Proper dental hygiene and dental cleanings by your dentist are crucial when living in NYC, not only to your current and future oral health, but also to your overall bodily health and self-esteem. Along with daily flossing and brushing, the ADA recommends scheduling a dental appointment once every six months for both an exam as well as a professional cleaning. Frequent dental care and healthy oral hygiene can go a long way towards ensuring that your natural teeth are with you for life.
The first part of your dental visit will be spent on a thorough examination of your gums and teeth. We will be looking for any discoloration or soft areas that might indicate decay, signs of gum disease, or other oral conditions. In order to obtain a better view of your teeth, we may also choose to use digital x-ray imaging during your routine exam. Sometimes, decay and infection can lie hidden beneath the teeth and gums. X-rays allow us to better see what is going on so that we can provide timely treatment to rectify the problem before it escalates and requires more complex and costly procedures.
The second part of a routine visit will consist of a thorough cleaning of the teeth. Before the actual cleaning begins, we will make sure that your current fillings are still intact and performing as they should. With time, fillings can become worn and may eventually require a touch up. We will also examine your gums for signs of gum disease. Gum disease affects many people and can eventually lead to tooth loss if untreated. The purpose of the periodontal exam is to ensure that the gums are flush with the teeth and that no pockets have formed, which can cause a buildup of bacteria and infection. Next comes the actual cleaning. With a variety of tools, we will remove all tartar buildup, floss your teeth, and then apply a polish. You may then receive a fluoride treatment which serves to strengthen the teeth and prevent cavities.
The cleaning itself is rarely painful but it can be a stressful experience. If you are experiencing some anxiety, let us know and we may be able to offer you some mild sedation to make the process more pleasant for you. Depending upon whether or not we find any signs of gum disease or decay, we may talk with you about ways you can improve your dental hygiene habits.