Regular dental check ups are the best way to make sure your gums and teeth stay healthy. The check up allows Dr. Muntaka Shah to diagnose any problems, and to take preventive action to stop problems before they develop.
Dr. Muntaka Shah from Lumos Dental in Edmonton is trained to look for anything unusual in your mouth, throat and neck, including the oral manifestations of diseases, oral cancer, infections, the early signs of gum disease, eroded fillings and dental decay.
Your dentist understands the treatment alternatives available to you, and can help you make informed decisions about your dental care. But you have a role to play too in preventing many of the common dental problems associated with growing older.
Brush and floss your teeth properly, visit your dentist regularly for a professional cleaning, check up and necessary treatment, and update Dr. Muntaka Shah on your medical history, including any new medication you are taking.
Do I Need a Dental Check Up?
Yes. Everyone needs regular preventive check ups. Even if you are diligent about brushing and flossing, your teeth and gums still need regular care from a dental professional. Check ups are equally important if you wear dentures, have dental implants, or are taking medication that affects your mouth in some way, such as causing dry mouth or overgrown gums.
How often you go for a check up depends on your oral health needs. The goal is to catch small problems early. For many people, this means a check up every six months. Your dentist may suggest that you visit more or less often depending on how well you care for your teeth and gums, problems you have that need to be checked or treated, how fast tartar builds up on your teeth, and so on.
No matter how carefully you take care of your teeth and gums, or how carefully you look for signs of problems, there are a number of oral health conditions that only your dentist can see. Various medical conditions can also be detected during your dental checkup, often in their early stages. Your dentist has been trained to identify the oral manifestations of these conditions, and can refer you to other health professionals for treatment.
Ten oral health problems your dentist can see that you cant:
Parts of the Check Up
During your check up, your dentist will look for early signs of oral cancer and many other diseases. Your dentist will also look for gum disease, cavities, eroded fillings, tooth fractures, and oral infections. He or she is trained to catch small problems before they become big ones, and can often treat a problem right away.
A check up can include some or all of the following procedures:
Here are the main steps in a cleaning. Dr. Muntaka Shah or dental hygienist may do these steps in a different order, because your teeth are unique.
Why do I need my teeth cleaned?
Professional cleaning is the only way to remove hardened deposits of tartar from your teeth. If tartar is not removed, it can cause gum disease, the leading cause of tooth loss in adults.
Cleaning also smoothes and polishes the surfaces of your teeth and your fillings so they are less likely to accumulate plaque (the invisible bacterial film that builds up on teeth every day). Finally, cleaning removes stains and mild discolorations, so your teeth look better.
A good cleaning can take some time, but it's time well spent. A cleaning by Dr. Muntaka Shah or dental hygienist helps to prevent gum disease, one of the most common adult dental problems.
4. Fluoride treatment - a member of your dental team may apply fluoride to your teeth during a check up. It may be a gel, a foam or a liquid. Fluoride helps prevent cavities by fixing the first, tiny stages of tooth decay, and by slowing down the germs (or bacteria) growing on your teeth. Dr. Muntaka Shah from Lumos Dental in Edmonton will talk to you about your total exposure to fluoride to determine if you need a fluoride treatment.
5. Advice - Dr. Muntaka Shah can give advice and answer your questions based on the results of your checkup.
You can help Dr. Muntaka Shah understand more about your teeth by telling Dr. Muntaka Shah about any changes in your mouth or with your overall health. Ask Dr. Muntaka Shah from Lumos Dental in Edmonton questions about your check up results and how to take better care of your teeth and gums. And make sure Dr. Muntaka Shah has your updated medical history.
Will the Dentist Take X-rays?
X-rays may or may not be a regular part of your checkup. X-rays help Dr. Muntaka Shah from Lumos Dental in Edmonton see problems long before they get too serious. Dr. Muntaka Shah will only take x-rays if there is a need for them.
X-rays can show:
Are X-rays Safe?
X-rays are safe. People are exposed to very low levels of radiation as part of their daily lives. When you have a dental X-ray, you are protected in three ways:
Is There Anything I Need to Do?
Yes. Be sure to tell Dr. Muntaka Shah from Lumos Dental in Edmonton about any changes in your general health, any medication you are taking, or whether your medication has changed since your last visit. Talk to Dr. Muntaka Shah about any specific dental problems or concerns you have. You should also mention any stress-producing factors in your life, since stress affects the condition of your mouth.
Be sure to tell your dentist about discomfort, pain or other oral symptoms that you are experiencing. Dr. Muntaka Shah will be able to determine what's wrong, or refer you to an appropriate health care professional for further consultation.
Some adults suffer from dry mouth, which may be a side effect of medication. In addition to being uncomfortable, this condition can aggravate other dental problems and increase the risk of decay. Mention it to Dr. Muntaka Shah from Lumos Dental in Edmonton.
Tell Dr. Muntaka Shah:
It's just as important to let Dr. Muntaka Shah know about your general health. Tell Dr. Muntaka Shah:
You should also tell Dr. Muntaka Shah from Lumos Dental in Edmonton if you are nervous about dental visits. This feeling is called dental anxiety. Even people who visit the dentist on a regular basis sometimes get "butterflies in the stomach." In severe cases, fear can be so bad that it keeps people away from the dentist and puts their dental health at risk.
Often, it's fear of pain that keeps people out of the dental chair. But new ways of doing things have made modern dentistry almost painless. If you are afraid of going to the dentist for any reason, don't be shy to talk to Dr. Muntaka Shah about it. Dr. Muntaka Shah is trained to help you relax.
Questions to Ask Dr. Muntaka Shah
A check up is also an opportunity to talk to Dr. Muntaka Shah from Lumos Dental in Edmonton about your oral health and to ask questions.
For more information on how to keep your teeth good for life, talk to Dr. Muntaka Shah.