If you don’t have any significant symptoms like bleeding gums or a toothache, it can be tempting to postpone seeing your dentist in order to attend to more pressing matters. You may also feel like it’s hard to brush and floss every single day, so you do it when you have the time. However, if you’re neglecting your oral health, you may suffer some serious consequences. Here are five important reasons to take good care of your smile:
- Your oral health has a connection with your overall health: Regular appointments with your dentist don’t just benefit your smile. Systemic illnesses like heart disease and diabetes appear to have some sort of relationship with gum disease, with the connection most likely due to the inflammation associated with all of those conditions. So, reducing your risk of gum disease can give your general well-being a boost, too.
- Poor dentition affects your nutrition: If you lose your teeth, you may not be able to chew as well. Dentures or dental bridges can’t process food in the same fashion that biological teeth can, and patients who have these appliances may find that they have to omit nutritious foods like fresh fruits and vegetables from their diets.
- Regular dental check-ups can detect oral cancer early: Your dentist will check your gums and other soft oral tissues for signs of oral cancer at your check-up. The prognosis for oral cancer is quite good when the disease is diagnosed early, but more than half of the cases of oral cancer have already spread to surrounding tissues, when the outlook is much poorer.
- An unattractive smile can cause a decline in self-esteem: Tooth loss, gum recession and other conditions that can occur if you neglect your oral health can detract from your smile’s appearance, and your self-esteem may suffer as a result.
- Tooth loss is expensive: Some patients may delay routine care because they feel like they can’t afford exams and cleanings twice a year. But that approach may ultimately be more costly in the long term. If you wait until symptoms develop, the issue may be far enough along to require an invasive – and expensive – treatment. If you suffer tooth loss, those costs go up dramatically. So, it’s a worthwhile investment to schedule your dental checkups every six months.
A healthy mouth truly is the gateway to a healthy body, so don’t neglect your oral health. Make sure you’re coming to see us for an exam and cleaning at least twice a year.