Dental exam – a brief introduction
A dental exam involves your gums and the teeth. it is a part of check up of the teeth and the gums. Whenever you visit your dentist for a check-up, the procedure usually involves three parts, namely –
- A thorough examination of your teeth and the overall mouth by the dentist
- Dental cleaning to remove plaque build-ups from the teeth surface (plaque is a sticky film of harmful bacteria that forms on the teeth surface)
- X-rays of the teeth although this occurs on certain visits and depends on the condition of your teeth
Dental exams are crucial for everyone. These exams prove helpful in protecting our oral health. Oral health covers your teeth and the gums along with all the bones and the muscles that allow you speak, smile and chew. Oral health problems that are most common include tooth decay or cavity in the tooth, and gum disease which is also called periodontal infection. These oral health issues should not be allowed to grow. At serious stages these issues often lead to severe pain, inconvenience and infection. At ultimate levels these problems even result in tooth loss.
Poor oral health invariably takes its toll on your overall physical wellbeing. For example when you are suffering from severe toothache or develop a loosened tooth it can affect your normal eating and nutrition. This is turn may lead to other issues related to your physical health. It is possible to prevent oral health issues if you go for regular dental visits to your dentist and practice the proper tooth-brushing and flossing habits at home everyday says a dentist in London with years of experience in conducting dental examination on patients.
At routine dental checkups one usually meets both dentist and dental hygienist. Dentist is a reputable profession in which one is trained to take proper care of the patient’s teeth and gums. Weather a Dental hygienist is trained to take of oral health care of the patient. This professional has training in cleaning the teeth. Moreover he or she can teach you how to take proper care of your teeth and the gums. Dentists treat patients belonging to any age group. Paediatric dentists are especially trained to provide dental care to children.
What purposes dental exams serve?
A dental exam serves a number of purposes including the following –
- Clear away harmful plaque and tartar build-ups from the teeth that cause gum disease, tooth decay and many other oral health issues
- Identify a problem in its initial stages and ‘bud it in the nip’ as they say (Oral health issues are often easier to treat when the right treatment is provided at the early stages)
- Also known as regular teeth examination it helps raising people’s consciousness about their oral health
What is the importance of dental exam?
You should ask your dentist how often you should undergo dental exams. Your dentist is the most appropriate person to select that timeline for you. Depending on the condition of your teeth and the overall mouth along with few other factors your dentist can tell you at what time frequency you should undergo routine dental exams. Usually dentists recommend routine dental exams for children every year. For adults it is six months. But if you suffer from any of the following conditions then the expert may recommend you oral health exams more frequently.
- Gum disease or periodontal infection
- Multiple cavities in the teeth
- There is a strong family history of oral health issues
Even if you suffer from chronic general health conditions like blood sugar or diabetes, any condition that affects the immune system or heart disease then you may require undergoing routine dental exams more frequently. Each of these conditions makes you more prone to develop a serious oral health problem or the other. Even HIV patients and heavy smokers usually require undergoing routine oral health exams more frequently. Patients who take medicines that make their mouth dry also require undergoing more frequent routine dental exams.
A dentist with years of experience in handling both old and new patients’ dental exams has something important to say in this matter. According to him if you experience any of the symptoms mentioned below then you should not wait for your routinely scheduled next dental exam. Rather you must book an appointment with your dentist and see the expert right away. The symptoms include –
- Gums that are dark red, swollen or bleeding
- Severe pain the tooth or
- Any other discomfort in the oral cavity
A typical dental exam – how the procedure unfolds
At a usual dental exam the dental hygienist cleans your teeth. Then the dentist diagnoses your mouth. However during certain exams they may take dental x-rays of your mouth. This is done before the dentist diagnoses you. Dental x-rays prove helpful in exposing hidden cavities in the teeth, loss of bone mass from the jaw and gum disease.
Steps in which dental cleaning is carried out
The first step of dental cleaning is called scaling. With help of tiny metallic tools the oral hygienist scrapes films of tartar and plaque from the teeth. Plaque is film of harmful bacteria that develops on the teeth surface over the day, every day. Plaque build-ups lead to cavities and gum infection. Tatar is an advanced form of plaque build-ups. When plaque films are not properly removed from the mouth it hardens up to form tartar. A dentist in London quotes nominal check up cost. The expert says tartar build-ups may even affect your gum line. Your gum turns red and swollen. These are the primary symptoms of gingivitis which can led to severe conditions including tooth loos If It is not properly treated.
Tartar build-ups can only be removed by professional dental cleaning. Professional dental cleaning at regular intervals prevents accumulation of tartar in the mouth.
In the next step the hygienist polishes your teeth. This is usually done with an electric toothbrush that has a rubber tip. Polishing also requires a especial paste. Then the hygienist flosses the teeth. if required the oral health professional may also apply a fluoride gel, foam or dental sealants to your teeth.