Getting a comprehensive oral exam is vital. This is much more than a cleaning could ever provide. While teeth are superficially examined during a cleaning, an exam at Tribeca Smiles in New York, NY provides a much more in-depth analysis of your mouth. Getting an exam once a year from our general and cosmetic dentist, Dr. Frederick Solomon, is vital for your continued health as it gives us a chance to catch any problems early and treat them. As with anything else concerning your health, addressing issues earlier rather than later can make all the difference. Exams at Tribeca Smiles evaluate your general health and oral hygiene, your tooth decay, root decay, oral cancer, and gum/bone disease risks. It assesses your need for tooth enhancements and replacements and checks your bite and jaw for problems. Detailed x-rays are also taken to get better insight into your dental situation.
Oral Cancer Screening
We provide our patients with an oral pre-cancer and cancer screening during their comprehensive dental exam. Dr. Solomon will look inside your mouth for discoloration of the tissue, and feel for lumps under the surface. We utilize a state-of-the-art ViziLite® technology to identify abnormalities within the soft tissues of your mouth using light. After rinsing with a 1% acetic acid mouth rinse, we will use this handheld chemiluminescent light to check the inside of the cheeks, gums, and top of the mouth. The ViziLite can detect irregularities in your mouth that may not be visible to the naked eye. If you happen to need a biopsy of a lesion inside the mouth, we will use an OralCDx® scanning technology. It is a computer-assisted brush biopsy test where Dr. Solomon will swab your mouth and send it off to the OralScan Laboratories.
Everyone is a candidate for a comprehensive oral exam. Often, patients are lulled into a sense of complacency when they don’t feel any pain in their teeth or gums. It is also tempting to think just because teeth are white, there must not be much wrong with them. Keep in mind that tooth color and oral health are not necessarily correlated. Remember, many common problems like gum disease — the biggest cause of tooth loss — don’t actually have early symptoms. Therefore, if you haven’t had an exam in a year, you are due now. If you’ve never had your gums screened for periodontal disease, had professional x-rays in more than six months, or your mouth examined for abnormal growths indicating oral cancer, it’s your turn.
What To Expect
Dr. Solomon will start with an overall evaluation of your mouth, teeth, gums, tongue, the roof of your mouth, inside your cheeks, throat, and other oral checkpoints. This includes looking for signs of oral cancer throughout your mouth. He will take x-rays of your mouth and look for abnormal tissue with a periodontal screening. He will evaluate your head, neck, jaw and temporomandibular joints (TMJs), and your bite while talking about anything he finds and how to best treat them. He will discuss any health problems you have and medications you may be taking, especially how they might impact your oral health such as medications contributing to dry mouth and tooth decay. Finally, he will examine any prosthetics you have, like dentures or bridges, to see how well they fit and how to best maintain them.
The follow-up period of an exam will depend on your oral health. If Dr. Solomon does not identify any issues, then the only follow-up would be to continue a regimen of dental health including brushing and flossing twice a day. However, if he did see something that needs to be addressed as soon as possible, those would be next steps. For example, if a cavity is found, then he and his staff will begin to address your options; this may include utilizing some of our new tooth-colored fillings which restore your teeth to their original appearance without the old look of metal fillings. If loose teeth are found, options will be presented, as with any other issues such as gum disease, tooth wear from grinding, or even if you’d like to chat about simple tooth whitening.
Plan Your Procedure
Exams To Smile About
Healthy teeth are not just the result of going to the dentist when something goes wrong. Preventive care is vital. It can save your teeth, as well as a significant amount of money. So, we urgently recommend seeing us every six months for a preventive exam. Doing so will enable you to stay on top of issues by catching them early. We do our best to make your exam a positive experience and it also give us all a good chance to catch up with you and your busy life!