As summer ends, we want to remind you to schedule a dental exam! Though you know brushing and flossing are essential, so are regular and routine dental exams. During your exam, we do more than clean your teeth… We also make sure your oral health is in check! You may wonder, if you brush and floss regularly, why do you need to visit the dentist every six months?
During your dental exam, we examine the health of your gums and search for any indications of oral cancer, bad breath, plaque, tartar, gum disease, or cavities. We may also ask you to bite down so we can see your bite and the movement of your jaw. Your dentist will also check for signs of gum disease, loose or damaged teeth, fillings, and any dental appliances you may have.
We may recommend x-rays depending on your age, risks of disease, or symptoms. X-rays help us to diagnose problems that we can’t see on the surface such as impacted teeth, cysts, bone decay, and swelling. Our x-ray machines emit virtually no radiation, but as a precaution, we continue to insist patients wear lead aprons when necessary. Panoramic x-rays can capture a complete view of your upper and lower jaw within a single image.
The last stage of your dental exam is professional cleaning. Using specialized tools, we will remove plaque and tartar buildup. Even if you brush twice a day and floss daily, the buildup can occur where your cleaning can’t reach and be tougher to remove than your brushes and floss can handle. If the plaque isn’t removed, it can develop into tartar which can increase your risk of gum disease and tooth decay. After removing any build-up and plaque, we may polish your teeth using a dental paste that gently removes surface stains from your teeth.
After your exam, we will go over your oral hygiene habits to ensure you maintain a happy and healthy smile. If any treatment is needed, we will discuss your options and schedule them for a later date. Between each visit it is important that you continue to practice good oral hygiene habits such as brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and using a mouthwash.
Why should I visit every six months?
We recommend patients visit the dentist’s office every six months so that we can monitor your oral health regularly. If untreated, these conditions can worsen and may develop into more serious conditions.
If you are experiencing any pain, signs of bleeding, dry mouth, or notice unusual symptoms such as spots or sores in your mouth, please contact our office right away.
We encourage dental exams every six months to allow us to diagnose and treat any problems early before they become serious. Keeping a dental appointment may not seem important if you aren’t experiencing any pain, but you don’t want to skip an appointment as it can greatly affect your oral health. For more information on dental exams or to schedule an appointment, contact Merrily Sandford, DDS & Associates today.