The best way to keep your gums and teeth healthy is by following a daily habit of brushing and flossing along with regular dental checkups from a Surrey dentist. There is another good reason to see your dentist regularly and something you may not realize is that they are trained to spot signs of non dental issues in your mouth during a exam. Diabetes, infections, oral cancer, HIV and stress are some of the conditions and diseases that exhibit signs inside your mouth. Here are 5 issues your dentist looks for during your checkup.
Loose teeth, dry mouth, receding, dry and bleeding gums are a few things that may indicate to your dentist that you might have diabetes. Poor immunity along with an inability to fight disease effectively also make gum line infections more challenging to heal in diabetics. Gingivitis and other gum disease could be the cause of bleeding gums but your dentist may advise you to see your primary care physician to rule diabetes out as the underlying cause.
Severe pain, swelling and redness around an affected area, or a surface that feels hot to the touch, fevers and draining from a wound or tooth all signal an infection is present in the mouth. Should your dentist see signs of an infection, it could even be a result of a recent dental procedure, will most likely prescribe an antibiotic to fight the infection. Infections can spread throughout the body including the lungs and heart which make it crucial to deal with them.
Most cases of oral cancer appear as red or white lesions on the floor of the mouth, palate or tongue and your dentist can spot these during your checkup. Some risk factors for oral cancer are heavy alcohol use, smoking and exposure to HPV, the human papillomavirus which can also cause cervical cancer. A dentist can perform an oral cancer test if they notice any of the warning signs.
Another disease the dentist might see that could be HIV, in children patients it might present as salivary gland swelling which can lead to dry mouth. This will cause them to be more prone to oral lesions and viruses such as herpes simplex, herpes zoster, HPV and oral candidiasis. In adults with HIV oral warts, lesions and white, purple, red or brown spots on the tongue or in the mouth or other infections could be indicators. The presence of any of these doesn’t mean a person has HIV but a follow up for testing is crucial.
A sign of stress might appear in a patient’s mouth through grinding of their teeth, and while it may appear to be less serious than other issues it shouldn’t be overlooked.
Visit a local dentist like those at Proactive Dental Studio for regular checkups.