Taking proper care of your mouth, including daily brushing and flossing, is a key element of preventing oral health issues. However, sometimes, despite your best efforts, problems arise. Many times, these problems go unnoticed, until they develop into something more serious. This is why, at National Dental East Meadow, a part of your regular dental visits includes an exam.
ASSESSING YOUR ORAL HEALTH
There is only so much you can see of your mouth in your bathroom mirror. A dental exam is designed to check all areas of your mouth so that we can make sure your teeth and gums are healthy, and take note of any areas that might be cause for concern. You should have at least two exams, and typically they are performed in the same appointments as your cleaning. An exam allows us to assess the overall health of your mouth, and find any trouble spots. This then allows us to take the necessary preventive measures to keep your mouth healthy.
There are several different categories of oral exam:
- Comprehensive. A comprehensive oral exam is performed during your very first visit to our office, or if it has been a while since your last appointment.
- Periodic. A periodic oral exam is an exam that is performed during your regular dental visits. We thoroughly examine your mouth, checking for any signs of issues, and update your information.
- Limited. A limited exam is one that is done when we are diagnosing the cause of certain symptoms. Digital X-rays may be included in this type of exam.
- Follow up. A follow-up exam allows us to check the progression of your mouth following treatment.
WHAT DOES A DENTAL EXAM ENTAIL?
During an oral exam, we inspect all structures within your mouth. We take a look at your teeth, checking them for signs of damage and decay. We look at your gums, checking for redness, swelling, and any other signs of gum disease, such as gum recession. We also check the other areas of your mouth, including your lips, tongue, cheeks, roof and floor of the mouth, back of the mouth near the throat, as well as your neck and face. Checking these areas is a part of our oral cancer screening, checking for oddities such as swelling and lesions. We check the condition of any dental restorations you may have as well as your bite. This thorough exam allows us to get a full picture of everything going on in your mouth.
After your exam, we will take the time to speak with you regarding your oral hygiene routine, and any habits (such as smoking) that you may have. We can provide you with pointers on how to improve your oral health, and answer any questions that you may have.
Digital X-rays are not performed at every exam, but they are an important part nonetheless. With digital X-rays, we can see all of the structures of your mouth that are otherwise invisible, including between your teeth as well as below the gum line. This helps us to complete the picture of your whole mouth health.
With dental exams, we can help to monitor the health of your mouth, and take action as soon as an issue is noticed. To schedule your dental exam, contact National Dental East Meadow today at (516) 962-2292.