Do you take my insurance?

This is a question that many ask. We are a non-network provider. We will process your dental claim(s) for you even though we are not in network. We work with many patients who are concerned about what it would mean to go to an out-of-network dentist. What we found is that the fee difference between the in-network dentist and us is surprisingly small, while the difference in quality is great. We made a decision that we would never compromise a patient's treatment decisions and options because of insurance limits. Insurance companies are not willing to reimburse our patients for the level of care they deserve. We are committed to helping our patients maximize whatever benefits they have, but we're not willing to compromise the care we give to our patient's for any insurance company. We know our patients deserve better than to have the insurance company dictate their care.

Can I have my old silver fillings replaced?

Yes. Old silver fillings that have been in for many years will eventually leak thus allowing the tooth to decay and can cause the surrounding tooth structure to crack or fracture.

There are many options to replace these and the type of replacement is dependent on the individual tooth structure remaining. If the majority of the tooth structure is intact you can replace the old silver filling with a new white colored filling. If additional tooth structure is broken down i.e.: cracked, decayed, or fractured the tooth may require a material that will be stronger. This could be with an onlay or a full coverage crown that would also be a tooth-colored material.

Do you do Invisalign?

Yes, we do Invisalign for adults. Invisalign is a great alternative to conventional braces. There is a sequence of clear aligners that are custom made to gradually straighten your teeth. These are changed every two weeks during the active treatment. Straightening your teeth can make a significant difference to having a healthy mouth and keeping your teeth for life. Ask if you are a candidate for Invisalign.

Why is flossing so important?

Dental flossing helps remove plaque from between your teeth in areas that a toothbrush can't reach and helps prevent gum disease and dental decay. Our dentists always reminds our patients that plaque that's not removed by thorough daily brushing and cleaning between teeth can eventually harden into calculus or tartar, which can cause oral health problems.

Why is fluoride important?

Fluoride plays an essential role in protecting and strengthening teeth. Most tooth enamel begins with a very high concentration of fluoride in its outer layers, but the fluoride can dissolve over time. So whether ingested through fluoridated beverages or applied topically with toothpaste, rinses or treatments, replenishing fluoride is one of best ways to strengthen tooth enamel and help it resist acids that can lead to cavity production.

What kind of toothbrush should I use?

You can't overestimate the importance of good oral hygiene -- not only for dental health, but for your overall wellbeing. In fact, gum disease is a major risk factor for the development of serious health conditions, including heart disease and diabetes.

There are certain characteristics that you should look for in whatever toothbrush you choose, regardless of whether it is manual or powered. The best toothbrush head for you should allow you easy access to all surfaces of your teeth.

To ensure your toothbrush has undergone rigorous quality control tests for cleaning effectiveness and safety, ask your dentist for a recommendation. Or look for manual or powered toothbrushes that have the ADA American Dental Association Seal of Approval. For the vast majority of people, a soft-bristled toothbrush will be the most comfortable and safest choice. Depending on how vigorously you brush your teeth and the strength of your teeth, medium and hard-bristled brushes could actually damage the gums, root surface, and protective tooth enamel. For even more tooth protection when you brush, be sure the bristles on the toothbrush you select have rounded tips.

What are the different ways to replace missing teeth?

Missing teeth are a threat to maintaining good oral health. Filling the gap is essential for comfortable eating, an attractive smile, establishing a good relationship between the upper and lower jaws, preventing premature aging lines around the mouth and, in some cases, facilitating clear speech. Three solutions for restoring missing teeth are implants, dental bridges and partial dentures.

A dental implant is the preferred way to replace a missing tooth. The implant is a small titanium post planted into the jawbone. This actually slows or stops bone loss that can occur when you lose a natural tooth. A restoration is placed on top of the implant and the result is it looks and feels like your natural tooth. The advantages to the implant over the other two options are that is does not stress the surrounding teeth for support or require removal before sleep.

A fixed dental bridge is not removable. It is a structure designed to span the gap between teeth supported by teeth on either side of the open space. A permanent bridge is cemented into place, although it may eventually need to be replaced. Bridges are composed of precious or nonprecious metal to which tooth-colored porcelain is fused. Some bridges are made entirely of porcelain. The teeth on each side of the space are filed down to receive crowns, and the replacement crowns are attached to the artificial tooth or teeth to form a bridge.

A removable partial denture is an appliance to replace one or more missing teeth. It attaches to the natural teeth on either side of the gap with clasps and may be removed by the wearer. Partial dentures have the same benefits as a bridge; however, there is an increased risk of plaque accumulation if the partial denture is not carefully designed. Food becoming lodged around or under the denture is another potential problem. Acrylic or metal forms the base of the denture. The gum areas are made from acrylic, and the artificial teeth may be acrylic or porcelain.

How much will my dental care cost me?

We know with good home care and regular visits to your dentist for preventive care that the cost of dentistry can be controlled. We encourage you to have a thorough examination with one of our three dentists to make an assessment of your dental needs. One of our dental care team members will then be able to review the cost and payment options best suited for you.

What is the condition between oral health and overall health?

Like many areas of the body, your mouth is teeming with bacteria – most of them harmless. Normally the body's natural defenses and good oral healthcare, such as daily brushing and flossing, can keep these bacteria under control. Without proper oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that might lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and disease.

Inflamed, painful, bleeding gums are a sign that harmful bacteria may be entering into your bloodstream. A Harvard Medical School study found several types of bacteria that cause gum disease to be located in the atherosclerotic plague in arteries of the heart. The study noted that inflammation in the mouth revs up inflammation throughout the body, including in the arteries, where it can lead to heart disease and stroke.

Brush and floss every day, and see your dentist at least twice a year for regular cleanings and oral exams. This will pay off for your oral health and just may benefit your heart health as well.

What are the options for improving my smile?

There are a variety of options to improving your smile depending on the individual needs of the patient.

Orthodontics including Invisalign for crowded and misaligned teeth. Straight teeth are healthier teeth. Properly positioned teeth can lead to better gum health.

Porcelain veneers or crowns to esthetically correct the color, alignment, and spacing of teeth.

Bonding can also esthetically correct minor defects in alignment, spacing and color.

Tooth bleaching (whitening). There are different types of whitening to enhance the color of your teeth and provide a beautiful smile.

I have heard about anesthesia-free, no needle procedures (Solea), can you tell me a little more about it?

  • Solea is a dental laser that we use to replace the drill for cavities.
  • With Solea we don't have to give you a novocaine shot for the majority of procedures. The appointment is faster because we don't have to wait for you to get numb.
  • Since we don't administer novocaine for the majority of procedures, you won't leave with a numb lip after the procedure, so you can eat and drink right after the appointment.
  • We can do multiple procedures in one appointment because we don't have to use novocaine, we can work in different areas of your mouth.