Dental Examinations

A dental examination is how we find & diagnose potential problems in your mouth. For most patients, we recommend a dental exam at least once per year. If you have certain medical conditions or are at high risk for certain issues, we may recommend you have an exam more often.

During an exam, the dentist will inspect your mouth, usually with a small mirror & a metal probe. The dentist is looking for signs of cavities & worn enamel on your teeth & swelling, irritation, or infection on your gums. We also look for sores or abnormalities on the soft tissues of your mouth, such as on the palate (roof of your mouth), tongue, under the tongue, & one the insides of lips & cheeks. We may also ask you to bite down & will feel around your jaw & neck. The dentist will also look at your most recent x-rays to spot decay that isn’t visible above the gum line & to check for bone loss.

Among the conditions that are checked for during an exam are caries (tooth decay), gingivitis, gum disease (periodontal disease), TMD (jaw joint disorders), grinding & clenching (bruxism), & oral cancer. With any of these problems, the earlier they are caught the easier & more affordable they are to treat. That’s why it’s important to always visit us for a checkup at the recommended interval

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