The purpose of preventative dentistry emphasizes the significance of ongoing preventative hygiene procedures, as well as daily practices that will inevitably help to prevent tooth decay and other dental conditions and diseases. There are two factors that go into adequate preventative dental care: at-home oral care and regular, routine chairside treatments from Dr. Nicholas Grasvik.
There are a number of preventative strategies that can be implemented for the healthy oral hygiene of both adults and children. This includes dental checkups every six months (3-4 for those who suffer from periodontal disease) and full exams once every year.
At Home Oral Hygiene
The most effective preventative measure that you can take to protect your smile is brushing and flossing at home, at least twice daily (even better if you can brush after every meal). This will help to remove plaque, a sticky film-like substance on the tooth’s surface. If plaque builds up on the tooth, it eventually produces tartar, which is an acid producing bacteria that causes decay and can eventually lead to gum disease.
Regular dental cleanings (prophylaxis) are recommended at least every six months. These cleanings are designed to remove the existence of stains and more importantly, dental plaque that has not been removed through the practice of regular brushing and flossing. Regular cleanings will also give Dr. Grasvik the opportunity to locate any signs of tooth decay. Routine oral health screenings will enable Dr. Grasvik to locate and assess any signs of abnormal tissues that could indicate forms of oral cancer.
Depending on your past history of tooth decay, you should visit Preferred Dental Care Center every six months to 3 years for dental x-rays. X-rays allow Dr. Grasvik to detect signs of dental issues that might not otherwise be detectable by the naked eye. For instance, cavities that exist below the gumline and between the teeth.
Dr. Grasvik can prescribe custom-made mouthguards to those patients who suffer from bruxism, or teeth grinding. Bruxism over time will wear down the tooth’s surface and can contribute to TMJ (temporomandibular joint disorder). Additionally, for those patients who participate in regular contact sports activities, a custom mouthguard provides a better fit and more protection to the teeth.
Dental sealants are thin tooth-colored composite coatings made from glass ionomers or polymer that are bonded to the molars to protect the tooth from decay.
Regular visits to your dentist can improve the chances that any suspicious changes in your oral health will be caught early, at a time when cancer can be treated more easily.
Gum disease occurs when plaque builds up below the gumline and starts to pull the gums away from the roots of the teeth. It has been linked to diabetes and heart disease.
For more information, or if you'd like to schedule an appointment, please give us a call at (503) 350-1234.