Dr. Kim: Getting To The Root Cause
Although my goal is always to help patients feel comfortable, I’ve noticed that some patients get upset when we ask about their medical history. “Why do you need to know THAT?” they will sometimes ask. Or they might say, “I filled this out LAST YEAR…why do I have to do it again?” For those of you who may have been my patient for a while, you know that our medical history forms are very comprehensive.
But there is a very, very good reason for that: we care.
It is my belief that every health issue has a root cause. In other words, if a patient has a receding gum line, even if it is just a very minor recession, we want to know why. Has something changed about their medications? Are they sleeping less? Has their diet changed? Has their environment changed? Did they change their daily brushing or flossing regiment?
If the patient is starting to experience jaw pain or facial pain, why is that happening? Did they have an injury? Have their teeth worn out from grinding? Have they had years of untreated misalignment?
If a patient is more tired than usual, is it related to their quality of sleep? Is their airway affected somehow while they sleep? If so, why?
The human body is so dynamic. Usually there are many causes leading to health issues and I believe it is our duty to understand our patients as a whole, in order to properly diagnose and treat them. Your teeth are meant to last your entire life, and it is our responsibility to help you do just that.