Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do in a dental emergency?

a) Knocked-out Tooth: Hold the tooth down by the crown. If the root of the tooth is dirty, rinse it off. Do not scrub the tooth or remove any attached tissue. If possible, try to replace the tooth in its socket and hold it there with the tongue or by biting down gently. Call your dentist immediately. If you cannot replace the tooth in the socket, put it in a glass of milk or water and get both the tooth and the patient to your dentist as soon as possible.

b) Broken Tooth: Rinse your mouth with warm water to clean the broken tooth. Put a cold pack on your face to reduce swelling. Call your dentist immediately.

c) Possible Broken Jaw: Do not move the jaw. Secure the jaw by tying a handkerchief, necktie or towel under the jaw and over the top of the head. Call an oral surgeon immediately or go to a hospital emergency room. General dentists are not equipped to treat a broken jaw.

d) Toothache: Rinse your mouth with warm water to clean food particles out of the aching tooth. Do not place aspirin on the aching tooth or gum tissues. Over the counter pain relievers may help. Call your dentist for an appointment as soon as possible. For the most severe toothaches, sips of water can provide short term relief.

How often should I have my teeth examined?

For most people, dental exams should be done twice a year. This allows us to find potential problems such as cavities or gum disease in their early stages so they can be corrected before they become big problems.

Why do my teeth need professional cleaning?

Tooth decay and gum disease both develop when plaque (the white, sticky film of bacteria that grows on teeth constantly) is allowed to build up on the teeth and remain there. Brushing and flossing regularly will remove a lot of the plaque, but it is nearly impossible to remove all of it. Plaque left on teeth for more than 24 hours begins hardening into tartar or calculus, especially in hard to reach areas near the gum line and between teeth. Once plaque has hardened into calculus, the only way to remove it is through a professional cleaning by a dentist or dental hygienist.

What is caries dye?

Caries dye is a colored chemical that is used by dentists when removing tooth decay. The dye reacts with the decayed tooth structure and stains it so the dentist can clearly see it and remove it. It does not stain the healthy tooth structure. Without the use of caries dye, caries removal is often incomplete.

At what age should a child first visit a dentist?

By the age of 2½ years, most children will have developed the social skills to cope with a dental visit. This is also the age at which all deciduous teeth have usually completely eruption into the mouth. Of course, if there appears to be a problem before age 2½, do no hesitate to call your dentist.

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Information on this website
a) is not intended to offer specific medical or dental advice;
b) does not represent diagnosis or treatment; and/or
c) does not establish a doctor/patient relationship.
Regular visits to your dentist are necessary to protect your health.