Lukens Family dental
Routine dental cleanings are important to maintaining good oral hygiene. Professional cleaning by a hygienist can remove mineralized plaque that may develop even with careful brushing and flossing, particularly in areas that are difficult to reach. It is recommended you go in for a cleaning once every six months.
WHAT TO EXPECT
You can expect your dental cleaning to last between 30 minutes and an hour. Typically, a trained hygienist will do the cleaning, and a dentist may come in for an exam at the end. Most people find that dental cleanings are painless, and do not cause any discomfort.
There are two important steps to a dental cleaning. The first step is scaling the teeth, whereby the hygienist will remove the plaque and tartar from the tooth surfaces. This can be performed by hand or with electric scalers depending on the hygienists preference. The second step is polishing to remove any final plaque and buff the teeth.
Preventative Care - Frequently Asked Questions
What tooth paste should I use?
The most important ingredient to look for when choosing toothpaste is fluoride. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral. Its use has been instrumental in the dramatic drop in tooth decay and cavity occurrence that has taken place over the past 50 years. Bacteria in your mouth feed on sugars and starches that remain on your teeth after eating. Fluoride helps protect your teeth from the acid that is released when this happens. It does this in two ways. First, fluoride makes your tooth enamel stronger and less likely to suffer acid damage. Second, it can reverse the early stages of acid damage by solidifying areas that have started to decay.
What is plaque and why is it harmful?
Plaque develops when foods containing carbohydrates (sugars and starches), such as milk, soft drinks, raisins, crackers, cakes, or candy are frequently left on the teeth. Bacteria that live in the mouth thrive on these foods, producing acids as a result. Over a period of time, these acids destroy tooth enamel, resulting in tooth decay. Plaque can also develop on the tooth roots under the gum and cause breakdown of the hard and soft tissue attachment supporting the tooth.
How often should I floss?
The American Dental Association recommends flossing at least once a day to help remove plaque from the areas between your teeth where your toothbrush can’t reach. This is important because plaque that is not removed by brushing and flossing can eventually harden into calculus or tartar.
Are electric toothbrushes better than manual brushes?
What causes bad breath?
While bad breath (or “halitosis”) can be linked to numerous systemic diseases, some bad breath originates in the mouth. A dry mouth or a low salivary flow can also influence bad odor. There are two main goals in the management of bad breath. First, controlling the bacteria that produce the sulfur compounds and second, to neutralize the sulfur compounds that are produced.
It’s been a long time since I’ve visited the dentist. What do I need to do?
You’re not alone! Whether it’s been 6 months or 6 years, it’s never too late to get back into a healthy routine. At Lukens Family Dental, we look forward to helping arrange a thorough and educational initial appointment for you. Dr. Lukens and his staff have been taking care of people just like you for over 10 years, so take advantage of our experience! We’re here to help!
How many times a year should I have my teeth cleaned?
For most patients, a six-month interval is frequent enough to keep your mouth healthy and clean and also allows potential problems to be found and diagnosed earlier. However, some patients are more susceptible to dental decay and/or gum disease, so their re-care interval is shortened to accommodate for this. Following your initial evaluation we can determine what interval will work best for you.
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We understand that you might be worried about a procedure.We assure you that we prioritize your oral health and want to help answer any questions and want to aid in any fears or anxiety that you might have.
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J. CriderWichita, Kansas
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