How To Spend Less On Dental Care

Posted on Nov 18, 2013 by William J. Claiborne, DDS MS

As a Periodontal Specialist, I see the insides of many, many mouths. Occasionally, I see a patient who wants to improve the appearance of their smile, such as through crown lengthening or repairing a ‘gummy smile.’ In most cases, however, the mouths I see are in dire need of care.

Whether an adult is at my office for dental implant placement due to lost teeth or needs their gum health restored due to periodontal disease, most of these situations are avoidable. And, their condition is not always one of neglect as much as from a lack of knowledge.

While commercials promote denture creams, tooth paste and whitening strips, there has been little public awareness of how to adequately care for one’s teeth and gum health. A dental hygienist may urge you to floss, but do you really know how? Or, do you know why you should and what can happen if you don’t?

A vast amount of research is showing how your oral health can impact your overall health and even contribute to the onset of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, arthritis and preterm babies. Yet, the American population still lacks the understanding of how easy it is to prevent problems from occurring in the mouth in the first place.

This year, be determined to save your money on dentistry and spend mere minutes per day tending to your oral health. The key is to:

Floss daily – Ask for a ‘flossing lesson’ if you’re having difficulty

Brush thoroughly (at least twice a day) using a soft bristle brush and fluoride toothpaste

Swish after meals when you cannot brush and drink plenty of water to keep your mouth moist

Use a tongue scrapper daily to remove bacteria embedded in the tongue

Maintain your 6-month dental check-ups and cleanings

Keep between-meal snacking to a minimum and avoid sugar whenever possible

If you have soft enamel, ask your dentist for sealants. When teeth are cracked or fractured, have them crowned as soon as possible.

If you are missing teeth, replace them – preferably with dental implants.

We tend to spend many hundreds of dollars on the upkeep of our automobiles, yet, balk at investing in our oral health and appearance. Your smile is worth the attention you can give it each day to keep your smile in good working order and looking great! Be as committed to your smile as your vehicle and you’ll save time, money and enjoy overall health benefits all day, every day!


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