Since childhood, we’ve been reminded (or even nagged) that oral health is just as important as physical, mental, and emotional health. We need to brush our teeth twice a day, floss every so often, and scrape our tongues to keep our mouths smelling fresh and clean!

But how often have we heard the importance of regularly visiting your dentist for professional cleanings and checkups? Apparently, not much. A survey by the U.S. Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion showed the following:

  • 35.6% of persons aged 18-44 visited the dentist.
  • 43.3% of persons aged 45-64 visited the dentist.
  • 46.3% of persons aged 65 and above visited the dentist.

These statistics contribute to the fact that regular dental visits and cleanings must become part of our personal health and wellness (if they were, these numbers would be higher or close to 100 percent). But aside from these numbers, here are some other reasons why regular dental cleanings result in better overall health!

It Prevents Gum Disease

Even with regular brushing, flossing, and tongue-scraping, we will miss certain hard-to-reach areas that are only accessible with professional dental tools. Plaque can harden into tartar or dental calculus, an extremely hard substance that can’t be removed with a toothbrush or dental floss.

What’s even more shocking is that tartar or calculus bacteria produce infectious toxins that cause gum disease, which is extremely common yet treatable.

One example is gingivitis. In its initial stages, this gum disease inflames your gums and causes them to bleed whenever you brush or floss. Gingivitis eventually progresses to periodontitis in its later stages, a disease that eats away at your gums, ligaments, and even bone! At its worst, periodontitis loosens teeth and—in extreme cases—causes tooth loss.

How Gum Disease Causes Other Health Problems

Gingivitis and periodontitis not only cause external health problems but internal ones as well! Aside from loosening teeth and causing tooth loss, the toxins found within these diseases can enter your bloodstream directly when your gums bleed. These bacteria increase—and even worsen—existing health conditions such as diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and heart problems.

Stopping the Problems at Their Roots

The above concerns are why it is of the utmost importance to get your teeth cleaned professionally by a dentist. They have the expertise and tools needed to thoroughly remove plaque, tartar, and calculus buildup between your gums and teeth. Your gums and teeth will also be checked by a special dental probe that measures the spaces in between them. These measurements are recorded so any changes are identified efficiently by the time of your next visit

For reference: healthy gums have gaps of just 3 mm. Any wider could indicate gum disease.

Final Thoughts

When visiting a dentist, they will first assess your teeth and gums’ condition prior to conducting the prophylaxis. Afterward, they will polish your teeth to give them smoother surfaces and prevent bacteria from clinging to your teeth. These treatments leave you with brighter teeth, healthier gums, and fresher breath! They could also provide you with a preventive, non-invasive oral cancer screening and even some customized advice on brushing and flossing to give you the best oral hygiene possible!

If you’re looking for an emergency dentist in Franklin, Tennessee, or a hygienist that can provide family dentistry with the services above, set an appointment with us today! We could be your next step towards better oral health!