What To Expect at Dental Checkups

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What To Expect at Dental Checkups

Whether you have recently moved to St. Albert, have left home and are looking for your own dentist, or are just now getting around to setting up regular dental checkups, the staff at Dentus Family Dental are looking forward to meeting and getting to know you. Here’s what we try to accomplish at checkups every six months and what you should expect at your first appointments.

Taking your medical history

At your first appointment with a new dentist in St. Albert, the dentist’s staff will take a complete medical history. This initial review will give your dentist all the information necessary to identify particular issues of concern and to develop a treatment plan to achieve your goals. Issues your dentist might discuss with you include:

  • A review of any records transferred from a prior dentist
  • Whether you are taking any medications
  • Whether you have any allergies
  • Whether you drink or smoke
  • Your past and current dental treatment
  • Your cosmetic goals

At subsequent appointments with the same dentist, there may not be a complete review of your medical history unless things have changed since your last appointment. If, since your last appointment, you’ve experienced any emergencies or symptoms involving your mouth, teeth, gums, tongue, lips, face, head, jaw, or neck, be sure to tell your dentist and their staff. At the same time, tell them about any headache symptoms and breathing or sleeping issues. You may not understand the possible relationship between those issues and your teeth, but the staff at a dental clinic near you may be able to make connections that could help.

Conducting examinations

Your dentist will perform a detailed examination of your teeth, gums, jaw, and the bones and structures of your face. Different dental offices use different imaging technologies, but they all provide information about structures beneath the surface of your skin, including bones and teeth. Some x-rays also provide detailed imaging of gum tissue to identify discolorations. Your dentist and their staff will take all appropriate steps to protect you from any radiation exposure, though the risks of exposure are exceedingly low due to today’s advanced imaging technology. If you are pregnant, you should advise your dentist’s staff about this before any x-rays are taken.

Cleaning your teeth

At a typical checkup, your dentist will clean your teeth to remove any plaque and accumulated tartar that brushing and flossing alone is unable to remove. After your dentist’s hygienist has cleaned your teeth, they’ll be polished to get them as bright as possible pending your next checkup. Regular teeth cleanings in St. Albert will minimize the risk of tooth decay on an ongoing basis, but they are no substitute for annual deep teeth cleaning near you that your dentist’s staff will schedule annually.

Screening for oral cancer

Using the VELscope Oral Cancer screening system, your dentist will scan all of the soft tissues in your mouth with a handheld scanner. The blue light emitted by the VELscope excites different tissues in your mouth differently. Abnormal cells indicating the potential presence of oral cancer appear differently when excited. Regular scanning allows your dentist to screen you for the earliest indications of oral cancer. Early detection significantly raises the five year survival rate associated with oral cancers.

Making recommendations

No dental checkup will be complete until you and your dentist have an opportunity to discuss their findings during the examination and to develop a treatment plan to address any issues. Even in the absence of any necessary treatment, the dentist will provide recommendations regarding oral hygiene, decay prevention, gum disease prevention, and achieving your cosmetic dentistry goals. It is also an opportunity to ask any questions you have about your dental care or about any concerning symptoms you may be experiencing.

Are you ready to define and keep to a path to good oral health? When you’re ready, we’re ready to partner with you. Get in contact with a dentist near you to get started.