General & Preventative Care
Our experienced and knowledgeable team believes education is one of the most important aspects of your dental visit. The greatest thing we could ever teach you is that prevention matters a lot in dental care.
Nutrition, brushing, and flossing techniques are all important for you to do on a daily basis. These small habits lead to big dental results. When it’s time to come see us, here’s what we’ll do to help support your daily efforts:
We recommend that you visit your dental hygienist 2-4 times a year to maintain your oral health. Your dental hygienist will help keep your mouth healthy by removing plaque and tartar from your teeth. Done regularly, this simple procedure prevents a multitude of unwanted dental issues.
Gum disease is also referred to as periodontal disease, it is an infection and inflammation of the tissues and bone that support your teeth. Early treatment and intervention is very important as it can help prevent tooth loss. Gum disease is common among people with diabetes or heart disease.
Signs of Gum Disease
- Gums that bleed easily, including while brushing your teeth, flossing, or eating
- Tender gums that are red or swollen
- Sustained bad breath
- Persistent bad taste in your mouth
- Gums that are pulling away from your teeth and are receding
- Pockets between your teeth and gums
- Loose teeth
Gum Disease Phases
Gum disease is very treatable when it’s caught early. It generally follows three distinct phases.
- Gingivitis Phase: Gum disease’s earliest phase is called gingivitis. The chances of tooth retention and long term oral health stability are greatest during this stage and can be accomplished by routine cleanings every six months.
- Advanced Phase: If the initial cleanings don’t work and the disease continues to advance, a more specialized cleaning called a deep scaling and root planing (SRP) is needed. Scaling is completed by your dental hygienist to remove all subgingival debris (plaque and tartar) to the base of the periodontal pockets. Root planing is the process of smoothing and cleaning the root surfaces of your teeth. This process promotes better healing and attachment between the tooth root surface and the surrounding tissue.
- Re-Care Phase: After your sessions of scaling and root planing we complete a 30-day re-evaluation to review healing and follow-up in areas that may require extra attention. If further interventions are needed, periodontal surgery will be required.
If you have been diagnosed and treated for periodontal disease it is important to continue your routine cleaning schedule in 3, 4, or 6-month increments. Periodontal maintenance does not just address areas above the gumline, but also the entire root and bone around all your teeth that have had periodontal treatment.
Routine dental exams and oral cancer screenings are vital to your long term oral health. Our dentist and dental hygienists are experts at detecting potential problems before they start. Make sure you are having routine exams to prevent dental decay, infections, and pain today!
Routine digital x-rays give your dentist a look between and inside your teeth. They can also view the end of your roots and bone underneath your gums, all places where problems can hide undetected.
How often are x-rays needed? Circumstances vary and, as a result, our dentist and hygienist will evaluate your needs and recommend an x-ray protocol accordingly. If you’re a new patient, our dentist and dental hygienist may advise taking a full series of x-rays or a panoramic image to establish a comparative baseline going forward. As you continue your routine checkup visits, fewer x-rays are typically needed.
Fluoride varnish is a dental treatment that can help prevent tooth decay, slow it down, or stop it from getting worse. Fluoride varnish is made with fluoride, a mineral that can strengthen the enamel of teeth. It’s most commonly applied as a preventative measure to patients ages 1-18 and is almost always covered by most dental insurances.
Protective dental sealants are a simple, painless solution to prevent cavities. They’re usually recommended for children, teens, and adults with high-risk dental decay. Sealant is applied as a thin coating to the grooves on the chewing surfaces of your posterior teeth. The posterior teeth (1st and 2nd permanent molars) are the ones that are most likely to show signs of decay, so it is important to take this extra step to help protect them. Sealants help keep food particles and germs from getting stuck in the grooves of these teeth and causing decay. Most dental insurances cover sealants for children under the age of 15 as part of regular preventive dental care.