How Dental Sealants Fight Cavities

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Cavities are caused by tooth decay, which is nearly 100 percent preventable. A healthy diet, regular dental visits and good dental hygiene are among the most basic steps to keeping your teeth healthy and strong. However, preventive treatments such as dental sealants can also help you in the fight against cavities. One study showed that kids with dental sealants are nearly 80 percent less likely to have cavities than those without fillings. Sealants are even more effective when combined with dental fluoride treatments. Our Northridge dentist can help you decide if sealants are right for you.

Sealants are applied to the chewing surfaces of molars and premolars. They are clear and bond securely to the teeth where they can stay in place for 5 to 7 years. We can apply sealants in a single dental appointment. First, the teeth to be sealed will be cleaned and slightly roughened to enhance the bond between the tooth and the sealant. Next, the liquid sealant will be painted onto the tooth, and a UV light is directed onto the treated tooth to cure the sealant. There is no drilling or discomfort, and the entire process takes less time than a dental filling.

When combined with a healthy diet, brushing, flossing, professional care and fluoride treatments, sealants can significantly reduce the risk of cavities by preventing bacteria from accessing the fissures and pits on the chewing surfaces of teeth. Call our expert in dental sealants in Northridge to schedule your appointment.

How Dental Sealants Fight Cavities

Preparing for Your Dental Exam

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Many people experience anxiety at the idea of attending a dental exam. They become fearful of receiving bad news, or simply at the unknown. For these patients, as well as any others, it can be helpful to arrive prepared, for both them and our dental team.

Patients can begin preparing for their appointment by thinking of any questions or information they need to relay to their local dentist. This can include questions about the process of a dental exam, and information about elements regarding your comfort. Just before your appointment, be sure to brush and floss your teeth thoroughly, as this can make a difference when our dentist inspects your teeth. You should also be sure to bring important paperwork so our staff can process your information, such as dental history and insurance coverage. Patients should also arrive about fifteen minutes early to their appointment, in order to fill out any necessary paperwork.

During your appointment, you should be prepared for a thorough examination of your teeth and mouth. They will be looking for any signs of cavities, damage, or abnormalities. They will then clean the teeth by scraping away debris, bacteria, and plaque. They may also choose to take x-rays, as this type of record must remain up to date, and can show issues that cannot be seen with the naked eye.

Preparing for Your Dental Exam

Common Dental Treatments

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Modern dental care includes treatments to prevent problems and restore teeth after damage and cosmetic flaws occur. With a full selection of treatments in these categories, our dentist in Northridge offers patients a convenient source of general dental wellness. Here is a look at the most common procedures available.

Preventive Treatments

Examples of preventive treatments are fluoride and sealants. With fluoride, patients are less likely to experience dental erosion and tooth sensitivity. Sealants prevent acids and bacteria from causing tooth damage.

Restorative Treatments

This category includes basic restorations, such as fillings, as well as more complex procedures. Inlays and onlays, also called indirect fillings, are available along with crowns, which cover the entire tooth. Root canal treatment eliminates infections from teeth so that extraction can be avoided.

Cosmetic Treatments

Some popular cosmetic procedures are teeth whitening, for removing surface stains, and veneers, which conceal discoloration and structural flaws. Patients can also get a smile makeover, which combines multiple procedures to rejuvenate oral appearance.

During exams, our dentist can explain options for patients who are looking to achieve restoration of their dental health and looks. Patients can schedule a consultation at our dental clinic in Northridge to learn more about common treatments and their applications.

Common Dental Treatments

What Do General Dentists Do?

Along with regularly brushing and flossing your teeth, your general dentist is your first line of defense against poor oral hygiene. When you go in for a routine exam and cleaning, it is a general dentist that you are seeing. While we may not pay too much attention to how they have become the dentist we are seeing, these professionals have actually completed four years of undergraduate coursework, as well as four additional years of dental school.

A general dentist is trained to give comprehensive oral exams. During these exams, they will check for cavities, signs of gum disease, and oral cancer. If a cavity is found, your general dentist will drill out the decayed portion of your tooth and then replace it with a dental filling. When decay has penetrated the tooth deep enough to affect the root, a general dentist can save your tooth using a root canal procedure. During this procedure, the pulp of your tooth is carefully removed from the root canal. Your tooth is then filled and restored with a crown. Crowns are the most common restoration used after a root canal treatment, but your general dentist can also provide other restorations, such as dental bridges.

It is important to see a general dentist at least twice a year for an exam and cleaning. With routine exams, your dentist will be able to catch many early dental problems before they become too severe. If you have not been to the dentist in a while, then contact our general dentist in West Hollywood to set up an appointment.

What Do General Dentists Do?