May is National Mental Health Month — a time to fight stigma, provide support, educate the public and advocate for policies that support people with mental illness and their families. Many people struggle with anxiety every day to the point where it can roll over into basic tasks such as going to the dentist.
Having dental anxiety can prevent you from getting the care you need to keep your smile healthy. Whether you’ve had a bad experience or have just always felt nervous about going to the dentist, it can be hard to work up the courage to schedule those annual checkups. Overcoming these fears can help ensure that you don’t miss out on any dental problems you might have.
Here are a few tips that may help you overcome your fear of the dentist:
When in doubt, talk to your dentist! Communicate your fears and concerns, and they will be able to help you overcome your anxiety.
While you might not think your oral health has any connection to your overall health, they often go hand in hand. Your mouth is full of bacteria, both good and bad, which can sometimes spiral into certain diseases or infections.
As Mayo Clinic explains, there are many conditions linked to oral health, and it’s important to be aware of them:
Anytime you notice a new oral problem beginning to develop, contact your dentist immediately to ensure that it’s taken care of as soon as possible. You never know when it could potentially affect your overall health.
February has been designated Gum Disease Awareness Month! Initially launched by the Institute for Advanced Laser Dentistry, its purpose is to raise awareness about gum disease and encourage healthy dental habits to prevent it.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), gum disease, also referred to as periodontitis, is the result of infections and inflammation of the gums and bone that surround and support the teeth. In the early stages, the gums can become swollen and red, and they may bleed. As it progresses, the gums can pull away from the tooth, which can eventually result in bone and tooth loss. Not only does gum disease affect your mouth, it can affect your body as well. Regular check-ups and good oral hygiene are important to ensure everything is healthy.
Periodontal disease is mostly seen in adults, with 47.2% of those aged 30 years and older having some form of it. This risk only increases with age. On top of age, there are many other risk factors that can increase your chance of developing gum disease. One of the primary risk factors is smoking, followed by poor oral hygiene, diabetes, stress, hormonal changes and medications that cause dry mouth.
While gum disease starts in the mouth, when left untreated, it can start affecting many other parts of the body as well. This includes respiratory disease, rheumatoid arthritis, coronary artery disease and diabetes.
Common symptoms of gum disease to watch out for include:
The best way to help prevent gum disease is to have regular checkups with your dentist, brush your teeth twice a day and floss at least once a day. Good oral hygiene prevents the development of specific bacteria that cause periodontal disease. If you’re having any symptoms, it’s best to schedule an appointment with your dentist to get it checked out.
Summit Dental Health is a part of Mortenson Dental Partners.
May is National Mental Health Month — a time to fight stigma, provide support, educate the public and advocate for policies that support people with mental illness and their families. Many people struggle with anxiety every day to the point where it can roll over into basic tasks such as going to the dentist. Having […]