Newswise — CHICAGO- Like our treasured state parks or a beloved, family heirloom, a person’s natural teeth are worth saving! To help people appreciate their natural teeth and increase awareness about the importance of practicing good oral hygiene, the American Association of Endodontists (AAE), a group of specially advanced dentists, teamed up with Illinois state Rep. Sam Yingling, D-Grayslake, to proclaim the month of May as Save Your Tooth Month throughout the state.
The AAE worked with Yingling to sponsor HR0386 declaring May as Save Your Tooth Month in Illinois. The measure was filed May 16 and is expected to be adopted by the end of the state’s legislative session.
"It’s important for the public to value their natural, beautiful smiles and teeth,” said AAE President, Dr. Keith V. Krell. “Creating an awareness month can help draw attention to the importance of taking care of one’s mouth and reassure the public that treatment for issues that affect the insides of the teeth are quite easy, painless and effective when done by an endodontist. The Association is grateful for Rep. Yingling’s support, and we look forward to this measure being approved.”
According to a survey recently conducted by the AAE, 61 percent of women feel strongly that saving their natural teeth helps them feel better about themselves compared to 51 percent of men. Twenty-four percent of millennials ranked teeth as the No. 1 thing they would save or maintain about their body compared to baby boomers’ preference for saving their eyesight (37 percent). More than 95 percent of people say it’s important to save your natural teeth.
Endodontic treatment is necessary when the pulp, the soft tissue inside the root canal, becomes inflamed or infected. The inflammation or infection can have a variety of causes: deep decay repeated dental procedures on the tooth or a crack or chip in the tooth. In addition, an injury to a tooth may cause pulp damage even if the tooth has no visible chips or cracks.
Nothing looks, feels or functions like your natural tooth. Regular brushing and flossing, along with six-month check-ups from your dentist, can help you keep your teeth for a lifetime. Here are some more tips for saving your teeth:
- When given a choice between tooth extraction and root canal treatment, always opt for a root canal. No denture, bridge or implant will look, feel and function as well as a natural tooth.
- Act immediately when you experience symptoms of swelling or pain. Most endodontists can accommodate emergency cases, even on weekends, ensuring you’ll be seen quickly.
- If your dentist recommends tooth extraction, ask whether the root canal is an option.
- If you’re told root canal is not an option, ask why and request a referral to an endodontist or use the AAE's Find My Endodontist search tool to find a practice near you.
About the American Association of Endodontists
The American Association of Endodontists, headquartered in Chicago, Ill., represents more than 8,000 members worldwide. Endodontics is one of nine dental specialties formally recognized by the American Dental Association. The AAE, founded in 1943, is dedicated to excellence in the art and science of endodontics and to the highest standard of patient care. The Association inspires its members to pursue professional advancement and personal fulfillment through education, research, advocacy, leadership, communication and service. For more information about the AAE, visit the Association’s website at aae.org.