The Need for Preventive Dentistry
No one sets out to purposely neglect their teeth. However, over time, a combination of normal wear and poor dental hygiene can take its toll on your mouth. To avoid cavities, infection and tooth decay, you should have dental checkups every six months with Dr. Parsa T. Zadeh. During your checkups, Dr. Zadeh will employ several procedures to maintain your oral health.
Dental Examinations and X-Rays
The first, and perhaps most important, task in preventive dentistry is to have your teeth examined and X-rayed on a regular basis. The X-rays and examination can reveal problems with your teeth before they become a major issue. For example, the X-rays might reveal a hidden cavity, enabling Dr. Zadeh to treat it before it overtakes the entire tooth. Alternatively, your exam might reveal gum disease or problems with worn enamel. Identifying these problems early can prevent more severe problems as well as tooth loss.
The dental examination is not the only preventive dentistry tool at Dr. Zadeh’s disposal. Another way to protect your teeth from decay is to apply sealants to your teeth. Sealants are thin sheets made from a special plastic. Once these sealants are applied to your teeth, they protect the tooth from decay. These sealants are typically applied to the back teeth since these teeth are the most vulnerable to decay. If you are interested in getting sealants, or if you are not sure if you need them, Dr. Zadeh can examine your teeth and determine if they are right for you.
Most people have pits and fissures in their back teeth, which can accumulate bacteria and food debris that can accelerate tooth decay. It is advised that you get sealants if they are recommended, but of course, this is always just a suggestion. We do take things like sensitivities and concerns about the materials used into account.
It is also often highly recommended that college students get sealants because these are the years when oral hygiene is most frequently neglected and dental problems can begin to develop in young adulthood. Sealants can mitigate these issues by minimizing buildup and keeping debris out of the fissures in you or your child’s molars and premolars. This is no replacement for regular dental cleanings and examinations, but they can certainly help prevent problems from occurring.
Teeth Grinding and Clenching
If you suffer from a common problem called bruxism or nocturnal bruxism, where you grind and clench, you should speak to your dentist to find out about options to help prevent excessive wear and tear to your teeth. By stopping teeth grinding and clenching, you can help ensure that you have your teeth for your entire lifetime. Bruxism has been identified as one of the leading causes of tooth loss in adults, after tooth decay. By speaking with a dentist like Dr. Zadeh, he can assist you in finding stress relaxation techniques and even create a nighttime splint to help prevent you from grinding your teeth and causing unnecessary wear and tear to your teeth. Many individuals in their 20s and 30s already have worn their teeth down and may require crowns or even replacement teeth before middle age, which is why it is important to speak to a professional about bruxism as early as possible. It may also be an indicator of a more serious TMJ issue as well.
What You Can Do for Your Oral Health
You can practice preventive dentistry yourself by ensuring that you are taking proper care of your teeth. Brush your teeth after each meal and floss your teeth at least once a day. Avoid consuming foods and beverages that contain a lot of sugar, and brush your teeth immediately after you eat or drink anything with sugar. Use an antibacterial mouthwash to kill bacteria in places where brushing and flossing cannot reach. Most people brush for 45 seconds to a minute, while most dentists recommend two to three minutes of brushing twice a day.
Preventive dentistry in Beverly Hills, California, can save you time, money and pain in the long run, and help you keep all of your teeth for years to come, if not your whole lifetime!
If you do not have a routine checkup scheduled, call our office at 310-273-9919 to schedule an appointment with our dentist. When it comes to your oral health, an ounce of prevention is truly worth a pound of cure.