It’s widely recommended you should visit your dentist for a check up twice a year, even if you carefully floss and brush your teeth twice a day. Having said that, most people struggle to find time for their dentist, as work, family and social life tend to get in the way of regular checks.

In case you’re wondering whether you’ve left it too long, here are a few clues you should schedule an appointment ASAP.

Bad gums

Swollen or inflamed gums can be caused by plaque which accumulates over time. It can also be caused by an almost invisible, sticking film containing bacteria. If your gums change colour and become redder, or you experience regular bleeding when brushing your teeth, you’re probably suffering from some sort of gum disease. Visit your dentist for advice.

Bad breath

Bad breath can be a strong, somewhat awkward sign you’re not brushing your teeth well or regularly enough. It may be that you have a lot of food bacteria around your teeth, which if unaddressed can cause tooth decay. Bad breath is also the first sign of gingivitis, which can lead to tooth loss and other serious health problems.

Dry mouth

A dry mouth can crop up for different reasons. For instance, it is a well known side effect of many prescription drugs. It can also naturally occur with age. On the other hand, it’s also a common sign of bacteria and oral disease.

Tooth spots

Tooth decay starts by enamel dissolving, and tends to materialise by white spots appearing on the surface of the tooth. Brown and black spots are also clues to decay, usually at an advanced stage. If you spot any of those – excuse the pun – you should definitely visit your dentist.

Having said that, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to spot decay at its very early stages. That’s why regular checkups, including X-rays, are so useful.

Ultimately, the best way to keep great teeth is prevention. So even if you don’t have any symptoms, make sure you visit your dentist regularly so they can spot and tackle oral health problems early. Why not come visit us today?