Brushing and flossing your teeth every day is essential for preventing serious oral health issues from occurring. The American Dental Association recommends brushing at least twice a day and flossing at least once a day. In addition to brushing and flossing, the ADA also recommends that you have your teeth professionally cleaned at least twice a year. All of these are crucial components for preventing issues from developing. However, even with proper care, issues can still arise. At Healthy Smiles Family Dentistry, we provide regular dental exams, during which we can spot the earliest warning signs of a wide array of different issues and providing you with the treatments you need to keep your mouth happy and healthy.
In addition to your twice-yearly dental cleanings, the ADA also recommends that you have twice-yearly dental exams. These exams are typically done at the same appointment as your cleanings. These exams are critical for spotting oral health issues, including oral cancer, in their earliest stages, enabling us to provide you with the treatment you need to restore your oral health and prevent more serious consequences from occurring. Regular dental exams are not the only types of exams that we perform. Sometimes, exams are needed when you are experiencing specific symptoms of an oral health issue.
Types of Exams
There are several different types of exams that we may perform, including:
- Comprehensive—A comprehensive exam is one that we perform when it is your first visit to our office, or it has been a long time since your last appointment.
- Periodic—This is your regular 6-month exam, during which your mouth is looked over, and your information is updated.
- Limited—Limited exams are performed when we are diagnosing the cause of specific symptoms.
- Follow up—A follow-up visit is performed after receiving treatment for a specific issue to ensure that you are healing properly.
Getting Your Exam
Regular dental exams are fairly straightforward. We begin by looking over your teeth, checking for signs of cracks, chips, decay, and cavities. Your gums are looked over for signs of gum disease, including redness, swelling, and gum recession. We also perform an oral cancer screening, which involves scanning the soft tissues in your mouth for unusual growths, changes in the tissues, and other abnormalities. Following this examination, we have a discussion with you during which we may talk about any issues we find, treatment options, your oral care habits, and lifestyle habits.
Dental x-rays are an important tool in helping us to provide you with optimal oral health care. These images show us the hidden parts of your mouth, including the spaces between your teeth, the roots of your teeth, and your jawbone. We can detect hidden cavities, root damage, bone loss, and more. When issues are found, x-rays also enable us to create a custom treatment plan that can provide you with the best possible results.
Benefits of Dental Exams
There are several benefits associated with dental exams, including:
- Detecting issues in their earliest stages, allowing us to provide treatment before the issues become serious.
- Early detection of oral cancer, which can be life-saving.
- Maintaining good overall health.
- Saving you money. By avoiding more serious oral health issues, we help to prevent the need for more invasive, more expensive treatments.
Dental exams are important for detecting oral health issues before they become something serious. Call Healthy Smiles Family Dentistry to schedule your next exam today at Tulsa: (539) 302-3266 Claremore: (918) 343-4300.