What is Really Happening at Your Child’s Dental Cleaning

Have you ever wondered what happens during your child's dental cleaning? Here are the typical steps in a child’s dental visit:

  • We will walk back to the exam room with the child and parent and ask if there have been any changes in the health history.
  • We will ask the parent and child if there are any dental concerns.
  • Often, we ask the child about school or their summer. We want the child to feel comfortable before the exam gets started.
  • Depending on when the child last had x-rays, we may take them back to get the x-rays done.
  • Next, we move back to the exam room and chair and we count the teeth and mark which teeth are existing on the chart and if there are any wiggly ones.
  • Then we will scale the teeth, removing plaque build-up, and polish them.
  • After that, usually a quick rinse, and on to flossing.
  • Generally, after flossing, we then use an instrument that blows air, just to confirm there is no plaque remaining.
  • We will do a cancer screening, checking the sides of the tongue and the roof of the mouth and all around. (Oral cancer is rare in children, but this is part of the process).
  • If everything looks good, we will go over some oral hygiene instructions and call the dentist to do his/her check.
  • The dentist usually asks the same questions, checks the teeth, and makes sure any concerns are checked out.
  • Lastly, we do a fluoride treatment – either the foam tray or the varnish, (depending on the office)
  • Then we walk the patient out and give any follow-up instructions before scheduling the next visit.
I hope this helps both you and your child feel more comfortable with dental exams. If you have any questions, feel free to ask! We are here for you.

Dr. Brandon Schmidt | 01-March-2021

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