While regular checkups and cleanings are essential parts of preventive dental care, they aren’t the only way to keep your smile its healthiest. Unfortunately when dental problems do arise, many people don’t recognize the signals. By knowing the clues that it’s time for restorative treatment, you can increase your chances of saving a damaged or infected tooth with minimally invasive procedures. You’ll also help preserve your smile’s natural beauty, as well. So clearly it’s time to learn about the signals your smile is sending, and what they mean for your oral health!
Most people experience bleeding while flossing.
True. Many people’s gums bleed while they floss, but this does not mean it’s healthy. In fact, bleeding gums is one of the surest signs of gum disease in its earliest stage. Prompt treatment through either a cleaning or ultrasonic scaling is the best way to restore your gums’ health, and also the best way to protect your smile.
Cavities are always easily spotted.
False. While you may see grey or black lines as a cavity is forming, many people don’t notice any visible symptoms until a cavity has already progressed. The best way to prevent cavities is by seeing the dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings.
A little tooth sensitivity isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
True. Slight sensitivity to ice cream, for instance, isn’t necessarily a sign of a problem. However, if you’ve noticed increased or painful sensations when you eat or drink hot or cold items, it could be because the dentin, the sensitive layer beneath your enamel, has been exposed due to erosion. A filling could help restore your smile, and help minimize or eliminate your discomfort, if a cavity is to blame.
A wait-and-see approach is usually the best way to deal with a cavity.
False. While some cavities may not require immediate restorative attention, most need to be treated to prevent worsening decay or even infection. Prompt diagnosis and treatment of dental issues like cavities can prevent more extensive measures becoming necessary, so if you know you have a cavity, you should schedule a dental checkup as soon as possible.