I absolutely can not explain to you how much I am terrified of the dentist. I don’t know why I’m afraid but I do know that I struggle to find my way to the dentists office let alone the chair. It’s a common fear and and for me it’s right up there with clowns, creepy kids and china dolls. Little Miss has always been good at brushing her teeth. Even more so now that her Montessori teacher gave her a tooth brushing timer. But I’m terrified I’m going to pass on this fear to her.
*** This is a collaborative post but don’t be like me and avoid the dentist. Look after your oral hygiene, your teeth and your gums. ***
I’ve written a few articles about fears lately. Passing our fears on to our children was one of the first pieces I wrote for the Irish Examiner and I expanded on the idea with tips and advice for the current issue of Easy Parenting. I haven’t exactly taken my own advice when it comes to the dentist but I do my best to shield my apprehension from Little Miss. She’s less worried about the dentist than the idea of having plaque on her teeth which I suppose is a good thing.
But I really need to start focusing her on routine dental visits. I’m embarrassed to say we still haven’t brought her to the dentist. I’m too terrified to make the appointment and will be forcing Papa Bear to take control of this one. I do, after all, appropriately discard of spiders for him.
The fact of the matter is that gum disease is more common than we think. Although it’s much less common in children, most adults have some form of gum disease, whether it’s in the early stages or it’s progressed and starting to have an impact on their everyday life. I actually hate to think about it since my last dental appointment was ten years ago.
So what has me freaked out about all of this? It’s quite simple really. And gross. Gum disease is an inflammation of the gumline which, if left untreated can spread to the bone that surrounds your teeth. Scary stuff. What can we do to prevent gum disease? So I’m kind of writing this for myself. I really need to heed these words and overcome this fear that has left me crippled.
Go To The Dentist – Just Go
No one enjoys visiting the dentist and having a fear of the dentist is extremely common. But visiting a dentist like Docklands Dental is vital if you want to keep on top of your oral health. Many people make the mistake of visiting a dentist when something is wrong i.e. a toothache or bleeding gums. When in fact, visiting the dentist is how we stop these problems from occurring in the first place! I know, I know, I know. Common sense and l that but if you’re like me, routine visits is terrifying.
When you visit your dentist, they’ll carry out a thorough dental examination and be able to establish if you need any treatments or identify any potential issues like gum disease. They’ll also check the health of your gums and in some cases, ask you to have some X-rays taken to get a closer look. It sounds so innocent and simple and it I really. When I look at the larger picture and at how much dentistry has evolved over the years, I really shouldn’t be afraid.
In many cases, your dentist will give your teeth a thorough cleaning, removing hardened plaque – also known as tartar – and descaling the surface of your teeth. It’s the bacteria build up in this plaque that will cause gum disease. Simple procedures like this tend to send shivers down my spine but prevention is better than cure, right?
Ask The Montessori Teacher For A Spare Timer
We’re told from an early age that we need to brush at least twice a day. But it’s incredible to believe that some people barely manage to do it once a day. We all lead busy lives, but if you want to take care of yourself and have good oral health then brushing twice a day and flossing once a day will be a big step towards perfect health.
The tooth brush timer Little Miss got from her teacher is fab and makes sure that she gets every tooth rather than a quick swipe. It’s a 60 second timer. You can nick one from the Yatzee box!
If you’re unsure if you’re brushing your teeth correctly, then your dentist will offer advice on the very best techniques to get you brushing like a pro.
Spot The Signs
Gum disease is very common, and many of us don’t realise that we have mild cases of it. But if you begin to suffer with any of the following symptoms, then speak to your dentist as soon as possible.
Red and swollen gums
Bleeding gums when you brush or floss your teeth
Persistent bad breath, even after you’ve brushed
A constant bad taste in your mouth
Visible swelling and pus oozing around a tooth or in an area of gum
Sharp or dull pains when you’re chewing on food
Overly sensitive teeth – to hot or cold food/drink!