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Chelmsford Dentists: What Are Dental Exams and Cleanings?

Chelmsford Dentists

Chelmsford Dentists | Dental exams and cleanings are the first line of defense that your Chelmsford dentists use to protect you and your family from tooth decay and gum disease. Unfortunately, these types of appointments are frequently neglected by patients, particularly in today’s challenging times. Patients don’t realize the harm that can happen by postponing these vital dental visits. Let’s take a look at the importance of dental exams and cleanings so that you can protect your teeth and gums to prevent unnecessary dental work in the future.

Tooth Decay and Gum Disease

Before looking into dental exams and cleanings. It may be helpful to understand why you need them in the first place. As mentioned earlier, the primary goal of these necessary Chelmsford dentists visits is to protect you from tooth decay and gum disease.

Tooth decay is caused by the presence of oral bacteria that are always present in the mouth. If you let up on your regular brushing and flossing, or put off needed dental exams and cleanings, bacteria can really take a toll on your mouth by creating acidic substances that damage tooth enamel.

Chelmsford Dentists | Woman lying on dentist chair.

Damaged tooth enamel can allow the entry of bacteria further into the dentin layer of the teeth. From there, it’s just a short hop to the dental pulp. Inflamed or infected pulp can be extremely painful. This requires a procedure like a root canal treatment, or even a tooth extraction.

Gum disease is a chronic condition that can, left untreated, result in the eventual loss of teeth by undermining the gums and bone that support them. Plaque is a sticky substance that can build up on the teeth, leading to the formation of tartar – a hardened form of plaque. At this stage, only your dental team can remove it.

The danger of plaque is that it eventually leads to an inflammatory condition of the gums. In its early form, called gingivitis, gum disease can be reversed. But if it develops further into periodontitis, the condition becomes irreversible. At that point, you would need constant treatment to prevent the loss of teeth.

Dental Exams and Cleanings

The importance of dental exams and cleanings is that they allow your Chelmsford dentists a chance to remove any plaque or tartar that they may find. Your dental hygienist will use their training and specialized dental tools to scrape away plaque and tartar during your cleaning appointment.

Dental exams usually takes place before a dental cleaning. Unless you have some ongoing situation that was previously known about. Your dental hygienist will be checking for problems like oral cancer, gum disease and tooth decay. If any abnormalities are noted, your Chelmsford dentists can be called in to take a closer look.

Benefits of Dental Exams and Cleanings

  • Prevents tooth decay and gum disease
  • Removes plaque and tartar
  • Polishes the teeth to help brighten your smile

Schedule Your Appointment

Has it been awhile since your last dental exam and cleaning appointment? If so, contact Chelmsford dentists today at (978) 250-0079 to book an appointment and get back on track with these important dental visits to protect your teeth and gums from tooth decay and gum disease.

 

Chelmsford Dentistry: What To Expect During Your First Dental Visit

Chelmsford Dentistry

Chelmsford Dentistry | We find that patients are more comfortable when they are informed in advance about needed treatments and appointments, such as going to their first dental visit. This guide should allow you to understand what will happen at this important appointment with your dentist and dental team.

To begin, you will be escorted to a treatment room for a review of your dental and medical history. This is a good time to share any dental health concerns or questions that you may have.

Your dental assistant will take x-rays of your teeth and mouth for a review by your dentist at your Chelmsford dentistry.

Chelmsford Dentistry | Happy patient at dentist.

Comprehensive Dental Exam

New patients will visit the dentist to undergo a comprehensive dental exam. Your dentist will go over your health history. Chelmsford dentistry may take your blood pressure to ensure that you are in sound health.

The dental x-rays will be reviewed, and you may also undergo an oral cancer screening, which is recommended annually. Oral cancer is a serious disease that is actually quite treatable when detected early, emphasizing the importance of this initial visit.

A first dental visit can take up to one hour so that your dental team can spot any signs of trouble like cavities or gum disease. Depending upon the results of your examination, Chelmsford dentistry may formulate an individual treatment plan for you and go over your treatment options.

