When it comes to our smiles, we want to do everything we can to keep them healthy, beautiful, and strong. Many of us accomplish this by visiting a general dentistry center for regular exams and preventive cleanings every year. But, what if you should be visiting a dentist in Lakewood for other reasons besides routine care?
At Lakewood Dental Group, we are here to handle all of your oral health needs. Whether you need preventive, restorative, or cosmetic care, we have plenty of affordable options to suit your budget and lifestyle. Get started with our dentists in Dallas, TX, by calling (214) 827-1885 now.
In this blog post, we tell you five reasons to visit a dentist in Lakewood outside of routine care. Knowing when to get professional care could end up saving your smile, pocketbook, and overall health.
You Suddenly Develop Bad Breath
Typically, bad breath is the result of poor oral hygiene or a short-lived symptom of certain culinary delights (we’re looking at you, garlic and onions!). But, bad breath that persists even after thorough brushing and flossing may be indicative of something more serious at play.
For example, bad breath may be the result of advancing gum disease. Experts believe that roughly half of all people aged 30 and older have some form of gum disease. This is a shocking statistic, since gum disease is one of the leading causes of permanent tooth loss in adults.
Similarly, bad breath may be the result of other health conditions, such as infections in the mouth, lungs, or nose. Tobacco products and alcohol can also lead to bad breath, as well as certain medications (like antihistamines).
If you or your loved ones are noticing a change in the scent of your breath, then contact a dentist in Lakewood immediately. The sooner you address the issue, the sooner you can restore your oral health.
Visit a Dentist in Lakewood for Suspected Cavities
Cavities aren’t always easy to see with the naked eye (especially if you’re not a trained professional!). But, there are a few, subtle signs to look out for when it comes to spotting cavities early, such as:
- Pain when biting down
- Noticeable holes, pits, or grooves in the teeth
- Noticeable discoloration, like white, brown, or black spots on the teeth
- Sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures
- Sensitivity to sugary foods and beverages (ice cream is a big trigger!)
- Persistent or intermittent toothaches
Cavities do not go away on their own. So, it is important to visit a dentist in Lakewood as soon as you notice any of these symptoms. Otherwise, an untreated cavity can spread to neighboring teeth, eventually leading to significant dental decay. And once this happens, it is much harder to treat than a simple, single cavity.
You Notice a New Bump on Your Lips, Gums, or Tongue
Many of us have gotten the errant cold sore from time to time. But, what about other bumps or lesions in and around our mouths? Well, they may require the attention of a dentist in Lakewood.
A bump that develops on the lips may be a pimple, cold sore, or cancerous lesion. Similarly, bumps on the gums and tongue may be infections, tumors, cysts, or the beginning stages of oral cancer.
Ultimately, it is best not to jump to conclusions about new bumps in or around your mouth until you consult with an expert. A qualified dentist in Lakewood will be able to help you diagnose new lumps and bumps while helping you get the resources you need to treat them.
Visit a Dentist in Lakewood if Your Teeth Feel Sore or Sensitive
As we discussed earlier, tooth sensitivity may be a symptom of cavities. But, sore teeth may also be the result of:
- Receding gum tissue that exposes nerve-dense tooth roots
- Worn tooth enamel that leaves sensitive dentin vulnerable
- Dental damage, like cracks and fractures
- Sleep bruxism (teeth grinding)
- Recent dental work
A skilled dentist in Lakewood will be able to pinpoint the cause of the sensitivity and make recommendations on how to address it. Solutions may be as simple as:
- Filling a cavity
- Using dental bonding to strengthen weak tooth enamel and cover exposed tooth roots
- Repairing damaged teeth with custom dental restorations
- Personalized mouthguards to protect teeth from grinding and clenching at night
You’re Living with Jaw Pain
Our jaws are responsible for opening and closing our mouths, which helps us do everyday things like eat, speak, laugh, yawn, and smile. This means that our jaws are almost always working! So, it’s no wonder why nearly 10 million Americans are living with at least one symptom of a temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD).
The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the hinge joint found in our jaws. When significant trauma or dysfunction affects the TMJ, it can lead to devastating disorders that make daily activities much more difficult.
Luckily, there are plenty of simple treatments to address the causes and symptoms of TMDs, such as:
- Neuromuscular dentistry: This branch of dentistry aims to reteach our orofacial muscles and structures to work in synergy with each other. A dentist in Lakewood can accomplish this with exercises and electrical stimulation, among other therapies.
- Orthodontia: Oftentimes, malocclusions are to blame for painful TMDs. Indeed, crooked teeth and jaws can place undue stress on our already-strained TMJs, leading to worsening symptoms over time. Orthodontia (like braces and Invisalign®) can shift crooked teeth and jaws into better alignment.
- Custom oral appliances: Jaw pain is a very common symptom of bruxism, which is a condition in which one unintentionally grinds their teeth while sleeping. A personalized appliance that fits perfectly over the teeth can protect them from damage while also providing a much-needed cushion for the jaws.
A trained dentist in Lakewood will be able to help you determine the cause of TMDs and make treatment recommendations based on your unique needs.
Talk to a Dentist in Lakewood Today
These are just five reasons to visit a dentist in Lakewood outside of routine dental appointments. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms or have questions about other symptoms, then contact Lakewood Dental Group today. Patients can easily reach us online, or they may call our Dallas dental office at (214) 827-1885.