Regular dental examinations can prevent most dental issues. 100 million Americans, however, fail to see a dentist each year.

Whether dental phobia, lack of insurance, a busy schedule or faith in an electronic toothbrush is keeping you from the dentist, professional dental care should not be avoided for an extended period of time. Below are 5 signs that it’s time to see a dentist.

1) Toothache

Toothache pain can range from tolerable to excruciating. When should you see a dentist for tooth pain? Constant pain is a sign that you should see a dentist not next year, not next month but as soon as possible. Inflammation in a tooth due to a cavity, infection or a variety of other reasons is unlikely to heal on its own. Don’t wait until the pain is unbearable to seek out professional help.

2) Dry Mouth

Feeling constantly parched? When your mouth stops producing enough saliva, you are susceptible to infection and tooth decay. Saliva neutralizes acids, helps digest food and influences your sense of taste. An insufficient amount can obstruct these benefits. A dentist can help you identify the cause of your dry mouth and recommend solutions to this problem.

3) Irritated Gums

If you see red when brushing your teeth, you’re either brushing too aggressively or there is something wrong with your gum tissue. Advanced gum disease, also known as periodontitis, affects 47.2% of adultsover 30 in the United States.

Occasional bleeding of the gums is usually nothing to worry about, but constant bleeding could be a sign of a more serious issue. Look out for other warning signs of gum disease like redness, swelling and loose permanent teeth.

4) Bad Breath

Bad breath is expected after a garlicky meal or cup of coffee. But, if it persists after brushing and flossing, there is probably something else going on. Bad breath could be a sign of gum disease, a dental cavity or other medical condition. Stop bad breath in its tracks by visiting your dentist and ruling out any serious issues.

5) Jaw Pain

Did you know that jaw pain can be caused by a dental problem? If you’re suffering from jaw pain, you might be grinding your teeth while sleeping without even knowing it.

It’s also possible that a cavity is triggering jaw pain. Bacteria from the cavity can travel to the root of the tooth, causing pain in the jaw, and eventually lead to an abscessed tooth if left untreated. The pain may subside, but if and when it returns, make an appointment to see a professional and get the help you need.

Finding time to go to the dentist isn’t always easy, especially with a jampacked schedule, but it’s necessary. Preventative check-ups and cleanings can save you from physical and financial pain in the long run.


Dr. Daniel Hall is an expert when it comes to your children’s oral health, and he is eager to offer them the best services in a friendly and warm environment, at the Sunray Pediatric Dentistry clinic.

Contact us to give your child the oral care he or she deserves.

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