James Island Dental Associates
Restorative, Cosmetic, and Implant Dentistry

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Preventative Care

How can we help you?

When you're making decisions regarding the health of your family, it's important to get all the information you need and answers for all your questions. 

At James Island Dental Associates, we are happy to provide you with answers so you can make informed decisions about your health. We've selected a few questions we often hear, and you are always more than welcome to reach out to us if you need more details. 

 

Preventative Care

Man in dental chair | Dentist Charleston SCWhile brushing and flossing at home are important elements of keeping your teeth healthy, preventative dentistry doesn't stop there.

It is a general rule to have your teeth professionally cleaned and examined by a dentist every six months.

Importance of Regular Dental Cleanings

Why every six months? Even with outstanding brushing habits, plaque can still build up in some areas that are difficult to reach. If the plaque is allowed to remain there for an extended period of time, it will calcify into tartar, which can only be removed with a hygienist's professional tools and technique. Seeing us every six months keeps plaque and tartar build-up to a minimum and offers you a fresh start with perfectly clean, healthy teeth. 

Seeing you twice yearly also allows us to keep tabs on your oral health. Certain issues can develop under the radar, without symptoms. If you wait to see the dentist until you experience symptoms, more complex treatment may be required. Identifying problems in their earliest stages allows for more conservative treatment options. Your hygienist is often your first defense against gum disease. Not only will a professional cleaning help prevent gum disease, hygienists are also skilled at identifying the first signs – signs that you are likely to miss. 

 

Gum disease in the US is widespread, and estimates indicate that nearly half of all adults over age 30 have it. In its early stages, gum disease is called gingivitis and is easy to treat and reverse. The reason it’s so prevalent is that many people don’t recognize the signs.

At James Island Dental Associates, we’ve seen the severe consequences of untreated gum disease. By making you aware of its symptoms, our dentists in Charleston, SC hope to motivate you to seek the prompt treatment you need.

Signs of Gum Disease to Look For

Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection that affects your gum tissue and, eventually, the bone that supports your teeth. Signs to look for are:

  • Bleeding gums when you brush
  • Swollen, inflamed, or irritated gums
  • A change in the way your dental bite feels
  • Bad breath that mouthwash can’t resolve
  • Teeth that feel loose to the touch

Schedule Your Next Teeth Cleaning in Charleston, SC

If you notice any of these, you may have gingivitis. Our dentist in Charleston will first need to perform an exam to determine the extent of gum disease. Based on those findings, we will develop a treatment plan to get the infection under control.

Please call us at (843) 762-1234 to schedule a teeth cleaning to get started.

Tooth brush and paste | Dentist Charleston SCBleeding gums can occur for a number of reasons. Sometimes, blood in the sink when you brush can indicate that you are developing gum disease. In other cases, it might be an indication that you are brushing too aggressively or using a toothbrush with bristles that are too firm. Brushing aggressively can lead to gum recession, so it's important to make sure that you are using good technique when you brush.

How to Properly Brush Your Teeth

We recommend brushing your teeth at least twice a day – in the morning after breakfast and at night prior to going to bed. We also recommend flossing daily.

When brushing for two minutes in small circular movements with a soft bristle toothbrush, you are using good technique. When flossing, make sure the floss is smoothly gliding between the teeth, underneath the gums, and hugging the sides of each tooth.

If both of these techniques are followed for one week, sensitive bleeding gums will feel and look much healthier.

Schedule A Dental Appointment

If you don't experience any improvement, please reach out to us and schedule an exam. You could be developing gum disease, and the earlier we can put the brakes on this serious and chronic condition, the better! 

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We are open and very excited to be seeing patients. That being said, safety is still the utmost concern. We are adopting new procedures in the office to keep both you the patient, and our staff safe. For more information, see our Covid-19 page detailing our new operating procedures