General dental services include basic care and instruction in oral hygiene habits essential for helping to maintain good oral health. Routine dental care includes at least two checkups each year. Each checkup may include a comprehensive examination, cleaning and x-rays. These are all beneficial for discovering any potential problems. With early treatment and intervention, the negative effects of cavities, gum disease and other conditions can be minimized. Dental professionals can also recommend a variety of preventative treatment procedures that are designed to help prevent cavities or gum disease. They may provide fillings or sealants and remain pro-active about prevention as part of their general services.