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General Dental Exam Procedure and Steps

What does a general dental exam include?

Your dental check-up will be performed by a general dentist, along with the help of one or more experienced dental assistants and a dental hygienist if teeth cleaning is required. Here’s a detailed look at the general procedure and steps of a routine dental exam.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Any questions or doubts you might have, please feel free to schedule an exam with our General Practitioner.

Medical History Intake

Once you get into your dentist’s office, the dentist will ask you a few questions that will help them discover more about your oral health. You will be required to offer information about the medications you’re currently taking, possible healing remedies currently in progress, allergies, and whether you smoke or consume alcohol. The dentist must ask if you have any medical conditions for which you are undergoing treatment. Once you answer all these questions, the dentist may ask you about your previous dental treatment procedures, surgeries, and your experience with anesthesia. With all this information, the dentist will be able to make an essential first step towards establishing a sound treatment plan.


After collecting all the information needed, the dentist will move to the second step, which involves a thorough investigation of your teeth, gums, jaw, and supporting structures. Here are what dentists use and look for during the examination.

X Rays

X-ray machines are essential and are commonly used to detect dental abnormalities that are not visible to naked eyes. The dentist will first take full mouth X-rays before ‘spot checking’ specific problem areas in future visits.

Dental Cleaning

When performing a check-up, your dentist will get rid of tartar that frequently forms on teeth and under the gum. Many dentists now use ultrasonic cleaning equipment during dental cleaning. After scraping away the tartar, the dentist will polish your teeth and will recommend proper brushing and flossing techniques that will help you maintain oral hygiene.

Examine the Results

After tartar removal, the dentist will conduct a dental exam using both visual and X-rays results to check if there are more dental defects and will also evaluate your risks for future dental abnormalities.

Oral Cancer Screening

The increasing number of oral cancer cases has prompted many dentists to include an oral cancer screening during dental exams. Oral cancer is a serious problem and can occur in various ways. If not detected early, oral cancer can quickly spread and become life-threatening. An early oral cancer diagnosis, however, is often beneficial since it is easily treatable. Modern dentists are highly trained to detect early signs and the likelihood of detecting the disease in time is dramatically higher. Your dentist will examine the area surrounding your jaws and also the soft tissues in your mouth for signs of oral cancer.