What to expect at your first visit to Stinauer Family Dentistry:
We understand choosing a dentist is a big decision for you and your family.
It is our goal to make that transition as stress free as possible.
After you have scheduled your first appointment, you can print out our new patient forms and fill them out ahead of time.
Do not hesitate to call us at any time to help assist preparing you for your first appointment!
What you can expect on your first visit:
A warm welcome from our incredible staff
A comprehensive oral examination, a dental and periodontal analysis, and a head and neck exam including an oral cancer screening
Digital X-rays, as needed
Dental cleaning specific to your needs, as needed
Daily oral hygiene instructions
What to bring with you:
If you do not have access to a printer or want our help filling out new patient forms please arrive 15 mins before your scheduled appointment
Insurance Card with photo ID
Previous dental records, if available
A list of medications you are currently taking
Parent or guardian if you are under the age of 18
What type of toothbrush and toothpaste should I use?
There are countless options for toothbrushes and toothpastes on the market. The most important factor when selecting a toothbrush is choosing one with soft bristles. Stiff bristles can wear away enamel and cause gum recession. Using light intermittent pressure when brushing is also key. Typically, we see similar results between electric and manual brushes, but children and teenagers with braces can greatly benefit from an electric toothbrush.
Toothpaste, like toothbrushes, are highly driven by marketing. We recommend any fluoridated toothpaste that has received the American Dental Association's Seal of Acceptance. This ensures you have bought a toothpaste that has adequate levels of fluoride to prevent cavities. There are specialized toothpastes for children and adults suffering from dry mouth or sensitivity, and for patients that are at a high risk for cavities.
Do I really need to floss?
Yes! Everyone's favorite topic at the dentist. Flossing cleans contact areas and spots below the gum line that brushing does not reach. Food and plaque build up causing gum inflammation and dental decay between teeth. Flossing spots are the most common areas that we detect cavities. It is recommended to floss everyday.
Are dental x-rays safe and needed?
Dental x-rays are a common diagnostic procedure that is considered to be extremely safe and a vital part of your routine dental check-ups. Stinauer Family Dentistry has digital x-ray units and sensors producing just a fraction of what you are exposed in other imaging procedures. Dental x-rays allow your dentist to see bone levels and hidden surfaces of your teeth that can't be seen during a clinical exam. An exam and cleaning are recommended every 6 months with x-rays taken yearly. As a new patient, we may recommend a full mouth set of x-rays including x-rays of the front teeth and all of the roots of the teeth.
What are sealants?
Brushing and flossing are the best way to help prevent cavities, but this can be a difficult task for children, especially on back teeth. Back teeth, known as molars, have uneven surfaces and deep grooves that harbor food debris and cavity-causing bacteria. Sealants are a type of filling material that is placed in the deep grooves of molars to create an environment that is much easier to keep clean. Around the age of 6, your child gets their first permanent molar. Once the permanent molar is fully erupted into the mouth is the best time to place a sealant. Sealants are recommended on 6 year and 12 year molars when they fully erupt. Other permanent teeth can also benefit from sealants, and even some adults can benefit greatly from sealants if their teeth are difficult to keep clean.
What is gum disease?
Gum disease, also known as periodontitis, is a common infection of the gum tissue and bone supporting the teeth. There are varying degrees of severity of gum disease that can be localized or generalized. Primary risk factors include: poor dental hygiene leading to plaque/tartar build-up, tobacco products, and lack of professional dental cleanings. Different types of dental cleanings are prescribed to patients depending on the severity of their gum disease. Severe cases can benefit from deep cleanings followed up by 3 or 4 cleanings a year. Mild cases are properly managed by monitoring bone around each tooth at typical 6 month intervals.
How should I clean my dentures?
Dentures should be removed every night and cleaned with a soft bristle, denture brush and non-abrasive denture cleaner. After cleaning, the denture can be soaked using an effervescent tablet. It is very important to give the soft tissues of the mouth the opportunity without the denture in place as you sleep to prevent infection and unnecessary sores. Routine dental exams remain very important, even without teeth, to check the fit of your dentures and to screen for pathology, such as cancer.
What exactly is a cavity?
Simply put, a cavity is a hole in a tooth. Cavities most commonly are caused by acid from bacteria, highly processed carbohydrates, and inadequate home care. A cavity can range from a small decalcification that your dentist will "watch," to a cavity that penetrates the enamel requiring a restoration, such as a filling. If a cavity is left untreated, it will continue grow until the nerve of the tooth is reached, causing a highly undesirable toothache. Monitoring of cavities is one of the most important reasons for routine dental check-ups.
How do I know what my dental insurance will cover?
Most dental plans will cover your dental care with different co-pay levels. This means that some procedures may be fully covered by your plan, while other procedures may require you to pay a portion of the cost. The range of options with dental insurance plans can be overwhelming. Read your dental plan carefully to see what is covered, or call your insurance provider if you have questions about a specific procedure. All of our staff are experts in dental insurance, and we would be happy to assist you any way we can!
What if I don’t have dental insurance?
A large portion of patients do not have dental insurance through their employer or do not seek out private insurance. Dental care is still affordable, and we always are willing to work with payment plans for our patients.