Routine Dental Check-ups
We recommend regular dental checkups every 6 months in order to catch potential problems early. Through the use of radiographs, an intraoral camera and a clinical examination, we will check for cavities, gum disease and oral cancer. A thorough cleaning through the use of an ultrasonic cleaner and hand scalers should be performed a minimum of every 6 months as well. Depending on your individual needs, we may recommend a more extensive cleaning or simply more frequent cleanings. We also believe that a healthy mouth is a partnership between our practice and you as the patient. We stress diligent home care and provide the information and guidance to achieve this goal.
Digital radiographs: X-rays are an important part of your dental records. They enable us to treatment plan your case properly since we would otherwise be unable to detect cavities between your teeth or areas of infection within the bone. We utilize digital x-rays with minimal exposure rather than traditional films. Your x-rays are instantaneously displayed on the TV screen in your operatory.
Intraoral Camera: While X-rays provide valuable information, they cannot show you everything that is going on in your mouth. This highly advanced piece of diagnostic equipment allows you to be an active partner in your dental treatment by enabling you to see what we see inside your mouth. The images are displayed on the screen so you will be able to see problems such as worn or broken fillings as well as excessive wear of teeth. With a clear understanding of your dental conditions, you will be able to make treatment decisions with confidence.
Dental sealants are a plastic material usually applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth where decay occurs most often. They act as a barrier to prevent cavities. Toothbrush bristles cannot reach all the way into the depressions and grooves to extract food and plaque. Sealants protect these vulnerable areas by “sealing out” plaque and food. They are painted onto the tooth enamel where they then harden into the depressions and grooves. The likelihood of developing pit and fissure decay begins early in life, so children and teenagers are obvious candidates.
Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally in all water sources. Research shows that fluoride helps prevent cavities in children and adults by making teeth more resistant to the acid attacks that cause cavities. Fluoride is nature’s cavity fighter, helping repair the early stages of tooth decay even before the decay can be seen. It is applied topically or systemically.
Night guards (or mouth splints) are custom-fitted plastic appliances that are worn over the teeth to protect them from damage due to clenching or grinding – a condition known as Bruxism. Common symptoms of bruxism include headaches, tired or sore facial muscles and cracked or sensitive teeth. Wearing a night guard cushions the teeth and prevents the grinding action from resulting in damage to the enamel as well as chipping from the pressure created by the grinding action. While it is possible to purchase over the counter mouth guard equipment, the fit is not always perfect and may only serve to minimize the damage done to the teeth and jawbone. A custom made night guard designed to the exact specifications of the upper and lower plates of teeth is a much better option.