Modern life is busy – busy enough that it is often easy to let self-care fall by the wayside. It is common to put off tooth cleaning and other essential dental care for a future date when there will be money and time. However, there are a few signs that you need immediate dental care.
Many people do not recognize a dental emergency. However, the latest dental technology at Columbia River Dentistry’s Gresham dentist office is here to help. They offer both routine and emergency care for the whole family.
If you notice any of these signs, you need our immediate dental diagnostics and treatment.
1. Bleeding gums
Do you notice bloody streaks or a pink tinge in the sink after brushing or flossing? Do you occasionally taste blood in your mouth? If so, it may be a sign that you are developing gum disease. It also may be a sign that you have an infection of the gums, which is dangerous for both your teeth and your general health.
Bleeding, redness or swelling in your gums can indicate that you have an infection that will lead to loss of teeth if left untreated. Even worse, the infection can spread quickly to other parts of your body and cause serious illness or even death if it is left without treatment. Your dentist can help to identify and treat gum disease and infections before they lead to more serious issues.
2. A change in tooth position
Did you look at a photo or in the mirror one day and notice that your teeth are in a slightly different place? It may not be your imagination. Shifting teeth are often a sign that your teeth are becoming looser.
Your adult teeth are meant to last for your entire life in the same position. If they are loose or gradually moving, this is a sign that they are no longer anchored as well as they should be. This often means that you are losing gum or even losing some of the bone that holds your teeth in place. This can be prevented if caught and treated early.
If that small gap in your teeth is getting wider or your teeth look a little more crooked than before, head to a dentist immediately. We can help you to keep your beautiful smile for a lifetime.
3. Dry mouth
Saliva is not there just for our comfort. It plays an important role in the health of your gums, teeth, and entire mouth. Saliva helps to flush away food as well as to neutralize acids before they can damage your teeth. If you often have a dry mouth, there is a good chance that your teeth and gums are decaying faster than they otherwise would.
In addition, a dry mouth can be a symptom of more serious disease. An excessively dry mouth can be a sign of other health issues such as diabetes or autoimmune disease. It should never be ignored. Your dentist can help to figure out what is causing your dry mouth so it can be treated before your dental or physical health are affected.
4. A receding gum line
Receding gums can be a normal part of aging. However, it also can be a sign that something is very wrong. Although many elderly people have some mild receding of the gums, they should not change noticeably until later middle age.
Receding gums can cause a variety of dental problems. They can increase the risk of tooth decay, which puts you at higher risk of cavities, and even tooth loss. Receding gums also can lead to immense pain if the sensitive roots of your teeth are exposed.
Although some gum loss is normal as you near old age, it should always be taken seriously. Healthy gums are essential to good dental health. Your gums should be full enough to securely hold your teeth in their place throughout your lifetime. There are many treatments that can help to prevent further gum loss.
5. Sore areas
Many people get canker sores and other common lesions in their mouth. These can be painful, but they usually resolve quickly without any treatment. However, other lesions are can be a warning sign that something is wrong.
People who get painful white patches in their mouth may have an infection called candidiasis. Although this infection is easily treated, it can be a sign of diabetes or an immune deficiency. In addition, some sore or discolored patches may actually be a precancerous or cancerous lesion. You may be in need of not just dental care, but medical care as well.
If you have sore areas or actual sores in your mouth, a dentist can help to identify and treat the cause. These conditions will often progress until they are treated, leaving a lot of pain and damage in their wake. In addition, a dentist will carefully check your mouth for signs of pre-cancer at every visit, ensuring that any abnormalities are quickly identified. This basic screening is an important part of primary care.
6. Tooth pain
This should be an obvious warning sign, but many people, unfortunately, ignore pain and sensitivity in their teeth. While many popular remedies were used before dental care was widely available, we no longer have to rely on these.
Tooth pain is never normal or okay. It can be a sign of decay, cavities, and cracks or chips in enamel. In extreme cases, it can even be a sign of an infection. These all can lead to further issues if left untreated.
Although there are many home remedies for dental pain, none of them address the underlying issue. It is important to get high-quality dental care to treat the cause of the pain. This will end your suffering while ensuring that your teeth remain as healthy as possible.
If you have any of these six warning signs, it is time to get dental care immediately. But always remember that prevention is definitely better than cure. Make sure to show up on every dentist appointment and take care of your pearly whites religiously.