What Is a Full Dental Exam?

Dental Cleaning And Examinations Turlock, CA

A full dental exam is a much more detailed investigation than the standard checkup. In a regular checkup, the dentist looks at the most common general issues. This is usually enough to identify dental problems. A full exam looks in much more detail, using a wider array of tools and tests.

How does a full dental exam differ from a regular checkup?

A full dental exam includes the same tests as a standard checkup, but in more detail. It also uses other tests not usually performed in a standard checkup. As in a regular checkup, the full dental exam involves a tooth-by-tooth examination. In a full dental exam, the dentist checks each tooth carefully, looking for discoloration, plaque and damage. The dentist also uses this opportunity to look at any cavities, fillings and prior dental work.

Then follows a periodontal exam, which is to say, an examination of the gums. Identifying gum disease early can help spot a variety of dental problems, making them easier to treat. The dentist looks at the color and firmness of the gums. Healthy gums should be a rich pink in color and should not bleed at the touch. Bleeding or receded gums indicate other health issues in the mouth.

The full dental exam also includes testing the patient’s bite. This can help identify painful or sensitive teeth. It can also be useful in checking the alignment of the teeth and jaw. It allows the dentist to measure any overbite or underbite rather than merely estimating.

X-rays, aesthetics and screening

The aesthetics of the teeth, their whiteness and straightness, is also a factor in the full dental exam. Bright white teeth are a strong indicator of generally good oral health. The dentist will check both sides of the teeth, front and back, and the spaces in between. Overcrowded teeth often do not sit evenly and can be difficult to brush thoroughly. This, in turn, leads to a buildup of staining, plaque and tartar.

In addition to these basic but detailed checks, a full dental exam may also include an X-ray. X-rays allow the dentist to see the structure of the jaw beneath the skin. It can identify any problems in the bone that may be contributing to other dental issues. X-rays allow the dentist to compare what they see on the surface to what is happening inside the jaw.

Finally, a full dental exam includes screening for oral cancer. As with all forms of cancer, early detection is key to successful treatment. In this regard, a full dental exam may well save a person’s life. Oral cancer screening is quick and painless and an essential bastion in the fight against cancer.

Following up after a full dental exam

Following the full dental exam, the dentist will explain the findings and any problems uncovered. The dentist will discuss a plan for treatment and arrange follow-up appointments. The dentist will also advise on what the patient can do at home to improve dental hygiene. Contact your local dentist today to arrange an appointment.

Request an appointment here: http://www.kingdentistry.com or call King Dentistry at (209) 585-1474 for an appointment in our Turlock office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Dental Cleaning and Examinations in Turlock, CA.

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