Marysville Preventive Dental Care
Our first priority is always helping patients maintain optimal oral health and keep their natural smiles for a lifetime. That starts with great oral hygiene every day, regular checkups at Darby Creek Dental each six months, and thorough professional teeth cleanings in our office. Over the past few decades, the field of dentistry has seen a shift from reactive care following decay or damage to proactive care protecting smiles before damage is done. We welcome patients from Marysville, Milford Center, and surrounding communities to contact us and schedule an appointment today.
Dental Checkups & Cleanings
At Darby Creek Dental, six month dental checkups and cleanings are more than just quick evaluations of patients’ smiles. We start with advanced diagnostics and high definition digital X-rays to develop a clear understanding of past work, current concerns, and possible treatment recommendations. Then, we carefully evaluate the mouth, head, and neck, looking for signs of common health issues including tooth decay, gum disease, bruxism (teeth grinding and clenching), temporomandibular joint disorder, and oral cancer. Following the examination, our skilled hygienists thoroughly clean every surface of patients’ teeth, removing plaque and bacteria to prevent common oral health issues. Finally, patients meet with one of our experienced dentists to discuss areas of concerns, answer questions, and create a plan to address oral health issues. This consultation is the most important part of every visit. It gives us the opportunity to help patients understand their oral health, educate them regarding their at-home care, and work in partnership with patients to create an oral health plan that fits within their goals, budget, and schedule.
Periodontal (gum) disease affects more than 50% of US adults over 30, and it’s the leading cause of tooth loss in this demographic. That’s why periodontal charting, the measurement of the pockets between teeth and gums, is an essential part of regular dental checkups. By tracking these numbers from visit to visit, we know right away if there’s a change and can begin treatment immediately. The mild form of gum disease, gingivitis, causes mild bleeding and irritation. In most cases of gingivitis, more frequent professional cleanings and minor changes to at-home care are adequate to reverse damage. Left untreated, gingivitis may develop into the more advanced periodontitis, which breaks down the connective tissues between teeth and gums. At this point, we may need more advanced periodontal treatments, including scaling (the removal of plaque and bacteria below the gums) and root planing (the smoothing of roots to decrease the risk for further buildup), as well as topical antibiotics and surgical care. Signs of periodontitis include:
- Bleeding gums
- Teeth that appear longer
- Loose teeth
- Bite that doesn’t fit together well
- Consistent bad breath that doesn’t improve with cleaning
Nightguards for TMJ & Bruxism Therapy
Those patients who experience pain from over-stressed temporomandibular joints (TMJ) and have wear, cracks, and chips caused by teeth grinding and clenching (bruxism) may benefit from using a custom nightguard during sleep. In treating TMJ disorder, nightguards relieve strain on these jaw joints and allow the mouth to rest more comfortably. For those who suffer from bruxism, nightguards create a barrier between teeth, allowing patients to harmlessly clench or grind against smooth plastic.
Dental sealants create a layer of thick plastic coating between teeth and harmful plaque and bacteria. Typically recommended for children, they may be useful for patients of any age who want to improve oral health by reducing their risk for tooth decay. The process is simple enough to be completed as part of any regular dental checkup or teeth cleaning. The liquid sealant is painted onto the at risk surfaces of teeth and hardened into place using curing lights similar to those used for composite resin fillings. The entire application typically takes less than half an hour, and with proper care, sealants stay in place for ten or more years. Dental sealants are one of the most affordable, effective preventive dentistry services.
Soft Tissue Laser Dentistry
Lasers have many uses, including playing Blu-Rays, entertaining cats, and even improving oral health. At Darby Creek Dental, we’re dedicated to offering patients the most effective, time saving, and conservative treatments whenever possible. Soft tissue laser dentistry treatments offer all three of these benefits. Some of the procedures improved with soft tissue lasers include:
- Periodontal therapies
- Cosmetic gum recontouring
- Gum lift procedures preceding the placement of a dental crown
- Removal of lesions or cysts
Soft tissue lasers remove infected tissue while accelerating the healing process and reducing blood loss. This precision and healing acceleration saves time on the day of treatment and during healing. Laser treatments allows our team to more precisely care for affected soft tissue while preserving healthy structure for a more conservative solution to most cosmetic and restorative dentistry needs.
Sleep Apnea Treatment
Do you snore loudly and consistently? Do you wake up feeling as tired as you did when you went to sleep? You may be suffering from sleep apnea. This common sleep disorder affects 40 million US adults annually. In many cases, patients think that continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) systems are their only treatment option. However, once they try treatment with CPAP, they are unable to get used to the sounds and sensations. Our practice offers a comfortable, quiet, and effective alternative – oral appliance therapy. There are several types of oral appliances available, and they all reset the jaw slightly forward in order to open the airway, allowing for deep breathing and restful sleep through the night. All of the oral appliances we offer for sleep apnea sufferers are custom crafted to fit each unique smile for optimal comfort and effectiveness.
Oral Cancer Screenings
Even if you don’t smoke, use chewing tobacco, or drink to excess on a regular basis, you may still be at risk for oral cancer. Studies show that 25% or more of oral cancer sufferers engage in none of these high risk behaviors. The best way to reduce the number of annual deaths caused by oral cancer (one every hour on average) is to diagnose and treat the disease in earlier stages. That’s why our team provides oral cancer screening as a regular part of every checkup.
Radiography (X-rays) allow our team to view the inner structures of smiles, spot decay, diagnose misalignments, and other concerns – however, traditional X-rays were time consuming, exposed patients to radiation, exposed staff members to hazardous chemicals, and didn’t offer high resolution images. That’s why our team now relies on high definition, low radiation digital X-rays. They offer our doctors and patients direct access to crystal clear images of their oral structures quickly. We are able to easily transfer images to our patients, specialists, and insurance agencies at the touch of a button. Digital X-rays are also a great way to develop a better relationship with patients because we can show them clearly what concerns we’re discussing by highlighting, enhancing, or enlarging specific areas during consultation.
Athletic mouthguards, sometimes referred to simply as sportsguards, are an essential piece of protective equipment during any sporting event where patients’ smiles may come in contact with hard surfaces, other players, or equipment. Store bought brands are available, but many patients find custom-crafted guards more comfortable, leading to improved compliance.