There’s no escaping the need for dental care. Not for any of us — well, as long as we continue to have teeth that is! And there seems to be no evidence suggesting humans will stop growing teeth anytime soon. So that means staying on top of your oral health is vitally important because our mouths do so much for our overall bodies!

However, we completely understand that not everybody is as juiced up about dental health as we are, nor is each person as knowledgeable about the dental field. We did, after all, go through many tough years of dental school to learn what we know! Questions are great and we encourage them because that means you care enough to ask. We like providing answers even more, so today Joseph F. DeSantis and Associates Family Dentistry have dedicated this blog post to answer some of the most frequently asked questions you have about dental care and the dentist!

We hope you find the information to follow informative and helpful, but please don’t hesitate to reach out to us directly for answers to more pressing questions or for more detail. Enjoy!

Why Do Regular Dentist Visits Matter?

An excellent first question and a place we love to start! People are inherently trained to think about their health care as something you address when an issue arises. But in fact, so many complications can be avoided by proactive behavior. This is especially true for visits to the dentist for your dental care.

A dentist can identify issues before they become severe, or even stop them from happening at all. Treatment can, therefore, be easier and more affordable, and who doesn’t like that? Beyond oral health issues, a dentist can identify other serious health issues outside of your mouth such as diabetes. So many symptoms of other diseases or medical conditions show themselves in your mouth. Regular dental visits should be made at least every six months, as recommended by the American Dental Association!

How Do I Know When to See the Dentist?

As we stated in our previous answer, you should make it a part of your routine to visit the dentist once every six months in order to ensure proper dental care and overall health, and a good dentist will let you know about other visits that might be required as well. But in case something unexpected comes up, here are some reasons you might know to go see your dentist:

  • Your teeth are sensitive to hot or cold
  • Your mouth is often dry
  • Your gums are puffy or bleed when you brush
  • Your jaw pops or is painful when opening and closing

These are just a few common signs that a trip to your dental office would be necessary, but there are certainly far more. If anything seems different or wrong relating to your teeth or mouth, it’s best to set an appointment and have it checked out. We guarantee you’ll be happy you did!

What Kind of Toothbrush and Toothpaste Should I Use?

Brushing your teeth daily is a critical piece of maintaining your dental health. We recommend that you brush your teeth at least twice per day, but really, you should brush after every meal to most effectively prevent plaque build up.

  • Use soft-bristled toothbrushes
  • Replace them at least every 3-4 months
  • Both manual and powered toothbrushes are fine when used with proper technique
  • Always use fluoride toothpaste and look for ones with the Seal of Acceptance from the American Dental Association

As far as what kind of toothbrush and toothpaste to use, stick with soft-bristled toothbrushes to avoid damage to your teeth and gums from medium or firm ones. Use soft pressure for at least two minutes, twice a day. Both manual and powered toothbrushes work well when used with proper technique. Replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months at least and always use fluoride toothpaste, which strengthens and protects your teeth. There are lots of kinds of toothpaste out there, but any toothpaste with the ADA Seal of Acceptance is a solid choice. Don’t be afraid to ask your dentist what they recommend you use. Beyond that, flavor and other features are really up to you!

Do I Actually Need to Floss?

The short answer to this question is yes. The longer answer to this question is, heck yes! Flossing is important because it clears the areas between your teeth where food particles and plaque get stuck and build up. Left untreated, that plaque wears down your tooth’s enamel and causes cavities. Tooth decay is a serious issue and should be avoided to maintain strong dental care. Keep from costly crowns, tooth extractions and possibly dentures and just floss, OK?!

Schedule Your Appointment Today!

These are just a handful of questions we frequently get asked here at Joseph F. DeSantis and Associates Family Dentistry, but they are far from the only ones! We will go through more questions that are commonly asked about dental care and visits to the dentists in later posts, so stay tuned!

Of course, if you have any other questions that need more detailed or immediate answers, please feel free to contact us today at either our Chadds Ford, PA or Glen Mills, PA offices. But now that you know why dental care is important, reach out and schedule your appointment today so we can create and maintain a beautiful smile for you and your family!