Everyone undergoes a dental examination at some point in their lives. Whether you are someone who actively avoids them or ensures a recurring appointment slot every few months, you can never totally avoid your tooth and gum health.
In fact, the results of neglecting your oral hygiene can be disastrous. This is why dentists and oral hygienists do everything they can to check on your teeth and gums regularly, and conduct thorough examinations.
You may be wondering what exactly your dentist is doing during a typical dental examination. If this is something you have often wondered, but never quite asked, read below to find out more details on what goes on during a routine dental cleaning. After all, it’s good to know that your dentist has all bases covered when it comes to protecting your oral health and making informed suggestions.
Upon first inspecting your mouth, your dental hygienist will have a general look at your teeth and gums to assess how everything has been holding up. Dental hygienists work closely with dentists to perform a thorough examination.
They may ask you introductory questions about your oral hygiene habits, and can educate you on ways to better clean your teeth and gums. They can identify problem areas in your mouth and bring the findings back to your dentist.
They will also typically work with a dental assistant who may take x-rays, collect medical history, and set up equipment. Don’t be alarmed if there are a few people in the room during your dental examination, as the dentist requires help to perform their job and assess you successfully.
Swollen gums, bleeding, tooth decay, and sores can all be indications that something is amiss. During the initial assessment, your hygienist will be looking out for all cues as to the state of your oral hygiene. This will help to give your dentist an idea of what is happening in your mouth.
Don’t be afraid to speak up during this time if you have been experiencing any abnormalities such as pain, discomfort, lumps, or swelling. This is a great time to be transparent and ask for advice if you need it.
Gum and Jaw Issues
Keep in mind that your dentist and oral hygienist will also be looking at your gum and jaw alignment to ensure that these areas are healthy and fully functioning. A dental examination is not solely based on your teeth. Your gums and your jaw also play an important role in your overall dental and oral health. If you have been experiencing any jaw pain or bleeding gums, this is the perfect time to address it with your dental professional.
Beyond the Surface
In order to take a deeper look beyond the surface of your teeth and gums, your dentist will typically order digital x-rays to be done. The dental assistant will set up the equipment and guide you as to how to have the x-rays properly taken.
If you are seeing a new dentist, they will almost always conduct x-rays so they can learn more about your mouth and give you a better assessment.
However, if you have recently had x-rays done at another dental office, it may be worth mentioning it to your new dentist, as they can have the results transferred to them. These x-rays will give your dentist proper answers and determine if you have cavities or other issues such as impacted teeth, bone loss, and even tumours.
Although you should not need x-rays taken at every visit, try not to neglect having your x-rays done altogether as this is a vital step to ensuring a thorough and complete dental examination.
As usual, your dentist will review your x-rays and give you professional advice as to any next steps you should take. They will always be on the lookout for any indicators of periodontal disease and decay.
If additional treatment is required, your dentist will outline the steps to be taken and recommendations for treatment options. Listen carefully to your dentist, as their advice is very important in helping you maintain excellent oral health and keeping up with aftercare at home.
A dental examination doesn’t need to be uncomfortable or uneasy. Remember, you can always ask your dentist any questions, and let them know if you have any concerns. A good dentist will gladly answer your questions and help you become more acquainted with procedures.
For more information on dental examinations or to speak with a reputable dentist in Mississauga or the GTA, please call Bristol Dental Clinic at 905-712-3409 or contact us here. Our dedicated team of professionals are ready and willing to help you every step of the way. Your oral health is important to us. Contact us today for more information.