Dentists and hygienists hear it all the time: “It’s been . . . since my last trip to the dentist.” Often muttered with an air of embarrassment or stated outright with a sense of mild defiance, many people avoid visiting the dentist, sometimes for years. Some people avoid the dentist because they feel nervous or anxious about dental care. Others cite financial concerns or no insurance as the main reason that haven’t seen the dentist in years. Still others take an if-it-doesn’t-hurt-why-fix-it approach to professional dental care. Today, we’re discussing why seeking regular dental checkups is important and why you should schedule a new patient appointment immediately, no matter how long it’s been since you visited the dentist.
Why You Shouldn’t Wait Any Longer
With the exception of sudden, traumatic injury, most serious dental problems occur over the course of several months or years. Of course, if it’s been years since you visited the dentist, what might have been a clean bill of health a few years ago could turn into a mouthful of problems now. And, no matter if you only have a couple of small cavities or an early case of gingivitis now, failing to seek treatment now can result in painful, deep cavities, advanced periodontal disease, and a much higher bill when you make it back to the dentist in a few years.
Why You Shouldn’t Feel Embarrassed
Certain oral health problems, like broken or missing teeth, severe tooth decay, old and worn out dentures that should have been replaced a decade ago, and gum disease-related bad breath might feel extremely embarrassing to you. Just rest assured that no matter how bad your case is, your dentist and hygienist have seen and treated worse. They aren’t there to judge you; instead, they’ve made a career of helping people just like you improve and maintain the highest level of oral health achievable.
Why You Shouldn’t Wait So Long Next Time
After your new patient checkup, your dentist will develop a treatment plan, a systematic blueprint for addressing problems, restoring function, and improving the health and appearance of your teeth and gums. You don’t have to move forward with your treatment plan. Just be aware that serious oral health problems will not go away on their own and will only worsen as more time passes. Seeking aggressive treatment as early as possible is your best bet for preserving a healthy smile throughout your life.
About Shawn Hofkes, DDS
With advanced training in oral and maxillofacial surgery and certification in oral and IV sedation, Shawn Hofkes, DDS provides advanced dentistry and is currently accepting new patients at our state-of-the-art dentist office in Cerritos, CA. To schedule your appointment or consultation with Dr. Hofkes, contact us today. We proudly serve patients of all ages from Cerritos, Lakewood, Long Beach, Buena Park, and all surrounding communities.