Ensuring that your oral health is in good standing is imperative for your overall well-being. Unfortunately, simply brushing and flossing every night does not guarantee that your teeth, gums and tongue are in good health, although it is a start. You should be scheduling dental checkups every six months; therefore, if you cannot recall the last time you visited the dentist, you could have undetected issues that could be detrimental to your oral health. Here are four important reasons you need to visit the dentist at least once per year:

Oral Cancer

Unfortunately, the signs of oral cancer are not always present. There is also no way to prevent oral cancer in some situations, regardless of how often you brush your teeth or floss, there may be more deep-rooted issues at play. Depending on your use of tobacco and alcohol, you may be at a higher risk for oral cancer and ensuring that the signs are spotted before they get too bad is imperative because if it is caught early, it can almost certainly be prevented. You may not notice any visible signs of oral cancer in your mouth, but your dentist will be able to which makes routine dental checkups imperative.

Cavities Due to Plaque Buildup

For those individuals that routinely brush and floss you have an advantage when it comes to oral health. Flossing and brushing work to destroy plaque and tartar buildup; however, flossing and brushing do not completely rid your mouth of harmful germs and bacteria. There are many tough spots to reach in your mouth, and when foods accumulate and sit on your teeth, you become more susceptible to plaque which can then lead to tartar which is nearly impossible to remove without professional dental assistance completely. Cavities are a direct result of unaddressed plaque and tartar buildup, which can begin to deteriorate your tooth’s enamel.

Address Poor Habits

Flossing and brushing are not the only things we can proactively do to establish a healthy mouth. Did you know that many of our day-to-day habits all play a role in the condition of our oral health? Here are a few poor habits to avoid ensuring that you are taking proper care of your gums and teeth:

  • Biting ice cubes
  • Chewing your fingernails
  • Constricting your jaw
  • Teeth grinding
  • Regularly eating sour, chewy or hard candy
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Smoking cigarettes, chewing tobacco, etc.

As previously stated, you may not be able to tell how these habits have directly affected your teeth, but your dentist will be able to, and they will be able to provide you with the knowledge needed to begin healing your teeth and gums.

Dental checkups can be scary, even for adults. However, they shouldn’t be ignored or avoided for the sake of your overall health. Routine checkups will ensure that you are taking preventative measures against oral cancer, plaque and tartar buildup, as well as addressing bad habits that could be detrimental to your overall health.