Our teeth are so dependable we forget about them. Sure, enamel is the hardest tissue in the human body, and it protects our teeth. Sure, a little daily care and odds are you’ll have all your teeth the rest of your life.
It makes them easy to take for granted.
At Implant Dentistry of Florida, Drs. Brown and Vaughn recommend that all of our patients come see us every six months for their professional cleanings and exams. This allows us to stay ahead of issues such as gum disease and decay. But try as we might, it’s hard to get everyone to see the value in coming in twice every year.
And it appears those people aren’t alone, at least according to statistics from the American Dental Association. Here are some scary numbers from the folks at ADA.
How often do people visit their dentist?
Everyone knows six months is the goal with dental visits. This is about the time it takes for tartar to start building up in the typical places in the mouth. At six months we can remove it before it starts moving under the gumline.
So, how many people adhere to those guidelines? The ADA says that in 2014, 52.3% of adults visited their dentist every six months. 15.4% visited once a year, and 11% visited every two to three years. Believe it or not, 21.3% said they had not visited the dentist in the last five years. Anyone up for a little root scaling and root planing?
Why do people avoid the dentist?
The top reasons people gave for avoiding the dentist were cost, fear of the dentist (come on, Dr. Brown and Dr. Vaughn are nice guys!), inability to find a convenient location or a convenient appointment time (that sounds shaky).
How many people have untreated caries/decay in the U.S.?
Between 2011-2014, an estimated 18.2% of children ages 5-18 had untreated decay. For adults ages 19-64 this rose to over a quarter, 26.5%. Seniors over 65 reported 16.7% of untreated caries/cavities. Ouch. Hello root canal!
How many people have untreated gum disease in the U.S.?
The ADA estimates that over 47% of adults over the age of 30 have untreated periodontal disease. Hello dentures!
The crime in these statistics is that they show how dental problems like gum disease start. If you simply brush twice daily and floss once, and if you see us twice each year for our professional cleanings and exams most people never have serious dental problems.
Is it time for your next appointment with the team at Implant Dentistry of Florida? Call us at (321) 372-7700.