Dental Exams & Cleanings
At your initial dental visit, Dr. Braithwaite will perform a comprehensive dental exam. At regular check-up exams, Dr. Braithwaite and the hygienist will include the following:
- Examination of diagnostic radiographs (x-rays): Essential for detection of decay, cysts, tumors, and bone loss. X-rays also help show tooth and root positions.
- Oral cancer screening: Examine the face, neck, tongue, lips, throat, gums, and tissues for any indications of oral cancer.
- Gum disease examination: Check the tissues and bone around the teeth for any signs of periodontal disease.
- Evaluation for tooth decay: All tooth surfaces will be checked for decay with special dental instruments.
- Evaluation of current restorations: Check existing crowns, fillings, etc.
Professional Dental Cleaning
Professional dental cleanings (dental prophylaxis) are always performed by a Registered Dental Hygienist (RDA). Your cleaning appointment will include a dental exam and the following:
- Removal of plaque: Plaque is a sticky, almost invisible film that forms on the teeth. It is a growing colony of food debris, living bacteria, and saliva. The bacteria produce toxins (poisons) that inflame the gums. This inflammation is the beginning of periodontal disease!
- Removal of calculus (tarter): Calculus is a hardened plaque that has been left on the tooth for some time and is now firmly attached to the tooth surface. Calculus forms below and above the gum line and can only be removed with special dental scalers.
- Teeth polishing: Remove plaque and stain that is not otherwise removed during tooth scaling and brushing.