When it comes to maintaining a healthy smile over the long-term, there’s no better prevention than getting routine checkups and cleanings with a trusted dentist like Dr. Jamie Guthrie. By looking for any signs of trouble every six months, our Ardmore team can greatly reduce your risk of major dental problems down the road, saving you a lot of time and money in the dental chair. Not to mention keeping your smile looking and feeling great! If it’s been a while since you’ve had a dental cleaning and checkup, or if you simply want to be proactive about your oral health, contact our Ardmore, OK practice today to schedule your first appointment!
When it comes to problems like cavities and gum disease, we believe that prevention is so much easier than treatment. When you come in regularly for checkups and cleanings, Dr. Guthrie can either prevent these issues altogether or find them before they’ve progressed and caused too much damage. For instance, an initially harmless cavity can quickly grow larger and destroy a lot of the surrounding tooth structure. Or, a once-small case of gum disease can lead to bone deterioration, tooth loss, and other disastrous consequences without intervention. But when we’re seeing you multiple times a year, we can treat these problems early on before they get to that point.
How often should you be scheduling these visits? Patients with relatively healthy gums usually only need to come in every 6 months, whereas patients with gum disease typically need cleanings every 3 to 4 months (however, they still only get 2 annual checkup exams). These extra cleanings allow us to better maintain the gums and lower the risk of tooth loss and other problems associated with gum disease.
A checkup exam is usually done after your cleaning and is a chance for Dr. Guthrie to thoroughly assess every part of your oral health. Here are the basic steps included:
Both of our hygienists have been with us for over a decade and are friendly and compassionate. They’ll start your cleaning by asking if you have any specific concerns or questions. Then they’ll gently but thoroughly remove the plaque and tartar that you can’t remove at home with hand instruments and/or an ultrasonic cleaner. Finally, your teeth will be polished and flossed and you’ll get individualized tips to get the most out of your oral hygiene routine at home.
Fortunately, maintaining healthy teeth and gums at home doesn’t require anything complicated. Start by brushing at least twice a day for two minutes and flossing once. You may also benefit from oral hygiene aids such as floss picks, an oral irrigator, or an electric toothbrush. It’s also important to minimize dietary sugar, especially sweet beverages like soda and juice. Finally, wear a custom-made nightguard if necessary to prevent cracks and fractures from clenching and grinding, or a custom athletic guard when you play sports. By combining good everyday habits with regular care from us, you’ll help your smile look and feel fantastic for life!
Semi-annual checkups and dental cleanings in Ardmore are invaluable to maintaining a healthy smile; however, there are a few misconceptions about the appointments. We know you have a few concerns, but we’ll address them during your visit. In the meantime, here are the answers to a few of the most common questions patients ask us to help ease any apprehensions.
Yes! The American Dental Association recommends everyone over the age of 2 sees their dentist at least twice a year for a cleaning and checkup. Although the primary teeth eventually fall out, they are invaluable to your child’s oral health and development. An appointment every 6 months will ensure their baby teeth stay healthy while also creating the foundation their permanent ones need to thrive for a lifetime.
Believe it or not, a routine dental checkup in Ardmore can save you money down the road. Dentistry focuses on prevention to keep the teeth and gums healthy. As a result, you’ll lower your long-term oral health expenses. In fact, every $1 spent on prevention can save you as much as $50 on restorative services because you’re less likely to need a costly treatment in the future.
Not to mention, keeping your smile healthy also reduces your risk of a dental emergency, which could lead to an unexpected trip to your dentist. Although you probably never expect it to happen to you 1 in 6 Americans has a dental emergency each year. You can lower your likeliness of one by visiting your dentist every 6 months because we’ll ensure there isn’t an issue lingering in your mouth that can turn into a bigger problem down the road.
There isn’t a set fee for preventive dentistry because the cost is determined by your individual plan; however, many patients don’t need to pay anything for their visit. If you have dental insurance, most plans cover prevention 100%, so you can get the cleanings, checkups, and X-rays you need without fearing a large bill. You’re also given an annual allowance to help offset the cost of common treatments necessary to rehabilitate your smile. If there’s any remaining balance, our office accepts several payment options to keep your treatments affordable, like third-party financing. We’ll help you find the solutions you need to invest in optimal oral health.
Believe it or not, your oral and general health are linked. Research shows certain dental issues can significantly increase your risk of various health concerns. Gum disease can be especially damaging. Not only is it the leading cause of tooth loss, but it can also increase your risk of several complications, like cardiovascular disease, respiratory infections, and Alzheimer’s disease. A routine appointment allows us to detect any concerning areas sooner to ensure they don’t leave a lasting mark on your smile or your general health.