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Regular Dental Checkup

January 24, 2018 | Posted Dental Visit | 1 - Comment


Patient: I visit a dentist only when I have pain or any dental issue. Otherwise I don’t bother to see a dentist for years. Is it required to do a dental checkup regularly or I can visit the Dentist only, if I face any trouble. Please advice on a cost effective best option.

Dr: A regular dental check up is important because they help keep your teeth and gums healthy. You should have a regular dental visit at least every 6 months or as recommended by your dental professional.

Patient: What happens at a regular dental checkup visit?

Dr: There are 2 parts to a regular dental visit – check up, or examination and the cleaning, or oral prophylaxis.
At the dental check up your dental professional will check for cavities. X-rays might be taken to detect cavities between your teeth. The check up will also include a clinical examination for plaque and tartar on your teeth. Plaque is a clear, sticky layer of bacteria. If it is not removed, it can harden  to form a tartar. You cannot remove tartar with brushing and flossing. If plaque and tartar build up on your teeth, they can cause oral diseases.

Next, your gums will be checked. This will be done with a special tool to measure the depth of the pocket between your teeth and gums. With healthy gums, the pockets are shallow. When people have gum disease, the pockets may go deeper.
The check-up should also include a careful examination of your tongue, throat, face, head, and neck. This is to look for any signs of trouble - swelling, redness, or possible signs of oral cancer.

Your teeth will also be cleaned at your visit. Brushing and flossing help clean the plaque from your teeth, but you cannot remove tartar at home. During the cleaning, your dental professional will use special tools to remove tartar. This is called scaling
After your teeth are scaled, they may be polished. In most cases, a gritty paste is used for this. It helps to remove any surface stains on your teeth.The final step is flossing. Your dental professional will use floss to make sure the areas between your teeth are clean.

Patient: What you should do between each dental visit. Are their any guidelines to follow?

Dr: Be sure to take care of your teeth and gums between regular dental visits. Plaque is always forming on your teeth, but you can manage it by brushing and flossing regularly. Here are some tips for good oral care at home.
Brush your teeth at least twice a day. Be sure to use a toothpaste that contains fluoride.
Floss daily.
Use a mouthwash to help control plaque bacteria. This will also help to keep your breath fresh.

Quick facts about a regular dental check up

Regular dental visits are important because they help to keep your teeth and gums healthy.

There are two parts to a regular dental visit: 

- The check up 
- The cleaning

During the dental check up, your dental professional will check your overall oral health for any trouble areas.
During the cleaning, your dental professional will remove any plaque and tartar buildup and may polish your teeth.
You should have a regular dental visit at least twice a year or as recommended by your dental professional.