Patricia Guerra-Hirji, DDS

Diagnostic Services


Diagnostic services include clinical examinations, including digital radiographs (x-rays), and, in some cases, making plaster molds of the teeth. Dr. Guerra also utilizes photography, wax-ups, and computer simulation for individual evaluation and treatment design.

A clinical examination involves the evaluation of the teeth and supporting structures. Teeth are visually inspected for decay, condition of existing fillings, cracks, and alignment. Soft tissue is examined for periodontal (gum and bone) health, including measurement of pocket depths, calculus (tartar) buildup, bleeding sites, and gum recession. X-rays provide a lateral view of teeth and bone levels. X-rays allow us to see areas between teeth, which is where most adults develop decay. Dr. Guerra can also view areas at the root ends, where abscesses and cysts can form from tooth nerve necrosis. In addition, bone levels are examined, which shows the history and current status of periodontal health.

Upon completion of the diagnosis, a consultation is scheduled to discuss Dr. Guerra’s findings, and if necessary, treatment recommendations. No dental treatment is performed until each patient fully understands their dental health and need for therapeutic or restorative care. This appointment also provides an opportunity to discuss elective procedures, including whitening and/or cosmetic makeovers.

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