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Dental Exam


Dr. Coussens examining a patient at Mark A. Coussens, DMD Family & Cosmetic Dentistry Brushing and flossing your teeth are two very important habits for keeping your mouth clean and healthy, and for preventing serious issues such as cavities and gum disease. In addition to brushing and flossing, it is also important to have your teeth professionally cleaned at least twice a year. Even with proper brushing and flossing, oral health issues can still develop.

The early stages of many oral health issues do not present noticeable symptoms, however. Routine dental exams help to detect early warning signs, enabling you to get prompt treatment before more serious issues develops. Other dental exams help to determine the exact causes of specific symptoms. At Mark A. Coussens, DMD Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, we can help you maintain optimal oral health with exams.

What is an Exam?


An exam is a process of looking over the structures inside your mouth. During an exam, we check for warning signs of different oral health conditions, such as tooth damage, decay, and gum disease. Routine dental exams are recommended twice a year or every six months, and they are generally performed in the same appointment as your dental cleanings. Exams may also be recommended when you are experiencing specific symptoms, and a diagnosis is needed.

Types of Dental Exams


There are a few different types of exams.
•  Comprehensive exams. A comprehensive exam is performed if you are a new patient, or if it has been a while since your previous exam. These types of exams include a visual inspection of your mouth as well as dental X-rays.
•  Periodic exams. A periodic exam is your routine dental exam. We look over your mouth and update your information. X-rays are occasionally taken during these exams.
•  Limited exams. A limited exam is performed when you are experiencing specific symptoms. This type of exam allows us to determine the cause of your symptoms and recommend treatment. Depending upon your symptoms, X-rays may or may not be taken.
•  Follow up exams. A follow-up exam is performed following a dental treatment to ensure that you are healing properly.

What to Expect During an Exam


Exams are fairly straightforward. We look over the structures inside of your mouth, checking for warning signs of a variety of different issues. Your teeth are checked for signs of physical damage, decay, and cavities. Any dental restorations, such as crowns, bridges, and implants, are assessed for signs of wear and damage. We look over your gums, looking for signs of gum disease. These signs include redness, swelling, periodontal pockets, and gum recession. We also look over the other soft tissues in your mouth, looking for any signs of abnormalities that might point toward oral cancer.

X-rays may also be taken during dental exams. X-rays provide us with a unique view of the hidden structures of your mouth. We can spot decay and cavities between your teeth, root damage, bone loss, impacted teeth, abscesses, and cysts. This allows us to make a more accurate diagnosis and a more effective treatment plan to restore the health of your mouth.

Benefits of Exams


There are many benefits associated with exams.
•  We can detect the presence of many oral health issues in their earliest stages, allowing us to provide treatment before the issue becomes serious.
•  We can detect oral cancer in its earliest stages, which can be lifesaving.
•  Detecting issues in their early stages can help to save you money. The earlier treatment is provided, the less invasive, and less expensive, treatment often is.
•  Exams help you to maintain a healthy, beautiful smile.

With exams, we can detect the earliest warning signs of different oral health issues, make an accurate diagnosis, and provide the best possible treatment plan. Call Mark A. Coussens, DMD Family & Cosmetic Dentistry at (503) 567-4121 for more information and to schedule your next exam today.

Mark A. Coussens DMD
FAMILY & COSMETIC DENTISTRY



433 SE Baseline Street Hillsboro, OR 97123-4103

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