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General Dentistry FAQs

What is the best toothpaste?

Most toothpaste brands are fairly similar, though you should choose one that has the ADA seal of approval and contains fluoride. However, we can recommend specialized toothpaste for certain conditions. For instance, Crest Pro Health or Paradontax may help if you experience gum problems; Sensodyne Pronamel may benefit patients with sensitive teeth; and Squigle Enamel Saver is safest for patients with canker sores.

What mouthwash is best for me?

Not everyone needs to use mouth rinse, but in many cases, the right one can help significantly boost your hygiene routine. If you have gingivitis, the early stage of gum disease, then antiseptic rinse such as Listerine can help you more effectively fight it. The most effective use for it is to brush the rinse into your gums carefully, rather than rinse with it. For chronic bad breath, a zinc rinse such as TheraBreath or SmartMouth can be highly effective at neutralizing strong odors.

How do hygienists use lasers?

At our office, we utilize advanced laser technology to more thoroughly eradicate harmful oral bacteria, reducing your risks of tooth decay and gum disease. In some cases, the laser can also be used for treating cold sores in their earliest phases. All laser treatments are minimally invasive and require minimal or no anesthesia.

How often should I whiten my teeth?

Whitening your teeth is a personal and purely cosmetic decision, and is a highly effective way of combatting most common teeth stains. The most common type of teeth whitening is a custom-designed take-home kit, which consists of bleaching trays that allow you to apply the whitening gel from the comfort of home. We also offer in-office treatment that can help jumpstart the process.

What if my teeth are worn?

One of the most common reasons for worn down teeth is bruxism, or constant teeth grinding. Left untreated, bruxism can cause the chewing surfaces of your teeth to wear down and change, which can ultimately affect your bite’s function and the health of your jaw’s muscles and joints. A custom oral appliance can typically help patients stop grinding their teeth. However, if your teeth are already worn, then your dentist will recommend an appropriate restorative treatment before designing a bruxism appliance.

Will a bite adjustment stop the wear on my teeth?

If you grind your teeth because of a serious misalignment in your bite, than a bite adjustment can help correct the problem and alleviate your teeth grinding. This will prevent further wear on your teeth, as well as alleviate symptoms of teeth clenching, such as chronic headaches and jaw pain. The adjustment will alleviate the pressure on your teeth as well as on your jaw’s joints, which is often the source of bruxism’s many symptoms.

If I lose a tooth, why is a dental implant needed to replace it?

Replacing a lost tooth is vital to your oral health for many reasons. For instance, it improves your confidence by improving your smile’s appearance, and it improves your long-term oral health and bite function by restoring your bite’s harmony. Dental implants in particular are often best for replacing lost teeth because they also replace lost teeth roots, reestablishing stimulation in your jawbone that it needs to remain strong and healthy.

To schedule your next preventive dentistry appointment, call Lawson Family Dentistry in Urbandale, IA, today at 515-278-4366.

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