DR ASHRAF GAD: Contrary to popular belief, dental visits need not and should not be painful

Most people are raised to fear dentists. With threats about visits to the dental clinic and descriptions of dentists being butchers commonly being used as disciplinary tools for children. To make matters worse, many people are not raised on the proper way to take care of their teeth under the excuse that milk teeth will be replaced.

Contrary to popular belief, dental visits need not and should not be painful. If like most people you wait till you must have an emergency visit, then yes it will be natural to experience pain due to exposed nerves, heavy cleaning and other issues. However if you visit the dentist regularly, you can correct issues before they grow and will only need a light cleaning

Today there is a movement to improve dental experiences and eliminate pain in dental clinics. Social media provides a space to improve dentistry. Many psychological factors are being improved. How the clinic is set up frames the mood for patients, bright colours put patients at ease alongside calming music.

 Another key factor is the relationship between the dentist and the patient. The dentist needs to earn the trust of the patient through explaining the procedure and convincing them of the benefits. Over time trust builds up and the patient grows more relaxed with the dentist.

That said, what can you do to take proper care of your teeth and prevent pain at the dentist. The most important thing you can do is visit the dentist regularly, once every six months. When you visit the dentist, they will clean your teeth and remove tartar. Tartar causes several teeth issues such as tooth decay and gingival recession. Its build up is caused by saliva and it can’t be removed by just brushing teeth. You must visit a dentist for it to be removed. Visiting the dentist regularly will also allow for correcting issues before they grow into emergency complications.

Another commonly overlooked factor of dental health are the gums. Their health is of equal importance, if not more, to your dental health. To take care of your gums, try to massage them as you brush your teeth to improve blood flow and circulation. Make sure to floss as well.

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