At Dr. Steven W. Haywood in Timonium, we strive for excellence in dentistry every day. Providing the best possible dental care goes beyond cleanings and exams. We like it when patients ask a lot of questions, because that tells us they are taking a strong interest in their dental health.
One of the questions we’re frequently asked is whether it’s really necessary to have a cleaning and checkup every six months. Our short answer is, yes! But a more nuanced answer includes that time-honored truth that prevention is the best medicine.
Every appointment includes a thorough cleaning by a hygienist. Then the dentist examines your teeth and gums, looking for any new cavities and signs of gum disease. Every checkup also includes a screening for oral cancer.
Sometimes we need to see patients more frequently. Someone with gum disease, or who is undergoing orthodontic treatment, should have appointments more often than twice a year. We determine that on a case-by-case basis.
Patients often wonder how long a filling will last. Some people think they’ll last a lifetime, but unfortunately that is not usually the case. Fillings can break down or become loose over time. If that happens, decay can get into the area around it and cause problmes. You can extend the life of any restoration with good oral hygiene at home. If you have any questions about what that means, don’t hesitate to ask.
What kind of toothbrush is best? This is among the most-asked questions for any dentist. Manual and electric toothbrushes, used properly, both do an excellent job. We recommend soft bristles, with mixed bristle heights and angles. They do a better job getting between the teeth.
To really get between the teeth, we also recommend daily flossing. String floss is best, but whether it’s waxed or unwaxed, flavored or not, or wide dental tape is up to you.
When it comes to toothpaste, we recommend one that has the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance. That means it contains fluoride, which strengthens and protects your teeth.
These are just some of the common questions we get from our patients at Dr. Steven W. Haywood in Timonium. Have we missed anything you’ve wondered about? Never hesitate to bring your questions to your checkup. We offer general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next appointment today.
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