It's typically recommended that adults visit the dentist at least annually, if not twice per year, so that a person can get a thorough cleaning of their teeth. A dentist will also check for any signs of gum disease, receding gums, and the like.
While an annual or twice yearly dental visit is often sufficient for most dental patients, some people might have an increased risk of oral infections, tooth decay and other such serious concerns, and should see their dentist even more regularly. While only your dental professional can tell you when you should visit their office, note a few indicators that you might need to make an appointment more often than average.
Smoking kills the healthy tissue of the mouth and also contributes to tooth decay. It also increases a person's risk of oral cancer. A dentist can note if teeth need filling or even caps or crowns put over them, in order to protect them from the risk of decay from smoking; he or she will also check for signs of oral cancer, so that treatment can be started as soon as possible.
Weakened immune response
Even the cleanest mouth will still have lots of germs and bacteria clinging to the teeth and gums. Tiny cuts and scrapes in the mouth can then be vulnerable to infections, especially for those with a weakened immune response due to diabetes or another such health condition. This includes oral infections, throat infections, infections of the tonsils and similar conditions, which can then lead to tooth loss, or to having that infection travel to another part of the body. Be sure you tell your dentist about any medical condition you have that weakens the immune system, so he or she can ensure you're getting the regular checkups you need.
High risk of tooth decay or plaque
Only your dentist can tell you if you're at high risk of tooth decay or plaque, but consider if you eat lots of sugar or drink sugary beverages, or drink acidic sodas, coffee or tea. These all wear away at the enamel of the teeth, weakening them, as does citrus fruits and juices. Dry mouth also contributes to tooth decay, as saliva washes away food particles that would otherwise damage teeth. Be honest with your dentist about your diet and how much soda and other such beverages you consume, and ask him or her to check for signs of dry mouth, so you know if you need to visit their office more often than usual.
For more information, contact a local dental clinic.