Top 12 Signs You Need to See a Dentist

1. You Have Pain

When you have pain or swelling in your mouth, face, or neck there can be several reasons. Pain is usually a sign of either swelling or exposure of a sensitive area like a broken tooth or a deep cavity. Swelling can be a sign of infection either in the tooth or around the tooth from gum problems. When tooth infection becomes severe enough, then swelling can spread to the neck. This can become a serious problem requiring hospital care. Prompt attention to pain and swelling can help avoid serious problems

2. Your Gums Are Acting Up

If your gums are puffy and they bleed when you brush or floss, or you have a family history of gum disease. it is time to make an appointment. Do not accept bleeding gums since they are not normal. You would be alarmed if your hands were bleeding, and your gums are not designed to bleed either. Bleeding can be a sign of progressive gum disease leading to tooth loss. Usually this can be controlled by better home care and more frequent dental cleanings. Attention to your daily home care is very helpful here.

3. You Try to Hide Your Smile

Whether you are self-conscious about a missing tooth or hoping for a brighter smile, do not be shy about talking to your dentist. There are many methods to improve a smile you are not proud of. These include simple measures like tooth cleaning, or more advanced techniques including crowns or implants. In some cases, a digitally changed photo of your smile can show you how much improvement you can attain. Consult your dentist to find the best method of smile improvement.

4 You've Had Work Done

If you have fillings, crowns, dental implants, or dentures, see your dentist regularly to make sure everything is in great shape. Even the best dental care can start to have small problems which can grow into larger problems when they are not attended to. Your dentist can spot small problems before they become painful or obvious to you, and in addition can provide quick inexpensive solutions in most cases.

5. You Have Ongoing Medical Issues

Make your dentist part of your team if you have a medical condition (such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, eating disorders or are HIV positive), or you are undergoing medical treatment (such as radiation, chemotherapy or hormone replacement therapy). Each of these medical conditions can irritate existing dental problems or can cause new dental problems when they are ignored. Your dentist is a vital member of your general health case. The more you let your dentist know about your medical status, the better your dentist can help you.

6. You're Pregnant

Your OB/GYN will tell you It is safe to go to the dentist while pregnant. In fact, hormonal changes during pregnancy can make some dental problems worse by flaring up gum inflammation. Serious gum problems can even interfere with your baby’s normal development, so do not miss your regular dental cleaning and exam. Sometimes, during pregnancy, more frequent cleanings are needed because of hormonal issues.

7. You're Having Trouble Eating

Difficulty chewing or swallowing is not the norm. Make an appointment right away and try eating soft or liquified foods until you can see your dentist. Getting to the “root” of the problem will help you avoid bigger problems later.

8. You Have Dry Mouth

Always feeling parched could be the sign of a medical issue or a medication side effect. Sometimes your salivary glands can be blocked due to salivary stones, or some medications can result in less saliva production. Less saliva can lead to more bacterial growth, and result in rapidly destructive cavities and rapidly progressive gum disease. There are some simple mouth rinses and sometimes some changes in medications that can help prevent these dental problems. Letting your dentist know you have dry mouth can be helpful to you.

9.You're Having Jaw Pain

Make an appointment if your jaw sometimes pops or is painful when opening and closing, chewing or when you first wake up. See a dentist also if you have an uneven bite. Delaying treatment for this condition can lead to necessary jaw surgery. Rest assured that there are many non-surgical treatments for jaw issues that can lead to rapid improvement if you follow your dentist’s advice. In the meantime, take small bites of soft foods and avoid opening very wide when eating or yawning. Avoid over the counter mouth guards which can cause some changes in your bite.

10. Your Mouth Has Spots and Sores

If there is something that does not look or feel right in your mouth, your dentist should examine any mouth sore that lasts a week or longer. Types of mouth sores include canker sores, cold sores, leukoplakia, and candidiasis. They vary in their severity and causes. Mouth sores could be the symptom of a disease or disorder; infection from bacteria, viruses or fungus or result from irritation caused by braces, dentures or the sharp edge of a broken tooth or filling. Sometimes these problems can be quickly cured with simple medications or by smoothing a sharp edge of a bracket or denture. Help your dentist help you by making an appointment before your problem progresses.

11. It's Time for Your Dental Exam and Cleaning

Even if you do not have any symptoms, dental exams are important because they can help prevent problems from developing and can treat existing symptoms before they become more advanced.

12.  Remember You May Not Be Aware

If you have any of the above signs, it may be time make an appointment. Your dentist has the knowledge and experience to help you avoid painful and disfiguring problems before you are even aware of them.