As the video mentions, most cancers have a common trait. Early detection significantly increases the chance of successful and less invasive treatment.
Your dentist is well placed to spot signs of oral cancers at a thorough check up, which involves far more than your teeth and gums. They inspect all the hard and soft tissues in your mouth, along with surrounding areas.
As research has shown, oral health often reflects overall health and manifestations of other conditions can be found. Swollen gums, ulcers, dry mouths, or other symptoms may have underlying causes.
How your body first displays signs of illness will vary but an experienced dentist can pick up signs of diabetes, thyroid issues, anemia, leukemia, pancreatic cancer, kidney disease, or heart conditions.
Osteoporosis, or rheumatoid arthritis have oral aspects. Other abnormalities in bone structure, or tooth wear can be symptomatic of stress, or long term sleep problems, perhaps related to tooth grinding.
A skilled dentist is a medical practitioner, offering wider care alongside the support you need to maintain sound oral health.
A UK study in 2020 looked at how patients of varing ages wished to receive oral health advice. More than 50% of participants preferred verbal advice at a dental visit to any other method of communication.
They can better relate to this and any points made are enhanced by physical touch. Key advice is more likely to be understood and followed, professional views can become part of healthy routines in everyday life.
There may be cases where individualised dental check frequencies are advised, or a particular focus. A useful and proven way to track unusual issues, or reduce the amount of dental work patients need.
Dental check ups are about helping with a range of medical conditions, yet they are also about reducing damage from periodontal disease and tooth decay. In a similar way to oral cancer, early treatment means less disease.
Part of the reason for the ongoing statistics we see on oral decay is behavioural. Half of UK adults have not visited a dentist in the last two years, more than a quarter only attend when they have a serious problem.
Seeing your gums bleed a little, or mild tooth pain can be transient but they have causes and are pointers to longer term issues. A check up will often spot problems before you realise, or give you an opportunity to discuss them.
Regular check ups ensure that a need for smaller fillings can be identified, any bacteria filled pockets within your gums be treated, teeth saved, individual advice given on oral hygiene and brushing routines.
A Healthy Life
Most bone and tooth loss is avoidable, as is unwanted, perhaps expensive treatment to try to correct deeper issues. For the sake of your teeth and wider health, keeping to regular check ups makes sense.
They are at times an opportunity to be alerted to significant medical conditions and are at all times, the best way to monitor your teeth and gums.
Our team spend time on dental check ups because they are an important contribution to the health of our patients. They are quite painless, reassuring and not time consuming, a rational way to enhance quality of life.