Dental exams should be scheduled regularly and not just when you think something is wrong. At Dental Express in San Diego, CA, our professional team believes that preventative dentistry is most important. Regular exams and cleanings help us to detect dental problems early on before a toothache begins or there’s a need for extensive dental treatments. Good dental health also requires an efficient at-home oral hygiene routine.
What happens at a dental exam?
During a dental exam, we learn about your medical history and your oral health. We learn if you smoke, have allergies, or have other medical factors that can affect your oral health. We also may want to know about your past dental history. With all of this helpful information, we can get a full picture of your health.
We look at your teeth, gums, jaw, and mouth for tooth decay, oral cancer, or disease. We use x-rays to see any abnormalities that we cannot see with the naked eye. After an exam, patients usually have a dental cleaning where tartar is scraped away from the teeth. After they’re clean, the teeth are polished. At Dental Express in San Diego, CA, we believe that our job isn’t just to resolve dental problems but also to help prevent them from happening.
Why it’s important to have regular dental exams
Here are some reasons why regular dental exams are important:
1. Oral cancer prevention: Oral cancer is serious and, oftentimes, isn’t diagnosed. When left untreated, it can quickly progress. We conduct oral cancer screenings during dental exams. An early-stage oral cancer diagnosis is treatable. Our dental team is highly trained to recognize signs of oral cancer.
2. Detect plaque, tartar, or cavities: When plaque builds, it can become difficult to remove. If it is left untreated, it turns to tartar, which is hard to remove without the help of a dental professional. Regular exams and cleanings prevent tartar from creating holes in teeth, which lead to cavities. This can be avoided with regular dental exams.
3. Prevent gum disease: Plaque and tartar buildup causes tooth decay, and can also damage the gums. When tartar builds up, an infection in the gums occurs, known as gingivitis. As it progresses, the teeth can become loose or even lost. In the early stages of periodontal disease, it is reversible. However, if it is left untreated, more extensive periodontal disease treatments are necessary.
4. Monitor bad habits: Smoking, drinking, or eating a high-acid diet, and clenching or grinding your teeth can all be detrimental to your teeth and gums. When you have a dental exam, our dentist can check for oral damage caused by these habits. Regularly visiting the dentist allows you to fix the damage that is already done and to help maintain your oral health.
5. Find problems using x-rays: Oftentimes, our dentist cannot detect all dental problems with their eyes alone. This is why dental x-rays are important. They can find issues, such as impacted teeth, jawbone damage, cysts, bone decay, or even tumors. Treating these issues as soon as possible is important to your overall health.
Oral Hygiene Tips
Regular dental exams and routine dental cleanings are important, and so is proper oral hygiene. Our team at Dental Express in San Diego, CA offers professional advice on the best ways to brush and floss from home, including
Brush properly: Brush your teeth at a 45-degree angle using back and forth strokes across the sides of the teeth while focusing on the gumline. Brush at least two minutes twice daily. Use a small or medium-size brush that is small enough to reach into hard-to-reach areas.
Floss: Floss at least once daily. Use a forward or backward C shape motion while wrapping floss around each tooth.
Use mouthwash: A cavity-fighting mouthwash helps prevent gingivitis, which can lead to red, tender, or bleeding gums.
Take care of your teeth and gums with regular dental exams
A regular dental exam allows you to take the best possible care of your teeth and gums in San Diego, CA. At Dental Express, we believe in preventative dentistry that focuses on promoting good oral hygiene and regular dental visits. Call today to schedule a dental exam with our team.