Frequently Asked Dental QuestionsWhat you need to know
You have questions, we have answers
Why is visiting a dentist so important?
Regular visits to a dentist are not only important for healthy teeth but also for the rest of your whole body. The oral / systemic connection is real. With our thorough dental checkups we can uncover problems that can exist without you knowing. Dental care is important because it:
- Helps prevent tooth decay.
- Protects against periodontal (gum) disease.
- Helps prevents bad breath with regular brushing and flossing which reduces the amount of bacteria in your mouth.
- There are oral-systemic connections linking the mouth with the body. The health of your mouth can mirror the condition of your body as a whole. This relationship between oral health and your whole body affords insight about your overall health, including whether or not you may be developing a disease like diabetes, strokes, cardio-vascular diseases, Alzhemiers etc.
How often should I see the dentist?
We recommend everyone should come in for a regular checkup at least once every six months. Patients who are at a greater risk for oral cancer or gum disease may be required to see the dentist more than just twice a year. Many dental plans will pay for up to 4-6 appointments per year. They too know how important dental checkups are for both your smile and overall dental health.
What care do you recommend between dental checkups?
- Brush and floss your teeth at least two times a day.
- Brush your tongue! It will remove food particles and reduce bacteria and help to keep your breath fresh.
- Make sure to use toothpaste that contains fluoride which will help prevent cavities.
- Avoid foods with a lot of sugar (sugar increases the amount of bacteria that grows in your mouth and cancer likes sugar).
- Avoid tobacco (it will stain teeth and can cause gum disease).
What is a cavity?
A cavity is a small hole that forms inside the tooth because of tooth decay. Cavities are created when plaque buildup on the outside of the tooth combines with sugar and starch in the food you chew. An acid is produced that eats away the enamel on your tooth. A visit to the dentist will fill a cavity that if left untreated can lead to more serious oral health problems.
What is a filling?
A filling is a synthetic material that is used to fill a cavity once the tooth decay has been removed. Fillings are made from a variety of different materials, including composites, gold, or ceramic – we rarely use silver or mercury fillings anymore.
How often do I change my toothbrush?
No matter what type of toothbrush you use, we recommend replacing your toothbrush every 3-4 months or even sooner if the bristles are frayed. A new toothbrush will remove more plaque than one that is well-used. If you’ve been sick, be sure to change your toothbrush as soon as possible.