Dental Check-Ups: Step by Step

Did you know that you should attend regular appointments at your dentist’s office at least twice a year? These dental check-ups provide patients with crucial preventive oral healthcare that at-home efforts like brushing and flossing your teeth cannot accomplish alone. You could face a serious risk of forming cavities, gum disease, and other problems without this dental attention.

You can feel more confident going to your dentist’s office for this appointment when you know what will occur during the visit. Read on to learn about each step that will happen during a routine dental check-up to help you alleviate lingering dental anxiety and get the oral healthcare your smile needs.

Dental Check-Ups Step by Step

Oral Examination

Your dentist will want to evaluate your oral health during this check-up appointment. So they will perform an examination of your smile. This will consist of a visual exam first, in which the dentist looks at the teeth and gums. They can identify early signs of tooth decay and gum disease this way.

However, the dentist will also recommend getting an x-ray of your teeth as well. This will reveal hidden tooth decay along with potential damage in the inner layers of the teeth not visible to the naked eye.

You can receive more comprehensive preventive care this way. Then the dentist can intervene and resolve dental concerns at an earlier stage. Dentists suggest getting dental x-rays on an annual basis for most patients.

Professional Teeth Cleaning

During a routine dental appointment, you will also undergo a professional teeth cleaning. Although you clean your teeth at home, your toothbrush and floss might miss some spots in your mouth. The dentist must remove stubborn plaque and tartar build-up to prevent tooth decay and other serious dental damage.

They begin the cleaning process by asking the patient to rinse the first layer of build-up from the teeth with mouthwash. Then they use a scaler to scrape away these residues from the smile, especially in tricky locations like the gumline.

The dentist will also polish the teeth, making them shine, with a special brush and paste. They complete the dental cleaning by flossing between the teeth with traditional string floss.

Preventive Dental Treatments

After the oral exam and dental cleaning, the dentist may suggest additional treatments that can protect your smile from plaque and other potential threats to your smile. For instance, a dentist might ask if you would like to pursue a fluoride treatment.

Fluoride is a natural mineral that can absorb into your tooth enamel to fortify the teeth. This treatment involves applying concentrated fluoride to the enamel to strengthen them, making them more resistant to decay, surface stains, and more.

Dentists can also recommend dental sealants, a resin-like protective layer that they can apply over the surface of the teeth. Usually, dentists give pediatric dental patients this treatment. But patients of any age can benefit from this barrier that preserves the health of the teeth. Learn more about preventive dental care when you call your dentist.