At Family Dental Associates, we want our patients to be educated about their oral health and comfortable with their dental care in Miami, Oklahoma. Our caring dentists and team understand that most people get nervous when it comes to visiting the dentist. To help you feel at-ease during your appointment with Dr. Mark Folks and Dr. Matthew Keim, we welcome you to review our answers to some of our most frequently asked questions. If you have further questions, and to schedule your appointment, we welcome you to contact our practice today.

Why should I regularly go to the dentist?

The American Dental Association recommends that you and your family visit the dentist at least once every six months, and our team at Family Dental Associates give the same recommendation. By regularly visiting the dentist, we can help prevent oral problems or catch and treat them early on. Many oral problems do not show symptoms until they become severe. At our practice, we can help keep your smile healthy and happy.

Why should I floss? Isn’t brushing enough?

While brushing your teeth is a must to maintain a healthy smile, your toothbrush cannot reach every area of your teeth. When you floss, you reduce the amount of bacteria and plaque that is in your mouth, especially between your teeth. By flossing at least once a day, particularly at night, you can help keep your teeth strong and healthy.

Why does the dentist take X-rays?

X-rays are a great way for our dentists to get a closer look at your oral health. There are many diseases and other oral problems that cannot be seen during a normal oral examination. With an X-ray, we can spot decay between your teeth, any bone infections, gum disease, tissue abnormalities or cysts, and more. Because we want to not only protect your oral health but also your overall health, Family Dental Associates proudly uses digital X-rays. This particular type of X-ray produces 90% less radiation than other X-rays, so you can rest assured that your treatment is the safest it can be.

What are dental sealants?

A dental sealant is an effective weapon used to protect your tooth from the damage that plaque can create. Sealants are most often applied to the biting surface of the back teeth, where deep grooves or crevices provide homes and hideouts for bacteria. To add a dental sealant to a tooth, our dentists will simply paint a thin coating for the sealant resin over the tooth’s biting surface and let it bond to your natural tooth. This sealant creates a level biting surface, helping to prevent bacteria from building up and causing decay.

What is periodontal disease?

More commonly known as gum disease, periodontal disease is a damaging infection in your oral gums and bone structure. If gum disease is left untreated, it can lead to irreversible bone and tooth loss. Gum disease has also been shown to contribute to several major health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and prostate cancer. If periodontal disease is caught and treated early on, it is possible to fully treat or reverse its effects. Some common signs of gum disease include:

  • Bad breath
  • Swollen, red, or bleeding gums
  • Loose or sensitive teeth
  • Pain while chewing

Early stages of gum disease can be treated in our office. However, if your condition is more severe, you may require surgery. Visit the dentist as soon as possible if you experience any of the signs of gum disease.