What to Expect from Your Dental Checkup

Posted on: June 29, 2016

Dental CheckupThe dental checkup is one of your most powerful weapons if you are trying to offset gum disease, keep your teeth in optimal condition, and make sure that you get the maximum longevity from your teeth themselves. This is because a dental check-up is our way of catching problems before they become serious, and often before they begin so that we can proactively take care of them and provide you with solutions.

If you have visited a dentist recently, one of the things you are sure to have heard is that you should schedule a dental checkup a minimum of once a year, and a regular maintenance visit at least once every 6 months. This is to make sure that we are catching any problems during your dental check-up, and are working to ensure that your teeth are extremely clean and free of plaque so that you can go for longer periods of time without any risk of decay or gum disease.  Very often we get the question from our patients, what exactly we do during these visits.

What to Expect from Your Dentist Appointment 

The very first thing we do when you come in for a dental checkup is to make sure that any dental forms, x-rays, or other diagnostic devices are completely up to date. Typically, we will take dental x-rays, and dental panoramic x-rays, once every five years or so to make sure that we are checking on the roots of the teeth, the overall health of the jaw bone, and ensuring that everything is in perfect working order. If we find that there is a problem, we may need to take x-rays in between, but in most cases, the x-rays are only sporadically required as a maintenance tool.  Once we have your x-rays on file, your routine maintenance has become far more mundane, as the principle task is to make sure we are performing a comprehensive examination and also providing your teeth with a deep dental professional cleaning.

During your dental checkup, one of the things we are going to be checking for is to see if there are any soft spots in the enamel of your teeth. We do this by probing the teeth with one of our dental devices and seeing if an area of the tooth is softer than the rest of the tooth. We do this to look for decay that may have set deep into the tooth. If we find that there is significant decay on a particular area of the tooth, we will recommend that you have the decay cleaned out and have a filling placed.  If there are no significant soft spots, we will move to the cleaning as part of your regular dental checkup.

During the cleaning process, we will get into all of those hard-to-reach places that a toothbrush does not have very much luck with it. These places are typically very close to the gum line, and require the use of special tools to remove the plaque build up situated there. If the plaque that is just under the gum line is not properly removed it can lead to infections and gum disease.

We will identify any oral health challenges you are facing or any areas where your teeth have become damaged.  We can then treat you so that your oral health can return to optimal levels.

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