Reasons to See Your Dentist Beyond Your Teeth

Reasons to See Your DentistThe importance of visiting your dentist regularly is common knowledge. Only a dentist or dental hygienist can remove hardened plaque from beneath the gum line and detect gum disease and tooth decay before it leads to worse problems. However, not many people know that there are several reasons to see your dentist beyond the health and beauty of your smile.

Bad Breath

While everyone has bad breath from time to time, some people have chronic bad breath (also called halitosis) that does not improve with regular brushing and flossing. When you express this concern to Dr. Fiss, he can determine whether or not you have halitosis, help rule out possible causes, and create a plan of treatment. Dr. Fiss and his staff recently completed advanced training in the early detection, treatment, and elimination of halitosis to provide patients with optimal care.

Oral Cancer Screening

Oral cancer has become the sixth leading cancer among men, and one person in America dies from the disease every hour. However, it is one of the few cancers in which the rate of detection is increasing among young adults, which is likely thanks to regular screenings at the dentist. Dr. Fiss has always conducted annual comprehensive oral cancer screenings for all of his patients and has more recently incorporated the VELscope System, which is the latest technology available for oral cancer screening.

Sleep Apnea

While snoring is very common and typically harmless, it can lead to a more serious and potentially fatal condition called obstructive sleep apnea. With typical snoring, the airway is partially blocked as the throat muscles intermittently relax. This can worsen and cause you to stop breathing during sleep. Sleep apnea increases the risk for heart attacks, strokes, heartburn, and depression. Dr. Fiss can treat sleep apnea and snoring with a device called the Thornton Adjustable Positioner (TAP) that positions the lower jaw into a forward position and prevents blockage of the airway during sleep.


Many people experience chronic facial pain in the jaw or ears and have chronic headaches. These are sometimes caused by the joints responsible for moving your jaw, the temporomandibular (TM) joints. According to the Delta Dental Plans Association, your description of symptoms combined with an examination of the face and jaw provides useful information for diagnosing temporomandibular disorders (TMD, or TMJ syndrome) in about 90 percent of cases. Dr. Fiss may also request specialized X-rays to see what type of treatment is needed, or he may refer you to a specialist.

If you have any symptoms related to the above concerns, take note of how often they occur and schedule an appointment with Dr. Fiss. He will review your health history and provide a plan of action to improve your quality of life.

You can schedule an appointment with Dr. Fiss today by calling (312) 642-6631 or by filling out our online contact form.