The dentists at Jade Bay Dental are trained to detect dental problems early. A dental exam entails checking for the following:
X-rays, also known as radiographs, are an essential part of any dental care treatment plan. They are diagnostic, but they can also be preventive, by helping the dentist at Jade Bay Dental diagnose potential oral care issues in a patient’s mouth before they become a major problem. Most importantly, they cut the amount of radiation exposure to the dental patient. X-Ray pictures give a high level of detail of the tooth, bone and supporting tissues of the mouth and allow dentists to:
Radiation exposure associated with dentistry represents a minor contribution to the total exposure from all sources, including natural and man-made While digital technology has minimized the health risks of x-rays, it has not entirely eliminated it. That's why dentists will only use them when the benefit of obtaining better diagnostic information outweighs the procedure's small risk. Each case is considered individually, and your safety is always of paramount importance. If you have questions about why an x-ray is being recommended for you, please feel free to ask.
The goal of oral cancer screening is to detect mouth cancer or precancerous lesions that may lead to mouth cancer at an early stage — when cancer or lesions are easiest to remove and most likely to be cured. Our dentists perform an examination of your mouth during a routine dental visit to screen for oral cancer. Some dentists may use additional tests to aid in identifying areas of abnormal cells in your mouth. You and the dentist may decide that an oral exam or a special test is right for you based on your risk factors. People with a high risk of oral cancer may be more likely to benefit from oral cancer screening, though studies haven't clearly proved that. Factors that can increase the risk of oral cancer include:
Ask the dentist whether oral cancer screening is appropriate for you and for ways you can reduce your risk of oral cancer.
Teeth cleanings remove the buildup of plaque and tartar and are an essential part of keeping your mouth, and the rest of your body, disease-free. This buildup is for the most part natural; but too much buildup leads to gum disease. At a certain stage, damage due to gum disease is irreversible, so prevention is the best way to maintain overall health and keep your beautiful teeth for a lifetime — and teeth cleanings are a critical piece of this prevention.
A professional teeth cleaning is usually done by the hygienist at Jade Bay Dental. The hygienist uses tools to remove tartar from your teeth — both above and below where the gum meets the tooth.
Before the actual cleaning process begins, the hygienist starts with a physical exam of your entire mouth for any signs of gingivitis (inflamed gums) or other potential concerns.
If major problems are detected, the dental hygienist might call the dentist to make sure it’s fine to proceed. With a small mirror to guide them, the dental hygienist uses a scaler to get rid of plaque and tartar around your gum line, as well as in between your teeth.
After your teeth are completely tartar-free, the hygienist brushes them with a high-powered electric brush to get a deep clean and remove any tartar left behind from the scaler. Professional cleanings use toothpaste that smells and tastes like regular toothpaste, though you can often choose between flavors. However, it has a gritty consistency that gently scrubs your teeth.
The hygienist will then floss your teeth using standard dental floss to remove any polishing paste that may be left behind. The dental hygienist can get deep between your teeth and locate any potential trouble spots where you might bleed at the gums.
Next, your mouth is rinsed to get rid of any debris. Your dental hygienist will usually give you a rinse that contains liquid fluoride.
The last step of the cleaning process is a fluoride treatment. This treatment is used as a protectant for your teeth to help fight against cavities for several months.
Your dental hygienist may ask you what flavor you like best. They’ll then place the foamy gel (or sometimes a sticky paste) into a mouthpiece that fits over your teeth. It’s usually left on your teeth for one minute. Besides the foamy gel, fluoride varnish is also painted onto the teeth with a small brush.
Once your teeth are nice and clean, the dentist will examine your teeth, gums, tongue and the rest of your mouth.
At your cleaning appointment, we can also give you tips on your at-home oral care routine, your diet and anything about your smile that you may be concerned or have questions about.
Whether you need any additional steps or not, the key is to keep going back to the dentist for regular teeth cleanings to prevent problems altogether. By understanding what’s going on in advance, you’ll feel more at ease — and maybe even look forward to your next appointment at Jade Bay Dental.
The process of scaling and root planing the teeth is often referred to as a deep cleaning. Scaling is a common dental procedure for patients with gum disease; this treatment goes beyond the general cleaning that you receive with your regular checkup and annual visit. This is a type of dental cleaning that reaches below the gumline to remove plaque buildup, bacterial toxins and tartar deposits from your teeth and root surfaces. Dental scaling is typically followed by a procedure known as root planing. Root planing reaches deeper to address the surface of the tooth’s root. Smooth root surfaces keep bacteria, plaque and tartar from re-adhering underneath the gum line, allowing your gums to heal and reattach themselves more firmly.
If gum disease is caught early and hasn’t damaged the structures below the gum line, a professional cleaning should do. If the pockets between your gums and teeth are too deep, however, scaling and root planing may be needed. Scaling and root planing teeth, provided by either your dentist or dental hygienist, may take more than one appointment to complete, and a local anesthetic is often used to minimize any discomfort.
Your mouth may feel sore and sensitive after your dental scaling and root planing. Some patients may experience swelling or bleeding for a few days following the procedure. Your dentist may suggest a desensitizing toothpaste to help ease this discomfort. You might get a prescription mouthwash to use after the procedure, as well, to help keep the gums clean. It’s crucial that you use proper brushing and flossing procedures after your scaling to stop plaque from forming again in the same areas.
The dentist may schedule a second a visit after your dental scaling to examine the gums, measure the depth of your gum pockets, and make sure your mouth is healing properly. The good news is that in most cases, red or swollen gum tissue becomes firm and pink again, bleeding is reduced or eliminated and pockets get smaller. If your gum tissue has responded well and remains stable, you may not need any further treatment.
Grinding your teeth (often while you sleep), is a condition known as bruxism. It wears down teeth, and without protection can destroy tooth enamel and can chip or crack teeth. Once enamel has been destroyed, it cannot be replaced. Damaged teeth can be costly to fix, not to mention uncomfortable.
In addition, constant clenching of the jaw during sleep can lead to headaches, sore jaw and facial muscles, and even a condition called TMJ disorder, which causes chronic pain in the face, jaw, and neck. Because teeth grinding while sleeping is unintentional, the most safe and effective way to ensure teeth are protected is to wear a mouth guard, also called a nightguard, that separates teeth. The mouthguard or night guard does not really stop the habit of teeth clenching and grinding, but it helps the patient prevent possible damage to their teeth. Custom made mouth guards are professionally fitted and crafted by the dentist and therefore addresses the patient's specific dental needs. These mouth guards are made using a mold of the patient's teeth which is then sent to a laboratory that specializes in creating mouth guards.
To learn more about night mouth guard options and to choose the best option for you, speak with the dentist.
Another safety net to help keep teeth clean is the application of a sealant. A sealant is a thin, protective coating (made from plastic or other dental materials) that quickly bonds into the depressions and grooves of the back teeth, forming a protective shield over the enamel of each tooth
Although thorough brushing and flossing can remove food particles and plaque from smooth surfaces of teeth, they cannot always get into all the nooks and crannies of the back teeth to remove the food and plaque. Sealants protect these vulnerable areas from tooth decay by "sealing out" plaque and food. Because of the likelihood of developing decay in the depressions and grooves of the premolars and molars, children and teenagers are candidates for sealants. However, adults without decay or fillings in their molars can also benefit from sealants.
The dentist will clean and dry your tooth before placing an acidic gel on it. This gel roughs up the tooth surface so a strong bond will form between your tooth and the sealant. After a few seconds, the dentist will rinse off the gel and dry your tooth once again before applying the sealant onto the grooves of your tooth. The dentist will then use a special blue light to harden the sealant.