When it comes to maintaining your oral health, you always hear about the importance of scheduling routine cleanings and exams with your dentist about twice a year. Have you ever wondered why only twice?
Does it apply to everyone? Or are there some people who should go more often?
It may surprise you to know that yes, there are times when more frequent trips to the dentist are necessary for a person’s oral and overall health.
There are conflicting theories about where the 6 month rule originated, but most experts agree that dental cleanings and exams twice a year is a good standard for people who are generally at a low risk for gum disease or other oral health problems.
Now you’re wondering if YOU should see the dentist more than twice a year. Today we’re talking about a few of the high risk groups of people who probably need to schedule an extra cleaning this spring. Could you be in one of these high risk groups? Keep reading to find out!
Are You Stressed?
If you’re going through a stressful period in your life, it might be in your best interest to work in another visit in between your usual checkups. Stress can affect your health in a number of ways thanks to its ability to weaken your immune system.
A compromised immune system leaves you more vulnerable to infection, and an extra trip to the dentist wouldn’t be a bad idea.
If stress is a reason to see your dentist a bit more frequently, imagine how many of us would need to get out those calendars and schedule another appointment?!
Are You A Smoker?
Smokers are at twice the risk of developing gum disease than non-smokers. This could be attributed to the way smoking, like stress, weakens your body’s ability to fight off infection.
If you’re a smoker who has had some kind of surgery before, you might recall your doctor talking to you about how smoking can negatively impact the recovery process. The same is true for a smoker who’s already experienced damage from gum disease. Smoking makes it harder for you to heal once the damage has been done.
Are You A Diabetic?
Not all diabetics are at a higher risk of periodontal disease. In fact, a person whose diabetes is well-controlled are at no more risk of gum disease than a non-diabetic.
It’s really all about blood sugar control. With poor control, you’re at a higher risk of not only getting gum disease, but the disease can be more severe and longer lasting.
Are You Genetically Prone to Oral Health Problems?
It might be completely out of your hands, but genetics plays a role in determining how often you should see the dentist.
If you come from a line of relatives who have struggled with their oral health, you might consider more frequent dental checkups. How prone you are to gum disease, tooth decay, cavities, oral cancer, and tooth loss can all be traced back to genetics.
Are You Nutrient Deficient?
Taking care of your oral health is so much more than just brushing, flossing, and seeing your dentist regularly. It’s also about whether or not you’re adding the right kind of fuel to your body for optimum health. This means eating a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and calcium.
You should try to avoid “junk” food – foods and drinks that are highly acidic, highly processed, and loaded with sugar. All of this threatens your oral health just as much as it does your general health because your body won’t have the right nutrients it needs to effectively prevent or fight infection. It will also put you at risk for gum disease, tooth decay, erosion, cavities, and even tooth loss.
Are You In Need Of A Spring Cleaning?
If you can identify with any of these categories, give Duffield Dentistry a call at (248) 721-4502 or fill out our online form to schedule an appointment. Dr. Duffield wants to help you get healthy and stay that way. Come in for a spring cleaning and talk to us about the dental checkup schedule that’s right for you and your life.