Routine Dental Checkups
Routine dental checkups are vital to good oral hygiene and are the best way to detect problems at their earliest stages. Early detection and treatment saves unnecessary discomfort, time and money. Oral hygiene needs change with age and the condition of your teeth and gums. Your dentist may recommend a checkup schedule that is more frequent than twice a year.
During a visual exam, your dentist will use an intraoral camera with sophisticated magnification and lighting to see all surface areas inside your mouth. You will be able to watch the real-time, tooth-by-tooth video exam on your chairside monitor.
Your dentist looks not only for cracked and decayed teeth, but also for growths and sores on your mouth, tongue, lips, gums, and the mucous membranes that line your cheeks and gums. Then your dentist will check the lymph nodes of your head, jaw and neck for pain, tenderness and flexibility.
Your teeth are cleaned using special instruments individualized to each patient to remove plaque from above and below the gumline. Afterwards, your teeth are polished. Tooth polishing makes your teeth look and feel great. It also smoothes tooth surfaces so bacteria is less likely to accumulate.
Good Oral Hygiene
The key to healthy teeth and gums is keeping plaque and food decay from building up in your mouth. Plaque and food decay attract harmful bacteria that cause cavities, gum disease and persistent bad breath.
Your tongue attracts bacteria, too. During the normal process of eating, tiny fragments of food collect on your tongue. As these fragments decay, bacteria create a filmy white coating on the top of your tongue.
Practice the four-step routine to keep plaque and harmful bacteria from building up in your mouth.
Easy Four-Step Routine
To keep your teeth and gums healthy:
- Brush your teeth and use an antiseptic mouthwash twice daily (after breakfast and before bedtime)
- Use dental floss daily
- Clean your tongue regularly by using a toothbrush or a tongue scraper
- See your dentist for routine dental checkups
Benefits of Good Hygiene
When you practice good oral hygiene, you will:
- Have less plaque to remove during routine dental checkups, so professional cleanings will be faster and more comfortable
- Minimize your need for dental procedures due to tooth decay or gum disease
- Minimize your annual dental budget
- Feel healthier
- Enjoy fresher breath
- Be more confident about your smile