A common query that patients might have is whether their dentists treat their own family and friends as well. The real ethical concern with regards to medical and dental practitioners treating their loved ones revolves around professional objectivity. Ideally, dentists should refrain from providing healthcare to their family and friends. It can be tricky for dental caregivers to make professional decisions about the people they care about, and it is best to ask your loved ones to get themselves treated by another dentist; it could even be a colleague.
There is, however, a set of advice that dentists prefer to keep not just for their patients but also pass on to their family and friends.
Any kind of dental problem, even if it’s a minor toothache or occasional bleeding gums, should not be ignored until it turns into something more complicated. Delaying treatment for a dental issue that may not bother you much at the time, can eventually lead to major oral health concerns like loss of a tooth, increased risk of heart disease that can occur as a result of advanced gum disease, etc. Seeing your dentist at least every six months should be everyone’s priority.
Being conscientious of what you consume is as essential for your oral health as it is for your general health. Try to keep foods high in sugar and carbohydrates to a minimum; remnants of such foods on your teeth for long periods contribute largely to tooth decay and development of cavities. Overconsumption of acidic foods and carbonated drinks can also lead to erosion of the tooth enamel over time; the enamel is the protective layer on the teeth, which, if eroded, can lead to problems like tooth sensitivity.
Individuals who are conscious about not just the health but also the appearance of their teeth should avoid foods that can lead to tooth staining. These include overconsumption of drinks like tea, coffee, wine, etc.
Bad breath is an unpleasant thing to encounter, whether it’s on yourself or on others. Medically referred to as halitosis, bad breath can usually be dealt with by brushing your teeth and keeping your mouth clean. However, bad breath can sometimes persist in spite of maintaining proper oral hygiene. Bad breath can be caused by certain foods that get stuck in the teeth and may be difficult to remove. More serious causes can include gum diseases, dry mouth syndrome, or tooth decay. Bad breath should be addressed professionally if it persists for a long time.
If your dentist cannot determine a cause for your halitosis and suggests it is not related to your mouth, it is advised to see your general health practitioner about the bad breath. Addressing the root of the problem is more important than masking it with mints and mouthwash.
A dental office receives all kinds of patients and can be a breeding ground for infections. Make sure the dentist you choose isn’t just an experienced and qualified one, but also boasts a spotless dental practice. Your dentist should be washing their hands and putting on a pair of fresh gloves before they see each patient. They should be using instruments that are either disposable or sterilized before each use as well. If you have any doubts or concerns about the dentist of your choice, do not hesitate to voice them out.