It was once thought that all individuals would eventually lose their teeth from “old age.” Twenty-first century dentistry has proven that through proper preventive care, people can keep all of their teeth until the day they die. So what is preventative care? Preventative care involves individuals taking an active role in their overall health. Dr. Miller recommends patients have a professional cleaning and check-up exam a minimum of twice a year. The reason for bi-annual visits is to not only help patients keep their teeth clean and healthy, but also to catch small problems before they become bigger.
Radiographs (X-Rays): A full series of dental radiographs is recommended a minimum of every 7 years. A full series of dental x-rays typically consists of bitewing x-rays to check for cavities between the teeth, and periapical x-rays of the teeth, which show the roots of the teeth and supporting boney structures. Bitewing x-rays alone are recommended every 12 to 18 months (depending on active decay and previous dental history) to check for cavities between the teeth. Surface cavities can usually be seen visually, but small cavities that develop from inadequate flossing need to be seen with bitewing x-rays.
Fluoride: Why is Fluoride so beneficial to teeth? The outer surfaces of teeth are made up of enamel which is the strongest substance in the body. The only thing that can break down enamel is acid. Acid attacks to the teeth can occur from foods and drinks which are acidic by nature, or from bacteria that convert sugars to acid. No matter how it happens, teeth are constantly under attack from acid. Fluoride acts to neutralize the acid within the enamel structure. For this reason, Dr. Miller does recommend fluoride treatments for all of his patients.