According to research revealed by NHS Digital, just over half of all adults in the UK have not visited their dentist for a check up in the past two years. Not only that, it was also revealed that over one-quarter of adults will only ever visit a dentist when they have a problem that needs dealing with.
A lot of the issues that take adults to the dentist to fix may well have been caught early or even prevented with the right early intervention had the patient been attending regular 6-monthly check-ups in the first place. This proves that the old saying ‘prevention is better than cure’ can apply in the field of dental health more than anywhere.
Such is the infrequency or irregularity of many adults actively visiting their dentist on a regular basis that dentists are now facing a huge increase in dental problems. Studies by NHS Digital show that 31% of adults have tooth decay and 66% of adults have plaque build-up on their teeth that is visible to the eye. It was also reported that 29% of the general UK population regularly suffer from pain in their teeth or mouth.
More Frequent Check-ups
A lot of people are actually unsure about how often they should visit their dentist for a check-up. It is recommended that adults and children visit their dentist at least every 6 months for a routine check-up to make sure everything is OK with their oral health. It is at these regular check-ups that dentists can spot the early signs of tooth decay or other issues that could lead to more severe problems further down the line if left neglected.
For those people suffering from certain medical conditions or have long-term health issues, your dentist may recommended that you have more frequent check-ups.
Medications and drugs being taken by patients can also impact on their oral health. Many side effects from medications can actually increase the risk of developing dental issues, such as dry mouth causing an increased risk of developing tooth decay. This would need more closely scheduled check-ups from your dentist.
Too Busy To Bother
With the fast pace of life these days, we all run the risk of ignoring the health of our teeth and mouth. Because we think we cannot afford the time off to go to the dentist for a check-up let alone when we experience a minor issue, we are allowing more severe problems to develop with our oral health. Many people will choose to ignore mild toothache, low-level pain in their jaw or bleeding gums thinking that it manageable with pain killers at home. It is only when it develops into a painful abscess or becomes painful to chew or swallow that we become concerned.
Visiting the dentist regularly will ensure that your teeth and gums are properly maintained and early treatments are administered before dental issues turn into more serious problems.