Preventative dentistry can save you lots of money over the years. It also reduces the odds of you ever having a serious dental issue that can negatively affect your health. Most dentists spend the majority of their time administering preventative treatments.
Treatments commonly used for preventative dentistry
1. Teeth cleanings
Dentists recommend getting teeth cleanings at least twice a year. It is one of the most affordable treatments performed by dentists, and it takes less than an hour. During the cleaning, the dentist scrapes off tartar from the patient's teeth. Tartar is calcified plaque, and it gives a person's teeth a yellow tint. It also promotes tooth decay.
The dentist will also perform an oral examination during the cleaning, and that gives them an opportunity to detect any problems that are developing. In dentistry, the earlier a problem is noticed, the cheaper it is to fix it.
2. Dental sealants
Dental sealants are thin plastic coatings that are applied to the biting surfaces of a person's teeth. They are mostly used on the molars since these are the hardest to clean. The sealant serves as a barrier between the patient's teeth and all the damaging things in the mouth, like acids and food particles. As a result, the patient's odds of developing tooth decay on that tooth are significantly reduced.
Dental sealants can be used by people of all ages. They are highly recommended for children who are yet to develop good oral hygiene habits.
3. Fluoride treatments
Fluoride treatments can be used to protect a tooth from decay. A mouth tray is typically used to apply a fluoride solution to the patient's teeth. The mouthpiece is held in place for about a minute or two, and it infuses the patient's teeth with fluoride. The protection can last for up to six months.
4. Oral hygiene
Having good oral hygiene does not cost much, but it goes a long way when it comes to keeping teeth healthy. It starts with brushing the teeth at least twice each day. One of those times should be right before going to bed since the teeth are more susceptible to decay during sleep. Food particles have had a chance to build up during the day, and less saliva is produced while sleeping. Both conditions are conducive for the bacteria that cause dental issues like tooth decay, gum disease and bad breath to thrive.
Flossing at least once a day should also be a part of everyone's oral hygiene routine. Doing so cleans out the tight spaces between teeth where food particles and bacteria that cause tooth decay can be housed.
A quality mouthwash also helps to keep teeth healthy. Look for one that contains important minerals like fluoride, which helps to mineralize teeth, and finish off each brushing session with it. Mouthwash also helps to kill some of the bacteria that cause tooth decay and bad breath. Those who would rather not use mouthwash can use a salt water solution instead.
Talk to one of our dentists to learn more about preventative dentistry.
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