In addition to brushing, flossing and scheduled dental cleanings, comprehensive exams are also a necessary part of your oral care maintenance to help prevent problems and detect early signs of potential dental issues. A comprehensive exam offers an extensive and broad analysis of the state of your teeth, gums, tongue, throat, jaws, and the rest of your mouth.
This procedure is recommended by the ADA for all new patients, and our established patients also undergo it at least every 3 years. The ADA also recommends that patients should have a periodic oral exam for patients when the dentist determines that there’s a need to monitor changes in the patient’s oral health status compared to the results of their last examination.
As the name of the procedure indicates, a comprehensive exam is broad and all-inclusive. The entire procedure lasts for the whole period of the appointment. It includes:
- A dental exam of the teeth
- A periodontal exam focused on the gums and bones that support the teeth
- A bite analysis,also known as an occlusal exam
- A head and neck cancer exam that checks the throat, soft tissues of the mouth, and various nearby features
- A TMJ exam that checks the joints of your jaw
- A radiographic exam that includes taking X-rays and various other types of scans
- A check of the salivary function, which evaluates the amount and the quality of your saliva
- And an aesthetic exam, which basically evaluates the quality of your smile
While the comprehensive exam should be performed regularly every 3 years, it should also be done right before these dental procedures:
- Making aesthetic changes to your smile
- Installing new implants to replace any teeth you’ve lost
- Installing new dentures
- Upgrading dental restorations you’ve previously received
- Any treatment that required for a medical problem or disease
With a comprehensive exam, you can be very sure that everything is checked. Our team will find out anything and everything that has something to do with your dental health. We will know for sure the current state of your oral health, discover any current or potential issues, and proceed with confidence to plan for treatment with confidence.
Please give us a call at (530) 534-8353 if you need to schedule a comprehensive exam as part of your oral health maintenance.