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Cancel Your Next Dentist Appointment

A new study says you may not need to go

Who doesn't dread going to the dentist? Sure, you might like the squeaky-clean feeling of polished teeth right after your appointment, but you only go twice a year because dentists make you feel like your teeth will fall out, otherwise.

Well, good news: A new study published in "The Journal of Dental Research" reports that if you go in for a cleaning once per year -- instead of twice, as dentists have recommended for decades -- your teeth won't be any less healthy.

Of course, there's a catch. You can skip the second cleaning if you have a healthy set of chompers. But if you have certain risk factors for periodontal disease -- like you're a smoker or diabetic -- stick with the twice-a-year check-ups.

"The take-away is not that you don't need to see the dentist, it's that each patient needs to be treated in their own individual way," said Dr. William V. Giannobile, the study's lead author.


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