What Do Dentists Mean When They Say Numbers?

If you've ever been to the dentist in Columbia and have experienced a few mild pricks to your gums followed by some numbers, you've had what's called a periodontal chart. But what do those numbers mean? Let's take a look at what dentists are referring to when they call out numbers during your dental exam. When the dentist begins the measurements, he or she will call out the depth numbers to their assistant, who will record the information on a table or portable tablet. These numbers refer to the depth of the pockets between your teeth and gums. The British Society of Periodontology provides great information about how to keep your gums in good shape.

Generally, if you hear numbers of 0 or 1, you're doing quite well. Along with the numbers mentioned with respect to pockets, there will be a correlated number referring to which tooth is affected. That way, it's easy for the attending dental hygienist to note where the problem pocket is located. Nick Allday, head dentist at Manor Dental Health in Hull, explains that it's pretty black and white. He says: “He has an appointment to get a checkup with us, he sits in the chair, he opens wide and then his dentist and nurse seem to communicate in a form of ‘dental’ shorthand, it doesn't make any sense, well, recently a patient asked me what all those numbers mean at the beginning of the exam.”So there you have it! Now you know what dentists mean when they call out numbers during your dental exam.

Keeping your gums healthy is important for overall oral health, so make sure you follow the advice of your dentist and hygienist.

Benjamín Gonçalves
Benjamín Gonçalves

Certified web maven. Freelance writer. Award-winning travel evangelist. Infuriatingly humble internet buff. Certified bacon practitioner.

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