8 Benefits Of A Regular Dental Check Up – Savina Clinics Malta & Gozo

dental check up malta

A dental check up should be one of the most important dates in your diary. However, due to our more hectic schedules, it can be sometimes easy to overlook or postpone them.

One of the more recent EU based oral health surveys indicated that 55% of Maltese residents visit their dentist for a dental check up once in the previous 12 months. To put it into perspective, the Dutch were the most frequent visitors to the dentist, as 79% indicated they visited the dentist once in the preceding 12 months.

While the UK has a myth of bad teeth (think Austin Powers movie), the survey results tend to disprove this stereotype as the British are the 2nd most frequent visitors to the dentist with 72% of survey respondents stating they visited the dentist at least once in the previous 12 months.

This shows that Malta is still far behind when it comes to dental check ups and oral health in general.

The following article will hopefully remove the sense of anxiety people have when it comes to dental health. We shall cover the following topics:

  • 8 benefits of a regular dental check up
  • What happens during a routine dental check up?
  • How often should you have a dental check up?

Benefits Of A Regular Dental Check Up

#1: Save Your Teeth

The biggest cause of tooth loss in adults is gum disease. According to research by the Centre for Disease Control and prevention, 47% of people over the age of 30 have some form of periodontal disease. This figure increases more as you age (70% of adults over 65 have periodontal disease). Periodontal diseases occur due to infections and inflammation of the gums and bone that surround and support your teeth. Regular check ups can prevent gum disease and therefore save your teeth.

#2 Keep Your Smile White And Bright

Regular tooth cleaning which is part of the dental check up removes any stains on your teeth caused by tobacco, coffee, tea, wine, cola, fruit juices, curries, soy sauce, beetroots, etc., ensuring your smile is white, bright and ready to dazzle!

#3 Protect Your Overall Health & Well Being

There have been some recent studies showing the overall health benefit of looking after your teeth. Women can cut the risk of heart attacks by 33% with regular dental care according to a study published by the University of Berkeley in California. Another US based study  reported that people who have regular dental check ups have lower overall healthcare costs due to early detection.

#4 Can help save your life

One of the most unforgiving forms of cancer is oral cancer. Part of your regular dental check up will include the dentist analysing your mouth for early signs of these type of cancer (at Savina Clinics, oral cancer screening is an integral part of the regular check-up). Early diagnosis is vital for the successful treatment of oral cancer.

#5 Lighter on your wallet

A dental health check up is relatively inexpensive, and just like your car, if not maintained regularly, it will lead to costlier expenses down the line. Do not scrimp on your oral health as it will come back to haunt you later.

#6 Keep bad breath at bay

Bad breath can be avoided, and a regular health check up is the first step in combating halitosis. Not only does a regular cleaning prevent bad breath but it removes built up tartar and calculus, resulting in a fresh and clean mouth making you look and feel better.

#7 Can help you sleep better

Grinding of your teeth when you sleep is one oral health sign of sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is where someone stops breathing for short intervals during the night, leading to increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke. Your dentist may recommend use of a night guard to help protect the teeth from grinding or for severe cases, refer you to a specialist.

#8 Setting a good example for your children

Kids often tend to mimic their parents. Sometimes this can be bad depending on the actual activity, but not so for regular dental check ups. If your children get used to the habit of regular oral check ups, then not only will they continue the practice later in life, but they will also ensure their kids keep up this healthy routine.

What Happens During a Routine Dental Checkup?

A dental check up usually consists of two distinct areas:

  • Hygiene Session (more commonly known as a tooth cleaning session)
  • General Oral Check Up

Once you arrive at the dental practice, the receptionist will greet you and ask you to take a seat while they inform the dentist and the registered dental hygienist you have arrived.

savina dental clinic malta - Dental Check Up Preventative Treatment

Your Dental History

You will first meet the dental hygienist who will ask you a series of questions about your medical history and if this is your first visit to the clinic. If it is not your first visit, they will ask you if there have been any significant changes in your medical history since the last visit. It is important for the staff to know of any health concerns you may have along with any anxieties or allergies to ensure you get the best care possible.

