Dental Exams & Cleanings

Dental Exam

Dr. Madden will perform a comprehensive dental exam at your initial dental visit.  It will include all or part of the following:

  • Review of your medical and dental history: Many medical conditions and medications may affect your dental health.  It is important that we are aware of all conditions and treatments.
  • Head and neck examination: The muscle and skeletal condition of your head and neck gives us important information about your dental health and about your occlusion.  We also check lymph nodes for infection or possible cancer.
  • TMJ (jaw joint) examination: We check your jaw joints for dysfunction that can cause future pain and problems with jaw joints locking open or closed.
  • Examination of diagnostic x-rays (radiographs): Essential for detection of decay, tumors, cysts, and bone loss.  X-rays also help determine tooth and root positions.
  • Oral cancer screening: Check the face, neck, lips, tongue, throat, tissues, and gums for any signs of oral cancer.
  • Gum disease evaluation: Check the gums and bone around the teeth for any signs of periodontal disease.
  • Examination of tooth decay: All tooth surfaces will be checked for decay with special dental instruments.
  • Examination of existing restorations: Check current fillings, crowns, etc.

At regular check-up exams, Dr. Madden and our hygienist will include all or part the following:

  • Update of medical history: To keep current with changes in your health or medications.
  • Examination of diagnostic x-rays (radiographs): Essential for detection of decay, tumors, cysts, and bone loss.  X-rays also help determine tooth and root positions.
  • Oral cancer screening: Check the face, neck, lips, tongue, throat, tissues, and gums for any signs of oral cancer.
  • Gum disease evaluation: Check the gums and bone around the teeth for any signs of periodontal disease.
  • Examination of tooth decay: All tooth surfaces will be checked for decay with special dental instruments.
  • Examination of existing restorations: Check current fillings, crowns, etc.

Professional Dental Cleaning

Professional dental cleanings (dental prophylaxis) are performed by Registered Dental Hygienists in our office.  Your hygiene appointment will include the following:

  • Removal of calculus (tartar): Calculus is hardened plaque that has been left on the tooth for some time and is now firmly attached to the tooth surface.  Calculus forms above and below the gum line and can only be removed with special dental instruments.
  • Removal of plaque: Plaque is a sticky, almost invisible film that forms on the teeth.  It is a growing colony of living bacteria, food debris, and saliva.  The bacteria produce toxins (poisons) that inflame the gums.  This inflammation is the start of periodontal disease!
  • Teeth polishing: Remove stain and plaque that is not otherwise removed during tooth brushing and scaling. This may not be done at every visit, because we want to preserve your tooth enamel as much as possible.
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