Poor oral health can result in a number of problems. When patients do not brush and floss regularly or miss routine dental appointments, bad breath, cavities, and gum disease can develop. But these dental problems are just the so-called tip of the iceberg. When poor oral health habits are not addressed, tooth loss can occur.
Tooth loss is a serious dental condition because it can affect the surrounding oral structures. The remaining teeth may shift out of place, affecting tooth alignment and your bite. The jawbone may deteriorate, resulting in a condition known as facial collapse. To avoid these complicated dental problems, Dr. Everett Heringer and the team at Heringer Dentistry urge our patients to maintain good oral health habits.
During an exam at our family dentistry practice, we can review oral health guidelines with patients and discuss the unique problems that affect their oral health. We also educate patients about how tooth loss and poor oral health are related. To schedule your dental appointment, contact our Bismarck, ND practice today.
Why You Should Brush and Floss Daily
Dentists recommend that patients brush their teeth at least twice a day, or preferably, after every meal. Brushing the teeth removes food particles, which attract bacteria. When food particles are left on the teeth, they form a sticky film called plaque. After 24 hours, plaque hardens into tartar, which is difficult to remove with a toothbrush or floss.
Flossing removes plaque in areas that the toothbrush can’t reach, namely in between the teeth and along the gum line. Dentists recommend that patients floss daily so they have a chance to remove plaque before it hardens into tartar.
The Importance of Professional Exams and Cleanings
Dental exams are important because they give the dentist a chance to examine the mouth for dental problems. When dental problems are caught early, they can be treated more conservatively. That is why dentists recommend that patients attend exams every six months. Typically, when dental problems are identified within the first six months of development, they can be treated in a minimally invasive manner.
Professional dental cleanings are important because they allow dentists to remove built up plaque and tartar from hard to clean areas. During a professional cleaning, we use specialized dental tools that more effectively remove plaque and tartar.
How Poor Oral Health Results in Tooth Loss
Poor oral health results in tooth loss as the result of cavities, gum disease, and root canal infection.
- Cavities: Cavities develop when dental bacteria damage healthy tooth structure. If a cavity is not treated, it can eventually damage the entire crown of the tooth and infect the root.
- Gum disease: Gum disease occurs when dental bacteria damage the soft tissues of the mouth. As more gum tissue is damaged, the infection can reach the jawbone, further loosening the hold on the tooth.
- Root canal infection: When dental bacteria infect the root canals of the teeth, which can occur when cavities and gum disease go untreated, tooth loss can occur.
To schedule your next dental appointment, contact Heringer Dentistry today.