Our Epsom dentists explain how your oral health is monitored.
Most patients of the Clock Tower Dental Clinic come to us at six monthly intervals to have their teeth and gums checked by one of our dentists. Providing that good care has been taken to keep both the teeth and gums clean in the period between, it is likely that no treatment, or only minor treatment will be needed.
So is a six monthly check-up always needed? Our recommendation would be that, unless you have a long history of completely trouble-free teeth and gums, then leaving it longer between appointments increases the likelihood of problems arising and needing more extensive treatment when they do.
What we look for
When we perform an oral health check for a patient, we look for many things. The following are some of the key points of a routine dental check up:
Sometimes, dental decay can be obvious to the naked eye and we examine a patient’s teeth closely for signs of this. Sometimes though, it may occur under the surface of the tooth, and, in order to check for this, an x-ray may be necessary. These can reveal not only tooth decay, but also any initial signs of bone loss caused by the onset of gum disease. X-rays at the Clock Tower Dental Clinic use low doses of radiation and are perfectly safe for most people. If you are pregnant though, please let us know, as x rays are usually avoided during this time.
Much dental decay starts in the gaps between the teeth. This is also an area where bacteria collect and which may contribute to gum disease. Unfortunately, only around 20% of people in the UK use dental floss or an inter dental brush, so the likelihood of finding problems in this area is quite high. We may also recommend that you see our dental hygienist who will thoroughly clean the teeth and gum line, removing any tartar deposits which may have accumulated.
Checking for other conditions
As well as your teeth and gums, our thorough Epsom dentists will thoroughly examine the soft tissues in your mouth for any signs of potential problems. Specifically, we will be looking for anything that may indicate the possibility of oral cancers, which, although not particularly common, are on the rise. We should point out that if we recommend that you see your GP because we have detected a potential issue, this does not necessarily mean that there IS a problem. We are in an excellent position to regularly examine your mouth and it is prudent to have your doctor check anything of concern rather than ignore it in the hope that it goes away. In these cases, early intervention is essential.
During your checkup, we will also be pleased to answer any questions that you may have about your teeth and gums.
We firmly believe that regular six monthly appointments are an excellent way to help keep your teeth and gums in good condition, so why not book yours now by calling the Clock Tower Dental Clinic of Epsom on 01372 720136.