General & Geriatric Dentistry
Cleanings & Dental Exams
Rocky River Dental provides cleaning and dental exams. A preventive program is a cooperative effort by the patient, dentist, and dental staff to preserve the natural dentition and supporting structures by preventing the onset, progress, and recurrence of dental diseases and conditions.
Preventing dental disease starts at home with good oral hygiene and a balanced diet. It is continued in the dental office by the efforts of your dentist and dental hygienist to promote, restore, and maintain your oral health. Prevention helps avoid serious and costly dental problems and is the key to having a healthy, confident, beautiful smile.
A comprehensive dental exam will be performed by your dentist at your initial dental visit. At regular check-up exams, your dentist and hygienist will perform the following:
Examination of diagnostic X-rays (radiographs): Essential for detection of decay, tumors, cysts, and bone loss. X-rays also help determine tooth and root positions
Oral cancer screening: Check the face, neck, lips, tongue, throat, tissues, and gums for any signs of oral cancer
Gum disease evaluation: Check the gums and bone around the teeth for any signs of periodontal disease
Examination of tooth decay: All tooth surfaces will be checked for decay with special dental instruments
Examination of existing restorations: Check current fillings, crowns, etc.
Professional dental cleanings (dental prophylaxis) are usually performed by Registered Dental Hygienists. Your cleaning appointment will include a dental exam as well as a removal of tartar, plaque, and polishing of the teeth.
The word periodontal means “around the tooth”. Periodontal disease attacks the gums and the bone that support the teeth. Plaque is a sticky film of food debris, bacteria, and saliva. If plaque is not removed, it turns into calculus (tartar). When plaque and calculus are not removed, they begin to destroy the gums and bone. Periodontal disease is characterized by red, swollen, and bleeding gums.
Four out of five people have periodontal disease and don’t know it! Most people are not aware of it because the disease is usually painless in the early stages. Good oral hygiene, a balanced diet, and regular dental visits can help reduce your risk of developing periodontal disease.
Signs & Symptoms of Periodontal Disease
Bleeding gums: Gums should never bleed, even when you brush vigorously or use dental floss.
Loose teeth: Also caused by bone loss or weakened periodontal fibers (fibers that support the tooth to the bone).
New spacing between teeth: Caused by bone loss.
Persistent bad breath: Caused by bacteria in the mouth.
Pus around the teeth and gums: Sign that there is an infection present.
Receding gums: Loss of gum around a tooth.
Red and puffy gums: Gums should never be red or swollen.
Tenderness or Discomfort: Plaque, calculus, and bacteria irritate the gums and teeth.
If the disease is caught in the early stages of gingivitis, and no damage has been done, one to two regular cleanings will be recommended. You will also be given instructions on improving your daily oral hygiene habits and having regular dental cleanings.
If the disease has progressed to more advanced stages, a special periodontal cleaning called scaling and root planing (deep cleaning) will be recommended. It is usually done one quadrant of the mouth at a time while the area is numb. In this procedure, tartar, plaque, and toxins are removed from above and below the gum line (scaling) and rough spots on root surfaces are made smooth (planing). This procedure helps gum tissue to heal and pockets to shrink. Medications, special medicated mouth rinses, and an electric tooth brush may be recommended to help control infection and healing.
If the pockets do not heal after scaling and root planing, periodontal surgery may be needed to reduce pocket depths, making teeth easier to clean. Your dentist may also recommend that you see a periodontist (specialist of the gums and supporting bone).
Cases of tooth decay has significantly diminished over the years due to the use of fluorides and an increase in patient awareness. However, teeth are still susceptible to decay, infection, and breakage and sometimes need to be restored back to health. Through improved techniques and modern technology, we are now able to offer more options for restoring a tooth back to its normal shape, appearance and function.
Should your teeth ever require a restorative treatment, you can rest assured knowing we will always discuss with you the available options, and recommend what we believe to be the most comfortable and least invasive treatment. Providing you with excellent care is our number one priority when creating your beautiful smile.
Reasons for Restorative Dentistry
Enhance your smile
Fill in unattractive spaces between teeth
Improve or correct an improper bite
Prevent the loss of a tooth
Relieve dental pain
Repair damaged and decayed teeth
Replace missing teeth
Replace old, unattractive dental treatments
Restore normal eating and chewing
Remember to give your teeth the attention they need today! Schedule a visit with Dr. Farr to learn more about how to make your smile life-long!