Sometimes we may feel tempted to avoid going to the dentist. We hear constantly from those who work in the dental industry that we should have a dental appointment every six months, but do we really know why? Sure, having clean teeth feels good and when we find out that we don’t have any cavities for the umpteenth time in a row, if we’re fortunate, maybe we start to think we don’t really need to go as often. In that case, postponing our next appointment may feel as alluring as ice cream or candy when we’re on a low calorie diet. Or, perhaps we’ve had a bad experience during a visit to a dentist and we’d rather avoid the risk of hearing bad news again, like when we once asked our boss for a raise. It would have benefited us and we need a raise from time to time, but the risk of being turned down just makes it too scary. Saving money may be another enticement for not going. The truth is that sometimes we feel tempted to disregard things we hear are good for us, like regular dental visits, because we simply don’t see them as valuable.
If only going to see a dentist was like getting a haircut, right? Millions of people regularly spend between $15 to $100 every two to eight weeks having their hair trimmed, cut, colored, and improved. Rarely ever does that feel uncomfortable or lead to bad news. How our hair looks is important and spending money on it seems worth it. On the other hand, seeing a dentist twice a year doesn’t create nearly as much gratification. Paying for the cost of a dental visit, especially for those who have to pay for a dental appointment without insurance, is an expense they may not feel is worth it. However, let’s closely look at the value of regular dental cleaning and exams.
The Value of Healthy Teeth and Gums
Fortunately, dental insurance covers most of the costs of having healthy teeth and gums. For our health, the purpose of teeth cleaning is to prevent gum disease, which is the primary cause of tooth loss. Plaque causes gum disease because if allowed to dwell, plaque hardens into tartar. That creates a home for bacteria. Yuck! Bacteria then causes inflammation in the gums called gingivitis, and no matter how well we brush, plaque and tartar can still build up. Really? Yes, we can really wind up with gingivitis even if we brush thoroughly every day. That’s what makes the uncomfortable scraping every six months valuable. Tartar can only be removed by dentists and hygienists.
Now think of some young people that don’t see a dentist until they are in their teens. Remember the bacteria living in the tartar from the plaque? That’s a long time in a kids mouth. Disturbing! Furthermore, untreated dental disease can create infections, damage bones and nerves, and spread to other parts of the body causing discomforts and even health issues as serious as heart disease. There are rumors that King Tut died of infections at age 19 that started in his mouth, although those are just rumors. Anyhow, to avoid paying more, especially for a dental appointment without insurance, for problems like toothaches, cavities, root canals, gum disease, sensitive teeth, missing teeth, abscesses, dental crowns, implants, dentures, wisdom teeth problems, tooth erosion, cancer in the mouth and throat, yellow teeth, and bad breath, have oral hygiene treatments every six months.
The Value of Time and Money Spent on a Dental Appointment
As for the cost of two dental appointments annually, a visit to a dentist’s office costs $200 on average each time depending on local rates for an exam, cleaning, and X-rays. That totals about the same amount annually, or less for some, as individuals spend on hair care.
Also, arguments can easily be supported that caring for teeth and gums is more important for health, future savings, and quality of life. Whereas people can trim, cut, or color their own hair to save money, doing what a dentist can do for oral hygiene is not something many individuals can do on their own. Professional dental care involves scraping plaque off of teeth, using professional instruments to remove hard tartar, polishing, rinsing, and discovering damaged teeth early to prevent toothaches and cracks that can ultimately lead to worse problems if left untreated. Now can you better see the value of regular dental visits?
The Significant Social Impact of Healthy Teeth and Gums
Lastly, a major benefit of regular dental visits is they can help create pretty teeth and beautiful smiles. Good teeth directly influence self-confidence. Often people feel self-conscious about their teeth and are reluctant to smile.
Studies show that individuals worry that the health and appearance of their teeth can negatively impact their ability to find a partner, reduce their chances of getting a new job or promotion, and lessen their quality of life. Because they lack confidence in their appearance, some people cover their mouths or look down when they laugh or meet new people. Regular cleaning and exams can help prevent such unpleasant feelings while creating healthy teeth and gums that can be shown with confidence.
Our invitation to you for a dental appointment so we can help you achieve healthy teeth and gums, even if you need a dental appointment without insurance
Based on the reasons above, those who believe that going to the dentist may feel too uncomfortable or cost too much should consider how painful and expensive not going consistently can be. For teeth and gums, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Contact the Young Family Dental office closest to you to make a dental appointment and treat your teeth and gums with the importance they deserve. If you don’t have insurance, ask about our specials. Young Family Dental understands the treasures they are, and as you age, your good oral hygiene will show it’s value!