Why You Should Get Routine Dental Checkups

why you should get routine dental checkups

It’s easy to skip out on routine dental checkups. Between full-time work schedules, hobbies, and family obligations, it can seem impossible to find the time to squeeze in an appointment.

You might think you only need go to the dentist when your mouth feels like it needs attention. If you’re like most people, you probably don’t even think about the dentist, unless your teeth are immediately hurting, chipped, or broken. Alas, the fact of the matter is that waiting until your teeth need immediate attention means that you’re already too late, and it can be detrimental to your dental health.

Much like how waiting too long to get your oil changed in your car can ruin your engine, skipping out on your regular dental visits can ruin your oral health. Today, we’re going to take a little time to talk about why regular visits to the dentist are important.

Why You Should Go to the Dentist Every 6 Months

Most International Dental Associations recommend that you go to your dentist every six months for checkups. This might seem overboard, especially since it’s not recommended you go to other doctors every six months, unless you have some underlying illness.

However, regular dental visits are essential to keeping your teeth and gums in optimal health. During your examination, your dentist or dental hygienist is able to remove plaque and tartar build up, while doing a thorough cleaning of your gums. Even if you brush and floss religiously, your teeth are still susceptible to plaque and tartar buildup.

While you should still make sure that you’re maintaining your dental health at home in between visits, regular dental examinations will not only clean your teeth and gums, but look for underlying causes of tooth decay.

If you’re not an adamant brusher and flosser, tartar buildup doesn’t take long to accumulate. And, even if you stay on top of your dental hygiene, there could be outside influences that are hurting your teeth within the 6 month time span.

Underlying Conditions Can Be Caught Early

A lot of components go into your dental health. Even if you take excellent care of your teeth, outside influences can harm your dental health. Sometimes catching changes in your dental health can help you get a better read on your overall health. Here are a some of the things you’re able to keep track of by going to your dentist every 6 months:

  • Make sure your entire body is healthy. Diabetes, vitamin deficiency, or oral cancer are silent diseases that wreak havoc on your dental hygiene. Your dentist is able to screen and clean your mouth, and if he or she notices a significant change in your dental health within the 6 months, you might be able to detect these ailments early.
  • Stay on top of sleep disorders. Other important disorders that your dentist will screen for are TMJ and Bruxism. Bruxism, or teeth grinding, can occur at any time during a person’s life. Because you might be grinding your teeth at night without even realizing it, your dentist is able to look at the state of your enamel and diagnose this condition. If your enamel is becoming worn down from bruxism, you can stay on top of your dental health by getting a mouth guard to protect your teeth while you sleep.
  • Catch cavities early. We mentioned that routine dental checkups are easy ways to make sure you’re not experiencing tooth decay. They’re also vital to keeping an eye on cavities, making sure that you don’t need fillings or root canals. Oftentimes, teeth develop what we call “microcavities.” Microcavities, like regular cavities, are caused by tooth decay. However, microcavities are small enough that they don’t cause any harm, and don’t need fillings yet. By going to the dentist every 6 months, we’re able to keep an eye on microcavities, ensuring that they are treated on time.

A dental checkup every 6 months is more than just a cleaning. At your appointments, your dentist is able to assess your entire mouth, making sure there aren’t any extensive changes from your previous checkup. Remember that prevention is always easier than treatment. Stopping gum disease and tooth decay early is a much simpler than needing extensive dental treatments later down the road.

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Covid-19 (Corona) Virus

                                                                     

                   

Our team at Williams Lake Smiles is excited to have the opportunity to welcome you back soon! Dr. Wassenaar, Dr. Dahia and the whole Williams Lake Smiles team appreciate your continued support and understanding as we continue to move through this difficult time

We are gradually reopening in the safest way to ensure that we take all precautions to keep both our patients and our staff healthy.

At this time, we are focusing on addressing emergency needs for our patients. Full dental services, including hygiene care, will be introduced gradually with priority booking to the patients that were delayed treatment during our time of closure. We will be contacting our patients to reschedule these procedures in the coming weeks.

Our office has always utilized personal protective equipment (PPE) that has exceeded all the recommended guidelines. We consciously designed our office with well-spaced, separate treatment rooms that allow minimization of aerosol transfer throughout the office. We have also added a brand new HEPA air management system to allow continuous air filtration in all treatment rooms and common areas to remove germs from circulating air. This puts us in a good position moving forward. However, in consideration of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic we have instituted additional guidelines and protocols to ensure your safety and that of our team.

Upon returning to Williams Lake Smiles you will notice our new enhanced precautions:

-When you are scheduling an appointment, our staff will ask you a set of health-related questions.

-You will be contacted 48-72 hours prior to your appointment via email and asked a set of pre-appointment instructions and health-related questions. It is required that you complete this questionnaire prior to your appointment. We will have to reschedule your appointment if we are unable to complete this step. Please also give our administrative staff all the necessary personal contact information to expedite our communications with you and your family.

-We have implemented new protocol for scheduling your appointments and managing your insurance and financial transactions virtually to allow for a contactless exit from your appointment.

-There will be new arrival procedures to guide you from your car directly to treatment rooms to eliminate contacting surfaces and other patients.

-You will be asked the above screening questions again on your arrival to your appointment.

-Your temperature will be taken on arrival. Again, we will have to reschedule your appointment if your temperature is elevated.

-You will be asked to put on the provided shoe covers and disinfect your hands upon arrival.

-All non-essential companions will be asked to remain outside of the clinic during the appointment. This includes friends, spouses, drivers, parents, and other children.

-We will maintain social distancing in the reception area for essential caregivers and parents of minors if they absolutely cannot wait in a vehicle or outside the clinic.

-We have removed magazines and other items that can harbor or transfer germs of any kind

-Glass barriers have been added in our reception area

-We have enhanced clinic disinfection procedures before and after all appointments.

-You will see new personal protection equipment like visors, gowns, and different masks for our doctors and team to provide barriers against the smallest of germs.

-We have protocols to reduce or eliminate airborne aerosols during all dental procedures.

-We have enhanced continuous disinfection procedures of equipment and office fixtures like computers, keyboards, telephones, tablets, chairs, doorknobs, and buttons that may be touched unconsciously.

-We will be disinfecting all outside mail and packages that enter the building.

-We will have longer appointment times for you to prepare and complete all appointment tasks and duties in the safest and most comprehensive manner.

-Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean fewer options will be available for scheduling your appointment.

We ask that, as we have so many patients to see, you treat your reserved dental appointment with the highest level of respect. Answer the screening questions honestly. Please arrive on time for your appointment. We may not be able to see you if you are late. If you miss your appointment it may be quite some time before we can get you back in.

We are committed to maintaining our high standard of dental health and safety under these new circumstances and appreciate your confidence in us.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we are taking to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice.

We are all excited to get back to work. Thank you for being our patients. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming back our patients, neighbours, and friends.

Sincerely,

Dr. Rudy Wassenaar

Dr. Sophia Dahia

And the entire Williams Lake Smiles Team


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