What is Preventative Dentistry?

There is no denying that the field of dentistry has advanced tremendously over recent years. Long gone are the days of dark and gloomy dental surgeries with scary tools and implements that could scare a child half to death on their first visit.

These days dental practices are far more bright and welcoming as well as being more family friendly than ever before. Most family dental practices will actively encourage new parents to bring their baby along with them for their routine dental check-ups so that they can become familiar with all the sights and smells of the dental surgery.

Getting to know the staff early on is also an important factor when introducing your children to your dentist. Seeing the friendly faces of the reception staff and the familiar face of your family dentist will also help them to relax and feel comfortable when it is time for their first go in the dentist chair.

Catching issues and problems early on is essential if you want your dentist to prevent dental or oral issues from developing. This is why careful brushing and tooth cleaning is encouraged from day one. Even if you are all grown up, this doesn’t mean your dentist isn’t performing any preventative dentistry with you.

Preventative dentistry for adults

Preventative dentistry focuses on ensuring that patients don’t develop dental or oral health problems that can lead to serious consequences further down the line. Your dentist will give you a thorough oral examination at your regular check-ups, so this is why it is important to make sure you book a check-up at least every six months.

Should you experience any damage or trauma through an accident, then it is wise to book an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist will be able to immediately treat any damage and advise treatments to help with your healing and recovery.  Leaving any damage untreated, even if you think the damage is quite minor, can lead on to further problems later down the line. A chipped or broken tooth that is left untreated could suffer from decay or become infected. This may mean having your tooth completely removed if it cannot be saved. An early trip to the dentist may well mean the difference between saving and losing a damaged tooth.

A broken, cracked or badly chipped tooth can be treated cosmetically to restore it’s strength and function and help prevent any further damage being done to the tooth or the underlying jawbone beneath.

Usually, preventative dentistry simply covers the care and continued maintenance of your teeth and gums without the use of any invasive dental treatments. At the most basic level, regular check-ups, professional cleaning and descaling and good oral health advice will be enough to help prevent many dental issues from developing, such as gum disease, dental cavities, and excessive wear to the tooth enamel.

Your dentist will be on the look out to prevent any conditions developing that will compromise the health of your teeth and gums. They can step in and help to treat the first signs of diseases such as periodontal disease, scurvy, tooth sensitivity, receding gums and gingivitis. All these conditions are not hard to prevent, but they can be troublesome to treat when left to take hold without prevention.

Prevention and cure

Although preventative dentistry is there to prevent teeth and gum health issues from developing or preventing the damage from progressing, a part of the preventative treatment may be to remedy issues using cosmetic dentistry procedures.

It may be that you have an overcrowded jaw or crooked teeth. Because there could be an issue where plaque build-up is trapped between teeth or in hard to reach places, then cavities or gum issues can more easily develop. To prevent this from happening, your dentist may recommend that you have your teeth straightened or some teeth removed and a brace fitted to even out your teeth alignment. Doing this may appear to be tiresome to you, but if it prevents a lot of problems and invasive treatments further down the line, it it time and money well spent.