More Than A Dentist

Typically, when we think about going to the dentist, we think about just getting a teeth cleaning by the hygienist, or seeing the dentist for a specific reason. The truth is, regular dental visits provide so much more than that. Since the mouth is the entryway to the body, it can offer much information about our overall health.

Patients Underestimate What General Dentists Can Do

Some Americans don’t realize that their dental wellness checkups cover more than hygiene, according to the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD). Only 25% of the respondents in a June AGD survey of 1,174 adults in the United States associate going to their general dentist with getting screened for oral cancer, and only 14% saw their general dentist as an expert in making broader connections to improving or maintaining systemic health.

“We know dental visits can feel unnecessary when patients don’t perceive anything to be wrong. This survey underscores the need for greater awareness about oral health’s relation to overall health. The condition of your mouth often mirrors the condition of the rest of your body, and maintaining a healthy body includes taking care of your oral health on a regular basis,” said AGD president Maria A. Smith, DMD.

“What makes general dentists unique is that no other health practitioner is supposed to be seen as frequently, even without any symptoms,” Smith added. “The mouth is the gateway to the entire body, and poor oral hygiene can result in or worsen cardiovascular conditions, diabetes, and other illnesses. Regular dental visits, every 6 months, are a chance to establish an oral care home base, educate patients, prevent disease, and screen for other conditions.”

Multiple studies have demonstrated the connection between oral health and cardiovascular health, but the AGD reports that general dentists also may be the first line of defense against other maladies such as anorexia and bulimia, as the first signs of these disorders often are revealed in the mouth. In fact, the AGD says, many systemic diseases have oral manifestations. For example, swollen gums can be a sign of diabetes, oral cancer, or heart disease.

Trust Your Dentist With More Than Just Your Teeth

By seeing your dentist regularly, he can provide the first perspective to your overall well-being. At C R Dental Group located in Dallas, Tx, Dr. James Reisman and Dr. Jordana Contrucci provide thorough oral examinations and screenings, as well as, being well trained in treating all aspects of oral health. The longer you wait to take care of your mouth, teeth and gums, the more complicated and costly it might be addressing the possible consequences.