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Your Healthy Family: Do you know the dental risk category you're - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Your Healthy Family: Do you know the dental risk category you're in and why it's important?

If you are in the high risk category more than 2 visits a year for prevention could save you big money and help you avoid major procedures If you are in the high risk category more than 2 visits a year for prevention could save you big money and help you avoid major procedures
COLORADO SPRINGS -

We have all likely heard the recommendations from the American Dental Association to have our teeth cleaned and checked twice a year.  That is also generally what most dental insurance programs will pay for.

Dr. Fred Guerra with Guerra Dental in Colorado Springs says while the recommendation is a safe one for many people, as we age it’s important to know the different categories we can transition into.   

"The first thing that you should be discussing with your dentist is, what risk category am I in?  Low, moderate, or high risk for having or acquiring dental problems."

Understanding what category you are in, could save you money and time if you are in the low risk group, or could help you avoid problems with your teeth if they need more maintenance.

Dr. Guerra explains, "I see some patients once a year, and they are meticulous with their teeth.  And that’s probably all they need is once a year. I also see some people that need to come in every two months, because of either problems that they've had in the past with their teeth or the susceptibility to decay.  Also many seniors don’t have the ability to to manually get in and work on their teeth like they need to."

If the thought of 6 dental visits a year with insurance only covering 2 sounds expensive, Dr. Guerra says when you look at the long game and consider the cost of major dental work, the extra dollars make sense for the people in the high risk category.

"Folks that are coming in every other month for a hygiene visit, and application of fluoride to prevent decay, if we add that up those 6 visits over the year, it's probably less than the cost of a single crown, so I think it's a good preventative investment."

If you have any questions about what risk group you fall into and how many visits a year are appropriate, follow up with your dentist.

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