We think one of the best ways to have great oral health is to be proactive about it. That means that patients should not only brush and floss for two minutes twice a day, keep up with their twice yearly exams and avoid sugary snacks, it also means they should be proactive about their oral health.
9 Questions to Ask your Dentist at Your Next Teeth Cleaning Exam
One of the best ways you can be proactive about your oral health is to engage with your dentist at your next teeth cleaning exam. They will be happy to have a more in depth discussion with you about your oral health beyond, “see you in six months!”
So here are 9 questions to ask your dentist at your next teeth cleaning exam.
1. What is the state of my overall oral health?
It might have been some time since you had a talk about your overall oral health with your dentist. Perhaps you’ve had some extensive work done over the last year or two, or needed gum disease treatment. Now is a great time to discover if you and your dentist believe you’ve reached your dental health goals since your last appointment.
2. How can I get whiter teeth?
You’ve probably seen social media ads and commercials about teeth whitening and are curious if it is right for you and if over-the-counter products work well. If you have questions about teeth whitening, as your dentist. They can recommend the right treatment for you, especially if you have severe staining or darkening of your teeth.
3. Why are my teeth so sensitive?
Perhaps you’ve always had sensitive teeth. Or maybe you’ve noticed an increased sensitivity to hot and cold since your last appointment. Always ask your dentist about any tooth sensitivity or pain you’re having. It might be the sign of a cavity. Or you might be one of the millions of Americans who have sensitive teeth. Either way, your dentist can recommend the right course of action and even the right toothpaste to help alleviate your tooth sensitivity.
4. Should I be using mouthwash regularly?
A good mouthwash can be a welcome addition to your current oral care regimen. Ask your dentist if this is something you should add once or twice a day. If you’ve had gum disease or are currently treating gingivitis, if you have sensitive teeth, or even if you have a condition that’s causing dry mouth, your dentist can recommend a good mouthwash for you.
5. At what age should I bring my child to the dentist?
When it comes to pediatric dentistry, you can bring your children to the dentist far earlier than you’d imagine. Most dentists recommend bringing your child in for their first cursory checkup once they start teething, and again for their first “big kid” check up once they are toddlers. Your dentist might recommend something different, so ask at your next appointment!
6. Why am I grinding my teeth (and what can I do about it)?
If you wake up with headaches, experience regular ear pain or notice you are grinding your teeth, it’s time to ask your dentist about it. You might simply be stressed, and your dentist can recommend techniques to help alleviate your grinding. But you could also be grinding for other reasons, like poor teeth alignment. If you know you’re grinding your teeth and it seems to have gotten worse since your last appointment, ask your dentist what to do.
7. When should I start thinking about oral cancer screenings?
If you are a smoker or have a family history with oral cancer, ask your dentist at your next appointment about oral cancer screenings. You can also ask about an oral cancer screening if you’re concerned at all about any changes in your mouth. Oral cancer is very difficult to detect, even for experienced dentists, so make sure to keep this on your dentist’s radar if you have any concerns.
8. I’m brushing and flossing regularly and keeping up with my dental exams. Is there anything else I can do to support my oral health?
You might be a model patient, but still want to make sure you’re doing everything you can to contribute to good oral health. Your dentist might be able to suggest things like healthy foods you can eat (especially if you’re busy at work and might not get a chance to brush after lunch), or ways you can increase your water intake. Or perhaps they’ll notice that you’ve been grinding your teeth or chewing on ice and can advise you on how to correct these behaviors, which can be damaging to teeth. No way to know unless you ask!
9. Can we spread treatment and procedures out?
Sometimes a patient needs extensive dental treatment to restore them back to their optimal dental health. If you have a long list of procedures you need done in the next six months to a year, ask your dentist if there is a way to prioritize and phase out treatment, especially if you have financial concerns. Typically your dentist can recommend a treatment plan that keeps visits as efficient as possible and helps you plan and budget in a way that works best.
Remember: The above information is to be used as general guidelines and you should not use this information to diagnose yourself. If you are concerned about your teeth, you should contact our Clintonville, Ohio dentists for a thorough dental exam.
Professional Dentistry and Teeth Cleaning Exams in Columbus Ohio
We are proud to offer professional dentistry, teeth cleaning exams and gum disease treatment in Central Ohio. If you’re worried about your oral health, come see us! Contact us today to learn more.