Visiting a dentist is essential to keep your teeth and gums healthy and to see any changes early. This way, the dentist can prevent decay and other oral health problems before they become serious. Seeing a dentist at an early age is also beneficial in treating infections and decay. The frequency of your checkups may be reduced if you take care of your teeth and gums.


Dental X-rays are an inevitable part of most checkups and cleanings, but some patients wonder if they’re necessary. Although most patients don’t require this procedure more than once a year, a few conditions require them. Your dentist may decide to perform them more frequently if you’ve experienced recent dental problems or have a history of periodontitis or other oral health problems.

The frequency of dental X-rays your dentist takes depends on several factors, including your age, risk for dental disease, and signs of damage or decay. If your teeth are healthy, you can skip the X-ray altogether. However, if you’ve had a dental issue for a while, you should schedule it sooner rather than later.

An X-ray is a picture of your teeth, gums, and jaw. It can help your dentist diagnose problems, such as injuries or cysts. These X-rays can also help dentists plan for dental treatments. They also help dentists assess bone health and diagnose problems, such as tooth decay.

The dental technician covers you with a lead apron to protect vital organs from the X-ray radiation. You should also wear a lead collar if you suffer from thyroid conditions. While dental X-rays are generally safe, it is still important to know what they entail.

Dental X-rays can show a dentist many things that are impossible to see with the naked eye. Besides detecting cavities and developing disease, x-rays can also show if there is space in your mouth for the erupting teeth. Additionally, they can show if your impacted teeth are growing properly.

Periodontal pockets

A dentist’s first step in determining whether you have periodontal disease is to do a thorough examination of your mouth. They’ll look for jaw dysfunction, deterioration of the bone, and bleeding gums. They will also use a thin instrument called a periodontal probe to measure the space between the gums and teeth. A healthy pocket is typically no more than four millimeters deep, and a higher number indicates a deeper problem. Often times, these pockets can be treated by taking antibiotics. These medications can be taken in pill form or applied directly to the periodontal pockets.

In addition to assessing the size of your gum pockets, your dentist will look for bleeding and a small gap between your gums and teeth. This gap can trap bacteria and cause gum disease, and if left untreated, can lead to tooth loss. Fortunately, periodontists can provide highly specialized treatments to treat this condition. Surgical procedures, including bone grafting, can restore damaged gum tissue.

A dentist can also perform a surgical procedure to reduce the size of periodontal pockets. This procedure will remove any excess tissue and enables the gums to attach to the teeth more securely. Over time, this procedure will also make periodontal pockets less deep and fit the teeth more closely.

A dentist will measure the depth of periodontal pockets in six different areas on your teeth. These measurements are very important, because a deeper pocket is an indication of severe disease and can make it difficult to control plaque with at-home oral care.

Early signs of gum disease

Gum disease is a serious issue that affects millions of Americans. It is caused by gum inflammation, which can lead to tooth loss or infection. Early detection of the disease is critical in preventing further complications. Visiting a dentist regularly is an excellent way to catch this problem in its early stages.

The early stage of the disease, known as gingivitis, can be treated to prevent more advanced damage. If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis, which affects the bone and gum tissues that support the teeth. The disease can cause the gums to recede, causing them to feel tender and painful. In advanced stages, periodontitis can even lead to tooth loss.

Early stage gum disease is not always obvious, and many patients do not know they have it until a dental professional reveals it. A dentist can detect it by measuring the space between the gums and teeth. Early stage gum disease is treatable with proper oral care and x-rays.

Advanced stage gum disease, also known as periodontitis, can require extensive treatment and/or oral surgery. Patients with advanced periodontitis will need to have their teeth removed or replace them with dentures. Fortunately, most patients can avoid the onset of gum disease by practicing good oral hygiene and scheduling regular dental visits.


Regular dental checkups are important for your overall health and wellness, but they can also be expensive. Fortunately, most insurance plans will cover these preventative treatments. If you have dental insurance, you’ll pay nothing out of pocket for a checkup, and you can take advantage of discounts offered through dental discount plans. You should also keep your mouth healthy at home with regular brushing and flossing, as well as getting a checkup every six months.

A dental checkup typically includes a thorough exam to determine the condition of your teeth, gums, and jaw. It may also include an oral cancer screening and a review of your prior dental work. This exam also usually involves a full set of dental x-rays, which is an additional expense. Comprehensive exams are typically necessary for people who have not been to the dentist for over three years or for new patients.

If you don’t have dental insurance, many dental practices accept uninsured patients. However, it is important to find out what your plan covers. Some practices require upfront payment, and you’ll want to ask your provider about their dental plans before choosing one. The cost of a dental checkup typically includes an exam by a dentist, x-rays, professional cleaning, and fillings. Many dentists also offer dental sealants and other treatments.

The cost of dental work varies widely. The average cost of a root canal costs about $300-$2,000. However, some treatments, such as bone grafting, will cost more than a few hundred dollars. The cost of a dental checkup also depends on the location of the dentist.

Finding a dentist

Choosing a dentist is an important part of oral health care, but choosing the right one can be tricky. Luckily, there are many ways to find a dentist that meets your specific needs. For starters, you can ask friends and family for referrals. While these referrals can be useful, they may not always be accurate. Instead, you should consider visiting a number of different websites and reading patient reviews.

A dentist’s reputation and experience are important factors in choosing a dental practice. In fact, in guides on how to choose a dentist, these are the top most considerations. If you have a family member or friend who had an excellent dental experience with a particular dentist, you can call their office for a recommendation. When calling, make sure to be courteous and flexible so you can get an appointment on the same day. Also, try to arrive early to fill out any paperwork and provide insurance details. Lastly, make sure to confirm the appointment well in advance so that you don’t miss it.

When choosing a new dentist, you should make sure to consider whether your insurance will cover your dental checkup. Dental insurance coverage often covers cleanings, x-rays, and exams. Sometimes, however, dental insurance networks change and you will have to make sure your current dentist is still covered by your plan.

Before choosing a dentist, get acquainted with their staff and practice. It is important to find out how friendly they are and whether they can accommodate your needs. Also, make sure to ask about their chairside manner. If they are rushed or impatient, you may want to look elsewhere.