The American Dental Association defines general dentistry as, “the evaluation, diagnosis, prevention and/or treatment (nonsurgical, surgical or related procedures) of diseases, disorders and/or conditions of the oral cavity, maxillofacial area and/or the adjacent and associated structures”. In short, general dental services are aimed at maintaining your oral health through preventative and restorative procedures. Examples of general dental services include:
During a dental cleaning, your dentist will use special tools to remove plaque and tartar from the surface of your teeth. They will then brush your teeth with a gritty toothpaste, floss them, and rinse your mouth with water before applying a fluoride polish. Regular dental cleanings are the foundation of oral health and help to decrease the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
Diagnostic x-rays are usually performed 1-2 times per year to evaluate the underlying bone structure. Dental x-rays allow your dentist to identify potential problems like decay between teeth, impacted wisdom teeth, and jawbone deterioration. Dental x-rays may also be used for treatment planning.
During a dental exam, your dentist will check each tooth for signs of decay. They will also measure your gum pockets and evaluate your gums to determine if there are any signs of gum disease. They may also check your bite and the functionality of your jaw joint. Most dentists also perform an oral cancer screening.
Oral Cancer Screenings
During an oral cancer screening, your dentist will visually examine the lips, inner cheeks, tongue, soft and hard palates, and pharynx for tissue discolorations or anomalies that could indicate the presence of oral cancer. In some cases, a special light may be used to detect cancerous tissue.
Your dentist is just as concerned about the health of your gums as they are about the health of your teeth. Periodontal care is necessary when gingivitis or periodontitis is present, and generally consists of specialized cleanings, possible antibiotics or prescription mouthwash, and possible laser treatments to remove diseased tissue.
Frequently Asked Questions:
How often do I need general dental care?
Regardless of your age or current oral health, the American Dental Association recommends receiving general dental care at least once every six months. In some cases, your dentist may recommend more frequent visits to manage certain conditions. Regular dental visits allow your dentist to closely monitor your oral health and detect potential problems early. Schedule your general dental appointment with Park City Dental today!
What should I expect during my dental visit?
Your dental visit will begin with dental x-rays. When having dental x-rays taken, you can expect to hold your mouth in certain positions while different images are taken. After your x-rays, you will receive an oral examination where our doctors will evaluate your teeth, gums, and jaw joint. She will also perform an oral cancer screening and discuss your x-rays with you. Once the exam is complete, a dental hygienist will perform a teeth cleaning.
What should I expect after my dental visit?
After your dental visit, you will need to make an appointment for your next visit six months later. In some cases, your dentist may recommend scheduling an appointment sooner for treatment. In between dental appointments, you will need to continue to brush twice a day and floss daily to maintain your oral health.