Healthy teeth don’t happen on their own. It takes work to keep that beautiful smile! The good news is that with a little bit of knowledge, you can make some immediate changes to your oral hygiene as well as your overall dental health. It begins with these five questions to ask your dentist at your next cleaning:
- What should I be doing at home to improve my dental health?
Of course, it starts with brushing and flossing daily, but there are other steps you can take, such as:
- Eating a balanced diet which focuses on vegetables and fruits.
- Using a fluoride mouthwash.
- Consuming fewer high-sugar snacks.
- Steering clear of all types of tobacco.
You may not want to hear the above suggestions, but they’re important for your oral health! Please consider them. Anyone looking to optimize their oral health should try this daily regimen!
- Why are you taking those X-rays?
It’s common for your dentist to take X-rays when you first become a patient, and then at set intervals afterwards to monitor your dental health. Having bitewing X-rays taken once a year and a full mouth series every four years should suffice for most adults. That being said, there are high-risk patients who will require more frequent X-rays. Let your dentist advise you what is best!
- Why are my teeth so sensitive?
Tooth sensitivity is a problem for many people. The pain you feel when drinking hot or cold beverages results from thinned tooth enamel. Without enamel, there’s nothing to protect the nerves inside your teeth! The result is mild to extreme discomfort and can be due to:
- Excessive teeth whitening
- Tooth filling
- Fractured tooth
- Grinding your teeth while you sleep
- Receding gum
During your exam, ask your dentist to examine the teeth causing you discomfort. He or she will be able to recommend the appropriate solution!
- How can I make my teeth whiter and/or get rid of these stains?
Never underestimate the power of a beautiful pearly white smile! Frequent culprits of tooth stains include: wine, coffee and tobacco. For many of us, excluding these stain-causing foods and drinks from our lives is not an option! Instead, try limiting their frequency. Brushing after you consume these particular items will also help.
Additionally, be sure to ask your dentist about at-home options, as well as their professional services to get that white teeth smile back!
- Is there any information I should share with my doctor?
It makes sense to keep your doctor in-the-know. Bad oral hygiene can cause gum disease, which in turn has been linked to heart disease, osteoporosis and diabetes! Make sure to relay any pertinent information you need to your primary care physician.