Family Dentistry and Preventive Care
At Jordan View Dental we welcome patients of all ages and backgrounds. Whether you’ve had struggles with teeth your whole life or you’ve never had a single cavity, we offer personalized recommendations and services you need to get your healthy smile back or to help you maintain that smile for a lifetime. We hope you bring your whole family to our warm, inviting office! Oftentimes we can see several members of your family at the same time for your preventive care.
Routine Cleanings and Exams
To maintain healthy teeth and gums, it is strongly recommended that you receive a thorough dental cleaning at least once every 6 months. During this one hour appointment, one of our amazing dental hygienists will use special instruments and techniques to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth, especially from areas where your toothbrush and floss cannot effectively clean.
We will also do an evaluation of your gum health and an oral cancer screening so that we can properly diagnose and prevent any periodontal disease, gingivitis, or other soft tissue conditions. We recommend getting digital x-rays of your teeth regularly, as this is one of the best ways to catch issues before they become major problems. The dentist will check your teeth, x-rays, and soft tissues to make sure everything is in great shape and give recommendations specific to you.
Depending on your health, genetics, diet, lifestyle choices, or a variety of other factors, you may need extra help besides regular brushing and flossing in order to prevent cavities or gum disease. We want to be your guide! Please let us know what you are currently doing, and we will give new recommendations tailored to your needs. Here are just some of the recommendations we may give:
- Sealants – We recommend placing sealants on the deep pits and grooves of permanent teeth very soon after they erupt in the mouth. A sealant is a tooth-colored coating that protects food from getting stuck in those deep, hard-to-clean grooves, and therefore helps prevent cavities. These are especially recommended for children!
- Fluoride Varnish – Fluoride is one of the most important ways to prevent cavities. It has consistently been shown through scientific studies that fluoride strengthens teeth and helps neutralize acid-producing bacteria that cause tooth decay. In the correct amounts, fluoride is completely healthy. Varnish is one of the more effective and safe methods of getting fluoride incorporated into your tooth structure. We recommend this for adults and children after cleaning appointments every 6 months.
- Prescription Toothpaste – Many times a regular toothpaste that contains fluoride is sufficient. In some cases you might benefit from a prescription toothpaste, with a higher strength of fluoride or other ingredients that help with sensitivity. Prescription toothpaste is a healthy, effective way of strengthening your teeth on a consistent basis. Ask our dentist if a prescription toothpaste is right for you.
- Mouth Rinses – Depending on your mouth, over the counter or prescription mouth rinses may help you prevent cavities or control gingivitis and halitosis (bad breath).
- Extras – Besides regular brushing and flossing, other tools that may benefit you are an electric toothbrush, Water Flosser or Waterpik, and small brushes (“GUM Proxabrushes”) that clean between your teeth.
Pediatric Preventive Care
Your child’s first visit
The American Dental Association recommends that your child’s first dental visit should take place after the first tooth appears, but no later than the first birthday. Typically we will do a “lap exam” at the first few visits, where the parent will be seated in the dental chair with the child on their lap. This provides an opportunity for the child to become accustomed to going to the dentist and having a positive experience, and it provides the parents an opportunity to ask questions. We will also clean the child’s teeth depending on their age and give the parents tips for daily care. Our goal is to make this a happy visit!
Children’s continuing care
After the initial visit, it is important for your child to come in for regular 6 month cleanings and checkups and to receive help with cavity prevention such as sealants and fluoride. Although in most cases the primary dentition (baby teeth) will be replaced with permanent teeth, keeping this first set of teeth healthy plays an important role in helping the jaw develop properly and preserving space for the permanent teeth – not to mention it helps for your child to chew and be pain-free!
At these regular visits your children will get their teeth cleaned and receive instructions and tips for their home care, and the parents will receive any recommendations for treatment needed such as fillings, cavity prevention, or an orthodontic consult for braces.
How do I prepare my child for their dental visit?
Our office makes dental visits fun with our awesome dental assistants and TVs for young children to watch, but we can only do so much. Parents play a huge role in how a child perceives his or her experience at the dental office. Your children will pick up on what you and other family members say about their dental experiences. The following may help you prepare your child for their dental visit:
- Start early! Watch videos, read books, or talk to your child about what will happen at their dental visit to help him or her become familiar and more confident, especially before their first visit.
- Explain that getting their teeth cleaned will help keep their teeth nice and strong!
- Try to help them practice opening their mouth for the dentist to check or clean their teeth.
- Encourage your child to ask the dentist any questions if there is something they are unsure about.
- Keep it positive! Avoid using negative terms such as “hurt” or “pain.”
- At home try not to motivate your children to brush in order to avoid a punishment such as a “shot” or “drill” from the dentist, as this doesn’t produce good feelings about their dental visits. Instead, focus on creating a healthy mouth, free of cavity bugs!
- Use positive examples of a parent or older sibling who has a good experience at the dentist, and if needed, bring your young child into the dental office while one of you is getting your teeth cleaned to show them how easy it is!
- If your child needs treatment such as a filling, remember these tips!
- Explain what will be done, focusing on the positive. For most children, the simpler, the better: “The dentist is going to clean out your cavity bugs so your teeth can stay nice and strong.”
- In some cases you may need to explain more: “The dentist will use ‘sleepy juice” to put your tooth to sleep. It makes your lip feel kind of funny for an hour, then it feels normal again. You can watch a movie the whole time.”
- It is best to avoid telling your child they will get a “shot”, as a vast majority of children handle dental shots very well. Many times they don’t even know that they’ve received an injection!
- If your child is particularly nervous or young, we highly recommend they have nitrous oxide “laughing gas” during their visit, which is safe and helps them stay calm and relaxed.