Practicing for over 27 years now, I’ve seen most every malady in dentistry.
The most common ones, of course are tooth decay, gum disease, cracked teeth, and abscessed teeth.
Here are the BIGGEST things you can do to prevent these problems:
1. Brush and floss without fail every night before you go to bed. As simple as that sounds, it doesn’t happen for those who have dental issues. If you scrimp on how long you brush, purchase a timed mechanical toothbrush (e.g. Sonicare) so that you’re brushing a full 2 minutes – and not 20 seconds. And, don’t forget the flossing! Brushing alone can get in between your teeth where most of the problems start. If you don’t know the proper way to floss, ask us. If you just have trouble flossing, consider purchasing something like an AirFlosser. The cost of the gadgets total less than the cost of a single filling.
2. Get regular checkups. The trend the past few years is that adults are not going to the dentist for regular checkups. By the time you know you have something wrong, I promise you most of the time it will end up costing you a good amount of money to fix the problem or problems. Most of these could be thwarted in their early stages by twice a year checkups. If you average out the cost of getting twice a year checkups and any problems that need resolution versus a checkup every few years and the cost of solving the problems, you will find that getting regular checkups is much, much cheaper.
3. Get early treatment. If you know you have a problem, get it fixed ASAP. When you wait, the problem gets worse, making treatment more extensive and expensive. It’s that simple.
4. Always opt for the best treatment option. It is true that “you get what you pay for”, even in dentistry. Patching things up is just that: patching things up. Patches fail, and you’ll spend money again to fix the problem.
5. Have a plan for achieving and maintaining optimal dental health. To do that, you need to work with a dentist who will sit down with you and be thorough, listen, and collaboratively develop a plan tailored to your needs and lifestyle. Those that do that save loads of money over the long haul. It’s important to know that your mouth is in a continual state of breakdown, and it needs daily attention if you want to keep your teeth and be healthy.