Routine Cleanings & Exams
Your smile looks great and you take good care of your teeth at home. So do you really need to come in for your routine cleaning and exam? Yes! When you come in to visit us every six months, as we recommend, we get the chance to take a closer look at your teeth, gums, tongue, and jaw to make sure everything is still healthy. Problems like decay or infection can go unnoticed, not showing any signs until we have to use invasive measures to restore health to your smile.
Our goal is to provide treatment that is not only effective, but also conservative. We don’t want to perform a root canal if we don’t have to! At Las Cruces Dental Solutions, we recommend all of our patients come in for regular dental exams and cleanings to keep their mouths in great health.
What to Expect
When you visit for your routine dental appointment, we strive to make sure that your appointment is effective and efficient. We don’t want to keep you longer than we have to, so we call you back fast and get right to work. Once you’re in the dental chair, we take X-rays if it’s been a while. Images from our digital X-rays are available almost immediately, and we’re able to get a good look at your teeth and jaw bone. If we notice any issues, we’ll let you know and discuss a treatment plan with you – we can usually begin treatment that same day so you don’t have to come back later.
After we’ve taken X-rays, we clean the plaque off your teeth. This lets us get a good look at the surface of your teeth as well as your gums. Your dentist will then come in to look over your X-rays, perform a more detailed exam, and go over any concerns you have. Then your hygienist will polish your teeth, and you’ll be all set!
Benefits of Routine Appointments
Coming in for regular dental appointments provides you with many health benefits, including:
- Brighter smile and fresher breath
- Early detection of decay
- Boost in overall health
- Early intervention if gum disease is present
- Save money – bigger problems require more expensive treatments
Cleanings & Exams FAQs
How long does a dental cleaning take?
Routine exams and checkups can last anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour. Patients who have put off seeing their dentist for a while may experience longer visits as the cleaning portion may be more intensive than for those who regularly see us as recommended.
How often should I get a dental cleaning?
Every six months, you should come in for a routine checkup and thorough cleaning. This way, we can keep your teeth and gums clean and look out for any potential issues that could arise in the future. When it comes to oral health, prevention is much easier (and less expensive) than curing more complex problems.
When can I eat after a dental cleaning?
Waiting 30 minutes before eating or drinking anything after your visit with us is ideal as fluoride is still busy at work re-mineralizing your enamel during that time. It won’t necessarily hurt you or your teeth to eat before that time limit, but it would make your appointment with us a little less effective than it could be.
What is a dental exam?
A dental exam—also commonly referred to as a routine checkup—involves a thorough examination of your teeth and gums. Things we are looking for during this process include cracks or chips in your teeth and signs of tooth decay or wearing down of enamel. These exams typically go hand-in-hand with a cleaning where tartar and plaque are removed from the nooks and crannies of your teeth and gum line.
How much is a dental cleaning or exam?
The cost of dental cleanings and exams vary from person to person, depending on their insurance benefits, unique smile needs, and other factors. For those without insurance or who are underinsured, check out our In-House Dental Savers Plan and see how you can save big. The plan includes cleanings and exams at no additional cost. Call our office for more details.