If left untreated, dental problems can become very painful and severe, leading to serious complications. Dental exams West Chester are used in detecting and treating such problems, including gum disease and tooth decay. Early intervention makes them easier to treat, increasing your chances of making a full recovery and having healthy teeth and exams. Also called an oral exam or dental checkup, let’s review dental exams, what they involve, and how you can prepare.
What Is a Dental Exam?
A dental exam is an official assessment performed by a dentist to check the health of your tongue, teeth, and gums. Regular dental exams help maintain the integrity of your teeth and gums and reduce your risk of potential problems. Because mouth-related medical conditions do not always produce obvious symptoms, these exams can help catch them in their early stages and prompt prevention or treatment. Most adults and children should get a dental exam twice a year.
Activities Involved in A Dental Exam
Typically, a dental exam is performed by your dentist but may also involve a hygienist. Some of the most common routines during this procedure include:
The dental hygienist sets you up on the dentist’s chair. They then use small metal dental tools to clean your teeth, during which time they may scrape your enamel to remove tartar and plaque buildup. After that, the hygienist will floss your teeth and uses a special electric toothbrush to brush every part of your mouth, including your tongue. They may also apply a fluoride foam or gel to your teeth.
A technician may take several x-rays of your mouth to help your dentist check for problems like bone loss, gum disease, and cavities that may not be visible to the naked eye. Depending on where you are with your visits, the technician may perform a full-mouth series (done every few years) or bitewing x-ray, which is more common.
Next, your doctor will use the information gathered and another exam to:
- Check for problems like cavities
- Assess the health of your teeth and gums
- Check your bite
- For children, check whether their teeth are growing properly
- Feeling around your mouth to check for oral cancer.
Preparing for A Dental Exam
Preparing for a dental exam is fairly straightforward. You may need to take antibiotics beforehand if you have certain health conditions, including immune system disorders, heart problems, or recent surgery. If you are unsure of whether you need antibiotics, contact your dentist before the procedure to receive instructions. You can also talk to them about any anxiety you or your child might be feeling about the exam and ways they can help you feel more comfortable.
Scheduling a dental exam at least twice a year is one of the easiest ways to keep your teeth and gums healthy. It can help you and your dentist identify and treat potential oral problems early, so you do not end up with painful and debilitating symptoms. If you are overdue for a dental exam, general dentist Ruchi Trambadia, DMD and his Family Dentistry team are waiting for you. They offer complete dental exams to patients of all ages and are located in West Chester, Pennsylvania.