What Happens During the Dental Exam?
During a dental exam, a mirror is used to examine the teeth as well as the soft tissues of the oral cavity. Radiographs may be taken if needed. A dental exam is entirely painless and only involves superficial examination and evaluation of the mouth. With a young infant or small child, Dr Sheppard will recommend examining the child utilizing a “Lap-to-Lap approach”. This is where the child sits on the adult’s lap and faces them. Dr Sheppard or his assistant will then sit knee to knee with the adult and they will have the adult tip the child back until the child’s head rests on Dr Sheppard’s knees. This allows the caregiver to still maintain contact and reassure the child, and also allows Dr Sheppard to see everything he needs to for the exam.
Tell me about Dental Radiographs.
Dental radiographs are taken to examine conditions and structures that cannot be seen with the naked eye. The two most common types of x-rays performed in our office include occlusal x-rays (front of the mouth) and bitewing x-rays (back of the mouth). These images play an important role in establishing and confirming a diagnosis and showing the most common tooth decay areas that cannot be seen visually on an exam.