“Go to see your dentist twice a year”. Right?
Most dental insurances pay for 2 preventative cleanings and 2 exams per year. As a result, many individuals think that this is the standard frequency that they should be coming in to see their dentist.
But what most people don’t realize that the ‘twice a year recommendation’ originated from a Pepsodent supported commercial in the early 1950’s which involved tooth powder. Pepsodent had not even INVENTED their toothpaste yet! As an attempt to gain support from dentists, twice a year recommendation was born. And to make a long story short, insurance companies adopted the suggested intervals of ‘twice per year’, from an advertising campaign.
So, lets think about it. I’m quite sure that new insight has been gained in the last 50 -60 years of dental and medical research. Let’s acknowledge that most people went to their dentist decades ago only if problems arose, which often resulted in extractions. Back then it was also common to have ashtrays in medical offices! Yes, ashtrays! I know because my father was a physician at that time and he had 2 in his waiting room!
Now getting back to the 21st century…. Intimate connections between medical and dental conditions have been linked. New techniques for dental disease prevention have been adopted. Medicine and dentistry are truly different breeds now than in the 50’s when it was normal to think tooth loss naturally occurs as you age.
Do most people need twice per year cleanings? Some, and some may need only once per year although very infrequently! I know for myself, if I came in once per year, or even twice per year for dental cleanings, my dental condition would be far less healthy. And I’m a dentist! My own mother lost all her teeth in her 40’s, which puts me at high risk for periodontal or gum disease.
For many reasons, patients often need their teeth cleaned every 3 or 4 months.
When you consider frequency of auto services, many parameters are considered such as mileage, current car care, weather, and so on. Why would dental needs be any different when there are so many factors to consider?
Home dental hygiene care, food choices, susceptibility to dental diseases, and dental alignment are just a few things that contribute to how often one may need a cleaning. There are also many medical conditions that contribute for more frequented dental cleaning for optimum dental health. (Our Part 2 blog post will touch upon these)
Our Naperville dental team believes that every individual has different needs based on his/her particular situation. We take pride in helping you determine what interval may be best for you. Call Rosa to schedule an appointment 630-369-5225.