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Preventative and Diagnostic Dental Procedures



7 need-to-know dental care tips everybody should remember daily

Dental procedures

Many dentists in Richmond, VA, are involved in a variety of dental services ranging from regular filling and cleaning to dental procedures like sedation dentistry. Family or general dentists are well equipped and expertly skilled to handle a comprehensive range of dental needs.

Some of the commonly sought-after dental services include dental bonding, cleaning and filling, crowns and bridges, dentures, cosmetic dentistry, contouring, teeth whitening or bleaching, root canal, tooth extraction, permanent replacement of teeth, braces, Invisalign, dentures, root planing, and scaling.

Oral examination

An oral dental examination involves the physical examination of all the parts that make up the oral health. The analysis also consists of the assessment of the patient’s medical history, screening for oral cancer, periodontal probing, diagnosis, and provision of treatment options. For a comprehensive examination, x-rays might be taken to extensively evaluate both the visible and invisible parts of dental health.

Regular cleaning

During the daily cleaning, the dentists or dental hygiene specialists will professionally clean teeth. The first step is the use of special dental apparatus to eliminate any plaque or tartar that may have accumulated on the teeth surface.

The teeth are then polished and flossed to make the teeth appear smooth and shiny. After all these processes are completed, the oral specialists will provide a set of proper hygiene practices and instructions depending on the dental requirements of each individual.


Instead of the traditional films which are bulky and cumbersome, dentists today use digital x-rays or dental graphs. The dentist uses a digital sensor to take oral x-rays. The sensor has been precisely designed to minimize the amount of radiation emitted up to about 90%.

The images produced by digital x-rays are of high quality and are automatically saved in a computerized system. Using the computer screen, the images can be rotated, magnified, and color-coded so that every x-ray that can be used to explain the various issues in dental health effortlessly.

The digital x-rays create a wide surface area showing all the parts of the mouth in a single illustration. The regions depicted in the radiograph include the jaw joints, teeth, nasal area, sinuses, and jawbones. Radiographs can reveal the presence of tumors, sinus, cysts, polyps, and bone irregularities.


Dental sealants are defined as thin coatings made of plastic that are applied to the surface of teeth used in chewing. The sealants are placed permanently on the back of the molars to prevent decay.

It is essential to do this as the surface of molars are irregular; there are grooves and pits where bacteria and food debris tend to get trapped. The dental sealant is placed to cover the grooves, therefore, eliminating room for the development of bacteria or any food debris getting caught. The dental sealants are most beneficial for children aged 5 to 14 years of age.


Crowns are placed on teeth that have been extremely decayed, cracked or damaged. The crowns can be made from a variety of materials such as metal or porcelain. Porcelain crowns are mainly made for aesthetic purposes, while metal crowns are mostly for strength purposes. Metal crowns are easy to clean as compared to those made of porcelain. The crowns should be placed in such a way that they cover the entire part of the teeth that recently underwent root canal therapy. The crowns are used for implant restoration and, at times, as roots for partial dentures.

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