Written by Dr Gunita Singh, director, Dentem
In India, dental health is often neglected, keep aside visiting a dentist for regular checkups. Even in pain, people prefer popping in a painkiller rather that’s seeing a dentist. And the reason is very simple. Dental office is often associated with anxiety, fear, pain, and financial burden.
But what is the reason for all this? Only negligence. My simple question is if one is scared to visit a doctor for a regular blood pressure check-up and lands up straight for a bypass surgery, then what is the difference in terms of trauma and financial burden you are going through? This holds true for dental treatment too. Just by neglecting or avoiding your regular dental check-up, you are going to land up with dental issues, health issues, and financial issues. If you get yourself checked at a dentist once in every three months, I am sure not only your dental health but your overall health and your pocket all stays intact.
And you save yourself from a lot of misery.
Let’s say that you don’t maintain good oral hygiene – there is plaque build up along the gum line, there is an accumulation of bacteria in between your gums and teeth – and you don’t visit a dentist for your regular cleaning. This will lead to gingivitis and further periodontitis. There will be bacterial accumulation in your mouth that might enter the bloodstream if provided any port of entry like a cut or a bruise or maybe just a little trauma with toothbrush bristles.
Now if your immune system is good, you can easily counter it but if your immune system is weak may be due to any systemic problems like cancer or diabetes or HIV, it can lead to infection in any other part of your body. For example infective endocarditis -it is one of the conditions which is caused when bacteria enter the bloodstream and
stick to the lining of the heart valves.
Severe gum diseases may also increase the risk of pre-term delivery and premature birth — the theory is that oral bacterial releases toxins which interfere with the growth and development of the foetus. Also oral infection may produce labour triggering. In short, a single visit to a dentist every three months helps to invest in your overall health not just for now but for the future too.
*Visit to your dentist will not only keep your teeth and gums healthy but also make sure that many systemic problems don’t come your way. Also, when dental problems are taken care of well in time, expenses and the trauma of going through extensive and expensive dental treatments are also taken care of.
*Also, regular visits would mean your fear of dental clinics would subside which is necessary for timely care.