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Dental Exams In North Ridgeville, OH
Caring for your teeth requires proper hygiene, including brushing and flossing twice daily. However, regular visits to your dentist are also vital to ensuring the health of your teeth and gums. Dr. Scott Arndt and the team at Center Ridge Dental understand that it often requires a professional eye to detect any health issues that may adversely affect your teeth.
What are Dental Checkups For?
You may be asking why it’s vital to have regular dental checkups, even if you already take good care of your teeth. The answer is that there are areas of your mouth and teeth that regular brushing and flossing alone can miss. In addition, there may be indicators of dental issues that you cannot identify without professional help.
Many dental problems develop without symptoms, making it difficult to tell if they’re present. When you realize something is wrong, the problem has progressed to the point where pain and complications are present. Treatment options become more aggressive, expensive, and time-consuming. A dental exam aims to detect these problems early enough to treat them quickly, painlessly, and inexpensively.
Some health problems such as diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis have symptoms that start in the mouth. If your dentist can find these issues, they may recommend that you see your primary care physician and have them taken care of before they progress.
How often should you visit the dentist for an exam? Experts recommend that you undergo a dental exam at least twice a year, about every six months. Alternatively, your dentist may recommend more regular visits if you’ve had any procedures done or if there have been any issues present in the past.
What Happens During A Routine Dental Exam?
Your dentist will start by reviewing your medical history and discussing any changes in medication or problems you may have had. This is the time to ask questions or discuss issues you may be experiencing, such as pain, cavities, or loose teeth.
The dentist will visually examine your teeth and soft tissue during the initial exam for any indications of decay, periodontal disease, or bacterial deposits. They will also take the time to look for cavities, loose teeth, or damaged teeth to evaluate your potential need for any general or restorative dental procedures down the line. Finally, the dentist will check your bite to ensure that your jaws properly fit together.
Your dentist may also order an X-ray. There are two kinds of X-rays that your dentist can request. Full-mouth series X-rays are used periodically to evaluate oral health and look for signs of significant problems. Bitewing X-rays are used to examine your teeth and check for cavities.
In a comprehensive dental exam, your dentist will not only check your teeth but will also check the following areas:
- Soft tissue, such as the tongue, lips, inside the cheeks, and the roof and floor of your mouth
- Gum tissue and the supporting structures of your teeth
- Your temporomandibular joint, where your jaw connects to your skull
- Your head and neck, to check lymph nodes and salivary glands
- Oral cancer screening, during which your dentist will examine your soft tissue, the sides of your neck, and under your jaw for any signs of oral cancer
After your exam, your dentist will tell you about any problem areas you need to improve upon and offer recommendations for what to do at home. If they discover any potential health issues, the dentist will help them make a treatment plan and schedule relevant appointments.
How Long Does An Oral Exam Take?
A routine oral exam can last for 15 to 45 minutes, depending on whether the patient has had an exam recently or not. The timing will also depend on how thorough the exam will be. A quick check-up goes faster than X-rays and cleanings. Try to plan for your exam to be at least 30 minutes to give yourself enough time to ask questions and raise any concerns.
Dental Check-up Cost
Dental exams are usually inexpensive if you remain on top of your oral hygiene and only require a check-up. However, more comprehensive exams will cost more because they involve more services such as X-rays and cleaning. Most dental insurance programs cover routine maintenance, including exams, but they may not cover oral cancer screenings. Check with your insurance company to see which services are covered by your policy.
Frequently Asked Questions About Dental Exams
Curious about dental care? Here are answers to some of the questions our patients frequently ask:
How Often Should I Get A Dental Checkup?
We recommend dental exams at least twice a year. However, if you have specific dental issues or have undergone certain procedures, we might suggest more frequent visits.
Is A Dental Exam Painful?
Dental exams are generally pain-free. Our team strives to ensure your comfort throughout the exam. If you have any anxiety or special needs, please let us know so we can make your experience as comfortable as possible.
How Do I Prepare For A Dental Exam?
Prepare by maintaining good oral hygiene, jotting down any questions or concerns you may have, and gathering information about your current medications and medical history to share with your dentist.
What If I Have Dental Anxiety?
If you experience dental anxiety, please let us know. We offer various solutions to ensure your comfort and can discuss these options with you to make your visit stress-free.
Tips to Maintain Optimal Oral Health
As your dentist, we are committed to helping you improve your oral health. Here are some essential tips to share:
- Brush and Floss Regularly: To maintain your oral health, brush twice a day and floss daily. This routine is key in removing plaque and preventing tooth decay and gum disease.
- Choose the Right Toothbrush: A soft-bristled toothbrush is ideal. If bristles become frayed, replace your toothbrush every three to four months.
- Mind Your Diet: Your dietary choices significantly impact your oral health. Limit sugary and acidic foods to prevent enamel erosion and cavities.
- Stay Hydrated: Drinking plenty of water is essential for washing away food particles and bacteria, and for keeping your saliva levels healthy.
- Don’t Ignore Gum Health: Pay attention to your gums. Redness, swelling, or bleeding could indicate gum disease, which dental exams can help identify and manage.
- Regular Dental Checkups: Dental exams are crucial for detecting issues early on. They help in combating oral health problems before they escalate, ensuring your teeth and gums stay healthy.
Schedule Your Dental Exam At Center Ridge Dental
Whether you’re new to our practice or a longtime patient, everyone who walks through the doors at our North Ridgeville dental practice is treated like family. We emphasize a feeling of comfort and care in everything we do for patients of all ages. In addition, we do everything possible to educate you on proper oral care and empower you to maintain the health of your teeth and gums.
If you have any questions or want to schedule an oral exam, please don’t hesitate to contact us.