You have probably visited a doctor’s office before for a physical checkup, but have you visited a dentist’s clinic for a dental exam? A dental exam is a routine checkup of your teeth and mouth, just like a physical checkup, to ensure your oral health is properly cared for and to spot any abnormalities before they can become a major problem for you.
Either a dentist or a dental hygienist can perform an exam for you, with pediatricians specializing in treating children’s oral care needs. If you would like to speak with a professional about dental exams or schedule an appointment, our team at Dr. Emily Zaramella, DDS is here to assist you with your needs.
When Should You Have a Dental Exam?
Regular dental exams help ensure you are in good health and spot potential problems before they become serious complications. We recommend that most adults and children visit a dentist about every six months, which will ensure a professional is routinely inspecting and monitoring your oral health. Most checkups can be completed in a single session; however, additional follow-up visits may be necessary depending on the assessment of your oral health.
Why Should You Have a Dental Exam?
Neglecting regular visits for a dental exam can result in poor oral health and hygiene. Without the oversight of a professional, you may not spot a cavity or other oral complications before it is too late. Regular checkups not only help you maintain good oral health but also act to prevent complications from developing into something painful and costly that could have otherwise been avoided.
What Do Dental Checkups Entail?
Most typical dental exams will involve a dental cleaning by a hygienist, x-ray scans, and an inspection of your teeth and gums by a dentist. We will often begin the exam with a dental cleaning by a hygienist once you have been seated, using small metal cleaning instruments to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth.
Following this procedure, the hygienist will floss your teeth to remove any particles or plaque caught in between and then brush them with an electric toothbrush. Additionally, a fluoride gel may be applied to your mouth (especially for children) to help prevent tooth decay, followed by instructions on how to care for your teeth at home with proper brushing and flossing techniques.
In the cases when an x-ray scan is necessary, you will be asked to wear a protective apron over your chest to shield you from radiation. The scanner will then take x-ray images of your mouth and teeth, providing our team with scans that we can reference for the inspection.
In addition to the dental cleaning, the exam provides us with an opportunity to inspect your mouth for potential complications. If early signs of tooth decay or an existing cavity are present, we can immediately work with you to treat it or schedule an appointment for the extraction or filling as necessary.
In your dental exam and cleaning, you will also receive an oral cancer screening.
Dental exams should be a routine part of your oral care to protect your teeth and prevent problems from developing. If you would like to schedule an appointment with Dr. Emily Zaramella, DDS or speak with a member of our team, we are available over the phone today at 737-273-3303.