Frequently Asked Questions
What can I expect during a dental checkup?
The dentist or hygienist will ask about your recent medical history, examine your mouth and decide whether or not you need x-rays. Depending on your treatment plan, the hygienist may use a special dental instruments to check your gums for gum disease. Your dentist will evaluate your overall dental health and conduct an oral cancer screening by holding your tongue with gauze, checking it and your whole mouth, then feeling your jaw and neck.
Which type of toothbrush should I use?
The brand of the toothbrush is not as critical as the type of bristle and the size of the head. A soft toothbrush with a small head is recommended because medium and hard brushes tend to cause irritation and contribute to recession of the gums, and a small head allows you to get around each tooth more completely and is less likely to injure your gums. It’s unnecessary to “scrub” the teeth as long as you are brushing at least twice a day and visiting your dentist at least twice a year for cleanings.
How often should I floss?
Flossing of the teeth once per day helps to prevent cavities from forming between the teeth where your toothbrush can’t reach. Flossing also helps to keep your gums healthy.
Why do I need X-Rays?
Radiographic or X-ray examinations provide your dentist with an important diagnostic tool that shows the condition of your teeth, their roots, jaw placement and the overall composition of your facial bones.
X-Rays can help your dentist determine the presence or degree of periodontal disease, abscesses and many abnormal growths, such as cysts and tumors. X-rays can also show the exact location of impacted teeth. They can pinpoint the location of cavities and other signs of disease that may not be possible to detect through visual examination (such as changes in the jaw bone structure as a result of systemic disease).
I have sensitive teeth. What can I do?
You can try using a toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth. Rub a little toothpaste into the sensitive area when going to bed as it helps protect the surface.
Try to avoid strongly acidic foods and drinks and wait at least an hour after eating before brushing as this could cause even more sensitivity. Grinding your teeth can also increase sensitivity and a mouth guard maybe necessary.
If the pain continues, speak to your dental team and they may be able to offer further care to reduce your symptoms. A number of things can cause sensitivity and your dental team will be able to identify these and advise the correct care.
How often do I have to go to the dentist?
There is no one-size-fits-all dental treatment. Some people need to visit the dentist once or twice a year; others may need more visits. You are a unique individual, with a unique smile and unique needs when it comes to keeping your smile healthy.
How Do You Know When You Need a Dental Filling?
If you suspect that you need a filling, don’t wait until your next routine appointment. Doman Dental Care can usually accommodate patients with same-day appointments. Patients who ignore these signs might end up with a more advanced problem, as bacteria quickly invades an untreated cavity. Give our dentist in Lapeer a call if you experience any of the following:
- Toothache or ongoing pain
- Tooth sensitivity
- Lost or broken filling
- Dark spot on your tooth
What about "silver" fillings versus "white" fillings?
Although the U.S. Public Health Service issued a report in 1993 stating there is no health reason not to use amalgam (silver fillings), more patients today are requesting “white” or tooth-colored composite fillings. We also prefer tooth-colored fillings because they “bond” to the tooth structure and therefore help strengthen a tooth weakened by decay. While fillings are also usually less sensitive to temperature, and they also look better. However, “white” fillings cannot be used in every situation, and if a tooth is very badly broken-down, a crown will usually be necessary and provide better overall satisfaction for the patient.
What Is a Root Canal?
Root canal treatment is designed to eliminate bacteria from the infected tooth, prevent reinfection of the tooth and save the natural tooth. When one undergoes a root canal, the inflamed or infected nerve is removed and the inside of the tooth is carefully cleaned and disinfected, then filled and sealed.
Are Root Canals Painful?
Most of the time, a root canal is a relatively simple procedure with little or no discomfort involving one to three visits. Best of all, it can save your tooth and your smile! If you continue to care for your teeth and gums, your restored tooth could last a lifetime. If you find yourself nervous about the prospect of a root canal, let us know! Our root canal specialist always wants you to feel comfortable and pain-free, and we will work with you to ensure your entire visit with us is stress-free.
What Is a Dental Crown?
A dental crown is a custom-made cap that replaces the natural crown of a tooth. It repairs the functionality and restores the size of a tooth that has suffered damage or decay beyond what can be fixed with a dental filling. The dentist will prepare the damaged tooth, take a mold, and place temporary protection for the tooth until the permanent crown is ready. Our philosophy is to always preserve as much of your existing tooth as possible, with the dental crown sealing your restored tooth. Thanks to advancements in modern dentistry, dental crowns are made from strong porcelain that is virtually invisible.
What's the best way to prevent gum disease?
Conscientious removal of plaque by flossing, brushing and regular professional cleanings will minimize your risk of gum disease.
However, there are other factors that can affect the health of your gums, such as stress, diabetes, genetics and pregnancy.