A comprehensive periodontal exam will be performed by your periodontist at your initial visit. At regular check-up exams, your periodontist and hygienist will include the following:
- 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 Periodontal Cleaning
Professional Periodontal cleanings (Periodontal Maintenance visits) are usually performed by Registered Dental Hygienists. Your cleaning appointment will include a dental exam (once or twice per year) and 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!
- Intrasulcular irrigation: We use an antibacterial rinse to irrigate around the teeth and into the periodontal space, this will provide for further reduction in the bacteria that occupies these pockets.
- Interdental stimulation: This will provide a massage to the interdental gingiva and will improve the blood circulation in these areas. This will ensure better ability of the gingiva to fight the accumulation of bacteria.
- Interdental Flossing: to complement the cleaning in the areas between the teeth.
- Teeth polishing: Remove stain and plaque that is not otherwise removed during tooth brushing and scaling.