The mouth is our window to our overall health. Young kids, a demanding job, a relative in need – there are a lot of things that can cause preventative dental care to fall by the wayside. Then a nagging symptom or two alerts you that it’s been some time since your last dental appointment.
While it’s tempting to dismiss seemingly minor dental concerns until your schedule becomes lighter, you shouldn’t ignore some warning signs. This is especially true if you are managing a chronic medical condition like heart disease or diabetes.
Potential dental emergencies are nothing to mess around with. The American Dental Association states that about 2 million people a year visit the ER for dental pain. Furthermore, the Centers for Disease Control reported that approximately $45 billion is lost in productivity due to dental emergencies.
So, when should you go to the dentist? Are there signs to watch out for? Catch potential problems early on through preventative care and save precious time and money. Read on.
Bleeding after flossing or brushing is not normal. This could mean that you are developing periodontal or gum disease. Left untreated, this condition could lead to bone loss, and eventually, tooth loss. Other signs of gum disease include discharge between the teeth and gums, as well as swollen, red, or tender gums.
When your mouth is healthy, it is well lubricated by saliva. The saliva helps neutralize the acids produced by plaque and helps wash away food particles in your mouth. Visit your dentist if you have dry mouth to determine its cause. Your dentist can also suggest some ways to help protect your teeth by restoring its moisture.
Typically, canker sores should clear up on its own in a week or two. But there are other oral lesions that require treatment. Thrush, a fungal infection, can manifest as white sores on the inner cheek, tongue, the roof of your mouth, or on your tonsils. Those who are suffering from diabetes are prone to it, since thrush thrives on elevated sugar levels present in the saliva.
This one is pretty obvious. However, it bears repeating that you shouldn’t ignore toothaches. Sensitivity and pain in the mouth can have many causes: a broken tooth, a cavity, damaged filling, abscess, or tooth grinding. Your dentist can identify what is causing you pain and treat the underlying issue.
If your gums are exposing more of your teeth, you could have a more advanced stage of gum disease. Uncontrolled gum disease puts you at a higher risk for specific health concerns. Receding gums can increase the risk of infection, decay, tooth loss, and pain. Early treatment can help stop or reverse the process.
Regular dental checkup can help prevent many of these conditions from happening. Visit your Dallas dentist – don’t wait until it’s too late.