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It’s important to communicate with your dentist to ensure a more personalized treatment plan. Here are ten questions you may want to ask your dentist at your next visit
1) How often should I get a checkup?
Dental health varies from person to person, but the American Dental Association (ADA) advises adult patients to visit a dentist once or twice a year even if their teeth are in excellent condition. This enables you to get your teeth cleaned professionally on a regular basis and ensure that any potential issues are identified early.
2) Do I need X-rays?
Your dentist will usually take a full set of X-rays early into the doctor-patient relationship to establish a baseline and point of reference. He or she may also need to take additional X-rays to identify and diagnose potential problems.
3) When should my child see the dentist?
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry advises parents to schedule a child’s initial dental visit once their first tooth erupts. That said, you may need to go sooner, especially if it seems to be taking a long time for your child’s teeth to erupt.
4) When do baby teeth fall out?
Most kids begin losing their baby teeth around the ages of six to eight. If your child hasn’t shed his or her baby teeth by then, your dentist may want to examine them.
5) How can I get a white smile?
Your dentist can give you tips on how to keep your teeth whiter. This will generally include advice on which foods and beverages to avoid. It will also include recommendations for professional whitening treatments that can brighten teeth by several shades. You may also get warnings about trendy self-whitening treatments that could damage your teeth.
6) What’s the best way to keep my teeth healthy at home?
From toothpaste to dental floss to lifestyle habits, your dentist can make expert recommendations on how to preserve your dental health now and well into the future.
7) Should I be using mouthwash?
Therapeutic rinses can be used to treat conditions such as tooth sensitivity, gingivitis and inflammation. For more serious conditions, dentists sometimes recommend prescription mouthwashes with chlorhexidine gluconate that kills bacteria that cause inflammation, bleeding and the formation of plaque.
8) How can I avoid tooth sensitivity?
According to the ADA, there are a variety of different things that can cause or exacerbate tooth sensitivity. Your dentist can give you tips for avoiding triggers and recommend potential treatments that can provide relief.
9) Am I a good candidate for implants?
Implants serve as good alternatives to dentures for people who have healthy mouths and jaws. They can also be useful for people with one or more missing teeth, which can lead to bone loss over time.
10) Do I need to see the dentist if I don’t have symptoms?
Even if you don’t feel anything, you could still have small cavities that could evolve into major problems. It’s generally best to maintain regular dental checkups to identify minor issues before they develop into painful problems requiring expensive treatments.