Your teeth are yours for life, but you must keep them healthy. Unlike other parts of our body, our teeth are relatively easy to keep in good condition, and routine dental care allows us to have healthy teeth for many years. You must, however, make it a habit to follow good oral hygiene practices if you want your teeth to last, and this includes a Dental Exam and cleaning every six months.
A dental exam begins with a visual examination of your teeth to check for obvious problems. Red, bleeding gums, dark areas on your teeth, and bad breath can all be signs of developing dental issues. All soft tissue areas are examined for signs of abnormality i.e. lumps, tumours, infections and pre-cancerous tissue changes.
The visual dental exam is followed by a more thorough exam, in which our dentist may probe your teeth, looking for trouble spots on or between teeth. Some problems are easily identified with a visual inspection; others require more careful examination.
Our dentist will often request x-rays to confirm cavities or other issues in your mouth. The x-ray will quickly identify problems which are not visible to the naked eye. This allows your dentist to pinpoint spots which may need fillings or treatment.
The jaw joint (T.M.J.), which controls the amount of mouth opening, requires monitoring to prevent degenerative changes due to missing and/or clenching teeth, etc. and is an important part of any thorough oral exam.
Your dental exam will conclude with a final check of your teeth before and after your cleaning. Our dentist will explain any problems to you and suggest ways to handle these issues.