When was your child’s last dental check-up? If you’re like most of us, you tend to procrastinate that particular chore. Sometimes, it’s due to some level of dental anxiety, but most of the time it’s simply yet another errand that we would prefer to push aside.
However, regular dental appointments are a vital part of your child’s oral–and overall!– health. During these appointments, we give your child’s teeth the deep-cleaning polish and shine they need to go another 6 months free of plaque and tartar. We check and halt the progression of decay, and often reinforce your child’s teeth’s natural defenses with fluoride treatments.
Here are four reasons that you should always keep your child’s regular dental check-ups, and set a habit of proactive dental care for their whole life.
Teeth Don’t Heal
Teeth occupy a rare category in the human body. Bones knit together, nerves and blood regenerate. However, once your tooth is lost to decay, that’s it. We can patch up the damage and prevent further decay, but we can’t teach the tooth to heal itself. And although modern medicine has found amazing solutions for lost teeth, nothing is as good as your natural tooth.
For this reason, it’s important to take care of the teeth you have. We fight to preserve as much of your child’s natural tooth as possible, knowing that teeth are essential to overall health, especially as we age. Even baby teeth have an essential function for your child’s health.
Oral Cancer Is Deadly
Did you know that at each dental checkup, we also check your mouth for signs of oral cancer? Oral cancer is one of the most deadly forms of cancer, not because of any inherent quirks, but because it’s seldom found and diagnosed in its early phases. Intervention from your dentist can help you steer clear of oral cancer, one of the fastest-growing cancers even amongst young, non-smoking individuals.
Most dental insurance providers provide for two dental appointments per year, with no extra cost to the account holder. Why? Because preventive dentistry is much cheaper than restorative measures, and someone who keeps their regular check-ups is much less likely to need costly dental repair. Even if you don’t have dental insurance, it’s wise to take a leaf from the expert’s book and save yourself some money with preventive measures.
Gum Disease Affects Half of Adults
We often worry about cavities as a contributor to tooth loss, but actually, the most common cause of lost teeth among adults is gum disease. Gum disease is an inflammatory condition caused by bacteria in the mouth, wherein the gum tissue becomes swollen and damaged, eventually receding in the case of severe gum disease. Numerous studies have found that as many as half of adult Americans have some level of gum disease. While it’s true that children are less likely to deal with this challenge, early dental visits set your child up for a lifetime of dental health, learning the habits necessary to prevent gum disease during adulthood.