Dental Exams & Cleanings: Taking Care of Your Smile

Dental Exams & Cleanings: Taking Care of Your Smile

Ever wondered how to keep your smile healthy and bright? Dental exams and cleanings hold the answer. The South Reno dentist office can also help you with these. Beyond the regular check-ups, these sessions are essential for maintaining optimal oral well-being. Let’s talk about dental exams & cleanings further in this blog.

What Are Dental Exams and Cleanings?

Dental exams involve a thorough evaluation of your oral health by a trained dentist. They check for cavities, gum disease, oral cancer, and other dental issues. Dental cleanings, on the other hand, are professional cleanings performed by a dental hygienist to remove plaque, tartar, and stains from your teeth.

Why Are Dental Exams Important?

Regular dental exams allow dentists to catch dental problems early on. Detecting issues like cavities or gum disease in their initial stages can prevent them from becoming more serious and costly to treat. Dentists also examine your bite, jaw, and alignment during these exams, helping to prevent complications down the line.

The Importance of Dental Cleanings

  • Removing Plaque: Even with regular brushing and flossing, plaque can build up. Dental cleanings remove this plaque, preventing it from hardening into tartar.
  • Tartar Removal: Tartar is hardened plaque that can’t be removed by brushing. Cleanings help get rid of tartar, which can contribute to gum disease.
  • Fresher Breath: Cleanings also remove stubborn bacteria that can cause bad breath, leaving your mouth feeling fresh.
  • Brighter Smile: Stains from coffee, tea, and certain foods can be polished away during cleanings, enhancing your smile’s brightness.

What Happens During a Dental Exam

  • Visual Examination: The dentist checks your teeth, gums, and mouth, looking for any visible issues.
  • X-rays: If needed, X-rays are taken to see between teeth and under the gumline.
  • Gum Health: The dentist measures the depth of spaces between your gums and teeth. Deeper spaces might indicate gum disease.
  • Oral Cancer Check: The dentist examines your tongue, throat, cheeks, and other oral tissues for signs of cancer.

What to Expect During a Dental Cleaning

  • Plaque and Tartar Removal: The dental hygienist uses special tools to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth.
  • Cleaning with Gritty Paste: A gritty toothpaste is used to deep-clean and polish your teeth, removing surface stains.
  • Flossing: Your teeth are flossed to ensure spaces between teeth are clean.
  • Fluoride Treatment: Sometimes, a fluoride treatment is applied to strengthen your teeth and protect against cavities.

How Often Should You Go?

It’s generally recommended to have a dental exam and cleaning every six months. However, some individuals with specific oral health concerns may need more frequent visits. Your dentist will determine the best schedule for your needs.

Tips for a Healthy Smile

  • Brushing: Brush your teeth twice a day using fluoride toothpaste.
  • Flossing: Clean your teeth daily with dental floss.
  • Healthy Diet: Eat a balanced diet, limiting sugary snacks and drinks.
  • Avoid Smoking: Smoking can contribute to gum disease and oral cancer.
  • Mouthguards: If you play sports, wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth.
  • Regular Check-ups: Stay on top of your dental exams and cleanings to catch problems early.


Dental exams and cleanings are more than just routine visits – they’re essential for maintaining your oral health. By preventing problems before they arise and keeping your teeth and gums clean, you’re investing in a brighter, healthier smile for years to come. So, don’t skip those appointments – your smile will thank you!