thrown out the window. On top of that, many people would cancel or ignore their regular checkups because they didn’t want to risk exposure to the virus.
That is certainly a valid concern, but failure to maintain these important dental routines can lead to a number of problems later on.
Naturally, we are doing everything possible to ensure that our offices are safe for our patients. We’ve taken every precaution and gone overboard in many cases to help everyone feel like they can visit a dentist in Northport and safely get the treatments they need.
Personal Consultation Time
A regular checkup is also the perfect time to consult with the professionals about your dental care for your entire family. If you are looking at potential dental procedures, we can help you understand your options. We can even provide guidance to help you get the most of your at-home routines. When we have the opportunity to consult directly and openly, it makes every 6-month visit much more productive.
In the end, regular dental visits really are just as important as your daily oral hygiene routine to ensure your ongoing dental health.
We understand, though, that you’re very busy, and it isn’t always easy to make these appointments.
However, preventative dentistry is so important to maintaining a beautiful and healthy smile that we cannot recommend these regular visits highly enough.
Take a moment today to contact us and make sure your next appointment is on the books.