There are many reasons that regular dentist visits are crucial, as they can go a long way in ensuring that your teeth and gums stay healthy. But did you know that your dentist may be able to detect other medical issues during a routine check-up? Here are some non-dental medical issues your dentist might discover.
As you get older the chance of being diagnosed with oral cancer becomes greater. During a routine visit, your dentist will be checking to see if there are any signs that oral cancer may be an issue, such as red and white spots on your gums. If you have been a lifelong smoker or smokeless tobacco user, then these habits will increase the chances of mouth cancer.
There are numerous oral signs that can point toward diabetes, and many of these can be detected by your dentist. Some of the most common oral symptoms that you may experience if you have diabetes is a receding of the gums and a continuously dry mouth. Although there are other infections and diseases that can cause similar symptoms, your dentist may recommend that you see a medical doctor if these signs are prominent.
Infections can be a major health concern if they become severe, and this is no different when it comes to your mouth and gums. One of the main reasons that infections are such a concern is due to the fact that they can spread to other areas of the body very easily. While you are in the chair, your dentist will check to see if there are any areas that appear to be infected, and if so, they may prescribe antibiotics to fight the infection.
When your body does not receive adequate nourishment it can lead to problems with your teeth and gums. There is an array of different oral signs that can be caused by a poor diet, such as loose teeth and bleeding gums. In fact, those individuals with eating disorders like bulimia often suffer from these symptoms. If your dentist feels that malnutrition is causing harm, they may ask you to see your family medical doctor.
There is no doubt that regular visits to the dentist are imperative in ensuring that your teeth and gums are well taken care of. And while your dentist can surely detect oral health issues, they may also notice non-dental medical issues, such as diabetes, malnutrition, and infection. This early detection can be critical in curing many of these problems, as the dentist may be able to prescribe medication to combat certain issues. In the end, it may be recommended that you see a medical doctor for further evaluation, but early detection is key.