Comprehensive Oral Examinations
Even if you maintain good oral hygiene in your daily routine, regular in-office exams are necessary for preventing disease and mitigating problems early. During your oral exam, one of our dental hygienists will remove any plaque or tartar missed during regular brushing. The cleaning will take approximately 30 minutes, after which your doctor will examine your mouth to make sure your teeth and gums are in optimal condition. Comprehensive oral exams can help prevent problems, before they become emergencies.
In-office cleanings are a necessary part of maintaining good oral hygiene. When plaque hardens into tartar, or calculus, it can no longer be removed with daily brushing at home. During a professional cleaning, your dental hygienist at Southwest Dental Group will remove plaque and tartar from your teeth, especially in areas that are difficult to reach with a toothbrush. The cleaning process takes between 30 minutes and an hour. It will be performed during your regular oral exam. It is recommended that you receive a professional oral cleaning every six months in order to remove plaque build-up and prevent infection.
In addition to hygiene treatment and maintenance during your regular oral examinations, your doctor offers fluoride treatment to help inhibit tooth decay. Fluoride is a mineral naturally found in water and other foods; it makes teeth more resistant to acid from oral bacteria and sugars. It can also reverse the effect of early tooth decay. Your doctor in Orland Park, IL can prescribe fluoride supplements, or apply it directly to the teeth in the form of a gel, foam or varnish. Fluoride treatment may be necessary for people who suffer from chronic dry mouth, the early stages of gum disease, or a history of frequent cavities.
Dental sealants are a preventative procedure used to protect permanent molars just after they have fully erupted (around ages 6 and 12). The sealant procedure involves brushing a tooth-colored material into the deep grooves and pits of your child’s back teeth, creating an environment that helps repel tooth decay and is easier to keep clean.
Toothbrush bristles are often too wide to clean these tiny areas. As the food and bacteria collect and build up, a cavity is likely to develop. The enamel is frequently weaker and thinner in the pits and fissures, which increases the chance of a cavity. Once decay has formed and a cavity is detected, your doctor must repair it and a dental sealant can no longer be placed.