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Seeing your dentist twice a year for exams is necessary to keep tooth decay and gum disease from invading your smile. Removing tartar is something only your dentist can do using professional tools. Along with brushing your teeth at least twice a day for two minutes, and flossing daily will help you maintain a healthy smile.

However, sometimes you may notice unusual activity, or there are other circumstances which might necessitate seeing your dentist in between visits. Let’s look at why you might want to call your dental team.

· Pain: Any swelling or pain in the neck, mouth, or face.
· Gums: Bleeding, puffy gums that indicate inflammation.
· Tooth problems: Missing teeth or staining on the teeth that make you embarrassed to smile.
· Previous dental work: Any dental work in the past can develop issues, so if a fillings, implant, denture or crown is acting up, see your dentist.
· Medical conditions: A long-term disease like heart disease, diabetes, or HIV or eating disorders means you should see your dentist to keep an eye out for problems.
· Pregnancy: Your mouth changes when you are pregnant, making you more vulnerable to issues like gum disease.
· Issues: If it hurts to chew or swallow, stay on a soft food or liquid diet until your dentist can check it out.
· Dry mouth: Feeling perpetually thirsty, or having a dry mouth is not normal.
· Tobacco use: Regularly using tobacco (smoking, chewing, etc.) exposes you to higher oral risks.
· Jaw pain: Chronic pain when you open or close your mouth, chew, or wake up after sleeping should be addressed.
· Oral Lesions: Sores in the mouth lasting ten or more days may need to be checked out.

For questions or concerns about your smile, please call 205-884-2370 and speak to a member of our dental team. Our dentist, Dr. Scott Barnett at Pell City Dental Center PC in Pell City, Alabama looks forward to helping you with all your oral care needs.