How Often Should You Go to the Dentist?

How Often Should You Go to the Dentist?


You probably know that regular dental care is important. During orthodontic treatment, such as braces, it is especially important. Braces and other orthodontic appliances tend to trap food particles and bacteria, increasing your risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Regular dental cleanings are crucial to maintain your oral health when under orthodontic treatment. 

How often should you go to the dentist? How often should you go to the orthodontist? Learn the answers to these questions and more. 

Ideal Schedule for Routine Dental Visits

The recommended schedule for routine dental visits is every 6 months. The purpose of regular dental appointments is for preventive care, which includes teeth cleanings and oral evaluations. Professional cleanings remove plaque that is left behind after brushing and flossing that builds up on the teeth over time. This same schedule still applies when you have braces or other orthodontic appliances. Your dentist can clean around your orthodontic appliances to remove the excess plaque that builds up there. 

The First Dental Visit  

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children have their first dental visit around the age of one or within 6 months of the eruption of their first tooth. The first tooth typically erupts sometime between the age of 6 and 12 months, and as soon as a tooth is visible above the gums it is susceptible to decay. If your child has reached their first birthday and still doesn’t have any visible teeth, there is no cause for concern. But it is still a good idea to schedule a dental visit to assess their oral health.  

Frequency of Orthodontic Visits 

When you are in the active treatment phase of orthodontics, such as wearing braces or clear aligners, you will most likely go to the orthodontist for adjustments and monitoring every 4-6 weeks. Before your treatment begins, you may need periodic evaluations every 6 months until it is time for you to begin treatment. After treatment you may still visit the orthodontist on a yearly basis for monitoring. 

Age For First Orthodontic Evaluation

According to the American Association of Orthodontists, children should have an orthodontic evaluation by the age of 7. Most children will not need treatment at this age, but some children may. Early orthodontic treatment can guide growth and development of the jaw and encourage the permanent teeth to come in properly as the baby teeth are shed. Proper teeth and bite alignment also improve dental health and may improve breathing problems such as mouth breathing and sleep apnea. In many cases early treatment can reduce the extent of later treatment during the adolescent years. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Dental Care and Orthodontics 

Why do I still need to see a dentist while I am under orthodontic treatment?

Your orthodontist provides adjustments for the position of your teeth, but your dentist focuses on the health of your teeth. It is even more important to get regular dental cleanings and evaluations while you are in the active orthodontic treatment phase. 

How will my dentist clean my teeth with braces on?

It is no problem for your dentist to clean around your braces. They have the necessary tools to work around all different types of orthodontic appliances and still provide a thorough and complete cleaning. It may be necessary to remove the orthodontic wires prior to your cleaning appointment.

Schedule an Orthodontic Evaluation Today

If your child is at least 7 years old, or if they are younger and your dentist has referred you, schedule an evaluation with The Brace Place Orthodontics. After an assessment of your teeth and jaw, we can determine if and when it is time for treatment. We recommend regular dental visits every 6 months between visits to us. 

To learn more, contact us today and schedule an appointment.