What Is Considered Routine Dental Care?

When you visit the dentist every six months, you receive routine dental care. Routine care is also referred to as preventative care. This care helps you avoid getting cavities, gum disease and other oral health issues. Learn the different options for preventative care.

Routine dental care procedures

Routine dental care helps patients maintain healthy teeth and gums. Those who avoid going to the dentist are more likely to end up with cavities, gum disease and other serious problems. It is even possible for patients to have undetected oral cancer that spreads if they fail to go to the dentist regularly. Learn what is involved during a routine visit to the dentist.

Examination

A dental examination is an important part of routine dental care. During the exam, dentists look for signs of decay, gum disease and oral cancer. Dentists also make sure the teeth are in good shape. Dentists identify chips and cracks that could become problematic in the future. This is the time for patients to bring up any issues they have, such as tooth sensitivity.

Teeth cleanings

Even people who brush and floss daily require professional dental cleanings. Dentists and hygienists can clean plaque and tartar that patients cannot reach or eliminate. In fact, the only way to get rid of tartar is with a professional cleaning. Professional cleanings help prevent cavities and gum disease. Patients should get professional cleanings every six months to a year, depending on their overall oral health.

Dental X-rays

Dentists take dental X-rays to look for issues that are not visible to the naked eye. Some patients require X-rays every six months, while others only need X-rays every two years. This diagnostic tool can find decay and look at the health of the roots and surrounding bones. Dental X-rays also provide a baseline for dentists. Dentists compare new X-rays to previous ones to identify changes.

Fluoride treatments

Fluoride treatments can also be part of routine dental care. Strong enamel is needed to prevent decay. Acidic drinks can eat away at the enamel, weakening the teeth. When this occurs, dentists often recommend fluoride treatments. Fluoride strengthens the teeth and makes them less susceptible to decay.

Dental sealants

Dentists also might recommend dental sealants during a routine exam. Dental sealants are clear and can be brushed directly onto the teeth. Sealants are used when teeth have deep ridges that trap food. The sealants seal the grooves so food can no longer get trapped. It takes approximately two minutes per tooth to apply sealants, so this process does not add much time to the dental visit.

Go to the dentist regularly

When you visit the dentist for your appointment, you will undergo an examination and a professional cleaning. The dentist might recommend dental X-rays, fluoride treatments and dental sealants as well. These visits will protect your teeth and gums, so you are less likely to experience issues such as cavities and decay. Go to the dentist every six months to maintain your oral health.

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