Your Comprehensive Dental Exam at the New Family Dentist: What should you expect?

With the ever increasing links between dental health and over-all health, your oral examinations may be more extensive than they were in the past.

Be sure to bring a list of the prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medications that you take to your first visit.  These will be reviewed to see how they may impact your dental treatment and outcome.  In our office, we take blood pressure readings to evaluate that your heart health does not adversely affect your dental treatment, also.

Times have changed!  Your exam may be more interactive than in the past.  Digital x-rays are commonly taken, which use less radiation and are viewable on the computer monitor.  An intra-oral camera can be used, which easily shows problems when the teeth are magnified.

Because there are 35,000 new cases of oral cancer reported every year in the United States, it is recommended that an enhanced oral cancer screening be performed yearly on all patients over age 18.  Our exam includes a visual examination and a VelScope luminescence exam, as well as palpation of the head and neck, checking for lumps and changes within the oral cavity.

Periodontal charting will be done to evaluate you for periodontal disease, which is an inflammatory process that targets the bone and gums in your mouth.  Other inflammatory diseases include heart disease and diabetes, only the targeted areas of the inflammation are different than the oral cavity.  Why is this important?  Controlling inflammation can lead to optimum overall health, not just optimum dental health. Now does this make sense?

Commonly, patients mention that they have never had such a thorough screening as our comprehensive new patient dental examination.  It gives us great satisfaction to uncover underlying health problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, acid reflux, Sjogren’s disease, and oral cancer while checking for periodontal disease and dental decay.  The oral/systemic link is there!

Would you rather get just a dental checkup, or be evaluated for contributing factors in your quest for optimum dental health?  Our goal is optimum overall health in addition to optimum dental health.  Seek out a dentist who realizes the oral/systemic connection and make your appointment today!