Our Most Frequently Asked Dental Questions:

How Often Should I Go To The Dentist?

Generally, we recommend visiting the dentist twice a year or once every 6 months for a check-up and teeth cleaning. If you have periodontal disease (gum disease) or a history of periodontal disease, your dentist may recommend more frequent visits to control the disease. If you are under orthodontic care (braces), you will see the orthodontist an average of every 6 weeks.

Are Dental X-Rays Safe?

Dental x-rays are safe and every precaution is designed to limit the body’s exposure to radiation. These images of your teeth are used by the dentist to evaluate your oral health. They help to identify tooth decay, cavities, abscesses, impacted teeth, bone levels, and abnormalities. Digital X-rays used in our office emit a low level of radiation to capture the images of your teeth, gums and bone. Digital x-rays decrease your risk even lower than x-rays developed from film. The exposure levels are so low that they are considered safe for children and adults. A lead bib with thyroid collar is placed over the chest and abdomen to protect from unnecessary radiation exposure. Dental x-rays are typically performed annually.

Our new patients will probably undergo dental x-rays along with a dental examination so your new dentist can get a clear picture of your dental health. If you have had x-rays in the past year, we will request a copy of the images to review. Children may have more dental x-rays than adults if the dentist is monitoring growth and eruption. Caution is taken when women are pregnant. X-rays are postponed until after birth to limit exposure to developing fetus. The exception is a dental emergency. Please consult with your dentist.

Why Are My Teeth So Sensitive?

Tooth sensitivity can occur when the gum tissue covering the underlying roots of the teeth are lost. This process known as recession is part of the aging process. It can, however, be due to periodontal disease which your dentist can determine. Tissue abrasion and loss can be caused from over-aggressive toothbrushing. Clenching and grinding teeth known as bruxism can also weaken the enamel at the gumline exposing the underlying tissue. Regardless of the cause, the recession at the gumline allows the underlying dentin and nerve endings to be exposed which allows food and drink to be in contact with porous areas of the tooth resulting in sensitive nerves. To manage the sensitivity, we recommend sensitivity toothpaste or prescription high fluoride toothpaste for temporary relief. Speak to your dental hygienist and dentist about addition procedures to reduce sensitivity.

How Do I Treat a Toothache?

Brush and floss to remove any food caught between teeth and rinse mouth with warm water. Do not place aspirin on your aching tooth or gums because it will cause a chemical burn. Take an NSAID like ibuprofen or naproxen to control pain. Call our office to schedule a visit as soon as possible. Our patients can call the on-call number recorded on phone line for assistance after hours. Antibiotics, if necessary, can be called in to a local pharmacy for temporary relief until definitive treatment can be completed.

What Is A Dental Implant?

A dental implant is a tooth replacement option to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth or to hold a denture in place. Made from titanium, a bio-friendly metal, implants are surgically placed in the jaw bone where they function as an anchor. After a period of a few months of healing, the implant fuses to the bone and loading can begin. An abutment is attached to the implant above the tissue to which a crown or denture anchor can be attached.

Implants are advantageous because they are most similar to natural teeth and do not involve adjacent teeth. Implants can potentially last decades with proper care and regular visits to our office. Implants help prevent bone loss which would naturally occur with tooth loss. Implants can also support full arch denture.

The disadvantages of implants include the healing time which varies from 3-6 months. Patient should be in good overall health since implants involve surgery. Patients must have adequate bone or to be able to have surgery to build up the area needing an implant. Using tobacco can slow healing. We work with our oral surgery partners and periodontal partners for placement. You will return to our office after healing for the final steps. Your dentist will fabricate and attach the final restoration onto your implant.

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2695 Maysville Pike

Zanesville, OH 43701

(740) 452-3697

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