What Actually Happens During An Adult Dental Cleaning And Checkup?

Dentist Blog

If you're someone who has not been to the dentist for a while, then you may be a little unsure of what to expect. You may even be nervous to ask exactly what happens at the dentist's office, as doing so will reveal that you have not been seeing the dentist as recommended. Have no fear — your questions will be answered here! Keep reading to learn the basics of what goes on during an adult dental cleaning and checkup appointment.


Prophylaxis is the technical term for a dental cleaning. The cleaning itself is generally done by a dental hygienist, and not by the actual dentist. You'll have your teeth cleaned before the dentist looks at them since it is easier for a dentist to thoroughly examine clean teeth.

Your dental hygienist may apply some numbing gel to your gums before they start cleaning. This helps prevent soreness, which is really common in patients who have not seen the dentist in a while and who have a lot of tartar buildup. Then, your hygienist will use a series of scrapers to remove the hard tartar from your teeth, focusing on the gum line. Then, they will polish your teeth using a special polishing tool with some flavored toothpaste.


Once your teeth are clean — or sometimes before your cleaning — your dentist or the hygienist will take some x-rays. You'll just need to bite down on a special x-ray device while wearing a protective lead shield to guard your chest and neck against radiation. X-rays do not hurt, and they only take a few seconds. Your dentist will examine them to look for evidence of cavities, decay, and infections in the tooth roots.

An Exam

After your cleaning and x-rays, the dentist will take a look in your mouth. They will be looking for any soft spots and evidence of cavities, and they'll also look at your gums to see if you're showing any signs of gum disease. Dentists also check your cheeks and tongue for any abnormal patches that could indicate oral cancer.

If your dentist does notice anything unusual during the exam, they will work with you to come up with a recommended treatment plan. This could be as simple as a filling for a cavity or as complex as extraction for a badly decayed tooth. If you do need any such work done, you will schedule another appointment for it.

Going to the dentist is a good way to maintain your oral health. A cleaning, some x-rays, and a good exam, and you'll be set to go. For more information about dentistry, contact a local dental office.


19 January 2021

Coping With Dental Emergencies

My son was outside playing with some friends when he accidentally fell down and hit his mouth on the sidewalk. The fall knocked out his front tooth, so I immediately placed the tooth in a small jar and added some milk. I rushed my son to the dental clinic and the dentist immediately took us into the examination room. The dentist placed the tooth back into the socket and saved it. My name is Beverly Tillman and thanks to the quick work of the dentist, my son didn't lose his tooth. Since this was a scary time for me and my son, I wanted to write this blog as a source of information for other parents who are facing a dental emergency. First of all, don't panic and get to your dentist as soon as possible. I hope this blog will help to answer your questions about dental emergencies.