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Frequently Asked Questions from Patients

Updated: Dec 16, 2019

While we love seeing our patients, we know for many people a trip to the dentist is stressful. Here are a few of the most frequently asked questions patients ask us:

About Your Visit

Are there any other options for dental work if I am worried about going to the dentist?

There are many people who are terrified the sounds and smells of a dental office and are jeopardizing their oral health because of their fears. If you are one of these people, please understand that we have options for you that will make a dreaded dental appointment less frightening.

Our patients have the option of being sedated during their dental appointment. During sedation, the patient is at a relaxed sleep-like state and is responsive to what is happening in their surroundings. Another option that we provide is “laughing gas” which is also a method that brings the patient to a relaxed state.

Will it hurt?

For all of our dental procedures, we utilize a topical anesthetic to numb the area first. In addition, a local anesthetic will be applied to the area to ensure that the patient does not feel anything where the dental work is to be done.

What do I do if I hate the sound of the dentist's drill?

At our office, patients have the option of watching satellite television or movies during their dental appointment. If patients are afraid of the sounds in a dental office, they can simply put on the headset to the television and nothing will be heard but the sounds of entertainment.

About Dental Health and Procedures

Are my gums healthy? How do I make them healthier?

Healthy gums are pink in colour and have pockets that are one to three millimeters in depth between the teeth and the gums. Healthy gums can be maintained with brushing at least two times a day and flossing daily.

Do I have gum disease?

Conditions such as red, swollen, bleeding gums, persistent bad breath and tooth sensitivity are common indications of gum disease. Shallow pockets of one to three millimeters in depth are present between the gums and teeth in a healthy mouth. Patients with gum disease have unhealthy pocket depths of more than three millimeters deep. With these deep pockets, an accumulation of harmful bacteria may occur leading to gum inflammation, infections and even bone loss. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned, please book an appointment with our office for cleaning.

What is scaling?

Scaling is one of the procedures performed during a hygiene appointment. The hygienist ultimately removes the tartar and plaque off the patient’s teeth with special instruments called scalers.

What is fluoride?

Fluoride is a substance that is placed on the teeth for at least one minute. It works to re-enforce the outer layer of the teeth which is known as the enamel. In doing so, fluoride helps make the teeth more resistant to the acid produced by bacteria and therefore helps prevent cavities.

Why is flossing necessary?

Flossing is important because it helps remove food particles and bacteria in between the teeth where your toothbrush may not reach. Flossing daily promotes healthy gums and teeth and prevents the development of cavities.

What are the x-rays for and do I have to take them?

X-rays are used by our dentists to further assess your oral health. X-ray pictures show cavities, hidden dental structures such as wisdom teeth, and bone loss that cannot be seen in a visual examination. With x-rays, dentists are able to see the teeth, bones and soft tissues surrounding the teeth and can identify any problems in the mouth and jaw. It is recommended that the patient have x-rays taken annually and are usually updated yearly when you come in for your annual cleaning.

Do I need a root canal?

Teeth that are in need of a root canal are painful and may be sensitive to hot and cold. When the nerve endings inside the tooth become infected and inflamed the tooth is in need of a root canal. If you are experiencing this discomfort and pain, please contact our office to schedule an appointment.

Can I eat after I have freezing for dental work?

Food and drinks can be consumed after freezing for dental work. Be careful while chewing after your dental appointment as it is easy to bite the lip and cheek or tongue while it is frozen. Avoid having foods that are too hot or hard until the freezing comes out to prevent burning or biting yourself.

How long does the freezing last?

Some people are more sensitive to the anesthetics than others. For most people, the freezing for a dental procedure lasts anywhere from two and a half hours to five hours. The length of time the freezing will last all depends on the patient’s metabolism in breaking down the anesthetics.

Do I need my wisdom teeth removed?

For some people, wisdom teeth do not cause any problems. However, since wisdom teeth are so far back in the mouth, they are hard to keep clean and may be more prone to decay and gum infections. Wisdom teeth may cause crowding and poor positioning in other teeth as they come in. Impacted wisdom teeth are those that grow at an angle underneath the gums rather than erupting through the gums as they should. In this case, an infection may form as bacteria gets trapped thus causing pain and perhaps swelling.

It is usually suggested that patients have their wisdom teeth removed. It is more advantageous to have the teeth removed at a younger age rather than a later age; since the roots of the teeth are smaller and the bone will heal better. If you are concerned about your wisdom teeth, please call to schedule an appointment for a consultation today.

Were sutures put in after my wisdom teeth were taken out?

Yes, sutures were put in after your wisdom teeth were removed. An appointment will be scheduled for you to have the sutures removed. Patients are to come back in a week after their wisdom teeth were removed to have this done.

If you have questions about your treatments or dental experience, please give us a call at 403-289-9922.


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