Depending on your age, risks of oral disease and symptoms, your dentist may recommend X-rays. X-rays can diagnose problems otherwise unnoticed, such as damage to jawbones, impacted teeth, abscesses, cysts or tumors, and decay between the teeth. If you are pregnant, inform your dentist, as X-rays should only be taken in emergency situations.
Checkups almost always include a complete dental cleaning, either from your dentist or a dental hygienist. Using special instruments, a dental hygienist will scrape along and below the gum line, removing built-up plaque and tartar that can cause gum disease, cavities, bad breath and other problems. Your dentist or hygienist will polish and floss your teeth during the visit and instruct you on oral care techniques and products to use at home for improved oral health.