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What to expect at a routine dental visit

Dental visits are a great way to maintain overall oral health. It’s recommended that you visit your dentist once every six months. When you visit, it’s always good to know what to expect at a routine dental visit.

The dental exam

At your dental appointment, your dentist or hygienist will thoroughly review your teeth. X-rays may be taken or reviewed to assess the condition of your gums and teeth and to give your dental team an idea of where any potential problems may be. If needed, your team will discuss treatment options with you if there are signs of gum disease or tooth decay.

Cavity check

Cavities are one of the most common dental problems but are easily preventable. If you brush and floss regularly, you can significantly reduce your chances of cavities. And if you develop a cavity, your dentist can typically address it within one visit.

When looking at the surface of a tooth, a dentist can easily spot when there’s been damage to enamel (the hard outer layer) or dentin (the softer inner layer). Dentists use dental mirrors and explorers to see clearly into areas where light doesn’t usually reach to identify decay on the inside teeth. 

Gum disease screening

When you go to the dentist, they may screen your gums for signs of gum disease. This is called a periodontal screening, and can sometimes be part of a dental checkup. Always check with your dentist to understand what to expect for your checkups. 


An x-ray is a type of image that can reveal hidden structures in the mouth. They are one of the most effective ways to detect cavities and other problems with teeth, as well as evaluate the jawbone, roots, nerves, and soft tissues. These images allow your dental team to see how your teeth fit together and how much space exists between them.

X-rays may not be recommended at every checkup appointment, but you can expect to have x-rays at one point or another. Especially if it’s been a while since your last images were taken.

Ask your dentist questions on how to maintain optimal oral health.

  • Ask your dentist how to best maintain your oral health and properly clean your teeth.
  • Ask about how to improve your brushing and flossing techniques.
  • Learn to avoid different foods and drinks, such as highly acidic lemonade, breaking down your teeth’s enamel.

Taking care of your teeth at home

Brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing once a day, and using fluoride toothpaste will help keep your teeth healthy and strong.

You should also use a tongue scraper to remove bacteria from the surface of your tongue. This can help prevent bad breath, too!

A water pick is another tool you may want to consider cleaning between teeth. It’s a great tool, especially if you have gum disease or loose fillings that are difficult to reach with floss.

Finally, using mouthwash can help improve the health of your mouth by killing harmful bacteria that cause bad breath and plaque buildup on teeth.

Routine dental visits are essential. You’ll leave with the knowledge of how to maintain a beautiful and healthy smile.

Routine dental visits are essential. They’re a time to deep clean your teeth and understand about any oral health issues that could arise. 

After each routine checkup and cleaning, you’ll feel better about yourself as well as your personal appearance. 

Our team is here to help you understand what goes on during a routine dental exam and why it’s so crucial for your oral health. If you keep up with your daily oral hygiene routine at home and come in for regular checkups with your dentist, you’ll have a happy and healthy smile for life!

If you are looking for a dentist in Mission Viejo, set up an appointment today!Contact your Mission Viejo dentist today.

Contact Your Dentist in Mission Viejo Today!

Monday: 9:00am - 6:00pm
Tuesday: 9:00am - 6:00pm
Wednesday: 9:00am - 6:00pm
Thursday: 9:00am - 6:00pm
Friday: 8:00am - 4:00pm
Saturday: 8:00am - 4:00pm
Sunday: Closed

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