When most people think of dental exams they think of a quick check for cavities and a brief cleaning. The dentist pops in for about 3 minutes, and the hygienist does the rest.

At Capital Dental Design we don’t just glance at your teeth, prod with the pick, floss for the rest of the appointment, and send you on your way. Instead, Dr. Forbes takes the time to evaluate every part of your mouth and dental health. Cavities aren’t the only dental problem you can face, so a comprehensive dental exam is one of the best ways to get and maintain a healthy smile.


Your comprehensive dental exam begins with a 360◦ dental X-ray that helps us pinpoint any major issues with your oral health. Any dental exam that skips the X-ray is not a comprehensive exam.

Some patients find X-rays uncomfortable. If you share that discomfort please let us know. We have a variety of ways to make X-rays as easy as possible. 

Gum Check-Ups

Your teeth can’t be healthy if your gums aren’t healthy. This part of the exam is especially important because over half of American adults have gum disease.

The faster we catch gum disease the better it will respond to nonsurgical treatment. The ADA recommends having a gum exam once a year. It is wise to make a gum check-up part of your regular dental exam.

Oral Cancer Screenings

During your oral cancer screening Dr. Forbes checks your mouth for bumps, lumps, red patches, white patches, and other abnormalities. While he can’t detect all types of oral cancers this way, this visual exam tells him if you may need additional tests.

Screening should be routine, even if you aren’t at high risk. Cancer can strike anyone, and we like to be safe. Early detection is the best way to lessen and prevent problems. 

Jaw Bone Health

During this part of the exam Dr. Forbes will gently feel your jaw bone from outside your mouth. Weak or damaged jaw bones can put you at risk of losing your teeth. The X-ray shows us a lot, but the manual checkup on your jaw also allows Dr. Forbes to check for clicking, popping, and more subtle signs of damage.


Of course, every comprehensive dental exam comes with a thorough cleaning. We can’t let you leave our dental office with dirty teeth, staining, or plaque! Whatever else your comprehensive dental exam holds, you know it will end with a brighter smile. 

Treatment Recommendations and Plans

Sometimes we can and will handle treatment on the spot. For example, the nonsurgical intervention for gum disease involves a thorough descaling that goes all the way beneath the gum line. Often we handle that during your routine cleaning.

Sometimes, though, we’ll uncover deeper problems we need to address. At that point we’ll discuss what we’ve found, talk to you about your treatment options, and come up with a plan.

We won’t push our treatments.  In a comprehensive exam, our job is to find any problems, help you understand those issues, and help you understand all your treatment options.

Schedule Your Comprehensive Dental Exam Today

When’s the last time you went to the dentist? If it’s been over a year, call Capital Dental Design to set up your appointment.

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