If you are planning to visit a dental clinic, you are likely reaping more rewards from your visit than most people would imagine. Visiting a dentist at least twice a year for preventive care can lead to better oral and overall health. Here are a few reasons to continue to receive preventive dental care.
Cavities develop as your enamel is dissolved by bacterial acids. There are many different kinds of bacteria that live in the oral cavity. Some of these microbes are harmless. However, others release acid that causes tooth decay. When the harmful bacteria, which includes popular strains such as Streptococcus mutans, metabolize simple sugars, they produce acid as a byproduct of their microbial digestion. This acid dissolves the minerals that comprise the tooth enamel and decay results.
During a routine visit to the dentist, the provider is likely to offer several preventive services, including a fluoride treatment. Fluoride is found in many oral hygiene products, such as toothpaste. However, the concentration in these over-the-counter preparations is much lower than the amount of fluoride found in a professional product used by your dentist. As a dentist applies a fluoride treatment, the substance is absorbed by your teeth.
Fluoride helps remineralize the teeth and strengthens them against decay. As fluoride coats the surface of a tooth, it attracts minerals, such as calcium and phosphorous, back to the tooth to create a new type of tooth enamel. The new enamel is better able to resist decay. By remineralizing the enamel, fluoride also reduces the likelihood of sensitive teeth. The teeth are more prone to sensitivity when the enamel is worn or dissolved, revealing the dentin layer that is normally covered.
Better Overall Health
Poor oral health is linked to many systemic conditions, such as cancer, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer's disease, and type 2 diabetes. Many of these conditions are thought to be associated with inflammation that is caused by oral bacteria that may have migrated from the mouth to other areas of the body. Preventive care, such as routine dental cleanings, help lessen the number of bacteria found in the mouth.
Fewer Dental Expenses
Preventive care is usually less time-consuming and expensive than restorative care. Thus, you rarely save money by forgoing preventive treatments. If you have not received routine dental care within the last six months, contact the office of a dentist in your local area to schedule an appointment.