Knowing what is going on in your mouth helps you stay in charge of your health. We make sure that our exams don’t just inform our team about your smile, but that we also inform and educate you about everything from dental wear and tear to periodontal disease and the risks of oral cancer. Kids love seeing their teeth up-close and personal when we use the intra-oral cameras. And our computerized treatment rooms keep your records right at hand for easy comparisons and updates. If we do discover a problem, we will take plenty of time to explain what is going on and involve you in the development of a treatment plan.
Oral Cancer Screenings
Did you know that too much sun exposure is not only a factor in aging, it also can cause oral cancer? While many people think of tobacco as the only cause for oral cancer, there are many more causes you may have never thought of and sun exposure is only one of them. Age, excessive alcohol consumption, Human Papilloma Virus (the same virus that causes cervical cancer), and even a diet low in fruits and vegetables are more quiet causes of oral cancer. Oral cancer accounts for about 2% of cancers in women and 3% of cancers in men. It’s serious business! But catching it early makes it much more treatable. That’s why we scan for signs or symptoms at every cleaning and recommend a yearly oral cancer screening as part of your cancer prevention routine.
Dental x-rays are the foundation of most dental exams. Almost everyone has had them. But did you know that not all dental x-rays are the same? And that there are more ways than x-rays to see what is going on inside your mouth? Here at Benifiel Dentistry, we offer clear, sharp, immediately readable digital x-rays for better visuals and dramatically lower radiation exposure. We also have:
● Panoramic x-ray technology so we can see your entire craniofacial structure
● The DIAGNOdent for laser-precise, early cavity detection
● CariVu to illuminate tiny lesions and cracks in your enamel
It all adds up to the most thorough exam imaginable and the earliest detection available.
Keeping your teeth clean is one of the most important things you can do at home. Brushing and flossing properly does a lot to keep your smile healthy. But no matter how well you brush and how diligently you floss, you are not able to stop at least some plaque and tartar from building up – and that tartar can lead directly to gum disease! You see, bacteria combines with the things you eat and form a sticky film called plaque. If the plaque stays on your teeth (some of it always will), it forms tartar, which is so hard to remove, only a dental professional can do it. We use the Cavitron for cleanings, an amazing little device that can comfortably clean above and below the gum line with super gentle oscillating sound waves. In other words, the Cavitron vibrates the tartar away for a fresh, clean mouth and teeth.
Gums do more than just hold teeth in place. They’re actually mucous membranes and offer a direct pathway to your bloodstream. That means that if they are infected, your entire body will be affected. Current research shows a direct connection between periodontal, or gum, disease and things like cancers and heart attacks. The biggest problem is that gum disease can start very quietly and without noticeable symptoms. In fact, many patients don’t even experience bleeding of the gums during the earliest stages of gum infection. It is another reason we encourage regular cleanings. If we discover the first signs of gum disease during a cleaning, we will deep clean your smile and treat the infection with Arestin, an antibiotic that is placed directly in your infected gum pockets. It stays right where it should for up to 21 days, so the infection is cleared and your gums – and body – are kept safe.
Everyday eating and drinking can put kids’ teeth at risk due to acid erosion, making them more susceptible to cavities. Even healthy food and drinks like orange juice can be risky. Don’t eliminate all sweet or acidic foods – protect those precious teeth with our fluoride treatments. We suggest fluoride for kids at every visit up to 16 years old. Fluoride remineralizes teeth, adding extra protection against decay and erosion. And if your child – or you – are at a high risk for cavities, we offer take-home fluoride rinses for extra protection.
By now we are sure you know how important it is to keep your teeth healthy and natural. So why not protect them from harm day and night? We offer both sports mouthguards for active adults and children and nightguards to stop the damage of clenching and grinding.
Nervous about dental visits? Don’t be! We have so many ways to keep patients comfortable, most of them don’t even consider the need for any kind of sedation. We snuggle you into a comfy chair, make you feel secure with a cozy blanket, and use the Wand – a novocaine delivery system that makes shots painless. But if you still feel a little anxious, don’t worry. We offer both nitrous oxide, AKA laughing gas, and gentle oral sedation.
If your smile needs a little straightening, why not ask us about Six Month Smiles? This unique, orthodontic technology allows us to straighten and perfect front teeth in about six months. Want the straight teeth you never got as a child? Need a smile for an upcoming wedding? Talk to your dental team and in six months, your smile will be transformed thanks to more naturally appealing tooth-colored wires and clear brackets.
No one likes to have a dental emergency, but if you have one, we make sure we see you right away. Isn’t it nice to know that when something goes wrong, you can count on people who really care? That’s right: If you have a dental emergency, give us a call. We are right here to help.