Most dental conditions, like decay and gum disease, take time to develop. Plus, they don’t show any symptoms at the beginning, which worsens the situation. The best way to avoid these dental problems is with preventive dental care. At Crest Family Dental, we offer several preventive dental measures that help maintain oral health.
Preventive dentistry is a cumulative dental service that is important to maintaining both your oral and overall health. Some of the necessary preventive dental care services include dental exams, professional cleaning, fluoride treatment, and dental sealants.
The American Dental Association recommends getting dental checkups and cleanings every six months. This prevents plaque accumulation (the primary cause of decay) and helps our dentist in Hartford detect any dental problems early. Regular dental checkups also help you avoid expensive dental procedures.
Dental sealants are one of the preventive dental treatments used in children. These plastic coatings are applied to permanent teeth to protect them from dental decay. The Centers for Disease Control recommends dental sealants as a cavity protection measure. Sealants are applied mostly in the back teeth because they are prone to decay.
A major concern among parents is the BPA levels in sealants. Bisphenol A is believed to affect the immune system, nerve, and thyroid function. However, according to CDC, the BPA levels in the dental sealants are too low to cause any harm.
Fluoride and dental care are interlinked. It is a natural cavity fighter found in toothpaste, food, supplements, and fluoridated water. This naturally-occurring mineral helps to strengthen the enamel and make it less prone to cavities.
The enamel contains calcium and phosphate that give it strength and make it hard. However, because of diet and lifestyle, these minerals are lost in a process called demineralization. If the reabsorption of the lost minerals is insufficient, the enamel becomes weaker and weaker. Fortunately, the enamel can reverse the effects of demineralization using fluoride from toothpaste.
Furthermore, fluoride helps to reverse minor dental decay. You can get fluoride from toothpaste, mouthwash, and fluoridated water. However, if you are at risk of dental cavities, in-office fluoride treatment is ideal. The treatment involves the application of foam, gel, or varnish to strengthen the enamel.
Fluoride treatment is safe if used in the right amounts. Fluorosis mostly affects children and cause teeth discoloration.
Professional dental cleaning is vital in preventing dental decay and gum disease. The procedure involves removing tartar accumulation from above and beneath the gum line. A dental prophylaxis is usually done during your regular checkup, but you can schedule it at a different time.
The hygienist will clean the teeth, gums, and in between to remove any tartar. Next, professional flossing and brushing are done, and finally polishing the teeth for an attractive appearance.
Oral cancer screening is one of the services we offer during your regular dental checkup. The procedure involves physical and visual exams that check the gums and soft tissues for any lumps, tumors, and lacerations.
Oral cancer screening is a recommended step, especially if you have risk factors such as family history, smoking, and age. Although there has been debate about its efficiency, oral cancer screening can help you detect it on time and initiate treatment early.
Remember, oral cancer accounts for about 30 percent of total cancer cases. Furthermore, one person succumbs to oral cancer every 24 hours. Unfortunately, it causes no symptoms initially, and the best way to prevent it is getting regular checkups.
Apart from getting regular dental checkups, focus on your diet and lifestyle. Increase the consumption of teeth-friendly foods such as yogurt, cheese, and eggs, whole grains, fish, and dark green vegetables. Avoid smoking, which affects both your gums and overall health. Furthermore, reduce your intake of sugar because it also damages the enamel.
Visit Crest Family Dental Clinic for more information on preventive dentistry and how it can improve dental health.