If you’re like a lot of people, you may only go to the dentist when you’ve got a problem with your teeth. Unless you’re feeling pain in your teeth, you just assume everything is ok in your mouth. However, even if you brush and floss regularly as recommended by the ADA and by Dr. Natasha Radosavljevic — Dr. Rados for short — in Clearwater, FL– that’s brushing twice daily and flossing at least once daily — you still need help preventing small dental problems from becoming bigger ones.
This is why regular check-ups with Dr. Rados or your area dentist are important because they help keep your teeth and gums healthy. You should have a regular dental visit at least every 6 months or as often recommended by Dr. Rados or your area dentist.
What To Expect At A Dental Visit
A routine dental visit is made up of two parts – the check up, or examination, and the cleaning. At your check up, Dr. Rados will check for cavities, take X-rays to make sure there are no cavities between your teeth and check for plaque and tartar on your teeth. Plaque is a clear, sticky layer formed by sugars breaking down in our mouths combining with other food particles. It can play host to all kinds of bacteria that eat away at your tooth enamel.
Brushing and flossing can remove most plaque, however, sometimes it simply isn’t possible to get it all yourself. If plaque is not removed, it can harden, becoming tartar which is the first stage of tooth decay. Tartar cannot be removed with brushing and flossing but instead needs to be removed by a dental professional with specialized tools. If plaque and tartar are allowed to build up on your teeth, they can cause tooth decay and gum disease, which can lead to systemic health problems if not treated promptly.
Dr. Rados or your area dentist will also check your gums with a special tool to measure the depth of the spaces between your teeth and the surrounding gum tissue. When your gums are healthy, the spaces are shallow. But when patients have developed gum disease, the spaces become deeper, providing more places for bacteria to gather and form plaque and tartar. Eventually, teeth can become loose due to gums swelling. Flossing daily to remove plaque building up between teeth and along the gum line is, in addition to brushing twice daily, the first step to preventing this. However, gum disease is not always accompanied by pain and the symptoms can be difficult to spot by an untrained eye. Not only can gum disease lead to tooth and bone loss but other diseases of the body and mind such as heart disease and Alzheimer’s Disease, as well.
Why Are Professional Teeth Cleanings Necessary?
At your visit at our office your teeth will also be professionally cleaned by one of the skilled and professional dental hygienists on Dr. Rados’ team. While brushing and flossing are important to remove the plaque from your teeth, they can’t remove tartar. Your hygienist will use specialized tools to carefully chip and scrape away the tartar that has formed in the hard to reach places on your teeth, usually at the bases, just below the gum line and in between your teeth. This process is called scaling.
Prevent Tooth Decay With Regular Dental Checkups
It is recommended to attend dental checkups every 6 months to prevent any serious issues from arising. However, if you haven’t been keeping regular checkups and cleanings, you may need to come back for more frequent cleanings and exams to help you dentist get any burgeoning issues under control.
Scheduling and keeping routine checkups with your dentist is essential to maintaining good oral health and will help you avoid more uncomfortable and expensive treatments. If you need a checkup, please call Dr. Rados’s appointment line today at 727.360.4302 or schedule an examination online.