| 08/13/13

We encourage our patients to be active in the care of their oral health, helping patients to understand and address their unique needs.  Often, we find that many patients approach a routine examine as spectators rather than participants.  Dental care is much more effective when patients proactively ask questions during their exams.  Here are 5 questions you should ask at every routine exam:

Question:  Are there any changes in my dental x-rays?

Routine dental radiographs show bone levels and can diagnose areas of bone loss and periodontal disease. These images also show areas of heavy tartar buildup on specific teeth that are being missed during your normal home care. By knowing what areas are unhealthier than others, you can re-vamp your home care routines to reflect the needs of those teeth.

Question:  Do you see signs of demineralization on my tooth enamel?

Long before cavities form, the tooth enamel begins to decalcify. This weakened tooth enamel typically appears as a white spot on the tooth and is most visible when the tooth has been thoroughly dried off. Depending on the severity of the demineralization, topical fluoride treatments or home fluoride gels can help reverse the damage.

Question:  How does my bite appear to be functioning?

As we age, teeth can shift. Misaligned teeth may wear prematurely or abnormally. If needed, bite splints or orthodontics can prevent premature wear.

Question:  Do your oral tissues appear healthy?

Your tongue, gums, roof of the mouth and cheeks can reflect more than just the health of your teeth. Oral cancers, anemia and other types of health conditions are all things your dentist checks for each time you visit Herrick Dental.

Question:  Am I using the right type of oral care appliances?

Depending on your oral habits, brushing techniques and current oral health, some devices may be more appropriate than others. For instance, water flossers or specific types of electric toothbrushes may be useful when you might not have realized they were best for your needs.

The dental team at Herrick Dental is dedicated to making each of your appointments educational and enjoyable. We explain each procedure in-depth and want all of our patients to feel that their concerns are valued.  Make sure you are taking full advantage of your routine exams in Columbus, Ohio by asking great questions!

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  • Olivia Smart says:

    Thank you for explaining that you can strengthen your enamel with home fluoride gels. I have noticed this with one of my incisors and have been wondering what I can be doing at home to help with it before consulting my dentist. I’ll be sure to try this out until I can get an appointment with my dentist.

  • James Franklin says:

    Very interesting, great job, and thanks for sharing such an excellent blog. Your article persuades me so much that I never hesitate to comment on it.

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