Robert Wong, DDS
Woodland Hills Family Dentistry

Comprehensive Oral Examinations

Preventive Care

Periodontal Therapy and Maintenance

Dental Exams and Radiographs


Routine dental exams are important to maintaining healthy teeth and gums.  Additionally, they can help to avoid the financial costs associated with large treatment plans later on.  We recommend twice yearly checkups for people of all ages.  At this frequency, most problems can be caught while they remain in an early stage.


We first review your health and dental history to assess how your medical conditions may affect your dental health.  We want to know about your past dental problems and any current concerns you have with your teeth and mouth.


We then examine your mouth visually, using dental equipment such as mouth mirrors, dental explorers, and high intensity lights.  We will look for cracked and decayed teeth, as well as any faulty restorations (fillings and crowns).

The soft tissue will also be examined starting with an oral cancer screening.  The face, neck, lips, tongue, throat, tissues, and gums will be checked for any signs of oral cancer.  Your gums and bone around the teeth will be checked for any evidence of periodontal disease by measuring the crevices between your teeth and gums.


Additionally, we take diagnostic x-rays to reveal any other hidden problems, especially in the areas below the gums.  An intraoral full mouth radiographic series is recommended for all patients to evaluate decay, bone levels and any pathology in the jaws.  We ideally would like to have these on all adult patients and they should be updated every five years.  Bitewing, or annual check-up x-rays, are typically taken every twelve months.

Routine dental cleanings are important to maintaining good oral hygiene.  Professional cleaning by a hygienist can remove mineralized plaque that may develop even with careful brushing and flossing, particularly in areas that are difficult to reach.  It is recommended you go in for a cleaning once every six months.

You can expect your dental cleaning to last between 30 minutes to an hour.  Typically, a trained hygienist will do the cleaning, and a dentist may come in for an exam at the end. Most people find that dental cleanings are painless, and do not cause any discomfort.

There are two important steps to a dental cleaning.  The first step is scaling the teeth, whereby the hygienist will remove the plaque and tartar from the tooth surfaces  This can be performed by hand or with electronic scalers, depending on the hygienist's preference.  Typically, the hygienist will also clean into the pockets of the gums to remove any plaque buildup there.

The second step is polishing to remove any final plaque and buff the teeth.  Polishers generally have several different sized heads to clean hard to reach places.

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