At Anderson and Atkins Dentistry, we agree with the adage that “knowledge is power.” A visit to the dentist stirs up anxiety in many people, which leads them to procrastinate on scheduling an appointment. But if your questions are answered, we hope that you feel empowered to make a wise decision to take care of your health which includes your mouth! You can walk into your appointment with confidence knowing what to expect and why each visit is worth your time.
Here are the answers to many frequently asked questions:
1. Why are regular dentist visits necessary?
Regular visits to the dentist enable your dentist to spot dental health problems early on when treatment is easier and more affordable. In fact, they can prevent health problems from occurring. Other medical conditions and diseases have symptoms that develop in your mouth, so regular dental visits often influence your overall health.
2. What are the signs that I need to schedule an appointment?
If you experience any of the following symptoms, schedule a dental appointment as soon as possible.
- Teeth sensitivity to hot or cold
- Puffy gums that bleed when you brush or floss
- You currently have fillings, crowns, dentures, or dental implants
- You don’t like your smile or the way your teeth look
- You experience pain or swelling in your mouth, face, or neck
- It is difficult to chew or swallow
- You have a family history of gum disease or tooth decay
- You use tobacco products
- You have an uneven bite or experience a popping sensation in your jaw
- There is a sore or spot in your mouth that feels uncomfortable and is not going away
- Your mouth is dry
- You are pregnant or are undergoing intensive medical treatment
- You have diabetes, cardiovascular disease, an eating disorder, or are HIV positive
3. Even if I have no symptoms, should I still see a dentist?
Yes! You may not have symptoms, but you may suffer from a dental issue that only a dentist can diagnose. Regular visits also help prevent major issues from developing. Taking care of your mouth is essential to your overall health. Visiting the dentist regularly, even if you don’t experience any unwanted symptoms, is important.
4. What should I expect at a regular dental visit?
Your dentist or dental hygienist will review your recent medical history, examine your mouth, and may determine that x-rays are necessary. Your hygienist will also examine your gums for signs of gum disease. Your dentist will perform an oral cancer screening and determine your overall oral health.
5. How often should I go to the dentist?
Many people only need to see a dentist once or twice a year, but others find more frequent appointments necessary. The number of dental visits you schedule in a year is determined by your health and the goals you and your dentist are working together to meet.
6. What’s the difference between DDS and DMD?
DDS stands for “Doctor of Dental Surgery,” and DMD stands for “Doctor of Dental Medicine.” Both mean that the dentist has graduated from an accredited dental school. This gives you the confidence to know that your dentist received a certain level of education and clinical training required to earn a dental degree. Each of our dentists at Anderson and Atkins has their Doctorate of Dental Surgery and continues the education requirements to keep their licenses and provide their patients with the best, up-to-date procedures and techniques.
7. How can my dentist help me maintain a healthy mouth?
Don’t be afraid of the number of months (or years) between visits--schedule an appointment and start the process of taking care of your mouth. Commit to seeing the dentist regularly so that he or she can catch gum disease when it is reversible or prevent cavities from developing. Keep your dentist in the loop about changes in your overall health and ask questions if you have any concerns about your oral health or certain procedures. Consider your dentist as a teammate, helping you maintain a healthy mouth and meet your dental goals.
Anderson and Atkins, DDS is a dentistry that places your comfort as the highest priority and promises to provide quality dental care to every member of your family. To schedule an appointment today, contact our office in Bryan/College Station.