Tooth Cleaning

Once the hygienist has discussed your medical history, they will then begin work inside your mouth. The first step in this process is tooth cleaning. This procedure usually lasts 10-15 minutes, depending on the current state of your teeth. The procedure involves removing built up plaque and tartar above and below the gum line as well as thorough flossing of all your teeth to remove any plaque or food particles that are stubbornly holding on tightly to your teeth.

Tooth Polishing

The hygienist will then use a tooth polisher (an instrument with a rotating head and coated in slightly coarse-grained paste) to give your teeth a shiny and smooth finish. Not only does the polish make your teeth shine but it also removes any remaining residue that was previously missed during the teeth cleaning. The extra benefit of tooth polishing is it makes your teeth smoother which in turn makes it harder for plaque buildup to occur.

Teeth Examination

Once your teeth are fully clean, it is now time to make a full examination of your mouth to investigate any problem areas thoroughly. A probe made from metal with a small angled mirror positioned on top will be used to look in the difficult to see areas. This tool is also used to check for weakened tooth enamel and dentin. Dentin is found beneath your enamel and communicates with the nerves in your teeth. Once exposed, it can have painful ramifications.

They will also look for swelling in any area of the mouth as well as checking for mouth sores or redness. The final test is to measure the area between the top of your gum line and where the gum tissue attaches firmly to your teeth (called periodontal pockets). A measurement between one and three millimetres is the ideal result.

Dental X-rays

The final part of the procedure is to check if there are any issues below the surface of the mouth. Any issues not visible to the naked eye can be determined by the taking of x-ray pictures of your mouth. Dental x-rays are a painless procedure. The dentist or hygienist will ask you to bite down on a piece of plastic designed to keep your jaw in line while the x-ray machine is placed beside your cheek, and the x-ray image is taken. The x-ray image will show both the roots below your gum line and your jaw bones, therefore giving your dentist a full picture of your exact oral health condition and needs.

Dental Exam

This exam is performed by the dentist (as opposed to the hygienist) and will first start by carefully looking over your x-rays to spot any underlying conditions (loss of bone, fractures or other specific issues below the visible gum line) and then perform the following checks:

Jaw alignment
The Dentist will survey the outside of your jaw while you are biting down to ensure there is no jaw joint clicking or popping as well as checking if the bite is smooth and aligned.

Teeth Grinding
A close examination of the teeth will determine if they are cracked or smoothed down due to teeth grinding or jaw clenching.

Oral Cancer
The final check will be an oral cancer preventative check by feeling behind your jaw and neck to ensure there are no suspicious signs that may indicate precancerous lesions.

Dental Check Up Results And Advice

Once all the above is complete, the dentist has a full understanding of your current oral health condition. At this stage, the dentist may schedule a further appointment to begin work on any trouble areas identified. If you do not require any urgent treatment, the dentist will advise you on ways to take better care of your teeth from home to ensure long lasting good oral health. By following the dentist’s advice carefully, you are protecting yourself from more extreme and costly procedures in the future.

How often should you have a dental check-up?

The most common response to this questions is every six months. However, it all depends on the individual. Some people are more prone to dental issues than others, so while some people can easily go one year without needing a check up, others may be required to go every three months. The following groups may need more frequent dental check-ups; regular smokers, pregnant women, diabetics, people with gum disease or with weak immune system response to bacterial infections.

Looking For A Dental Checkup In Malta?

Savina Clinic – Dental & Implantology Centres are friendly, state-of-the-art practices in Malta and Gozo dedicated to comprehensive quality dental care. Savina Dental is an innovative dental practice in Malta and prides itself on the high-quality customer service, low waiting room times, attention to detail and the advanced dental technology at their disposal.

Click here to book your next dental check up at Savina Dental Clinic (Gozo or Malta clinics).

You can also read more about all the preventative dentistry treatments at Savina Dental Clinic or check out our customer testimonials section.

