Developing an open, trusting relationship with your dentist can go a long way in improving your overall dental health, especially if you have questions. You might not initially think about asking these five questions, but your dentist will welcome the opportunity to help you develop the healthiest dental routines possible. At your next checkup, don’t hold anything back!
1. Is there anything you see that I should talk about with my family doctor?
Your oral health can reveal a lot about your overall health. For example, inflamed gums may signal diabetes, worn tooth enamel may indicate stress-induced tooth grinding and persistent sores may reveal early oral cancer.
2. How do the medications I’m taking affect my oral health?
Certain medications may cause dry mouth, which typically increases the number of bacteria growing in the mouth and also raises the risk of developing cavities and dental infections. Your dentist may recommend a prescription mouthwash or other steps you can take to protect your dental health.
3. I’m worried about radiation from dental X-rays. Is it really necessary to take an X-ray?
You might be very surprised to learn that you’re exposed to more radiation after spending an hour outside than you are when receiving a full set of dental X-rays. Although they aren’t a strict requirement, taking an X-ray minimizes the chances that your dentist could miss something serious like bone loss, extra teeth, impacted teeth, tumors, abscesses and fractures.
4. Do I really have to floss?
Your dentist probably won’t be surprised about this question because many people hate flossing and fail to do it regularly. And by the way, your dentist can tell even if you floss the night before! Your dentist might recommend flossing alternatives such as:
- Floss picks: These disposable picks are pre-strung with floss
- Interdental flossers: These are small, fine-bristled brushes quickly remove plaque between teeth while stimulating your gums
- Water picks: Comfort and efficiency are among the chief benefits of this alternative that uses a strong stream of water to remove food particles and bacteria from between teeth and along the gum line
5. What steps can I take to improve my dental health?
Don’t take it for granted that your dentist will automatically tell you everything you could be doing to support a healthy mouth. By opening up the conversation, your dentist can give you customized dental health information, recommend products that can help you and even provide samples.
Klement Family Dental has been taking care of the dental health of Tampa residents for more than 35 years. We’ve heard it all, so feel free to ask us anything at your next appointment.