How regular dental check-ups can improve your budget as well as your health

Regular dental check-ups are not just a recommendation; they are essential for saving money as well as maintaining good oral health. So, the last thing you want is to skip these appointments. Here's why...

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While you may be trying to save money and avoid unnecessary costs, skipping dental checkups could lead to significant issues and costly treatments in the long run. I’ve recently heard of friends and family members having to spend £££s on dentistry when problems have occurred.

Naturally, dental checkups may turn into more when your dentist notices an issue with your teeth. From managing cavities to removing plaque, appointments can cost a lot but they will improve your health AND save you money on future treatments to resolve bigger problems.

Here’s another thing to consider: often people are registered at dental practices that are quite far away from their home, as it’s sometimes difficult to get onto the waiting list for local surgeries. That means travelling to the appointment and the costs associated with that – fuel, tickets, parking. Surely it’s better for your wallet (and the environment) to do one journey for a check-up each year rather than letting a small issue become a big problem that requires multiple appointments and trips to the dentist to resolve?

I’m sure it’s obvious to everyone that avoiding those essential check-ups and treatments can get expensive in the long term. But what about dental extraction? Can removing a tooth save you money too? It sounds weird to say it but let’s delve into three scenarios where saying goodbye to a tooth becomes a necessity for a healthier smile.

When the tooth is impacted

An impacted tooth occurs when it fails to emerge fully through the gum line due to obstacles like other teeth, bone, or tissue. This can lead to pain, swelling, and even infection. Why does it happen? Sometimes, it’s simply a matter of genetics or lack of space in the jaw.

If left untreated, impacted teeth can cause damage to surrounding teeth and lead to serious oral health issues. Removing the impacted tooth is often the best solution to alleviate discomfort and prevent further complications.

When the tooth is infected

When a tooth becomes infected, the priority is to save it through procedures like root canal therapy. However, there are instances where the infection is too severe, and saving the tooth is not possible. 

Signs of an infected tooth include persistent pain, swelling, and sensitivity to hot or cold. In such cases, extraction may be necessary to prevent the spread of infection to other parts of the mouth and body.

When your mouth is overcrowded

An overcrowded mouth occurs when there isn’t enough space for all the teeth to align properly. This can lead to crooked teeth, difficulty chewing, and an increased risk of dental problems. Your dentist may recommend removing some teeth to create space and improve overall oral health. Wisdom teeth are commonly removed to prevent overcrowding and potential complications such as impaction or misalignment.

But what about the gap?

While some may worry about having a gap in their smile after tooth extraction, it’s essential to remember that there are options for replacing missing teeth. In cases where the mouth is overcrowded, the dentist may choose not to replace the extracted tooth, as it could worsen the crowding. However, in situations where a missing tooth affects chewing, speech, or aesthetics, dental implants offer a durable and natural-looking solution. Additionally, they help preserve jawbone density and prevent further tooth loss by stimulating bone growth.

While parting with a tooth may seem daunting, it’s often necessary for maintaining optimal oral health. Whether it’s due to impaction, infection, or overcrowding, removing a troublesome tooth can alleviate pain and prevent more significant problems down the road. Plus, sometimes getting rid of a tooth is the most cost-effective solution. And, if you don’t want it to come to that, sticking to those regular check-ups will improve both your budget and your health in the long term.

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Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in Lifestyle Promotion Studies and is trained in Personal Money Management. She loves to ‘get the look for less’ so regularly shares thrifty-living advice, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

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