Dr Joseph Xuereb
Dental & Implant Surgeon. Principal
Savina Dental Clinics

Joseph Xuereb
Joseph Xuereb
Principal Dental Surgeon & Owner of Savina Dental Clinics, Dr Joseph Xuereb BChD (Hons), MFGDP(UK), MGDS RCS(Eng), FFGDP RCS(UK), FICD is a general dental practitioner with a special interest in Implant and Restorative Dentistry. Dr Joseph & the teams' full biographical information can be found here.
  • "I just wanted to thank you for the dental treatment I received at your clinic on the afternoon of…" (Graham Consterdine)
    "Absolutely delighted with the results and the price was less than originally quoted.Friendly and…" (George Chapman)
    "Prior to the commencement 3 years ago I had visited dentists less than 10 times in the previous 60…" (Kenneth Page)
    "Was carried out over a number of visits from UK as clinical need arose. Absolutely no pain. Mr…" (Jennifer Page)
    "Save and sound back in the UK after my treatment at your clinic. Just a brief note of thanks…" (Joan Gabbitus)
    "Teeth feel as my own. Evening meals a delight. Grazzi hafna. Dave Dyke." (David Dyke)
    "Dear Joseph, I am still smiling and my family are very impressed. Things are progressing much as…" (Margaret Peacock)
    "Dear Dr Joseph, Just wanted to thank you for my lovely new teeth. Wonderful to be able to eat…" (Hugh Burns)
    ""i would like to say how scared i was of dentists until savina clinic my teeth were in very bad…" (Val Dick)
    ""Dr Xuereb, or Joseph as he likes to be called offered me excellent treatment and customer service…" (J Pulling)
    ""My partner and I had very succesful dental treatments in May 2009, having found Savina Clinic on…" (Michael Cleere)
    "I was extremely happy and satisfied with my treatment. The staff were extremely friendly, the…" (Francesca Smyth)
    "I am very happy with my experience in Malta. The staff is very friendly and would recommend the…" (Jim O'Mahony)
    "I have been using dentists for over 50 years, and Dr. Xuereb is one of the best that I have ever…" (Thomas P Leckinger)
    "I am very pleased with the Zoom Bleaching. My teeth went from between shade 6/7 to shade 2 in less…" (Andrea Fichera)
    "I am very pleased with Savina clinic and the prices they gave me on email are respected. The staff…" (Caroline Demay)
    "Hi Marlene, Everything is fine with me, I am very happy with the treatment I received and…" (Eileen Lee)
    "Hi Marlene, Hope you are all keeping well. My 2 ceramic veneers are great and I am very happy…" (Tara Cronogue)
    "First of all I please allow me to thank you and all your staff for giving me the courage and…" (Patrick Fenech)
    "Dear Dr Xuereb, We arrived home yesterday from Zurich and all is well here. Spring is in vibrant…" (Elaine Fothergill)
    "Dear Dr. Xuereb Thank you so much for your reply of 22 August. Again, many thanks for your several…" (Clotilde Mifsud)
    "Dr. Xuereb I continue to walk around grinning like a Cheshire cat - thank you very…" (Gerry Slater)
    "Hi Marlene, well back to rainy Ireland, I've had no problems with my crowns and fillings and…" (Nicola Moore)
    "We just thought we would send you a quick e-mail to say thank you very much for all the hard work…" (Caroline Wall)
    "Hi Joseph, Thank you so much for everything, can you please thank everyone at your practice…" (Emma Pisano)
    "Dear Joseph Many thanks for your note and your good wishes. The gum/tooth has improved…" (Carol Mellor)
    "Hello, Thanks for the below email. I would like to take this opportunity to say how pleased I…" (Alan Pratt)
    "Dear Joseph Having safely return to Ulster I wanted to express my thanks for the care and…" (Steven McBride)
    "Hi Jo Thanks for your e-mail around christmas time. We all had a great time all the families…" (Manya Bartick)
    "Hi dear Joe, I do hope you and Elsie had a really good trip to UK and Rome and that, in spite of…" (Liz Genton Eames)
    "Hi Dr., Back in Ireland and in work. Thank you for the work you have done for me so far. I…" (Teresa Igoe)
    "Thank you for you e-mail, we have just returned from Cyprus, had a fine time. The bridge and teeth…" (Alan McHale)
    "Dear Joseph, I am extremely well, and as before I am very,very happy with the work that you,…" (Donny Nisbet)
