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Most people assume that no news is good news. They would rather not know the condition of their teeth and gums, assuming that not having symptoms means not having problems. This is not true. Dental diseases manifest over time. Tooth decay is insidious and ongoing. While regular brushing and flossing at home are important steps to healthy teeth, nothing substitutes for professional inspection and advice. A licensed dentist undergoes four years of graduate training to earn a degree as either a Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) or a Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD). Dentists are skilled diagnosticians who are required to update their training by undergoing continuing education. Like other doctors, they have a grounding in scientific method. They are able to examine a patient's dental status and make reasonable estimates on expected outcomes. A lay person does not have the same background or experience to be able to diagnose his or her own teeth. While some people may complain of pain associated with dental care, this is mostly due to poor dental health at the time of the visit. Healthy teeth should not experience pain when examined, even with the pointed sickle probe that dentists employ. Any sensitivity to probing is a sign that there is an underlying condition that requires investigation. Decay occurs when the tooth enamel, the hard outer covering, demineralizes. Naturally occurring bacteria produce acids that break down the tooth's integrity. Brushing, flossing, and the use of antiseptic mouthwashes, will remove bacteria, but it quickly becomes replaced. Dental decay is a fact of life, but this does not mean it cannot be treated. Dental medicine has devised a number of preventive treatments and strategies to deal with tooth decay. Routine dental care can relieve tooth and gum sensitivity, making successive dental visits less painful. A dentist will monitor any troubling areas he or she observes in a patient's mouth and devise a plan of treatment to prevent them from advancing. Using x-rays, a dentist can detect decay that is not readily visible to his or her professional eye. If a dentist, who spends a career examining teeth directly, needs x-rays to properly diagnose tooth decay, a patient certainly cannot do this for his or herself. By establishing an ongoing, professional relationship with a dentist, people can work to ensure their teeth will last a lifetime. Dental appointments are nothing to dread or postpone.

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Q: The Importance Of Preventative Dental Care?
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What is an example of preventative care?

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Yes. Doctors do have dental care.

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