Some people visit our Houston dentistry when they have a dental emergency. Others make an appointment with us when they need to fix a chronic problem. For many, these are the only times they ever visit Lynn Alan Palmer, DDS. Are these infrequent occurrences the only times you should visit? All dentists recommend that you should schedule regular exams and cleanings rather than wait for an emergency to occur, but why and how can this help?
Our goal here at Lynn Alan Palmer, DDS is to make sure your teeth and mouth stay as healthy as possible. During an exam, your dentist will check for signs of any unhealthy conditions such as gingivitis and cavities. This visual examination is done using a small mirror to see all the places in your mouth that you normally can’t. Because of this, your dentist can detect any issues long before you notice them allowing it to be resolved quickly.
After the visual examination, your dentist will clean your mouth in three steps:
Your dentist will begin your treatment with a tool called a scalar. This is a hand-held, metal hooked tool used to get rid of plaque and tartar. The dentist will scrape along your gums and between your teeth, removing any buildup that you normally cannot reach. The time this process takes can vary, depending on the condition of your teeth. If a lot of work was necessary, your dentist may help you reduce this build up in the future by suggesting tools or techniques you can use at home.
Next, you will move on to brushing your teeth. Rather than using a standard toothbrush, your dentist will use a professional grade, electric toothbrush along with an abrasive toothpaste. This toothpaste is grittier than what you are used to at home. This grit greatly helps to eliminate any remaining plaque or tartar on your teeth.
After the brushing, your dentist will likely begin a thorough flossing treatment. This flossing treatment, like the brushing, is different than what you do at home. Your dentist has a view of your teeth that you normally do not, allowing them to take care of any spots you have missed. Additionally, they are equipped to give you a flossing treatment that most cannot do at home.
A dental examination and cleaning should be done every six months. Every year, during one of these visits, your dentist will x-ray your teeth to look for any issues below the surface of your teeth that may not be detectable during a visual examination. If you live in the Houston area, make an appointment with Lynn Alan Palmer, DDS to schedule your next visit to keep your mouth healthy and clean.