5 Reasons You Should Know About Dental Hygiene Month
What is National Dental Hygiene Month?
Every October, Dental Hygiene Month comes around and asks us what we’re doing to keep our teeth and gums healthy.
- Am I going to the dentist enough to keep my teeth healthy?
- Have I taken steps to brush and floss more frequently at home?
- Do I have toothaches I’ve been ignoring or that won’t go away?
All of these questions matter to your oral health over the long term. It’s no secret that having good oral hygiene tends to mean that you’re taking care of the rest of your body too. Many of us only want to see the dentist when we absolutely need to, yet, we’re constantly reminded of prevention being the best medicine. How do we do that? Easy answer: By visiting the dentist.
Why should I go to the dentist?
Even if you only go once a year, getting an annual cleaning and oral exam is going to be your best defense against tooth decay. Even if you’re brushing and flossing at home, only your dentist can examine your teeth with a professional eye, and take any necessary x-rays that give you a better idea of the internal health of your teeth, as well as spot cavities that might not otherwise be seen with the naked eye.
How often should I visit the dental hygienist?
Most hygienists will recommend that you visit every six months, and at minimum once a year. If you have less than stellar brushing and flossing habits, they might recommend that you come back every four months. Only your dentist can plan out a proper care schedule that works for you.
Can I resume routine dental care?
The reality of COVID-19 means that you may have some reservations about heading back to the dentist. For most areas of the country, routine, non-emergency dental care can resume, so if you haven’t had a cleaning in a while, now is definitely the time to schedule an appointment.
Is it safe to go to the dentist?
COVID-19 has made what used to be routine medical care more difficult to prepare for, but that doesn’t mean that your dentist appointment is inherently unsafe. Your hygienist should pre-screen you for COVID-19 symptoms prior to your appointment, and it goes without saying that you should postpone your visit if you are feeling sick in any way. Wear a mask when you arrive to the office and maintain social distancing policies as required by your locale.
The Months Ahead
Just because you’re thinking more about your dental healthcare routine this month doesn’t mean that the rest of the year is off-limits. Plan ahead for appointment schedules and any treatment you may have been putting off due to quarantine, and get a head start on your personal oral healthcare plan for 2021 and beyond.