Your oral health depends not only on daily brushing and flossing but also on regular visits to your dentist’s office for oral exams and cleaning. Dr. Bruce Hartley, a general dentist, and the staff of Woodcreek Dental Care are committed to offering patients of all ages the expert diagnosis and treatment required to keep your family on the path to a lifetime of optimal oral health.
Why do you need oral exams?
During the oral exam, we check the condition of your teeth and gums, looking specifically for signs of:
- Tooth decay
- Gum inflammation
- Bone loss
- Oral cancer
For all of these, early detection and treatment are essential. Your dental exam is also a good time to ask your questions and discuss the impact of any bridges or dentures you currently wear, medications you take or health issues that may have developed since your last exam.
How often should you visit your dentist?
Generally, you should plan on visiting your dentist twice a year for an oral exam and professional cleaning. This helps ensure that problems are detected and treated early. If you are diabetic, have gum disease or have other health issues, you may need to visit the dentist more often. Dr. Hartley will advise you on how best to maintain your teeth and gums.
How early should children visit the dentist?
Children should begin visiting the dentist twice a year from age 1 or when the first tooth appears. We will help your child learn proper brushing techniques and encourage children to develop good dental habits early! We will also do orthodontic assessments as the permanent teeth come in and let you know if and when orthodontic treatment needs to be started.
If your child has a disability or a genetic disorder, more frequent dental exams and cleaning will help prevent the tooth decay and cavities that occur due to weakened enamel, high fevers and the sugars in children’s medications.
What is a professional dental cleaning?
People love the clean feeling in their mouth that comes from a professional dental cleaning. Even people who floss regularly experience some build-up of plaque and hardened plaque (called calculus or tartar), particularly in hard-to-reach areas of the mouth.
During a professional cleaning:
- We remove uild-up from the pockets between the teeth and gums.
- We perform scaling or root planning to carefully deep-clean your teeth.
- We polish the teeth to remove stains and create a smoother surface which makes it harder for plaque to adhere again.
- We do a fluoride treatment to help protect the teeth from decay. If your back teeth are particularly prone to cavities, we can also apply sealants for added protection.
Call Woodcreek Dental Care to schedule your dental exam and cleaning today!