Pinnacle Dental
A Great Dentist

At Pinnacle Dental, we are committed to offering the highest standard of dental care available by utilizing the most advanced technology in our field, in a compassionate, friendly atmosphere.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Dental Cleanings & Periodontal Treatment

How can we help you?

When it comes to choosing a new dentist, we understand that you may have some questions. Your dental health is, after all, a major component of your overall health. We value your questions and will help you as best as we can. If you have questions for us at Pinnacle Dental, please give us a call.

Dental Cleanings & Periodontal Treatment

Give us a call! We love meeting new people and promise to treat you with compassion and respect. We’re not scary – our doctor and our staff are friendly, and we don’t make our patients feel guilty over missed appointments, cavities, or any other issues. We’re just happy you’re here, and we want to make you comfortable during your visit. We offer free ‘look, see, no fee’ visits for patients curious about their dental health or seeking second opinions.

If you decide to make an appointment for an exam, please call us at our number, and we’ll schedule you to see Dr. Kottman or one of our hygienists. At that time, you’ll have an exam with x-rays, and then we will address your concerns and answer any questions you have. We will also check your gums and ask when your last cleaning was done. Whether you have a pressing concern or just need to get back into the cycle of regular cleaning and exams, we will take care of you.

Above all, feel free to ask questions about what options we have available for you! We can help you out with questions about your dental coverage, hygiene, restorations and replacements, sleep apnea, or even cosmetic dentistry. We’d love to help you look and feel your best, and we understand how important having a healthy smile is to that.

Cavities may start small, but they shouldn’t be ignored. Cavities occur when the bacteria in your mouth use the sugars in food to create acid, which slowly dissolves tooth structure creating a hole. If ignored, cavities won’t go away on their own, and will eventually progress to cause pain and damage your teeth down to the nerve. When that happens, the problem goes from routine to emergency, and often requires invasive treatment. Remember, if a tooth has started hurting, it is often too late.

At Pinnacle Dental, our goal is to prevent you from ever experiencing a toothache, let alone tooth decay. We monitor small lesions and only recommend treatment when the situation is likely to progress without intervention. We won’t recommend anything that we wouldn’t want done in our own mouths. Our goal is to preserve your natural teeth or offer treatment that will keep the rest of your teeth in good health and preserve your smile. At Pinnacle Dental, we believe it’s easier to fix things when they’re small, before they become a problem.

A visual exam without x-rays is like a movie without sound – it only gives you half the story. Without periodic x-rays, we might be missing a problem not visible to the naked eye, such as one in-between your teeth or down in the bone. With an x-ray, we can see areas of decay between teeth or under existing fillings, find evidence of bone loss or changes in the jaw from infection, or determine the health of primary and permanent teeth in children. Once we discover problems, we can work to resolve them that much more quickly.

X-rays also help us to create dentures, crowns, braces, and implants. With x-rays, we can also find developmental abnormalities, such as cysts and certain types of tumors. X-rays also reveal abscesses, which if left untreated can be life-threatening. In our younger patients, we use x-rays to make sure primary teeth come out in time to make room for permanent teeth and to see if wisdom teeth are developing or impacted.

At Pinnacle Dental, we use all-digital x-rays, which greatly reduce the amount of radiation, and we only take radiographs that are absolutely necessary to limit your exposure. Digital x-rays can be magnified, sharpened, or colorized so we can make a more precise diagnosis. They can be stored on a computer for future reference and allow us to note changes over time such as tooth movement, bone loss or growth, or changes in fillings and root canals. One immense benefit of digital x-rays is time. We can now take x-rays and get the pictures within minutes instead of waiting for days for the film to be developed, which shortens the length of time between diagnosis and treatment.

Because cleaning and flossing your teeth every day is only part of maintaining good oral hygiene. Even if you’re a great brusher and flosser, you can’t reach everywhere that our hygienists can with their specialized instruments. We can remove more plaque and calculus buildup to help keep cavities at bay. Dental cleanings also help us to keep close tabs on your oral health and identify things that could be solved with an easy fix, preventing the need for expensive treatment.

When we clean your teeth, we also review and update your medical history. If you have a recently diagnosed chronic health problem (such as heart disease or diabetes), or you are taking medications, we can put that in your chart and use it to reference any problems that may surface. Dr. Kottman also performs a thorough examination of your mouth and surrounding tissues to help identify the early signs of oral cancer, which you want to have detected as early as possible.

Other problems can be discovered through twice-yearly cleanings, such as such as damage to your teeth and gums from aggressive brushing, oral habits, bruxism (grinding and clenching your teeth), and recent changes in diet and lifestyle. By having your teeth cleaned twice a year, you can help prevent small things from becoming serious things later.

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