Do You Really Need a Dental Checkup Once Every 6 Months?
Dental checkups are essential to keep your smile healthy and gums strong. But how often should you visit your dentist? What to expect during a dental checkup? How much would a visit to your dentist cost? This blog explains it all.
“You must visit your dentist every six months” — you may have probably heard or read it somewhere. It is the golden rule when in doubt. However, your oral health, eating habits, and overall well-being determine the number of dental visits.
Before concluding anything, let’s find out how a dental checkup is different from dental treatment and how often you should visit a dentist.
Dental Checkup vs. Dental Treatment
Your natural teeth can last long with good oral hygiene practices & routine dental exams. You must visit a dentist at least twice a year to learn about your dental health. Your dentist will examine the health of your teeth & gums, including checking soft oral tissues, jaw joints, and lymph nodes in the neck.
Your dentist will also ask questions about your overall health, the medicines you take, your eating habits, and tobacco/alcohol use.
If there is a minor condition like dental cavities or stained teeth, your dentist will suggest necessary treatments for a healthy mouth. Similarly, if the dentist suspects hidden conditions, they’ll consider dental x-rays. After a comprehensive oral examination, your dentist will counsel you to take specific precautions, adopt healthy dental practices, and guide you about restoring options.
Finally, your dentist will suggest treatments and other measures while also telling you when you should visit next.
You may need dental treatments after your dental checkup or in case of an emergency (broken tooth or dental pain). Your dentist may suggest you undergo invasive or non-invasive dental procedures. The type of dental treatment depends upon the severity of your condition.
Three most common dental procedures:
- Teeth Whitening – Your food and drink choices may lead to stained teeth. Tobacco use, skipping dental hygiene practices, and age are other factors behind a yellow smile. So, your dentist may advise you on the teeth whitening procedure. It is a comfortable, fast procedure that gives you a pearly-bright smile.
- Veneers – Veneers help get a more beautiful smile. They offer aesthetic & physical benefits to your teeth. Also, they are safe, affordable, and lasting. Your dentist may recommend you get veneers to hide discolored, crooked, or damaged teeth.
- Invisalign – In case you have misaligned teeth or an incorrect bite, Invisalign is the best option to get a straight smile. It is a clear, affordable alternative to metal braces.
How Often Should You Visit Your Dentist?
Experts recommend one must go for a dental checkup after every six months. However, this is not a “one-size-fits-all” answer. Various factors determine if you really need a dental checkup twice a year.
These factors include –
Lifestyle – Your eating or drinking habits contribute to your dental health. If you love sugary drinks and foods, you have a high chance of getting cavities. So, make regular dental visits to ensure your teeth are cavity-free and you have a healthy smile.
Also, the consumption of alcohol & tobacco harms your teeth & gums. Frequent visits to your dentist will help detect early signs of dental conditions (if any) and get on-time treatment.
|Studies show people who drink alcohol are three times as likely to experience permanent tooth loss than those who don’t.|
Dental Hygiene Practices – Do you brush in the morning and before going to bed? Do you floss daily? The answers to these questions help you find how committed you are to keeping your teeth strong and gums healthy.
The more you care about your dental health, the fewer chances you have of experiencing a dental condition. Therefore, if you follow good dental practices, you’ll need to see your dentist less often.
|Studies suggest poor dental hygiene may lead to dental cavities and gum diseases and affect your overall health.|
Family History/Biological Factors – If you have a family history of dental conditions, you’re at greater risk of getting them. There may be other biological factors about your dental health that are not in your control and put your healthy smile at risk. As a result, regular dental checkups are necessary to protect your oral health.
|According to some studies, genes associated with periodontitis may make you more susceptible to catching periodontal conditions than others.|
So, these are some of the factors that determine how many dental visits you must make in one year.
Going to the right dentist and getting the best advice also decides how many times you need to go for dental checkups.