5 Dental Symptoms that May be Warning Signs
At Prescott Dentistry, the leading holistic dental practice in Prescott, we care about your oral health, as well as your overall health. Here are five dental symptoms to pay attention to that might indicate something more serious is going on:
1. A Sore That Won’t Heal
Ulcers, sores, or tender areas in the mouth can be indicative of several different health conditions, not necessarily just oral health conditions. For example, non-healing sores in the mouth can sometimes be a sign of diabetes—diabetes prevents proper wound healing. Spots or sores in the mouth can also indicate oral cancer. These lesions can appear as white areas (known as leukoplakia) or as red lesions (erythroplakia). If you have a sore or ulcer in your mouth that doesn’t heal after a week or two, make an appointment to see your primary care doctor.
2. Bleeding or Swollen Gums
Healthy gum tissue shouldn’t bleed unless you are brushing too vigorously. Bleeding or swollen gums can be a sign of periodontal (gum) disease. According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control), almost half of all adults over the age of 30 have periodontitis, which is advanced gum disease. We check your gum tissue every time you come in for a checkup, but if you notice your gums are bleeding or swollen before your next appointment, give us a call right away. The good news is that early treatment can reverse the progression of gum disease.
3. Bad Breath
Bad breath, or halitosis, can be frustrating and embarrassing. It can be caused by certain foods, poor oral hygiene, gum disease, dry mouth, tobacco, odor-causing bacteria, not cleaning dentures properly, or it may be a symptom of another health condition. Chronic bad breath can be a symptom of dental cavities and gum disease. Check out these natural ways to fight bad breath, and if they don’t help, be sure to let us know.
Sensitivity in the teeth happens when dentin, the layer under the tooth enamel, is exposed. The hard enamel serves to protect the softer underlying layer of dentin. So when the enamel wears down, the dentin is exposed and sensitivity occurs. Gum recession, cavities, and root erosion can also cause the dentin to be exposed. Sensitivity is usually characterized by pain upon eating or drinking something hot or cold.
Toothaches can be difficult to diagnose because there can be many different causative factors—some of which are more serious, such as decay, a crack or chip in the tooth, gum disease, or an abscess. If you are experiencing persistent tooth pain, schedule an appointment with us right away. We can determine the root cause of your pain in order to know how to best treat it.
Give us a Call
Early detection is key for all of these dental symptoms. However, you don’t need to be experiencing any issues to see the dentist! Remember to come in for twice-yearly cleanings and exams even if nothing is wrong. Give us a call today to set up an appointment with one of our holistic dentists. At Prescott Dentistry, we are dedicated to compassionate service and biomimetic principles that result in lifelong oral health.