We all know that we’re supposed to visit the dentist every six months. Some people may need more frequent visits, but for the most part, twice a year is the general rule. It’s important to see your dentist regularly that way any potentially serious issues are handled before they snowball into something very bad (and very expensive). Aside from your usual check-up, there are some things that necessitate an immediate dental visit. Here are 5 signs that mean you need to see your dentist.
This is an obvious one, namely because it’s impossible to ignore. Tooth pain can interfere with eating, drinking, even talking! And tooth pain can have a variety of causes, so it’s very important to get to a dentist as soon as you notice it. It could be an infection, a cavity, debris lodged between your teeth, gum disease, or something else. Even if the pain recedes after a day or two, make sure you keep your appointment.
Swollen or inflamed gums
If your gums are swollen or inflamed, call your dentist immediately. What has most likely happened is that plaque has hardened beneath the gum line. It’s also a sign of gingivitis. If enough of this plaque accumulates beneath your gums, you’ll develop periodontitis, and surgery is the only way to fix it. This plaque is a breeding ground for bacteria, and when it’s beneath the gum line, it’s much easier for bacteria to get to the roots of our teeth, where it can do some serious damage.
A metallic taste
Having a metallic taste in your mouth (as if you’ve been chewing on coins) is another common sign of gingivitis. It is also an indicator of periodontitis. See your dentist immediately if it starts to taste like you’ve been sucking on a penny.
Dry mouth can have a variety of causes, either from age, medication, or some form of bacteria. In each case, it’s important to have your dentist check it out. Our saliva actually helps our bodies fight off cavity-causing bacteria. When our mouth is dry, it’s much easier for the bacteria to get out of control. Dry mouth is also one of the main causes of bad breath. Schedule an appointment with your dentist, and drink lots of water in the meantime to keep things moist.
White spots on teeth
This is the first sign of dental decay. Typically, the white spots are unaccompanied by other symptoms, so it’s important to check your teeth carefully every time you brush and floss. The white spots appear because the enamel has begun to dissolve, thanks to acid-producing bacteria.
If any of these sound familiar, call Dr. Chauvin’s office to set up an appointment today!