Most people would think to give their dentist a call for situations like a toothache or a broken crown. But there are many less obvious reasons you should reach out to your dentist. Here are six of them.

1. Your toothbrush is bloody

While blood on a toothbrush (or in the sink, or when you floss) isn’t an uncommon sight, it’s also not normal. It’s a sign of gum disease, and if your gums bleed from brushing, flossing, or even just eating, you likely have gum disease. Most of the time, it’s still treatable at the “bloody toothbrush” phase—but you need to let your dentist know.

2. You have persistent dry mouth

Xerostomia, or dry mouth, is a common but sometimes overlooked condition where someone doesn’t produce enough saliva. It’s a discomfort for sure and can also lead to bad breath, dental disease, and other issues. Dentists have a lot of experience with patients suffering from dry mouth, so if it’s happening to you, see your dentist.

3. You’re thinking about other health risks

From cognitive impairment and sleep deprivation to mental health and heart disease, oral health can have a profound effect on overall health. In that sense, going for regular dental check-ups safeguards not only your teeth and gums; it can also keep many other health issues from happening before they start.

4. You have strange headaches

TMJ disorders—a type of temporomandibular disorder, or TMD—commonly cause pain in the jaw and surrounding areas, but another side effect is persistent headaches. If you’re experiencing face, cheek, and head pain and you’re unsure of the cause, it could be TMJ. Treatment options vary; your dentist will suggest treatment or refer you to a specialist.

5. You’re having sleep issues

Say what? Oral health impacts sleep, too? It does, and in a multitude of ways. Snoring and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) are huge sleep disruptors that not only lead to the expected effect of fatigue, but can impact more personal aspects of life, too. Untreated OSA can interfere with hormone production for both men and women, leading many to experience sexual dysfunction. The good news is that your dentist may be able to help with snoring and OSA.

6. You’re pregnant

Nearly 60% to 75% of pregnant women have gingivitis, an early stage of periodontal disease, a prevalence that could be due to pregnancy hormones. But if the disease progresses, it can increase the chances of numerous pregnancy outcomes, including a premature delivery, low birth weight baby, pre-eclampsia, pregnancy tumors, loose teeth, mouth dryness, dental erosions, and more. If you’re pregnant, make a point to visit your dentist early on so you can discuss your risks and the interventions that can help reduce them.

If you have a periodontal/dental implant condition, it’s important to receive treatment before it becomes a dental emergency. At the Havrilla Center for Periodontics & Dental Implants located in Broomall, PA, attending to your comfort and concerns is our first priority.  Our mission is to provide you with the highest quality of periodontal and dental implant care in a warm and friendly environment.

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