Regular Dental Checkup
Getting regular dental checkups is essential to preserving a healthy smile. They are an important part of proper oral hygiene, and we recommend that our patients visit the dentist every six months to keep their teeth and gums in top condition. Through regular checkups, you can ensure that your mouth stays healthy and your smile remains bright.
Regular Dental Checkups
At New Providence Dentistry, we are dedicated to providing the best possible dental care for our patients, and our team of experienced hygienists is committed to creating a pleasant and helpful experience for everyone that walks through our door. We will help you protect your teeth and gums from dental disease through preventive measures such as teeth cleanings, flossing, sealants, and fluoride. We also provide thorough dental exams to check for any signs of decay, disease, or other health concerns. Our team is committed to making sure you leave our office with a healthy smile.
You can expect a typical hygiene and cleaning appointment to go as follows:
- Your dental hygienist will take you back to the exam room and will take any dental x-rays or photos that are required.
- Then your dental hygienist will perform a teeth cleaning, polish, floss, and fluoride. Your hygienist will also record overall oral conditions relating to oral and periodontal (gum) health.
- The doctor will meet with you and discuss any areas of concern you may have or that we may want to address.
- Schedule any additional treatment or your next 6-month cleaning appointment.
We anticipate that the initial appointment will take between one and one and a half hours, in order to ensure that you are not rushed through the process or overwhelmed with too much information at once.
Why is regular teeth cleaning important?
Regular dental checkups are essential for maintaining good oral health. During these appointments, dentists can perform screenings for oral cancer, take digital X-rays to identify any underlying issues, and provide professional cleanings to remove plaque and bacteria that cannot be removed through regular brushing and flossing. These checkups are an essential part of preserving your oral health, as many oral health concerns can only be detected by a trained dentist.
Early intervention is essential to combat gum disease, which is the leading cause of tooth loss. Once the disease has caused damage to the tooth and its supporting bone, it cannot be reversed, but only managed or replaced. The dental hygienist will use a small ruler to measure the “pocket” of the gums around each tooth, noting areas that cannot be cleaned by a toothbrush or floss. X-rays are used in conjunction with these measurements to identify areas of bone recession.
How often should you get dental checkups?
Ideally, dental checkups should be done every six months. At your first appointment, your dentist will ask for your health history to gain an understanding of your past and current health. After that, routine checkups are important for detecting any changes in your oral health and for maintaining your teeth and mouth in the best condition possible.
The American Dental Association, and most dentists, recommend six months because the maintenance and cleaning provided at each visit is the best way to ensure your teeth and gums remain healthy.
If your mouth is free from gum disease and heavy buildup, it’s typically recommended that you get a cleaning every six months to prevent tartar and stain from building up. However, if you have a history of periodontitis, it’s recommended that you get a cleaning every 3-4 months to maintain your oral health.
Why are brushing and flossing important?
Brushing and flossing are essential for maintaining a healthy mouth. Not only do they help to freshen your breath, but they also disrupt the biofilm of bacteria that can cause cavities and gum disease. There are many different products on the market, so be sure to speak to your hygienist to find the best option. It is recommended to brush twice a day for two minutes and floss once. It is important to encourage children to make these dental habits part of their routine in order to ensure a healthy smile for life.
What are other preventative dental care strategies?
At our dental cleanings, we provide not only teeth cleaning and stain polishing, but also other preventative services to keep your teeth healthy, including:
Dental Sealants — Placing a sealant over deep grooves and pits in your back teeth can help reduce your risk of tooth decay by making these areas easier to clean. The sealant acts as a protective barrier, preventing bacteria and food particles from getting stuck in the crevices and causing decay.
Fluoride Treatment — Fluoride treatments can help protect teeth against demineralization, sensitivity, and decay. Children are often covered by dental insurance for these treatments, while adults may be able to access them at a small fee. Regular fluoride treatments can strengthen tooth enamel and reverse the earliest stage of tooth decay.
Oral Cancer Screenings — We strongly recommend that all individuals get screened for cancer regularly, as early detection can be life-saving. This is especially true for those who are at higher risk, such as those exposed to certain viruses like HPV, those exposed to excessive sunlight, and those who use tobacco and/or alcohol. At our checkup appointments, we always include a cancer screening exam.
Diagnostic X-rays — Intermittent X-rays can help us detect early signs of decay or bone loss around your teeth, allowing us to take action and treat them before they become more serious and require more invasive methods.
Is It Time For Your Next Checkup?
If you would like to know more about dental checkups and other forms of preventative dental care, please reach out to our office and we would be glad to assist you further.