July 14, 2022
Despite the significance of dental check-ups, some may still regard them as unnecessary. And in some cases, it’s the fear or anxiety of getting dental treatments holding some people back from seeing their dentist.
However, constantly putting off your trip to the dentist can be detrimental to your oral health. For one, regular visits and dental check-ups allow your dentist to examine your oral cavity for possible teeth or gum concerns and recommend treatments necessary to prevent further dental health issues.
Suppose you’re due to visit your dentist soon. Here are some things you can expect at your dental check-up:
Discussion Of Your Dental History
If it’s your first time visiting the dental clinic, a dentist in Perth will ask for your dental history. For instance, have you had some dental treatments done in the past that they need to be aware of? Or perhaps, are there any recurring dental problems that need care? Your dentist may also ask about medication allergies that you may have. In such a case, this can be the time to inform them. They can use such information to help them have a clear picture of your overall oral health to give you the optimal care you need.
On the other hand, if you already have a record in the dental clinic, this process can still be performed. For instance, suppose you had a root canal recently. Your dentist will ask about the healing process and if it has helped address previous dental concerns. They can even begin their dental examination with the affected tooth.
Thorough Examination And Cleaning Of The Teeth
Now that you’ve already finished discussing your dental history and concerns, your dentist can proceed to work inside your mouth. A routine dental checkup generally involves a comprehensive examination of your mouth.
During the examination, the dentist will check for any problems, from something as minor as a toothache or a major concern such as gum disease. Using various dental tools, your dentist will thoroughly inspect your teeth for possible decay or cavities. And as part of the routine, your dentist will also look for any problems with your gums, jaw alignment, tongue, and other soft tissues of your mouth.
Depending on their findings, your dentist may recommend treatments or medications to address possible issues. And in some cases, they may also require a dental X-ray for better analysis.
After thoroughly examining your teeth and gums, your dentist will proceed with a dental cleaning. They’ll use dental tools to scrape plaque build-up or tartar in your teeth. And they’ll finish the process by brushing and flossing your teeth. Regular cleaning is essential as it can help prevent gum diseases like gingivitis.
A routine dental cleaning may take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour. The duration of cleaning generally depends on how clean your teeth are and how much plaque you have. You may feel a little uncomfortable during the procedure, but rest assured it is painless and can do wonders for your oral health.
As briefly mentioned earlier, your dentist may recommend that you get an X-ray during your dental check-up. Dental X-rays can help your dentist fully assess your oral health by detecting problems in your teeth and gums.
These images can help your dentist visualize your teeth and jaw placement, which may not be as evident when conducting an oral exam. X-rays can also confirm suspicions about cavities and other dental problems.
Here are some oral health conditions that your dentist may be able to detect with the help of X-rays:
• Bone loss in your jaw
• Abscessed tooth
• Tooth decay
• Tumors or cysts
• Teeth impaction
Oral Cancer Screening
Perhaps you may have unusual sore or suspicious growths in your mouth. In such a case, your dentist will perform an exam to determine whether you are at risk of developing oral cancer. During the screening, your dentist will look for other abnormalities on your lips, tongue, gums, jaw, cheeks, and inside of your mouth.
While a dentist cannot diagnose oral cancer through a simple screening or examination, they can perform a biopsy and send it to a laboratory for diagnosis. If the biopsy results show that you have oral cancer, your doctor may ask that you seek a second opinion and recommend possible treatment options. And on the other hand, if it’s not malignant, your dentist can best help you determine the possible cause for such abnormal growths in your mouth and how to treat it.
Either way, the sooner you detect or rule out oral cancer, the better since you can begin the necessary treatment.
Although it’s common for one to feel nervous or anxious about visiting the dentist, it's worth knowing that these visits are essential for oral health. During your dental check-up, you and your dentist will discuss dental history, as well as possible issues or concerns you may have. They’ll also perform a thorough examination and cleaning of your teeth. And depending on their analysis, your dentist may also require you to have a dental X-ray and oral cancer screening to provide you with optimal dental care.
Knowing what to expect ahead of time can help reduce stress and anxiety associated with dental visits.