We begin seeing our dentist for regular oral health care as soon as we start growing teeth. But when you reach adulthood, you might wonder if taking time to go to the dentist’s office is worth the hassle.
The answer is yes: you should schedule routine dental check-ups to receive optimal preventative dental care and keep your smile looking and feeling its best. But how frequently should you make these dental appointments?
You and your dentist can determine a personalized treatment plan to maintain good oral health for your unique smile. To feel more motivated to attend these dental visits, it can help to better understand their importance. Check out details about what you can expect at a routine dental check-up as well as when you should schedule these appointments by reading on.
What Happens at a Routine Dental Appointment?
Routine dental appointments serve to maintain good dental health and smile aesthetics. Attention from your dentist on a regular basis will prevent serious dental problems that can develop even if you practice proper at-home oral health care.
During these appointments, a dentist will thoroughly clean your teeth. They scrape away plaque, tartar, and other build-ups that your toothbrush cannot reach. Even with a diligent oral hygiene regimen at home, your smile will only be properly clean with professional teeth cleanings.
Your dentist also performs an oral exam during a dental check-up. They check your teeth and gums for signs of tooth decay, gum disease, and other dental concerns. Once diagnosed, the dentist can provide swift treatment to eradicate these problems before they cause serious and irreversible dental damage.
How Often Should I Attend Dental Check-Ups?
The average dental patient should schedule a routine dental appointment every six months. This establishes the ideal window where a dentist can remove harmful residues from your teeth before they cause lasting damage to your smile. And the dentist can diagnose any dental problems and offer treatment before they hurt your smile too.
Some dental patients might need to visit their dentist more frequently for a variety of reasons. For instance, senior-aged patients, those who form more tartar, and people with certain medical conditions might need more dental attention. They may require dental check-ups three or four times per year. A dentist will let you know what level of preventative care your unique smile needs when they evaluate your oral health.
What Happens If I Skip a Dental Check-Up?
If you do not attend your dental check-ups as your dentist suggests, you will miss crucial preventative oral health care. Then lingering plaque on your smile will eat away at your dental structure. This weakens your teeth, leaving them highly vulnerable to tooth decay. Weakened teeth may put you at a greater risk of a dental emergency too.
Skipping an oral exam from your dentist could mean that you have undiagnosed dental problems. If gum disease or cavities advance, you could suffer significant dental damage. And it may be harder to treat and require more extensive dental work. To avoid complications, attend your regular dental appointments.