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Reflections Dental Spa
Family & Cosmetic Dentistry

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Preventive Services

How can we help you?

We know that there is a lot to think about when it comes to your dental care. That’s why the team at Reflections Dental Spa encourages your questions. When you have all the information you need, you can feel confident when you need to make a decision about your treatment. No question or problem is too small because if it matters to you, it matters to us.

Here are a few of the questions we hear most often, but you probably have some of your own. If so, please don’t hesitate to call our office or fill out our convenient online contact form. We look forward to hearing from you!

Preventive Services

Baby teeth play an important role by holding the position for the permanent teeth and reducing the need for more extensive orthodontic treatment. Although genetics and habits play an important role in malocclusions, losing baby teeth early can cause a lot of complications with normal tooth position and result in longer and more extensive orthodontic treatment.

Even though they fall out eventually cavities can still become extensive and cause toothache and discomfort. It can affect your child’s eating habits, their nutrition, and their self-confidence if issues are extensive. Untreated cavities can also increase the bacterial count in your child’s mouth, which can in turn cause increased risk of cavities on their permanent teeth. Let us help them reduce the risk of pain and missed school days while improving their overall health.

We understand your concerns about your precious children and promise to take care of them as we do our own. We utilize gentle anesthesia techniques that they barely feel. We also administer nitrous oxide (laughing gas) if they are anxious and use distraction techniques like TV on overhead screens.

Please call us at Reflections Dental Spa to make sure we keep their pearly whites healthy and beautiful. To help make their appointments more comfortable, we let them relax in our kids’ room with toys and an opportunity to play the Wii U games as a reward for good behavior. We do have to warn you that they tend to get sad leaving the kids room! 

Twice-yearly cleanings are something an old dental advertisement company came up with as a slogan! Most insurance companies seem to have followed that motto in deciding the allowed exams and cleanings in a year.

Ideally you should be brushing and flossing twice a day, but in reality, we tend to fall short, which allows plaque and tartar to build up on the teeth. Teeth have a lot of nooks and crannies where bacteria can hide and form deposits or cause decay. A cement-like substance called tartar is what we remove when you come in for your hygiene visits, so it doesn’t cause more inflammation and bone loss.

Every six months is a reasonable period to evaluate and manage mild cases of inflammation and infection of your gums. In some instances, we recommend having you come in every three to four months for a deeper cleaning based on your specific conditions.

These visits also give us an opportunity to detect any early signs of decay or tooth fracture which, if undetected, can cause extensive complications. We also perform intraoral cancer screenings using visual and tactile examination.

Most dental problems do not hurt or cause any symptoms in the early stages. Please do not wait till it hurts since that can lead to extensive treatment, higher risk, and less favorable outcomes.  An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of treatment. Maintenance visits help us not only in early detection but also focus on prevention, which can stop things from developing into issues that need treatment.

Please call us so we can help improve your over all health and help you bring your gums which are the foundations of your teeth, back to optimal health!

There is a lot of conflicting information about the safety of fluoride. According to the American Dental Association, fluoride is the only mineral that can reduce the incidence of cavities in children. Having some fluoride in your diet helps make the enamel stronger and more resistant to decay. It gets absorbed locally and changes the external structure of enamel, making it harder and more resistant to acid attacks from cavity-producing bacteria.

That being said, we do not recommend overdoing it. Your safety is our priority. Fluoride concentration is measured in parts per million and at recommended concentrations for dental use, has been tested again and again to ensure its safety. We recommend using it in a varnish form after cleanings. It provides localized delivery and keeps it localized to the area of application to get the maximum benefit, and it is very safe. Fluoride is one of our most important lines of defense against decay.

We at Reflections Dental Spa have your utmost safety in mind and always do our due diligence to make sure we recommend what is in your best interest! We also prescribe fluoridated toothpaste at times if we see an increased risk of decay. Ultimately our duty is to inform you of the risks and benefits and help you make an educated decision but will respect your wishes.

Newly formed teeth usually have deep grooves, which are more prone to decay than other areas of the child’s teeth. These teeth tend to be less calcified and softer, and are at higher risk for decay because they are harder to clean.

It’s essential for us to protect these teeth, primarily your child’s permanent molar teeth, which erupt around six and twelve years of age. Placing sealants in the deep grooves prevents cavities from forming. Before placing the sealant, we thoroughly clean and prepare the tooth before applying the thin resin coatings to the deep grooves. This prevents plaque and bacteria from getting in there and beginning the decay process.

Sealants are most critical in the early years of tooth eruption. At this stage, teeth are softer with less mineralization, and your children are learning to brush and floss properly. They are also usually in the school environment where they are not under parental supervision. Each child and each tooth are different. We base our recommendations on your child’s hygiene skills and the anatomy of their teeth.

Please call our San Ramon Office so we can evaluate your child to see if they're a good candidate for the treatment.

Unfortunately, many people do not see a dentist on a regular basis and only go when they have a problem. This is known as reactive treatment as opposed to proactive treatment, and it simply means that you are not taking the steps to protect your teeth while they’re still healthy. While it may seem that this approach saves money in the short-term, it usually ends up being more cost prohibitive in the long run.

This is because most dental diseases don’t present any symptoms in the early stages when treatment is simple and less expensive. Dental diseases like decay (caries) do not hurt until they reach the interior portion of your tooth and need more extensive work to correct.

Periodontal disease is a dental “silent killer” that usually does not cause any symptoms until the very advanced stages. By the time periodontal disease gets to this point, there might not even be any treatment options left to save the tooth. There have been multiple studies conducted that show a strong correlation between periodontal disease and your overall health.

When caught early enough, problems like fracture lines around old fillings can be restored and replaced before the tooth fractures. If you put off treatment, however, this type of problem can’t be detected, and your only options may be extensive work or tooth loss.

Routine appointments at Reflections Dental Spa allow us to monitor your oral health and find and fix problems before they become complicated and costly to fix. If it’s time for your semi-annual visit, please call to arrange an appointment.

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