Cleaning, flossing, polishing, poking, prodding – a trip to the dentist has so many things going on. But did you know there is even more happening that isn’t as obvious?
Here are a few of the things your dentist is checking for while you’re hanging out in the dental chair.
- Cavities/soft spots: When a cavity begins to develop, it can cause dark spots on the tooth’s surface which your dentist can see during an exam. Dentists also look closely at your teeth for any holes or pits in the enamel as these are other signs of cavities brought on by bacteria eating into the tooth.
- Signs of Oral Cancer: Visual screenings are a great way for your dentist to detect abnormalities inside the mouth and on the tongue, which could be signs of oral cancer.
- Tonsils and tongue issues: You may not realize it, but both your tonsils and your tongue can tell a lot about your overall health. So, while your dentist is checking inside your mouth, he or she will also look for any abnormalities such as a pale or white covered tongue or redness and swelling that could be the sign of a more serious issue.
- Your salivary glands: If you’ve read any of our previous blogs, you’ve probably heard us say that saliva is one of the best things for oral health. During your checkup, the dentist will examine your glands to make sure they are functioning as they should and producing the necessary saliva to help keep your mouth bacteria-free.