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Dental Health FAQ

Cup full of colorful toothbrushes next to a couple of apples.

Q: Which type of toothbrush should I use?

A: The brand isn’t as important as the size of the head and the kind of bristles that the toothbrush has. Always opt for soft bristled toothbrushes as medium, and hard-bristled toothbrush can damage your teeth. That’s right, if the bristles of your toothbrush are too hard they can scratch the surface of your enamel! Harder bristles can also cause irritation of the gums and contribute to gum recession. Soft bristles offer just the right amount of cleaning capacity.

A toothbrush with a small brushing head is going to be superior to the larger headed toothbrushes. A toothbrush with a smaller head can maneuver into the various nooks and crannies between your teeth and throughout your mouth. A smaller head also has a lower risk of bumping into and irritating your gums. Scrubbing your teeth should be avoided. Instead, you should use moderate to light strokes on each tooth.

Q: Is one toothpaste better than others?

A: Generally speaking, no, toothpaste are all pretty much the same. The one determining factor that we recommend is a toothpaste that contains fluoride. Fluoride is a chemical that works to protect and repair the enamel of your teeth against decay-causing bacteria.

Q: How often should I floss?

A: Flossing at least once a day is what we recommend to our patients. Flossing does a great job of preventing bacterial build up between your teeth and works to keep your gums happy and healthy. If you want to floss more than once a day that is perfectly fine as long as you are gentle and try to use a light touch.

Q: What's the difference between a "crown" and a "cap"?

A: Restorations that are meant to repair teeth that have undergone an extreme amount of damage or decay, while allowing the natural tooth the remain, is call a “crown”. Crowns can restore teeth that have been cracked or chipped, have had a large filling fail, or have been attacked by extreme decay. Crowns can be crafted out of some different materials including:
•  Gold
•  Ceramic (zirconia)
•  Porcelain
•  Porcelain fused to metal (PFM)
•  Composite

Dental professionals refer to all of these restorations as “crowns”. Others often refer to tooth colored crowns as “caps”.

Q: What's the difference between a "bridge" and a "partial denture"?

A: A dental bridge is a permanent dental fixture, whereas a partial denture is a removable dental appliance.

A bridge is set in the mouth permanently using a strong dental adhesive which attaches it to anchor teeth (AKA abutments) or dental implants in the mouth. Bridges can be made from the same varied materials that dental crowns are made of. Dental bridges are not removable and can be used to chew food.

A partial denture is a removable dental appliance that is used to replace missing teeth, similar to a dental bridge. Partial dentures also require the help of surrounding teeth for support, but instead of being held in place with a dental adhesive, they are usually attached via a wire and bracket system to neighboring teeth. Partial dentures must be removed to sleep and sometimes to eat.

Q: What about "silver" fillings versus "white" fillings?

A: Amalgam (silver) fillings have been shown to be safe to for use in patients. That being said, they are much rarer today than they were in the past for a few different reasons. Amalgam used to be the best filling material available, but today that has changed. Now, tooth colored (composite) fillings are better suited to most tooth restoration requiring a filling. Not only does composite material look almost identical to your natural teeth, but they also require less of your natural tooth to be drilled to be successful. That being said, composite fillings can’t be used for every case that requires a dental filling and sometimes we must use amalgam instead.

Q: Do I need to have a root canal just because I have to have a crown?

A: No. These are two separate and completely unrelated procedures that accomplish different dental goals. A root canal is a procedure done when a tooth has decay that reaches into the core of the tooth and effects the root. During a root canal, we drill into the tooth, remove the inner most layer of the tooth, known as the pulp, and fill in the space left behind.

A crown is done when the crown of the tooth is unable to continue functioning properly. A new biting surface is placed over the tooth and sealed in place permanently.

Occasionally, a tooth that needs a root canal will also require a crown, but the procedures are distinct.

Q: Which tooth whitening solution is the best?

A: Today there are so many over-the-counter tooth whitening solutions that it is hard not to pick something that says, “Tooth whitening” on the side. Do any of these claims work? The more important question is, do these claims work well. The answer is usually no; most OTC teeth whitening solutions do not do a very good job of whitening teeth in a timely or impressive manner. Mouthwashes and toothpastes are the worst of the worst offenders when it comes to making false tooth whitening claims. Whitening strips can do a decent job of whitening teeth, but ultimately, can’t offer the results the professional dental whitening offers.

Q: How often should I visit your office for a dental checkup?

A: We recommend that you come in to see us at least once every six months or so. Six months is a long enough span of time for plaque and tartar to accumulate on your teeth, but a short enough amount of time that they can’t do much damage. During your checkup, we can give your teeth a thorough cleaning and examine them to make sure that there are no signs of decay or other oral maladies. We recommend taking an X-ray of your mouth at least once a year.

Preparing For Your Visit
We look forward to meeting you and working with you to achieve full dental health. We ask that you complete your Patient Forms a minimum of two days prior to your scheduled appointment with Lake Pointe Dental - Marietta. This allows our front office team to fully prepare your dental insurance benefits for a comprehensive consultation.

Questions? Please feel welcome to call or email us for assistance.

Lake Pointe Dental Marietta

1880 W Oak Pkwy, Suite 215
Marietta, GA 30062


Open: Mo-Th 9- 5, Fr 9-2

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Lake Pointe Dental - Marietta | | 770-514-0440
1880 W Oak Pkwy, Suite 215, Marietta, GA 30062



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