Frequently Asked
Questions
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Your Dental Questions Answered

How often should I go to the dentist?

Every patient is different so there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Some people only need to visit once or twice a year while others may need to visit more often for various reasons. Every patient has a unique smile and unique needs when it comes to maintaining their oral health. Talk to your dentist about how often you should schedule visits.

 

Should I really floss every day?

Absolutely. The American Dental Association recommends cleaning between your teeth at least once a day because plaque that is not removed on a regular basis can eventually harden into calculus or tartar. Flossing also helps prevent gum disease and cavities. There are many tools you can use to floss: dental floss, dental pick, water flosser, pre-threaded flosser, or wooden plaque remover.

I have a toothache –is there anything I can do to alleviate the pain?

It depends on the cause of the toothache. For starters, rinse your mouth with warm water to clear out any leftover food particles or foreign objects. Then you should gently floss to remove any food caught between your teeth as this may be the cause of your toothache. If this does not help and the pain persists, contact your dentist.

Why do we need fluoride?

Fluoride, also known as nature’s cavity fighter, helps prevent tooth decay by making teeth more resistant to the acids that cause cavities. When we brush with fluoride toothpaste, use other oral fluoride products, and drink fluoridated water we are strengthening our teeth’s enamel. It occurs naturally in varying amounts in rivers, lakes, and even the oceans. According to studies, enhancing the level of fluoride in community water supplies is effective in preventing dental decay by at least 25% in both children and adults. Merely by drinking water, everyone can benefit from fluoride’s cavity protection no matter where they are.

Are dental x-rays safe?

Yes, dental X-rays are safe. However, they do produce very low levels of radiation, which means the risk of potentially harmful effects is very minor. Specific tools and techniques are designed and used to limit the body’s exposure and every preventative measure is taken so that radiation exposure is As Low As Reasonably Achievable (the ALARA principle). For instance, a leaded apron protects the abdomen and is used when it will not interfere with the X-ray. Also, a leaded thyroid collar, recommended for women of childbearing age, pregnant women, and children, will protect the thyroid and should also be used whenever possible.

Comfortable & comprehensive
Dentistry
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919-620-6700
4210 N. Roxboro St., Suite 100
Durham, NC 27704

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