If you have regular oral exams, ideally twice a year, your dentist will be able to detect oral health issues and develop a plan to address them.
During your exam, your dentist will examine the health of your teeth, gums, jaw, and bite. Exams may also include dental X-rays, an oral cancer screening, and other diagnostic procedures.
Routine dental exams and cleanings not only help maintain your dental health, but they also help to keep your teeth white.
Oral Cancer Screening
Oral cancer can affect any part of the mouth or the tissues surrounding it, including the face, neck, lips, tongue, throat, tissues and gums. During your exam, your dentist will look for signs of oral cancer in these areas.
A dental exam that includes an oral cancer screening may help detect a premalignant or malignant lesion before it spreads. Oral cancer screening is quick, and the sooner a problem is identified and a definitive diagnosis is made, the sooner treatment can begin.
Oral Health Care at Home
To keep your smile healthy between appointments, be sure to brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time, and floss at least once a day.
A dental hygiene cleaning consists of a deep cleaning of your teeth and gums to prevent and treat disease.
To begin, a scaler will be used to remove any tartar and plaque buildup. Your dental hygienist will use a polisher and coarse toothpaste to remove any leftover stains or plaque. This will be followed by a thorough flossing of your teeth and gums.
Your dentist may also recommend a fluoride treatment if you or your child are at high risk of tooth decay. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that can help rebuild minerals in your tooth enamel, preventing or reversing tooth decay.
The fluoride your dentists use in these treatments is similar to the fluoride in toothpaste. However, the treatment contains much higher doses and may offer more rapid benefits.