What questions should you ask the dentist at your next checkup? The routine dental office visit includes more than just a cleaning and exam. It also provides time to talk to the dentist and discuss concerns or other oral issues. If you're not sure where to start, take a look at the top questions to ask at your next teeth cleaning appointment.
What Type of Toothpaste Do You Recommend?
At-home care is a crucial part of your oral health routine. Even though regular dentist office visits can help your teeth and gums to stay healthy, you also need to take the right steps at home to keep your smile bright, white, and decay-free. The specific toothpaste or type of product your dentist recommends may depend on a few factors. These include:
- Sensitivity. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), nearly 11.5 percent of dental patients experience sensitivity. If you're one of the many, your dentist may suggest a paste with a desensitizing agent as an ingredient.
- Whitening. Do you want to whiten your teeth at home? Whether you just want to remove light surface staining or you need a paste that helps you to extend an in-office whitening treatment, the dentist can recommend a product.
- Gum issues. Do you have gum disease? Your dentist may suggest a specific type of paste, ingredients to look for, or ways to keep this area of your mouth clean.
- Cavities. The ADA only approved fluoride-containing toothpaste. This ingredient can help to reduce the risks of cavity formation. While it can't reverse existing damage, it can help to improve the health of your mouth.
If you're sensitive to a taste (such as mint or cinnamon), the dentist can help you to find a paste product that is more palatable.
What is the Best Restoration?
Regular dental cleaning appointments can reduce the risks of decay and the need for restorations. But if you've skipped office appointments or haven't maintained an adequate at-home oral health routine, you may have issues to address at your next visit.
Do you have cavities, loose teeth, missing teeth, cracks/chips, or another dental issue? There isn't one type of restoration that meets every patient's needs. Common dental restorations include fillings, crowns, implants, bridges, veneers, and bonding. Whether you want a cosmetic fix for an uneven tooth and yellowing enamel erosion or have a dental health need, the dentist can recommend the best restoration for your individual oral issues.
How Does Diet Affect Dental Health?
More specifically, how does your diet affect your dental health? Review your typical diet with the dentist and ask what you could add or take away to improve your mouth's health. Your dentist may recommend decreasing sugary snacks and beverages to reduce the amount of plaque in your mouth and decrease dental caries. They may also suggest eliminating foods/beverages that stain your teeth or are highly acidic. Acidic items, such as soda and orange juice, can wear away enamel and leave your teeth vulnerable to decay.