What To Expect During a Routine Dental Appointment

Routine dental care is as important for your oral health as brushing your teeth and flossing. In fact, people who regularly visit the dentist Happy Valley Oregon are less likely to develop oral conditions that require extensive or costly treatment. While a trip to the dentist’s office can seem intimidating to some, there’s no reason to fear. Routine dental care is a simple way to keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy.

Before the Appointment

When you arrive, you’ll be asked to fill out a health questionnaire and provide your driver’s license and insurance card. Don’t be deterred if you are among the almost 25% of Americans without dental insurance. Many practitioners provide competitive rates for people who are paying out of pocket. Just be sure to ask about the costs in advance.

Dental Cleaning

Your dentist or a hygenist begins by using an array of metal tools to remove the plaque and tartar on the surface of your teeth and clean beneath your gums. After removing any buildup, your hygienist polishes your teeth with a rotating brush. As a final step, you may receive a fluoride treatment to strengthen your teeth. It’s not uncommon to experience some sensitivity during this process. If you feel discomfort, let your dentist know to slow down or numb the area. 

Oral Exam

After the dental cleaning, your dentist checks for signs of tooth erosion, calculus deposits, cavities, enamel degradation, gaps between your teeth, pockets in your gums and other conditions. X-rays may also be recommended to look for issues with your teeth, jaws and bone structure that are difficult to detect with the naked eye. Before you leave, your dentist discusses the results of the exam and any next steps.

Routine dental care is integral to preventing tooth loss and serious oral conditions that can be associated with heart disease, cancer and other health concerns. By getting a dental check-up every six months, you can improve your health and get your best smile.