Preventive Dental Care In Katy

Why Is Preventive Dental Care Important?

Preventive dental care is crucial because it helps maintain overall oral health and prevent more serious dental issues from developing. By regularly visiting your Dr. Mariangela Smith for check-ups and cleanings, you can catch problems like cavities, gum disease, and oral cancer early, when they are easier and less expensive to treat. Consistent preventive care also helps to remove plaque and tartar buildup, which can lead to decay and periodontal disease. Plus, maintaining good oral hygiene and receiving professional advice from your dentist can help ensure that your teeth and gums stay healthy throughout your life.

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Did you know…

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Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body.

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What to Expect at Your Preventive Dental Care Appointment

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Initial Examination

Your preventive dental care appointment begins with a thorough examination by your Dr. Smith or dental hygienist. This step includes visually inspecting your teeth, gums, and oral cavity. Dr. Mariangela Smith looks for signs of cavities, gum disease, oral cancer, and other potential issues. They may also check your bite and jaw alignment. This initial examination is essential to identify problems early and create a personalized treatment plan tailored to your needs.

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Professional Cleaning

After the examination, your dental hygienist will perform a professional cleaning. This involves removing plaque and tartar that have built up on your teeth, especially in areas that are difficult to reach with regular brushing and flossing. The cleaning process includes scaling, where the hygienist uses special tools to scrape off tartar, and polishing, which helps to remove surface stains and smooth your teeth. This step not only leaves your teeth feeling clean but also helps to prevent cavities and gum disease.

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Digital X-Rays

Digital X-rays are typically taken during your preventive care appointment to provide a comprehensive view of your oral health. These X-rays help detect issues that are not visible during the visual examination, such as cavities between teeth, bone loss, and impacted teeth. Digital X-rays use significantly less radiation than traditional X-rays and produce instant images, allowing Dr. Smith to diagnose and discuss any findings with you immediately.

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Fluoride Treatment

Whether it’s scheduling a follow-up visit for a filling, cosmetic treatments, or a routine cleaning, our team is here for you. At this time we will also be able to answer any questions you may have about your insurance and payment options. We strive to ensure every visit is seamless and stress-free!

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Personalized Oral Health Advice

At the end of your appointment, Dr. Smith will provide personalized oral health advice based on the findings from the examination and cleaning. This advice may include tips on brushing and flossing techniques, dietary recommendations, and suggestions for any additional treatments that may be necessary. The goal is to help you maintain optimal oral health and prevent future dental issues. Your Dr. Smith may also schedule your next preventive care appointment to ensure that you continue to receive regular check-ups and cleanings.

Preventive Treatment Options

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Cleaning & Hygiene

Regular cleaning and hygiene appointments are essential for removing plaque and tartar buildup that cannot be eliminated by brushing and flossing alone. These professional cleanings help to prevent cavities, gum disease, and other oral health issues. Your dental hygienist will also provide tips on how to maintain good oral hygiene at home, ensuring that your teeth and gums stay healthy between visits.

Digital X-rays

Your comfort is our priority. Digital x-rays are fast, comfortable, and high-resolution images that allow us to make accurate diagnoses while exposing you to less radiation than with traditional film x-rays. In most cases, a full set of x-rays will be taken once or twice per year, but your doctor may also recommend one if they suspect you may have developed a dental issue or you're experiencing a dental emergency.

Fluoride Treatments

Fluoride treatments are an effective way to protect teeth from decay. During a fluoride treatment, a concentrated fluoride solution is applied to the teeth, strengthening the enamel and making it more resistant to acid attacks. These treatments are quick and painless and can significantly reduce the risk of developing cavities. Fluoride treatments benefit patients of all ages, especially those with a higher susceptibility to tooth decay.

Did you know…

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Humans have four types of teeth: incisors, canines, premolars, and molars.

Have questions about preventive dentistry? Find answers here.

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How should I properly brush my teeth?

It is important to brush your teeth at least twice a day for two minutes each session. Angle the bristles of the brush 45 degrees towards your gums. Brush in gentle, circular strokes and clean all the surfaces of each tooth. Focus on cleaning each quadrant of your mouth for 30 seconds to ensure you aren’t rushing. Be sure to brush with a toothpaste that contains fluoride to keep cavities at bay. You can also use an electric toothbrush to make brushing easier!

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How do you floss correctly?

Start by rolling out about 24 inches of dental floss. Wind most of it around your index or middle finger and wind the last few inches around the index finger of your other hand. Hold a 1-inch section firmly between fingers and thumbs and gently glide this floss between your teeth, using a rocking up and down motion. When the floss is between your teeth, take it up into the gum line following the c-shape curve to dislodge plaque and bacteria. Repeat this for both sides of each tooth and be sure to wind a new 1-inch section each time you move to a new tooth to prevent spreading bacteria.

What's the difference between prophylactic cleanings and periodontal cleanings?

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A prophylaxis is the regular dental cleaning you need every 6 months to prevent cavities and bad breath. Your dentist or dental hygienist will remove plaque, tartar, and bacteria from your teeth and give them a thorough flossing to ensure your smile is clean and free of debris.

Periodontal cleanings are also known as “deep cleanings” and are only necessary for patients who have periodontal disease. During these cleanings, your dentist will take extra care to scrape away plaque, tartar, and calculus between your teeth and below your gum line to eliminate pockets that trap bacteria. Deep cleanings are a part of a periodontal maintenance routine and will help patients with gum disease preserve their oral health.

Is preventive care covered by dental insurance?

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Most dental insurance policies fully cover preventive care such as cleanings, exams, and x-rays. If your preventive care is not 100% covered, it will usually at least be partially covered by your policy. Some plans may also cover optional treatments like dental sealants and fluoride for children. To learn more about your coverage, consult with your provider and give our office a call to see how we can help you maximize your dental insurance benefits.

Did you know…

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Most people smile about 40 times a day!

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