A regular dental check up is important because they help keep your teeth and gums healthy. You should have a regular dental visit at least every 6 months or as recommended by your dental professional.

What happens at your dental visit?

There are 2 parts to a regular dental visit – check up, or examination and the cleaning, or oral prophylaxis.

At the dental check up we will check for cavities. X-rays might be taken to detect cavities between your teeth. The exam will also include a check for plaque and tartar on your teeth. Plaque is a clear, sticky layer of bacteria. If it is not removed, it can harden and become tartar. You cannot remove tartar with brushing and flossing. If plaque and tartar build up on your teeth, they can cause oral diseases.

Next, your gums will be checked. This will be done with a special tool to measure the depth of the spaces between your teeth and gums. With healthy gums, the spaces are shallow. When people have gum disease, the spaces may become deeper.

The check-up should also include a careful examination of your tongue, throat, face, head, and neck. This is to look for any signs of trouble – swelling, redness, or possible signs of cancer.

What you should do between each dental visit

Be sure to take care of your teeth and gums between regular dental visits. Plaque is always forming on your teeth, but you can manage it by brushing and flossing regularly. Here are some tips for good oral care at home.

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day. Be sure to use a toothpaste that contains fluoride.
  • Floss daily.
  • Use a mouthwash to help control plaque bacteria. This will also help to keep your breath fresh.

Quick facts about a regular dental check up

  • Regular dental visits are important because they help to keep your teeth and gums healthy.
  • There are two parts to a regular dental visit:
    – The check up
    – The cleaning
  • During the dental check up, your dental professional will check your overall oral health for any trouble areas.
  • During the cleaning, your dental professional will remove any plaque and tartar buildup and may polish your teeth.
  • You should have a regular dental visit at least twice a year or as recommended by your dental professional.