Regular dentist visits are vital to maintaining good oral health. But if you're experiencing pain or any other dental issues, you should visit your dentist right away. Here are a few of the most common signs that you need to see a dentist.

1. You have persistent headaches.
Though people don't commonly associate headaches with dental problems, persistent headaches (especially in the morning) could actually be the result of teeth grinding in your sleep. If this is the case, your dentist can fit you with a mouthguard to help alleviate your headaches and prevent further tooth damage.

2. You have tooth pain.
It’s hard to ignore tooth pain, and you definitely shouldn't ignore it, as it can be more serious than you think. Even if the pain dissipates after a day or two, you should still go in to see your dentist, as the root cause your pain could still remain.

3. Your gums are swollen.
Inflamed gums occur when plaque that has hardened plaque accumulates under your gum line. Inflamed gums are often a sign of gingivitis or periodontitis (which can lead to tooth loss if not treated early).

4. You have white spots on your teeth.
These white spots are commonly the first signs of tooth decay, an infection that causes the enamel of a tooth to dissolve in response to acid-producing bacteria. Tooth decay often has no symptoms, especially in the early stages, which is why it is very important to visit your dentist regularly.

5. Your teeth are sensitive to hot and cold.
Sensitivity to hot and cold is a common sign of tooth decay. When tooth decay first occurs, it first affects the surface of your teeth. But as the decay advances, it makes its way into the center of the tooth where the nerves and blood vessels are located. This is when you start experiencing pain in response to hot and cold temperatures. If you’re experiencing sensitivity to hot and cold, you may have a cavity. Visit your dentist as soon as possible to fill the cavity and prevent even more serious problems.

6. You have bad breath.
Bad breath is an early sign of gingivitis, which, if left untreated, can lead to periodontitis, a more serious condition that can lead to tooth loss. If you brush regularly but still have bad breath, you should visit your dentist immediately.

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