If you ask any Florida dentist, they’ll tell you that we see many dental problems from our clients. We’re not just talking emergencies here. Clients visit us for regular checkups, and we discover issues that they could have avoided if they took better care of their teeth. We usually advise our clients to brush and floss after every meal. Unfortunately, not many of them follow our advice. Flossing and brushing are time-consuming, we know, but they are a necessary part of protecting your oral health. We don’t like seeing our patients suffer. However, demonstrations sometimes work better than advice. Here are some of the most common problems we encounter as a Florida dentist.
1. Tooth Decay
Tooth decay tops this list because we see a lot of it. The journal Medical Science Monitor mentions that cavities are the second most prevalent disease affecting humans, next to the common cold. Tooth decay happens when plaque builds up on your teeth. This plaque is actually made up of massive colonies of bacteria that spend time digesting the food stuck to your teeth. A side effect of this digestion is the production of acids, which start forcing your tooth enamel to deteriorate. After years of this constant abuse, your teeth forms holes known as cavities. Since this is a gradual process, most patients don’t even realize what’s happening until it’s too late.
There’s no age limit to tooth decay. It affects the very young as well as the very old. Dental care in older adults may come from many different factors, from their diet to habits they demonstrate. You can impact whether tooth decay will be a significant factor in your oral health by controlling what you consume. Additionally, if you’re concerned about keeping your teeth for as long as possible, brushing and flossing are musts.
2. Bad Breath
Bad breath is also known as halitosis, and it can be a horribly embarrassing situation for a person. The International Journal of Oral Science suggests that up to 85% of the people who suffer from chronic halitosis can blame a dental condition for their woes. As a dentist in Florida, we quickly realize that bad breath may actually be a symptom of a larger problem. Several diseases present with bad breath as a sign. Among these are oral cancer, gum disease, and cavities. Even bacteria on the tongue can contribute to the problem. Dealing with bad breath may mean addressing the one or more other oral health concerns that you already have.
3. Oral Cancer
The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that oral cancer is as much as three percent (3%) of all cancers diagnosed in the US every year. If it’s caught early, patients have a high chance of recovery. The most prominent risk factors affecting potential sufferers of the disease are controllable habits. Excessive alcohol consumption and smoking are two of the most common contributing factors. Mouth or throat cancer usually brings with it tumors in the mouth and may lead to people changing the way they chew to cater for those sore spots. Visiting your Florida dentist regularly can help you to catch this disease in time if it occurs.
4. Gum Disease
Gum or Periodontal disease primarily affects your gums and can lead to a whole slew of painful symptoms. While everyone is at risk of gum disease, it most commonly occurs after the age of 30. Dry mouth, diabetes, and controllable habits like smoking can contribute to contracting it. Sufferers typically complain of red, swollen, or sometimes bleeding gums. They also have pain when chewing and sensitive teeth. Visiting your dentist in Florida often can help you to ensure that you don’t get gum disease, or if you do, treat it in time to prevent lasting damage to your mouth.
5. Mouth Sores
Mouth sores are more bothersome than anything else, but they’re among the more common ailments a Florida dentist encounters. Among the most common mouth sores we see are canker sores. These can be quite painful but aren’t contagious. If they last longer than two weeks, however, they can be an issue. Cold sores are a more insidious type of mouth ailment. They form on the outer edge of the lips and can be highly contagious. Informed Health notes that these sores are a symptom of the Herpes simplex virus. They occur in “outbreak” periods and never go away completely. Occasionally, we encounter mouth sores known as oral thrush. These are an oral infection of the Candida strain of yeast and are typical in infants, those who wear dentures, and patients going through cancer treatment. Canker sores and oral thrush are preventable, but cold sores usually aren’t.
Tooth erosion is related to tooth decay. When bacteria attack your teeth and start tearing away the enamel, the condition is known as tooth erosion. Sensitivity may be a symptom of tooth erosion, but it’s not a definite sign. As common as tooth erosion is, most patients don’t even realize it’s going on. Any dentist in Florida will tell you that it’s probably because of how gradual it is. Like the formation of dental cavities, tooth erosion can take months, years, and maybe even decades.
7. Sensitive Teeth
Some of our patients come in, complaining about pain when they’re eating ice cream or drinking hot drinks. Some sufferers even complain about discomfort while brushing their teeth. Sensitive teeth are a common complaint, and it may be a sign of another problem (like tooth erosion, mentioned above) or be its own issue. Sensitive teeth might suggest that a patient may have an abscess or inform a dentist that the patient is suffering from a cavity. If you haven’t suffered from sensitive teeth before, but it shows up suddenly, immediately contact your dentist. For those who have to deal with tooth sensitivity as a chronic problem, there are kinds of toothpaste available that can help you.
8. Stained Teeth
One of the more common disorders we see as Florida dentists revolve around stained teeth. These stains can come from several different sources. Smokers usually have brown coloration on their teeth from filters or nicotine. Coffee drinkers have yellowed teeth because of how coffee affects their enamel. Plaque can also stain teeth by forming tartar. Once tartar has been created, you’ll need to see a dentist to get it removed. Aging and genetics may also play a part in a change in your tooth color. Several toothpaste brands claim to whiten teeth, and procedures exist that dentists may offer to clients to regain their bright smile.
Correcting Problems Before They Happen
These conditions can be easily prevented with a few pertinent visits to your family dentist. There’s a reason why family dentists always set up future appointments for you. It’s because these conditions require constant monitoring to spot them early enough. They happen so gradually that you won’t even be aware of the exact day that a cavity occurs or tartar forms. That’s why you should always keep your dental appointments. At Anderson Dental Lake Worth, we’re dedicated to offering family dental services that take your needs into account. How about you call us and schedule an appointment so you can avoid falling prey to these common dental problems in the future? Call us today!