Preventative dentistry is the field of dentistry that seeks to maintain the health of your teeth and gums in order to protect you from disease and decay. One facet of preventative dentistry is regular oral exams. Our team at Rockton Dental conducts these exams during your scheduled cleanings and will provide feedback about your oral health.
Why Are Exams Completed?
Dental exams are completed by our team so that they can continuously monitor the health and appearance of your teeth and gums. During the exam, our team will visually inspect your teeth, gumline, and surrounding tissue. The goal of this exam is to ensure that your teeth and gums are healthy and developing properly. Improper development of your teeth may require additional treatments and corrective measures.
One of the conditions that our team will check for during the exam is gum disease. They check you for symptoms of gum disease by looking at your gums and measuring the pockets between your gums and teeth. These pockets should be between 1mm and 3mm deep. If they are deeper than the normal range, it is a symptom of periodontal disease.
They will also check for unusual developments or growths in your oral cavity. This is called an oral cancer screening. According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, oral cancer is responsible for nearly 10,000 deaths in the U.S. every year. By completing this screening and locating any areas of concern early, our team can improve the success rate of treatment.
Dental exams are also completed to assess the quality of your at-home dental care. If our team locates a build-up of plaque or signs of decay during the exam, they will review proper oral hygiene procedures with you. Good brushing and flossing habits are key to maintaining your oral health.
What Happens After an Exam?
What happens after your dental exam will depend on the results of the exam. If our team finds that your oral cavity is in good health, they will be able to schedule your next cleaning and provide feedback on your self-care habits. Regular dental exams are key to preventing the need for costly and time-consuming restorative dental procedures.
If our team locates signs of decay, such as a cavity, then they will recommend restorative treatment to strengthen and protect your tooth. A commonly used treatment for minor cavities is a filling. A dental filling is a composite material that is placed in the damaged area of your tooth to fill the void and prevent further decay. Oftentimes, our team can complete this procedure during the same visit as your exam.
If our team detects signs of gum disease, they will discuss potential treatment options with you. Depending on the severity of your symptoms and the type of treatment needed, they may be able to begin during the same visit. The goal of treatments for gum disease is to reverse the effects and prevent the spread of the disease.
Regardless of your current level of oral health, regular dental exams are the first step on your road to a brighter smile. You can schedule your exam with our team at Rockton Dental by calling our office at (815) 624-3269.