Dental Cleaning

You may also receive a dental cleaning at your first dental appointment. The purpose is to remove any plaque or tartar from your teeth. Plaque is a sticky material that forms from oral bacteria. It can inflame and infect the gums, leading to periodontal disease, commonly known as gum disease. Once it hardens, plaque becomes very difficult to remove. Now known as tartar, it is only removable by a dental specialist.

Your dental hygienist will scrape away all plaque and tartar from your teeth. This helps prevent the development of gum disease.

If you already have gum disease, you may undergo a somewhat different type of dental cleaning that also involves checking the depth of your gum pockets and cleaning plaque from around the gum line.

What happens next?

In addition, after reviewing your individual treatment plan with your dentist. A member of the Chelmsford dentistry will speak with you to allow for the scheduling of any needed follow-up appointments. As well as go over payment options and answer any questions that you may have about insurance coverage.

For any needed dental service, you will be given a comprehensive cost and insurance coverage breakdown. We want to make sure that you receive the dental care that you need as quickly and as comfortably as possible.

Schedule Your Appointment Today

If this will be your first visit with our Chelmsford dentistry, we would love to hear from you to schedule it as soon as possible. Please contact us today at (978) 250-0079 to schedule your first dental visit. Subsequent dental exam and cleaning appointments can also be conveniently scheduled at this time.

Chelmsford Dentist: Proper At-Home Dental Care

Chelmsford Dentist

Chelmsford Dentist | The first line of defense against tooth decay and gum disease is actually the responsibility of the patient. The battle takes place at your home. Unless you have some kind of mouth trauma or serious underlying medical problem, you should be able to preserve the health of your teeth and gums by regularly brushing and flossing, as well as eating a healthy, nutritious diet. For this reason, proper at-home dental care cannot be left to chance. Developing good habits is essential. Learn more below and contact our Chelmsford dentist today.

Fast facts on teeth and gum health:

  • Teeth are composed primarily of minerals.
  • Plaque is a sticky biofilm containing bacteria that damage teeth and gums.
  • Smoking is a major risk factor for developing gum disease.
chelmsford dentist | family brushing teeth

Brushing Your Teeth

Everyone knows that brushing their teeth at home is the best way to prevent tooth decay, but not everyone knows how to get the most out of this important daily practice. According to the American Dental Hygienists’ Association, you should brush for at least two minutes twice per day.  Your Chelmsford dentist may recommend additional brushing depending on your unique needs.Use only a soft or medium-bristle toothbrush to avoid damaging your tooth enamel. It is also important to maintain a 45° angle when using your toothbrush. The angle is relative to your gum line.The motion of your toothbrush is also important. Use a gentle, circular motion when brushing your teeth and avoid scrubbing or sawing motions.It is helpful to periodically brush your tongue and the roof of your mouth to remove any bacteria that may be hiding there. And if you are unable to brush your teeth after a snack or meal, such as when you are away from home, you can still rinse your mouth out with water to remove much of the food debris that would otherwise feed oral bacteria that causes tooth decay. Don’t let it get a head start.You should replace your toothbrush every three months at a minimum, as well as following any illness.

Flossing Your Teeth

It is important that you floss your teeth daily to remove plaque and food particles in hard-to-reach areas that your toothbrush may miss. One key area to look for is the tight spaces between your teeth and the area under your gum line. These are areas that are susceptible to the formation of plaque that can harden and turn into tartar.By failing to regularly floss your teeth, plaque and tartar can accumulate that cause cavities and gum disease.

Watching Your Diet

Watching your diet is more than about just maintaining a healthy weight. Certain foods and beverages are known to contribute to tooth decay and gum disease. Sugar is definitely the biggest culprit here. That is because oral bacteria use sugars to produce acids that destroy tooth enamel. So try to limit your consumption of sugary candies, sodas, cookies and chocolate.

Contact Us

Our Chelmsford dentist provides dental consultations to existing and new patients. Learn more by contacting our office today.