Why Preventative Dental Care Is Essential
The most important dental care advice we give our patients is to keep up with their regular dental checkups and preventive cleanings. Proper oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups can help improve overall health and wellness, and allow for a higher quality of life. If you have questions about preventative care, teeth cleaning, dental X-Rays, or general dental inquiries, contact us online here or call us at 617.782.9250.
How Does Preventive Dental Care Work?
New patients are always started up with a full set of x-rays referred to as FMX to set a baseline and point of examination. Preventative care not only means cleaning your teeth of calculus and any other buildups, it is an examination of potential decay, the health of your gums, oral cancer exams, your bite, and any other anomalies of your oral health.
Early detection of decay like cavities can be easily treated in early stages. However, poor dental hygiene can lead to a significant decline in tooth integrity and can affect other aspects of your general health outside of dental health. It's imperative that patients regularly practice oral hygiene tactics at home like brushing and flossing, but it's just as important to see a dental expert like Dr. Nazila Bidabadi and her team of specialists who can spot these early signs and intervene.
Do I Really Need X-Rays?
You do really need dental x-rays, but maybe not as often as you assume. The most recent recommendation from the American Dental Association is that healthy adults without signs of dental disease have dental x-rays done every two to three years. If you come into the office for a problem like a toothache, then we'll take x-rays of the area of your mouth that is affected. Dental x-rays give your dentist the opportunity to complete a more comprehensive examination of your oral health. This is because x-rays can see all of your teeth, including your roots and jawbone.
Why Should I Get My Teeth Cleaned Every Six Months?
Clinical dental exams and cleanings are integral to lifelong oral health. Even when you brush and floss daily exactly as recommended by your dentist or hygienist, there is a chance that plaque could begin to build up. Plaque that is not removed through brushing or flossing turns into hardened calculus, which can only be removed during your dental cleaning. In addition to deeply cleaning your teeth, your professional cleaning polishes away surface debris, which can give you a boost of brightness to enjoy until your next appointment!
How Can I Prevent Periodontal Disease?
Gum disease, also referred to as periodontal disease, is one of the most common preventable diseases to affect people of all ages. It doesn't take much to reduce your risk of developing gum disease. You also have some "wiggle room" in doing so. Periodontal disease is a progressive infection that begins as mere inflammation. The inflammatory stage of the condition is called gingivitis. By seeing your dentist every six months and following the recommendations for brushing and flossing, you stand a very good chance of catching gingivitis, the only stage of gum disease that is reversible. In addition to brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, flossing once a day, and seeing your dentist every six months, you can reduce your risk of periodontal disease by not smoking and by using antibacterial mouthwash if your dentist recommends it.
How Can I Prevent Oral Cancer?
Like all cells in your body, the cells on your lips and inside of your mouth receive instructions regarding what they should do from your DNA. Mutation within the DNA alters the messages that cells receive, leading to abnormal cellular function and growth. According to research, there are a few common factors that can contribute to oral cancer. The two most prominent are smoking and tobacco use and alcohol consumption. Sun exposure is a common factor that can contribute to the development of cancer on the lip. Inside the mouth, though, it is exposure to the toxins in cigarettes, tobacco products, and alcohol that can lead to cell mutations. To minimize your risk of this disease, it is advisable to not smoke or use tobacco and to limit alcohol consumption. Finally, it is beneficial to see your dentist regularly for routine exams in which they will check your lips and oral tissue for signs of abnormal cell growth.
How Can I Help Protect My Child from Cavities?
Your child's risk of tooth decay can be managed just as you manage your own, with twice-a-day brushing, flossing, and routine dental exams. We understand that children (and adults) may consume foods and beverages that can contribute to cavities. When such items are consumed, teach your child to swish some water through their mouth after they have finished their treat. Also, understand that your child does not have the full capacity to properly brush their teeth until at least age eight. Until that time, and perhaps much longer, it is beneficial to monitor your child as they brush and floss to ensure they're practicing good oral health. Younger children can learn a lot from doing their oral care alongside you while you're also brushing and flossing. Older children may be more motivated by rewards such as stickers or a little extra screen time for brushing and flossing well.
If you need a bit more help with your child's oral care tendencies, please don't hesitate to contact us!
How do Dental Sealants Work?
Dental sealant treatment is an added ounce of prevention for tooth decay. The dentist applies sealants in liquid form. The liquid is applied to the chewing surface of the molars, which tend to have deep crevices where bacteria and acid can get trapped. Once the liquid is applied, it is cured using blue light. The hardened material is somewhat flexible so it won't crack when chewing. The sealants work by acting as a protective layer that prevents acid and bacteria from coming into direct contact with the treated surface. This protective "shield" can last several years before a reapplication is needed.
How Often Should I Get A Dental Check-Up?
It varies from one patient to another. Most patients that do not have gum issues have twice a year preventative care visits. This above the gum line cleaning is referred to as Prophylaxis care. In some patients, this may have to be done more than twice a year.
The other type of care which is done below the gum line and is performed once every three months. This preventative care is called periodontal maintenance. Before the start of periodontal cleaning, a deep gum level cleaning is performed which is called periodontal scaling and root planing.
All hygienists in Dr. Baidabadi’s practice schedule the follow-up visit at the end of each visit to make sure all of our patients keep up with their regular checkups.
What Are Some of the Most Common Preventative Dental Procedures?
Preventative dental procedures include a comprehensive dental exam to look for signs of cancer, cavities, and signs of gum disease. A complete cleaning is also performed to remove plaque and tartar buildup. You may also be counseled on ways to improve your oral health at home as well as ways to avoid gingivitis and tooth decay.
In addition, you may have fluoride treatments to strengthen your teeth or have dental sealants applied to protect your teeth.
What Are the Benefits of Preventative Dentistry?
Seeing the dentist every six months for preventative care can catch cavities before they become infected and need a root canal, keep your gums healthy, and even catch the earliest signs of oral cancer.
What At-Home Treatments Can I Do at Home?
In addition to brushing your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, you can also floss after every meal to remove plaque and any food particles that may be stuck in your teeth. Limiting sugary food and beverage intake can also help ward off cavities and tooth decay. You should also avoid smoking and chewing tobacco, both of which increase your risk of oral cancer.
Will Preventative Dentistry Eliminate Chronic Bad Breath?
Yes, preventative dentistry can help eliminate chronic bad breath. While some people suffer from halitosis for unknown reasons, most cases are related to medical or dental issues. Tooth decay and poor oral hygiene are the leading causes of bad breath. Gum disease can also cause chronic bad breath, so once you find out the root cause, you can then work to eliminate bad breath permanently.
Hear What Our Patients Have to Say!
"Love going to get my teeth cleaned! Staff is always welcoming, knowledgeable, and caring. They never push anything on a patient. Great dentistry!"
"I’ve been going to Dr Bidibadi for most of my adult life. Her team has always been professional, friendly, incredibly helpful and accommodating. I feel fortunate to have had Dr Bidibadi and her team taking care of my dental health all these years."
"Every time I come here, I Have a wonderful experience. The staff here are so friendly and talk me through the procedures. Dr. Bidabadi is fantastic and very practical in terms of the treatments she recommends. I would 100% recommend coming here."
Schedule a Preventative Dentistry Checkup with Dr. Bidabadi
To schedule your next dental check-up or to learn more about the services we have available at Soft-Touch Dentistry, please call our Brighton office at 617.782.9250 or our Netwon office at 617.332.8146. You can also fill out our appointment request form below, and our staff will get back to you at the earliest. Soft Touch Dentistry looks forward to serving you!