What to Expect for Your First Dental Visit at Our Office

When you visit the dentist in Athens, Texas for the first time at Athens Smiles, you want to be fully prepared. Whether you are a first-time dental patient or bringing your little one to the dentist, you can improve the outcome. Here are some tips on what to expect when you visit our dental office for the first time.

Clean Teeth are a Must

Even though you may be coming to the dentist at Athens Smiles for a dental cleaning, you still need to brush your teeth. Prepare for your visit by flossing, brushing, and rinsing your teeth and gums. This allows the dental associate to clean even more thoroughly in the exam chair while saving you time in the cleaning process.

Be Prepared for Paperwork

If applicable, you must have your dental insurance ready to submit to our office when you visit. Otherwise, have a payment plan available that will cover your services.

If you have questions about the cost of dental work, please get in touch with our office with any questions before your visit. We are more than happy to discuss financial concerns with you as a patient of Athens Smiles.

Forward Any Previous Dental Records

If you have a previous dentist, you want them to send your dental records to our office. Contact our office to request assistance digitally or physically securing your dental records.

Choose Our Athens, TX Dentist

Whether you are concerned with tooth pain or need a new dentist for your family, Athens Smiles is ready to assist you. We want to be your preferred dentist in Athens, TX.

Contact our office at 903-675-4124 to schedule an appointment for a dental exam. Following a comprehensive oral exam and dental cleaning, we can diagnose and treat any issues.

Why You Don’t Have to Fear a Tooth Extraction

If your dentist has recommended that you have a tooth extraction in Athens, TX, your first thought may be smiling with a big gap in your teeth. Even if the tooth extraction is from the rear of your mouth, you may worry about not being able to chew food or having a speech impediment. But tooth extractions don’t mean what they used to mean. You don’t have a dread a future filled with hiding your smile or worrying about what others will think of you. You don’t even have to worry about pain.

Pain Won’t Be an Issue

With modern day tooth extraction, pain isn’t usually an issue. You’ll likely be given a numbing agent in addition to mild sedation if you choose. In most cases, the offending tooth was causing a toothache, so the extraction will actually get rid of the pain that you may have been experiencing, not add to it.

You Don’t Have to Watch

You don’t have to watch your tooth being extracted. You can close your eyes and sit back and relax as it’s being done. If you want, you don’t have to see the tooth once it’s been extracted. Only after the entire treatment is over do you even need to open your eyes.

A Solution Can Happen at the Same Time

When a tooth needs extracted, your dentist in Athens, TX will offer you a few different solutions to choose from. This may be a dental implant, a bridge or something else. In many cases, the solution to your missing tooth can be implemented immediately after the tooth extraction. In other words, you may go home with no gap in between your teeth where the bad tooth was extracted.

With all of the treatment options available today, you don’t have to worry about tooth extractions. If you have a tooth that has gone bad or is giving you trouble, contact us today to find out your options.

Dental Sealants 101: A Guide for Patients

While you may do all you can to prevent decay at home by brushing and flossing religiously, your teeth may still be at risk of decay simply because the surface of your teeth is textured and difficult to clean. Dental sealants in Athens, TX may be something to consider as part of your preventative dental health plan. Here is a look at some of the questions prospective patients tend to have about dental sealants.

Are dental sealants only for children?

Even though dental sealants are commonly recommended for children, the treatment can be just as effective for adults. If you are an adult that has certain tooth formation issues, such as deep ridges or areas that are hard to keep clean with regular brushing, sealants may be a viable option.

How long will the sealing treatment last?

Dental sealants can last for a really long time and offer adequate protection from decay. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the sealants will actually protect your teeth from about 80 percent of cavities for as long as two years. However, the sealant will still offer 50 percent protection for as long as four years.

Is the material used for sealants safe for the body?

Dental sealants are created out of specially formulated plastic. Depending on the type of sealant used by the dentist you are working with, the sealant may contain trace amounts of bisphenol acid (BPA). However, the trace amount is not considered a risk to the body. The benefits of having the sealants in place far outweigh any perceived risks, even for young children.

Talk to an Athens Dentist About Dental Sealants

In the end, dental sealants can be a valuable component in your preventative oral health plan with an Athens, TX dentist. If you are interested in dental sealants for yourself or your child, reach out to us at Athens Smiles Family Dental to schedule an appointment.

4 Ways to Avoid a Cracked Tooth

A cracked tooth can be more than just uncomfortable – it can also lead to oral health issues. Chewing with a cracked tooth can lead to infection in the pulp of the tooth, causing pain and even leading to a tooth extraction in Athens TX. It’s better to avoid a cracked tooth altogether! Here’s what you can do to avoid a cracked tooth.

1. Never Use Your Teeth As “Scissors”

Your teeth are not meant to cut through hard plastic, paper, cardboard, and other materials. Some people use their teeth as “scissors” to cut through packaging when no scissors are available.

Using your teeth in this way can cause cracks in your teeth. If you need to cut through packaging and don’t have a blade on hand, use something hard like your car keys.

2. Avoid Chewing Hard Candy

Hard candy is tasty, but it’s not good for your teeth. Hard candy is especially bad for your teeth when you bite down on it. Suck on hard candy and, if you’re tempted to bite down on it, set it aside for a while.

3. Wear a Mouth Guard If You Need One

People who grind their teeth are more likely to develop cracks in the enamel. If you grind your teeth at night, wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth and prevent these cracks.

If you don’t have a mouth guard, talk to your dentist to get one. Although they sell mouthguards at the pharmacy, the best mouthguards are custom-made.

4. See Your Dentist Regularly

See your dentist in Athens Texas to check your teeth for cracks and other problems that can lead to cracks. At Athens Smiles, we’ll monitor your tooth health and identify potential for cracks. Call today to make an appointment for a general checkup.

Do Fillings Have to Be Replaced?

Every year, millions of people see a dentist and walk away with a filling in their tooth where a spot of decay had formed. Fillings are one of the most effective ways to stop the deterioration of the tooth, but having one can bring about a few questions. One specific question patients tend to have is whether or not a filling ever has to be replaced. Here is a look at the answer to that question and a few other things to know about dental fillings.

All Fillings Do Eventually have to Be Replaced

A well-placed dental filling can last for many years before it starts to break down. However, the materials will eventually break down and need replacement. When dental filling breakdown occurs, it allows bacteria to get into the tooth and start to encourage new decay. The time it takes for a filling to breakdown can be related to:

  • Where the filling is placed; fillings in teeth primarily responsible for chewing may break down faster
  • What type of filling material you have (e.g. composite, amalgam, etc.)
  • The size of the filling

How Do You Know If a Filling Needs to Be Replaced?

One of your best plans of action is to follow a good routine when it comes to general dentistry checkups. It can be difficult to see that a dental filling has worn to the point that it should be replaced. The bond between the tooth and the filling may be interior where it can’t be seen, so if the bond breaks down, you may not notice much of anything. Of course, once a filling breaks down enough, it can fall out, which is an obvious sign that the filling should be replaced.

Let’s Talk About Dental Fillings in Athens, TX

A filling can be the number one thing protecting a tooth from further decay. If you believe you have a filling that needs to be replaced, don’t delay. Reach out to us at Athens Smiles Family Dental in Athens to schedule an appointment to have your dental filling assessed and replaced as needed.