At Gentle Dental Eagan, we believe that patient education is an essential aspect of care. It’s important to be well-informed about procedures and general information about oral health. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions we hear at our office.
I brush and floss. Why do I need cleanings?
Even individuals with impeccable oral hygiene are still not immune to issues like decay and gum disease. Every day, oral bacteria accumulate. Brushing and flossing at home is enough to keep these bacteria at bay for some time. But after a few months, a professional cleaning is necessary to address the issue. Your dental hygienist can remove plaque and tartar in hard-to-reach areas, keeping your bacterial levels healthy.
How often should my teeth be cleaned?
The answer to this question is different for every patient. Many individuals have their teeth cleaned every six months. However, if you are predisposed to certain oral health issues, such as decay or gum disease, we may recommend more frequent visits.
How can I choose the right toothpaste?
When shopping for any oral health product, be sure to look for the ADA Seal of Acceptance. This means that the product has been tested to the highest standards and considered safe for use. We recommend choosing a nonabrasive fluoride toothpaste. If you are prone to sensitivity, try a toothpaste formulated especially for sensitive teeth.
Are electric toothbrushes worth it?
Electric toothbrushes are wonderful investments, especially for patients who lack dexterity. Though they are not required, they can supplement your oral healthcare routine and yield excellent results. As always, be sure to choose a product that has been ADA-accepted.
Can I use a water flosser?
Waterpiks or water flossers are fantastic tools for removing large food particles and debris from underneath bridges, around braces, or other hard-to-reach areas. We encourage our patients to use waterpiks if they find them beneficial. However, you should never replace regular flossing with a waterpik, as they do not remove biofilm from the teeth surfaces. Therefore, if you purchase a waterpik, be sure to combine it with regular flossing.
How can I prevent cavities?
Good oral hygiene is the first defense against cavity-causing bacteria. However, there are also preventative measures you can take to reduce the risk of decay. Topical fluoride treatments help strengthen tooth enamel and address demineralization. Dental sealants are clear coatings that are applied to the teeth to shield them from bacteria. These treatments significantly reduce the risk of cavities.
Aren’t dental x-rays dangerous?
Digital x-rays emit much less radiation compared to conventional x-ray machines. At Gentle Dental Eagan, we take every possible precaution to protect our patients and keep them safe. We will never recommend x-rays unless they are necessary for treatment. Keep in mind that, for optimal oral health, dental x-rays should be taken at least once a year. If we are monitoring a specific problem, we may need to take them more often.
Red, tender, or swollen gums are the symptoms of periodontal disease. When detected in the early stages, gum disease can be addressed with cleanings. However, the more advanced the disease, the more likely surgery will be needed to correct the issue. For this reason, routine dental visits are so important.
Contact Our Practice for More Information
Do you have questions that we didn’t address here? Reach out to one of our knowledgeable team members. Contact us online anytime or call our office at (651) 452-5511.