Preventive care is the key to a bright and healthy smile. This covers at-home treatments and routine check-ups. The American Dental Association (ADA) launched an interactive Web platform called the ADA Dental Symptom Checker, which is designed to bring awareness to the importance of regular dental visits and oral hygiene.
Routine check-ups are essential for maintaining healthy teeth and gums. A trip to the clinic includes getting an oral examination, prophylaxis (teeth cleaning) and patient education for maintaining your oral health.
During the examination, your dentist will check your teeth, gums, head, neck and jaw. He will carefully examine your teeth and look for any damaged, missing or decayed areas that could lead to further problems. Your gums will be checked for any inflammation, periodontal pockets and other signs of periodontal or gum disease. He’ll evaluate the position of your teeth, spacing and bites including any signs of grinding and clenching that could damage them. If you have any dental restorations, he’ll take a look at the fillings, crowns or past root canal if they’re still intact.
Dr. Hadley uses an intraoral camera to provide you with an accurate and precise diagnosis. Make sure to update him about your medical condition, in case there are any recent changes in your dental health. Inform him about any medications that you are currently taking, changes that you noticed in your teeth (looseness, discoloration or movement) and any sensitivity to cold, hot or sweets.
Another part of your visit will include having a prophylaxis. Professional cleaning removes the accumulation of tartar and prevents the spread of the disease. While brushing and flossing can help reduce the amount of tartar in your teeth, there are areas in your mouth that can’t be reached by your brush alone.
Your Kennewick dentist also provides patient education about nutrition, smoking cessation and oral care for long-term dental maintenance.