What to Discuss With Your Dentist During Your Next Visit

When you visit your family dentist, you want to avoid making the mistake of just letting him or her clean your teeth and then leaving their office as quickly as possible. Your dentist is your partner in your overall oral health, so it's good to discuss any concerns you have about your mouth and teeth, or changes you've noticed inside your mouth. Note a few such issues you might discuss with your dentist during your next visit, so you know you're doing everything possible to protect your oral health.

Extreme Thirst

If you're always thirsty, this can be a symptom of various health issues, including diabetes. You might also be ingesting too much caffeine or other foods that cause you to become dehydrated, or you may be sweating more than usual and not drinking enough water to compensate. However, extreme thirst can also be a sign of dry mouth, which can be caused by certain toothpastes and mouthwashes, or simply due to genetics. Not having enough saliva in the mouth is not only uncomfortable, but it can also lead to tooth decay, so talk to your dentist if you notice that you always seem overly thirsty.

Sensitive Gums

Never assume that gums are supposed to be naturally sensitive, as your gums should be strong enough to withstand brushing and flossing and shouldn't be bothered when you eat most everyday foods, including seeds, nuts, toffee and the like. If your gums are swollen, red or at all painful, this can be a sign of gum disease, or it may mean that you're being too rough when you brush and floss. If gums begin to crack, this might increase your risk of an oral infection. To avoid this risk and ensure you're caring for your gums properly, talk to a dentist if any part of your mouth seems overly sensitive or painful.

Spots or Sores

Don't overlook spots or sores in your mouth, including everyday canker sores. Some spots may be the onset of oral cancer, whereas other sores may be oral infections or another recurring problem that a dentist should address. You might also be biting the inside of your cheeks or otherwise damaging your own mouth, causing those sores and irritation, and this can also increase your risk of oral infections. Talk to your dentist about these recurring issues so he or she can rule out oral cancer and treat those spots and sores accordingly.