Preventative Dentistry

Dental Checkups

Regular checkups with Dr. Mitchell are very important for the health of your mouth. It is important to catch health problems early when they are easier and more cost effective to deal with.

Benefits of Regular Checkups

  • Discover problems that you cannot see or feel
  • Detect early signs of tooth decay
  • Treat oral problems before they get too big

How often should you get checkups?

You should visit Dr. Mitchell every six months. Some patients may have to visit Dr. Mitchell more often depending on the condition of their health.

What happens during a checkup?

Dr. Mitchell will check the overall health of your mouth. He will check for signs of decay, gum disease, periodontal disease, oral cancer, and TMJ. Dr. Mitchell will check for receding gums, erupting wisdom teeth, or cavities. X-Rays will be taken of your mouth, if recommended by Dr. Mitchell, to spot problems in the gum, bone, or roots of the teeth. One of Dr. Mitchell’s hygienists will clean your teeth after Dr. Mitchell sees you.

Checkups are a good time to discuss any cosmetic changes that you would like made to your smile. 

X-Rays

X-Rays help Dr. Mitchell spot disease or injuries in the mouth. During a checkup Dr. Mitchell may suggest that you have X-rays taken to better assess the health of your mouth. X-rays will not be taken without good reason.

Benefits of X-Rays

  • View teeth that have not come out yet
  • Spot even the smallest cavities
  • Detect bone damage

What are the risks of exposure to radiation?

Modern X-Ray equipment allows good X-rays to be taken with less radiation exposure than ever before. You are exposed to more radiation on an airplane flight than you would get from a full set of mouth X-rays.

As an extra precaution Dr. Mitchell has all patients wear a lead apron to protect the vital organs from exposure to X-rays. Dr. Mitchell also goes a step further by requiring all patients to wear a collar attached to the apron that protects the neck from radiation.

Professional Teeth Cleaning

Patients should have their teeth cleaned every 3, 4 or 6 months. The frequency depends on several factors and will be recommended by the doctor and your hygienist. One of Dr. Mitchell’s hygienists will remove tartar, plaque, and stains from your teeth. This helps prevent gum and tooth disease.

Benefits of Professional Cleaning

  • Cleans hard to reach areas in the mouth
  • Reduces harmful bacteria in the mouth
  • Prevents gingivitis
  • Brightens the teeth

How long does a teeth cleaning take?

You should plan on spending an hour at Dr. Mitchell’s office for a professional teeth cleaning.

Sealants

Molars have pits that collect food particles. Removing the food particles can be very difficult using a toothbrush. Dental Sealants fill in the microscopic holes in molars so that food stays out. Sealant prevents cavities in the molars.

Benefits of Sealant

  • Prevents decay of molars
  • Avoids most common cavities

How are Sealants applied?

First your teeth are thoroughly cleaned. Then your molars are covered with cotton to keep them dry. A mild acid solution is applied to the molars to roughen up the surface. This helps the sealant bond with the tooth. After the molars are rinsed and dried again the sealant is applied. A special curing light is used to help the sealant harden.

How long do Sealants last?

Sealants can protect a tooth from decay for up to 10 years.