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Sometimes it’s just too convenient to put off going to the dentist. I have yet to across someone who enjoys the experience of having sharp instruments and drills inserted into their mouths. Moreover, there is always the issue of paying the costly bill.

Yet, if you neglect visit to the dentist for regular dental checkups and cleaning, it may result in unpleasant consequences. It may not be one of your favorite activities, but it’s an essential part of maintaining your oral health.

Here are some of the worst outcomes that are likely to occur if you don’t see the dentist regularly.

Loss of teeth

Missing Teeth

Credit: Shineorthodontics

Losing your teeth is one of the most serious negative consequences if you postpone your visit to the dentist. You can lose your teeth due to advanced periodontal gum disease or tooth decay if you ignore warning signs and avoid regular checkups.  This can contribute to embarrassing gaps in your mouth. Almost all problems affecting the teeth and gums can be treated, if they are addressed in a timely manner.

Periodontal gum disease

Periodontal gum disease doesn’t occur overnight, but results from long term neglect of the teeth and gums. It is a widespread problem that brings many harmful effects on your health. Symptoms such as painful or bleeding gums can lead to gum disease, and if left untreated can also contribute to painful inflammation and even losing your teeth. Studies also suggest that people with gum disease are more likely to suffer from heart disease and other fatal health issues.

Painful toothaches

We have a habit of ignoring problems like pain when chewing or sensitivity to hot or cold foods unless it is severe. If cause of the pain is not addressed on time, it could get worse over time. While self-medications (read using pain killers) can provide relief, it does not address the real issue. Dental problems can become painful and can result in chronic toothache if they remain untreated.

Risk of developing other serious diseases

heart disease

Credit: Cochraneohg

Ongoing research has shown that there is increasing evidence linking tooth decay and gum disease with other health issues, including heart disease, diabetes, dementia and certain type of cancer. One of the many reasons to keep mouth clean is to prevent plaque and bacteria build up in the gums that eventually spread to other areas of the body. While the health professionals are researching on these issues to determine the cause of the links, it’s always advisable to take good care of your oral hygiene nevertheless.

Stained teeth

There are many factors that can cause your teeth to get stained. Smoking, drinking coffee, eating certain foods can alter the natural color of your teeth. While brushing and flossing regularly can help to an extent, a professional cleaning of your teeth by a dental professional is much more thorough.

Bad breathe

Not seeing your dentist for regular cleaning can also lead to halitosis, or bad breathe. This can impact your personal and professionals life and can cause embarrassment in all events. Untreated dental problems can develop unpleasant odor in your breath and seeing your dentist immediately is the only way to get rid of it.

More costly dental procedures in the future

Expensive dental treatments

Credit: Pik

You cannot hold off visit to the dentist for long. When you start getting severe toothache, you will be motivated enough to finally dial the number and make an appointment. The treatments are not just expensive but you’re likely to undergo more painful procedures. For example, filling a cavity may require just one visit and the treatment is relatively inexpensive. If you wait until you need a root canal, you may be required to visit the dental office multiple times and undergo long and painful process.

Seeing a dentist at least twice a year can help detect problems in the early stages, which makes your visits simple and pain free. Postponing appointments with the dentist however may end up bringing more pain and large bills.