Our Dental Blog

Posts for: December, 2020

By Carol A. Cunningham, DDS
December 23, 2020
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Dental Checkups   Dentist  

Visiting the dentist regularly can play a significant role in helping you enjoy healthier teeth and gums. Unfortunately, many people do not see the dentist as often as is recommended. Even if you have not had a dental checkup recently, it is important to know when it is time to visit the dentist. Certain symptoms can be warning signs of a particular oral health problem. Dr. Carol Cunningham and Dr. Daniel Jurgens, the skilled dentists at Gentle Art of Dentistry in Decatur, can help you achieve better oral health.

Importance of Dental Checkups

Regular dental checkups are one of the best ways to promote a healthier mouth. They include an oral exam and screening, as well as professional teeth cleaning. The oral exam gives the dentist an opportunity to identify potential areas of concern, such as inflamed gums, so the problem can be remedied before it becomes more serious. The exam also allows the dentist to screen for oral cancer and other diseases so treatment can begin promptly.

Oral cleanings help you achieve and maintain optimal oral health as well. Dental professionals have the training, skills, and tools for achieving a deeper clean than is usually possible at home. Plus, certain oral health threats, such as tartar buildup, can only be cleared away during a professional cleaning. Tartar adheres so strongly to the teeth that it cannot be removed by regular brushing and flossing at home.

Periodic dental checkups with cleanings contribute to better oral health and help prevent a host of problems from developing, including tooth decay, gum disease, and tooth loss.

Signs You Need to See a Dentist

Certain symptoms can be an indication of an oral health issue. Five warning signs that you need to see a dentist include:

  • Toothache — Tooth pain can be a sign of several possible issues, such as a cavity, an abscess, a damaged filling, or the need for a root canal.
  • Gum issues — Gums that are receding, inflamed, or bleed after brushing or flossing could be infected and might be in the early stages of gum disease.
  • Loose or shifting teeth — If your teeth have moved slightly or gaps have developed, that could be a sign of bone loss.
  • Oral lesions — Bumps or sores in the mouth, such as white sores on the tongue or inner cheek, are often due to a condition known as thrush.
  • Dry mouth or persistent bad breath — Saliva helps clear away food debris, as well as neutralize acids that can erode tooth enamel. A dry mouth could be a sign of illness. Chronic bad breath could also be a sign of an oral health condition, such as gum disease or a cavity.

See one of the experienced dentists at our office in Decatur if you have any of these symptoms. The dentist can identify the problem and advise you on what steps should be taken next to treat the condition and restore your oral health.

You should definitely see the dentist if you are experiencing any symptoms, but it is best to schedule regular dental checkups to help prevent problems from developing in the first place. Dr. Cunningham or Dr. Jurgens treat a wide range of dental issues and can help restore your oral health.

To schedule an appointment with one of our dentists, call Gentle Art of Dentistry in Decatur IL at (217) 422-7448.