1. See your dentist for an exam and cleaning at least three times annually. Periodontal disease is a symptomless silent killer.
2. Do not refuse digital dental X-rays.
3. Have your dentist use the intra-oral camera, Diagnodent, and transillumination devices to find problems that X-rays cannot. Early diagnosis leads to less expensive reconstruction.
4. Make sure your hygienist is doing a pocket measurement annually with computer software that compares your probing depths from year to year. Have annual fluoride treatment too.
5. For your crown, veneer and bridge work, use digital no-goop impressions for greater fit accuracy. This prevents future decay of your teeth.
6. Avoid bridges that are too long to replace missing teeth. ALWAYS use implants to replace the missing ones.
7. Don't be a hero and insist that your dentist save a bad tooth with a root canal, pin and crown. If the tooth does not have 5 millimeters of sound tooth structure 360 degrees above the gum line, the work will fail in fewer than five years. Go for the implant, which has a much better chance to last your lifetime.