When booking a routine check-up at Cheadle Dental or similar, you probably know what to expect if you have been before. If not, it is a relatively simple process, where the dentist will ask you to open your mouth. They will then look inside, using a small mirror and dental tools to gently move your mouth and tongue so they can see every part of your teeth and gums.
You may be shown where there are build-ups of plaque still lurking, or evidence that gum disease is starting to take hold. The dentist may also take X-rays to help them see if there are any cavities or other problems lurking beneath the surface.
However, your Cheadle dental check-up goes deeper than simply looking for cavities, gum disease and signs you are not brushing away the plaque efficiently enough. Your mouth can often provide a window to the rest of your body. It can also tell the dentist much about your personal hygiene habits and underlying health concerns. For example, if you have inflamed gums, it’s quite likely that other parts of your body will also be affected by inflammation or related symptoms.
Here are some more areas where your dentist could unearth some surprising facts and findings about your overall health and well-being.
Check For Heart Attacks And Disease
Cardiovascular disease can be extremely serious, especially if it is left unchecked for too long. It can often be signalled by periodontitis, which is a serious gum disease that leads to inflammation. Periodontitis also causes damage to bones and soft tissue around the teeth and leads to higher amounts of plaque building up inside the arteries. This could go on to trigger a heart attack, thanks to bacteria present in the plaque travelling to the heart and vascular system.
Diabetes Can Be Noticed During A Cheadle Dental Check-Up
This is another life-threatening condition that can sometimes be picked up during a routine dental check. Diabetes happens when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin to function correctly by itself. It can be carefully monitored and managed, but must always be taken very seriously. Symptoms of diabetes can include oral issues around bleeding gums and bad breath. Statistically, people with diabetes are more likely to experience problems with gum disease and poor oral hygiene. Therefore, dental check-ups for this group of people are especially important for wider health and well-being.
Osteoporosis Can Be Spotted In Teeth Earlier
This condition affects the bones, causing them to become brittle through loss of calcium and mass. It makes it far more likely that those living with it will break bones if they fall or have an accident. Osteoporosis is not always easy to diagnose until it is quite advanced, as there are not many obvious symptoms early on. However, having regular dental X-rays could help spot problems sooner, as the density of the teeth will not present as in someone who doesn’t have the disease. So, dental X-rays can tell us far more than whether or not our teeth have cavities and should not be overlooked.
Your Teeth Carry Your Stress
While we can all feel stressed at times, if we allow our worries, anxieties or lack of self-care to develop too far, this can result in physical problems that a dentist can pick up on during a routine check. For example, someone who is very stressed may start to grind their teeth, perhaps without realising it. A dentist can spot signs that this is happening and take steps to investigate why. Other issues could be bulimia or poor nutrition caused by unhealthy lifestyles or disordered thinking around eating and diet. Your dentist could spot worrying signs, such as damage from frequent vomiting, earlier than a doctor and take action to help as quickly as possible.
Other Conditions You Can See During Your Cheadle Dental Check-Up
Finally, dentists are trained to look for signs and symptoms of other diseases and conditions, such as kidney disease, which can present with a chronic dry mouth and bad breath. Or anaemia, which causes a loss of colour in the tongue, gums and inside the mouth from iron levels affecting red blood cells. Your dentist can refer you to a specialist for this, who can help you make changes to your diet and supplements to help combat the anaemia and rejuvenate your iron levels. Rheumatoid arthritis can cause swelling in the jaw or problems with the joints linking the jaw to the skull.
Contact Cheadle Dental Village Practice for a routine check-up and it could keep your whole body fit and healthy, not just your mouth, gums and teeth.