    "Hi Dr. Xuereb, Thank you for taking the time to speak with me. You always explained…" (Eleanor O'Byrne)
    "Dear Joe, Thank you for seeing David so promptly, and providing such wonderful treatment. Things…" (David Grainger)
    "Hello Joe Do you remember Caroline who came for 3 implants at the beginning of September this…" (Caroline Holden)
    "I had an emergency broken tooth and found Savina on WhatClinic.com. I was somewhat nervous as I…" (Ken Gord)
    " Carol Mellor Facebook Xlendi Bay, Gozo - Appointment with my dentist…" (Carol Mellor)
    "Thank you once again Dr Xuereb for great fit of my teeth and it is wonderful to see a surgeon with…" (Maria Bonello)
    "Dear Marlene, I really appreciate your concern, thank you. I also found your missed calls - you…" (Josette Galea)
    "Dear Marlene I hope you are well. Thanks for your email and the x-ray attachments. I had a…" (Annette Moore)
    "Hi Dear Marlene and all, May I take this opportunity to give you my heartfelt thanks to all of…" (Tony Cassar)
    "very happy........with my new teeth!  Thanks Joseph and crew. Julie" (Julie Edwards)
    "Dear Joseph, It will come as little surprise to you that I am blown away by the completion of…" (Peter Drummond)
    "Hi Marlene, Had final adjustments to the bite today, only tried a xxxx peppermint.  Eating this…" (David Dyke)
    "Hi. I just wanted to thank you again for the treatment. I was particularly impressed that you…" (Chris Moffit)
    "Joseph, I just thought I'd drop you a quick email to say how pleased I am with the implants and…" (Peter Drummond)
    "Dear Dr Xuereb, I hope you are well. I just wanted to let you know that the implant itself…" (R. Fava)
    "Dear Dr Joseph, sorry for the delay in writing to thank you and everyone concerned re my recent…" (P.Jones)
    "Dear Dr Xuereb I would like to say thank you for your perseverance, patience and…" (E. Brown)
    "Thank you your practice is the best I've ever been to and the staff are brilliant as I'm so scared…" (S.Humphrey)
    "Good morning Joe and team.  Can't tell you how pleased I am with my new look which, I may add,…" (Jenni C.)
    "Dear Dr's Xuereb & Farrugia Having completed my implants in March/ July 2014, which have…" (Richings Mr/Mrs)
    "Dr. X and Marlene - We hope that you are well and wish everyone in the offices a Happy New…" (Michael Campbell)
    "To Dr Xuereb and Staff., Thank u Kindly for the Positive Support U gave me During My Treatment…" (Maria B)
    "Hello, I would like to thank you all for the perfect care I have received at your clinic and…" (Andrea K H)
    "Dear Dr Xuereb  Everything is absolutely fine and I am truly delighted with the result. Thank…" (Pamela C)
    "Hello Doctor Xuereb. Now we are back at home and we like to take the opportunity to say thank…" (A Kaun)
    "To: Dr. Joseph Xuereb  Good morning from Mellieha!  I have been meaning to write to you to…" (J.Saliba)
    "Hello Marlene, I should like to say how delighted I am with Dr Joseph Xuereb's treatment. It has…" (A.Mann)
    " My new implants are great!  No complaints.  My teeth feel natural and my eating time has…" (T.Murphy)
    "Hi Marlene, Firstly I really enjoyed Malta, especially the boat trip to Gozo.  The Maltese are…" (David E.)
    "Joseph, sincere and very many thanks for all your work today. Very professional reassuring and top…" (John S-S)
    "Friendly and professional service. I like the way I was treated as an intelligent and thinking…" (Josanne D.B.)
    "Just came out from Savina Clinic and was treated very good I recommend this clinic to the fullest.…" (Kylie F.)
    "Love how they explain every single process! Everything new & with latest technology" (Miguel G.)
    "Highly recommend!" (Alexandra M.B.)
    "Absolutely awesome service; They answered my emails, gave me neutral information what options I…" (Tatu O)
    "Good afternoon Dr.J.Xuereb  A VERY BIG THANK YOU for a wonderful competent treatment and for a…" (Terese S.)
    "Dear Joseph. Sincere thanks for your kind e mail. Hope you had a great break away ! It was my…" (John S.S.)
    ""Dear Joseph, Wonderful,  tried out on fresh roasted chicken...  Very pleased, as always…" (Dave D)