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          6 important things dentists check during routine visits

          On a regular check-up, we examine things that you may not even think of. Of course, we check for cavities or decays, but this is not the only thing we look for during your routine exam.

          Did you know that over 75% of all oral cancers are discovered by dentists?

          One important thing that we do on your dental examination is to check that your soft tissues are healthy. This involves lips, cheeks, tongue and all the soft tissue in your mouth surrounding your teeth. Many soft tissue changes are completely pain-free and can go undiscovered for a long time. Many are not harmful, but some can develop into more serious lesions.

          We check for signs of gum disease.

          Gum disease needs to be addressed very quickly to avoid serious dental problems such as wobbly teeth or ultimately, loss of teeth. Good oral hygiene routines help keep your gums healthy, but there are also strong genetic couplings to gum disease that make it important to have your mouth checked regularly. Gum disease has also got close correlation with circulatory and heart problems, which fairly recent research has shown.

          Regular dental exams help protect and maintain not just your oral health, but also your overall health.

          For instance, signs and symptoms of some systemic diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and diabetes might show up in the mouth first. There are other serious medical conditions such as HIV and other immune-suppressive diseases that can show early signs in your mouth.
          Dentist routine check-up

          Many commonly used medicines, such as some blood pressure suppressants, antidepressants and antibiotics can affect the oral environment and soft tissues.

          This can often be helped by just changing to a different type of medication as there often are several options to treat the same medical conditions and symptoms.

          We check for abnormal wear and tear of your teeth.

          This is often caused by so called teeth grinding or bruxism in medical language. People who suffer from teeth grinding get symptoms like frequent headaches, clicking jaw joints and difficulties in opening their mouth wide. Sometimes, teeth grinding can be symptom-free but still cause damage to your teeth and restorations (fillings, crowns, etc). It is important stop this habit that is often totally subconscious before it causes too many problems. Common treatments may include night guards, relaxing exercises and sometimes orthodontic treatment to develop a better-balanced bite or occlusion.

          We check your teeth for cavities, damaged restorations, cracks, etc.

          We can detect a lot of this by looking in your mouth, but it is also important to have dental x-rays taken regularly as we only see around 60% of the teeth surfaces, and dental cavities often turn up on surfaces not detectable for the bare eye. It is always better to protect and prevent than repair, but when repairs are needed, the earlier we detect the problems, the smaller the restorations.