Dental care is an important part of looking and staying as healthy and confident as possible. You may understand this, and that is why you faithfully attend the routine visits which your dentist recommends every six months. During these visits, you have an idea of what your dentist will do: “look around your mouth.”
What you may not know is that this tour of your wide-open mouth may reveal more than a tiny cavity or some tartar that has accumulated. Here, we will discuss a few attributes of self-care our skilled and conscientious dentists at Grove Avenue Family & Cosmetic Dentistry easily evaluate during your dental examinations:
#1: Your REAL Flossing Habits.
You know that your dentist will examine your gums as a routine part of your general exam. In preparation for this, you may decide that there is no time like the present to floss. However, if you haven’t maintained this habit, it will show. Flossing in the days just prior to a checkup may actually leave tiny marks on your soft gums, alerting your dentist to some fervent activity. Healthy gums are pink, tight and do not bleed. All the while, the amounts of plaque, tartar and inflammation that have been building up over the past several months will instantly betray your typical flossing habits to your dentist.
#2: Your REAL Drinking Habits.
It seems logical that what you drink will affect your teeth, right? But did you also know that certain beverages can create big problems? One of the biggest things that dentists see today is erosion, especially in their younger patients. This can indicate one of a few things. One of the biggest culprits of erosion is soda. Not far behind that beverage of choice are sports drinks, such as Gatorade. These beverages have highly acidic ingredients that can be just as damaging to teeth, if not more so, than sugar. Other drinks that leave evidence in the mouth (stains on your teeth, for one) include coffee, red wine and other alcoholic beverages.
#3: How Well You Care for Your GENERAL HEALTH.
What goes on in the body affects the mouth, and vice versa. One way in which your dentist may be alerted to a health issue is by the scent on your breath. People with high blood sugar, even if they have not formally been diagnosed with diabetes, can carry a certain sweetness on their breath that reveals their state of health. People with GERD, or gastrointestinal reflux disease, may have foul breath even though they brushed before coming in for their appointment. According to studies, vitamin deficiencies may also be noticed during a dental exam. For instance, an iron deficiency may show in pale gums. The same bacteria which cause heart disease cause gum disease.
At Grove Avenue Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, we are dedicated to providing the highest-quality preventative care. You are a whole person to us, not just a mouthful of teeth. Please contact us at (804) 285-1378 or schedule online for your next appointment. Thanks for taking good care of your teeth and yourself!