At the office of Paul D. Nifong, Jr., DDS, we understand that many people get nervous about dental checkups, and we want to help set your mind at ease. Our goal is to help you take the best possible care of your teeth, and since good dental care includes regular checkups, we want to encourage you to schedule a visit with our team. A lot of anxiety comes from a fear of the unknown, and while we can’t tell you the results of your checkup ahead of time, we can at least provide an overview of what to expect.
A typical dental checkup appointment also includes a routine cleaning. You will lie down on a reclining dental chair while the hygienist deep-cleans your teeth. First, they will use metal or ultrasonic tools to gently scrape away any hard plaque or tartar deposits on the surface of your teeth (this is necessary, as a toothbrush alone isn’t able to remove this buildup). Then, they will use an electric tool with a spinning head to polish and buff your teeth. Finally, they will floss between your teeth and may finish off their part of the appointment by giving you a fluoride treatment.
The actual checkup in a dental checkup typically occurs after the cleaning is complete. The dentist will come into the room and have a look at your teeth and mouth to check for any problems, such as cavities or gingivitis. Your dental team may take x-rays as part of this assessment in order to get a better look at spaces in between your teeth or the parts under your gums. If the dentist does identify any issues, they will discuss treatment options with you and set up follow-up appointments. When you’re done, you’ll get a new toothbrush and toothpaste and get to check out.