It’s not uncommon for people to fear the world of dentistry. In fact, people avoid going to the dentist for a variety of reasons. This may be due to their fear of pain, the sounds of the drill and other dentistry tools, or even just because they’re looking to save money by not going. However, people often fail to see the importance of regular dental exams. To help you better understand why regular dental exams are so important, let’s take a look at what exactly goes on during a visit to the dentist.
Checking for tooth decay is just one aspect of a dental examination. During your appointment, your dentist will take a thorough look at your gums, perform a head and neck examination, and examine the remainder of your mouth. With that in mind, it’s important to remember that there are several routine aspects of a dental examination.
During the head and neck examination, your dentist will start off by:
- Examining your neck
- Examining your face
- Checking your lower jaw joints
- Checking your lymph nodes
This part of the examination allows your dentist to check for anything out of the ordinary.
Next, your dentist will perform the clinical dental examination. This may involve:
- Examining your gums
- Looking for signs of gum disease and other illnesses or issues
- Checking for loose or broken teeth
- Checking your bite
- Examining the insides of your mouth, including your tongue
- Checking for damaged fillings
- Taking x-rays
Typically, a dental hygienist will perform a thorough tooth and gum cleaning either before or after this examination. While people may think that the cleaning is the only thing that’s done at a dentist appointment, it’s important to understand that there’s so much more that is done.
Visiting the dentist on a regular basis allows your dentist to not only ensure your teeth are healthy but to also look for warning signs of any additional health problems. Research shows that there is a correlation between poor oral health and conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, and premature or low birth rate. It’s important to remember that your oral health can have a big impact on your overall health.
Once the examination and cleaning are done, your dentist will discuss your dental health with you and make any recommendations about your oral care. It’s important to visit the dentist twice a year, even if you aren’t one of the 32% of people who say they are “concerned by the look of their teeth.” Even if your teeth look and feel fine, there may be underlying issues that can only be found with the use of dentistry equipment.