Teeth play a significant role in the digestive system and help us to break down food for easy digestion. Therefore, taking great care of your teeth with a regular dental checkup is an important thing to do. Most people decide to have a dental exam after experiencing a painful toothache. Should this be the case?
What is a dental exam?
Dental examination is a medical procedure of examining teeth and mouth for cavities and gum diseases. During a dental checkup, you learn about your oral health. Physical examination is done on your teeth, jaw, gums, and mouth for oral cancer, infections, tooth decay, or other abnormalities through diagnostic procedures and x-rays.
Everybody is aware that dental examination is an essential part of proper dental hygiene and health. However, few individuals comprehend the importance that comes with regular dental examination. Why is it critical to have regular dental examinations? Well, here are some reasons why:
1. Gum disease prevention
High accumulation of Tartar and plaque causes tooth decay. When Tartar accumulates and goes unchecked, it causes gum inflammation leading to an infection called gingivitis. As gingivitis develops, the teeth become loose and eventually fall. However, early diagnosis and treatment, if immediately administered, gingivitis can be reversed successfully. Untreated gum disease can grow and lead to more complications on bones, tissue, and teeth. These complications include:
- Infection in the jaw bone or gingivitis
- Loss of teeth and bone
- Gum ulceration due to bacterial infection
2. Prevention of oral cancer
When it comes to oral health, the focus is on cavity prevention and stopping the mouth’s lousy odor. Often, we do not take or think of ways to prevent oral cancer, resulting in low public awareness and sensitization about oral cancer prevention and how to recognize them. During dental examination, the dentist conducts oral cancer screenings to check for recognizable mouth cancer signs and symptoms. Oral cancer detected during the early stage is treatable and easily preventable.
3. Monitor bad habits
If not checked, some habits can lead to detrimental damage to our teeth and overall oral hygiene. Examples of these habits include: drinking, smoking, high acid diet, grinding, or clenching your teeth. During a dental checkup, a dentist can examine oral impairments as a result of these bad habits.
4. Detect, cavities, Tartar, or plaque
When plaque accumulates, removing it becomes hard. Plaque left untreated, grows into Tartar. Tartar is severe to get rid of without the assistance of a dental professional. Regular examination and cleaning protects your teeth and prevents Tartar from making holes in our teeth, which results in cavities. You can easily prevent this with a routine dental examination.
Plaque and tartar can lead to gum and teeth problems, causing inflammation conditions such as gingivitis. When gingivitis is left untreated, it can lead to periodontal disease and eventually loss of teeth. Routine dental examinations must be performed as per dentist’s advice, depending on your dental health status. Most often, the recommended interval is every six months.During a routine dental examination, your dentist will explain how dental bibs are used to help protect your clothing from spills, dental debris, and other contaminants. Dental bibs should keep you dry while maintaining a solid barrier against viruses and bacteria.
5. Find problems using x-rays
Usually, our dentist may not detect all oral problems with their naked eyes. Dental x-rays are paramount when it comes to your dental examination. With Dental x-rays, hidden issues can be easily detected, such as jawbone damage, impacted teeth, cysts, tumors, and bone decays. Diagnosing these problems at their early stages and treating them can be relevant to the future of your dental health.
6. Dental cleaning
Billions of bacteria live in our mouth, and when we eat food, particles of food remain in our mouth, where they get acted upon by these reproducing bacteria. If not controlled, some of these bacteria can grow in numbers due to these food remains leading to dental diseases. Therefore, after every dental exam, the dentist detects the plaque. He goes further and cleans your teeth to ensure total removal of the cavity and perform different dental care activities. The dental cleaning process includes expert flossing, a physical examination of the mouth, discharge of tartar and plaque, and application of fluoride therapy.
After dental cleaning, your dentist will assess your dental health to determine whether you’re suitable to pursue other dental procedures such as teeth whitening. If you choose to undergo teeth whitening procedures after cleaning your teeth, expect plaque and tartar-free teeth. Teeth whitening treatment after dental cleaning may lead to more noticeable and effective results.
In conclusion, regular dental exams are as important as any other regular checkups for our overall well-being, such as doctors’ visits.
Following tips like those above will help you to avoid the development of serious dental problems. If you regularly ingest food or beverages high in acid such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, fruit juice, red wine, and pickles which are harsh on the mouth, regular dental exams are even more crucial.