Maintain a Beautiful, Healthy Smile with Preventive Care
Routine professional cleanings and at-home dental care are essential for maintaining a healthy, attractive smile. We are a caring family dental practice that provides outstanding preventive care for children, adults, and seniors in the Northhampton area. With the two dental check-ups per year recommended by the American Dental Association (ADA), Dr. Teddi Olszewski can help keep your teeth beautifully clean and treat any developing conditions before they cause serious problems. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.
Preventive Care at Home
Preventive dentistry refers to the maintenance and procedures used to keep your teeth and gums healthy. At home, this means brushing at least twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste and cleaning between teeth once a day with dental floss or similar tools like picks, sticks, or brushes. The importance of excellent at-home oral hygiene habits cannot be overstated. Personal preventive dentistry also includes eating a balanced diet and limiting foods with sugars and carbohydrates, which feed on the bacteria that creates dental plaque. You can also aid your oral health by avoiding tobacco and limiting alcohol consumption, since these contribute to dry mouth, stained teeth, plaque buildup, and gum disease.
Routine Dental Visits
Equally important are twice-yearly trips to the dentist for routine professional care. It is important to note, some patients who are in a higher risk category for gum disease should see their dentist more than twice yearly. The purpose of these visits is to clean the teeth more thoroughly than you can at home, and check for any developing conditions before they progress. As a family dentist, we also check adolescent patients’ development and monitor any conditions as part of the evaluation. One reason it is so important to keep up with regular appointments is because most dental conditions are painless at first, and only become noticeable when damage is significant. Professional cleaning and exams with early treatment for tooth decay and gum disease is likely to result in less extensive — and less expensive — treatment down the road.
How It Works
A routine visit will include hygienic cleaning and an exam. The cleaning removes mineralized plaque, called tartar, which can develop even if you brush and floss carefully. If too much plaque has built up along the gum line, you may need a deep cleaning to halt or prevent periodontitis (gum disease). Our hygienist uses a state-of-the-art piezoelectric ultrasonic scaling system, which removes plaque in an extremely gentle and effective manner. Cleanings will also help remove surface stains and smooth the surface of the teeth to make it more difficult for plaque to adhere. X-rays are usually taken once a year, and are imperative to find issues such as cavities between the teeth. Our office uses digital x-rays, which provide superior detection with 80-90% less radiation than traditional film systems.
Routine visits also give the dentist and hygienist a chance to counsel patients on measures that can make a big difference over the long term. For example, if patients are grinding their teeth, a custom mouth guard can protect the mouth and help avoid problems with the temporomandibular joints (TMJs). Special sports mouth guards may also be recommended for both children and adults to protect teeth from injury. Special considerations for children include fluoride supplements and dental sealants to prevent tooth decay. Keeping an eye on tooth development will also allow Dr. Olsewski to detect potential alignment issues. If they are present, she may recommend orthodontics or Invisalign® to limit the chance of future dental problems.
Our goal is to help you keep your natural teeth for a lifetime. To learn more, or schedule an appointment, contact us today.