Regular dental exams are a vital part of preventive dental health care and will help you keep your teeth and gums healthy for a long time to come.
During your dental exam, our dentist or hygienist will clean your teeth and check for cavities and gum disease. The exam includes evaluating your risk of developing other oral problems and checking your face, neck, and mouth for any abnormalities. A dental exam might also include digital dental X-rays or other diagnostic procedures.
How Long Does an Exam Take?
The average dental examinations performed by our dentist takes about 45 minutes. It may take longer than that depending on the patient’s overall oral health condition. If the patient has many dental health problems, then it will have to take more time to address the oral issues.
Initial Oral Examination
The dentist will check your face, neck, and mouth for any abnormalities, and take X-rays to examine areas within your mouth and teeth that are not visible to the naked eye. Next, your dentist or dental hygienist will clean your teeth thoroughly for you.
Plaque & Tartar Removal
Deep teeth cleaning has two parts. Scaling is when your dentist or hygienist removes all the plaque and tartar (hardened plaque) above and below the gum line, making sure to clean the root of the tooth. Root planing is smoothing out the roots of your teeth to help your gums reattach to your teeth. Deep teeth cleaning with scaling and root planing may take more than one visit to complete depending on the oral health of the patient.
Polishing & Flossing Teeth
Tooth polishing is a dental procedure that leaves your tooth enamel glossy and smooth. At many dental offices, it’s a standard part of a routine cleaning appointment. Your teeth are inspected for decay and weak spots in the enamel. Plaque and tartar are scraped from the surface of your teeth in a process called scaling. Your teeth are then buffed and polished to remove staining before being flossed and topped with a protective coat of fluoride.
Rinse & Flouride Treatment
Fluoride will be applied directly to the enamel of the teeth in the form of a fluoride treatment after a thorough rinse to wash out any left-over debris. These professionally applied topical treatments take only a few minutes and can be done during your regular dental checkup.