Going to the dentist can be intimidating if you don’t understand what you’re experiencing. Understanding the purpose of each tool the dentist uses might help alleviate fear and anxiety in the chair. Remember; you’re always welcome to ask the dentist what they’re doing before and during a procedure.
The following are tools that will be used at nearly every visit to the dentist. These tools are used to inspect your teeth and gums to help the dentist determine if you need additional treatment and care.
- Mouth Mirror – The mouth mirror is used to view “hard to see angles” and reflect light onto the backs of teeth. The mirror can also be used to gently manipulate tissue out of the way.
- Sickle Probe – Traditionally, the sickle probe (or “shepherd’s hook”) is used to inspect the enamel on teeth to determine if cavities are present and to determine their severity.
- Periodontal Probe – The periodontal probe is used to measure any gap between your teeth and gums in order to determine how healthy your mouth is. A larger gap can indicate periodontal disease.
It is recommended that you have your teeth cleaned by a dental hygienist every six months. This will afford an opportunity for potential problems to be identified and prevent future ones.
- Periodontal Scaler – This tool is used to remove calculus (tartar), a form of hardened dental plaque, from the tooth surface.
- Prophy Cup – An abrasive polishing compound is applied to the prophy cup to polish teeth. The cup is motorized and cleaning with it prevents plaque accumulation and makes your teeth shine.
- Saliva Ejector – This is the suction device used to remove saliva and water from the mouth.
If you still have questions about the procedures used by our caring dentists and hygienists, call Ohana Dental Clinic at (905) 697-3440; we handle general dental care to cosmetic dentistry and orthodontics and want you to feel comfortable and safe during any visit.