Dental Exams & Cleanings

Dental Exam

At your initial dental appointment a comprehensive dental exam will be performed by Dr. Parrella and one of  dental hygienists, Kim or Lynne.   Dr. Parrella and your hygienist will include the following:  

  • Examination of diagnostic x-rays (radiographs): Essential for detection of decay, tumors, cysts, and bone loss.  X-rays also help determine tooth and root positions.
  • Oral cancer screening: Check the face, neck, lips, tongue, throat, tissues, and gums for any signs of oral cancer. 
  • Microscopic bacterial analysis:  Examination of oral bacteria to determine status of oral health. (Click Here For More Info) 
  • Gum disease evaluation: Check the gums and bone around the teeth for any signs of periodontal disease.
  • Examination of tooth decay: All tooth surfaces will be checked for decay with special dental instruments.
  • Examination of existing restorations: Check current fillings, crowns, etc.

If further tests are needed, we will do the following:

  • BANA TEST:  A chairside periodontal test.  This is also used to test for oral malodor. (Click Here For More Info) 
  • BACTERIAL CULTURE:  A culture done on the oral bacteria.  This is sent to Temple University, the closest facility that can do this procedure. 


Professional Dental Cleaning

Professional dental cleanings (dental prophylaxis) are performed by Registered Dental Hygienists.  Your cleaning appointment will include a dental exam and the following:

  • Removal of calculus (tartar): Calculus is hardened plaque that has been left on the tooth for some time and is now firmly attached to the tooth surface.  Calculus forms above and below the gum line and can only be removed with special dental instruments.
  • Removal of plaque: Plaque is a sticky, almost invisible film that forms on the teeth.  It is a growing colony of living bacteria, food debris, and saliva.  The bacteria produce toxins (poisons) that inflame the gums.  This inflammation is the start of periodontal disease!
  • Subgingival full mouth irrigation with a bactericidal solution.
  • Removal of calculus, plaque, and the disruption of subgingival biofilm with an ultrasonic scaler.
  • Selective Teeth polishing: Remove stain and plaque that is not otherwise removed during scaling.