What is the Best Treatment for TMJ?

TMJ, is commonly known as severe jaw pain. TMJ stands for the Temporomandibular Joint, which is the place where the jaw attaches to the skull. It works somewhat like a hinge that allows your jaw to move up and down. 

Woman eating yogurt with fruits for breakfast

When you experience pain or limited range of motion in this joint, the condition is referred to as TMD, which stands for Temporomandibular Disorder. The good news is the TMJ/TMD is curable. What is the best treatment for TMJ? There are a range of different treatments that can help relieve pain and increase range of motion in the jaw. 

Treatments You Can Try at Home

When you experience pain in your jaw, the first step is to try some home remedies to see if you can relieve the pain without a dentist’s intervention. Here are some ideas to try:

  • Apply ice. Applying ice to any type of injury can help to relieve pain, reduce swelling, and accelerate healing. Ice can help the jaw in the same way. Apply ice to one or both of your jaw joints a few times a day. 
  • Eat soft foods. Jaw pain can be exacerbated by a lot of chewing or biting on hard or chewy foods. Eat soft foods that will allow your jaw to rest and avoid chewing gum. 
  • Relax your jaw. This can be easier said than done. If you hold tension in your jaw when you feel stress, it can make TMJ/TMD worse. Try to make a concentrated effort to relax your jaw periodically during the day. You can try holding a pen or pencil gently across your mouth with your lips tucked in around your teeth. It causes a natural relaxation of the jaw as long as you don’t bite down. 
  • Take a pain reliever. Over-the-counter pain relievers can help with the pain. Anti-inflammatory pain relievers can also reduce any inflammation in the jaw joint that could be causing the pain. 

Sometimes these methods will help jaw pain go away on its own. But if not, it would be best to call your dentist. 

Treatments Your Dentist May Recommend

When your pain persists after attempting to relieve it at home, you may need some professional intervention. What is the best treatment for TMJ according to a dentist? A dentist may recommend any of the following:

  • Mouth guard/oral splint. Wearing a mouth guard, like the type worn to prevent teeth grinding, can help to relieve TMJ/TMD pain. A buffer between the teeth absorbs some of the impact of teeth grinding or jaw clenching, taking the pressure off the joint and allowing it to heal. 
  • Physical therapy. When you think of physical therapy, you probably think of treatment for a knee or shoulder injury. But the jaw is a joint, similar to the other joints in your body. It can respond to physical therapy in much the same way, getting stronger and improving range of motion.
  • Injections. Pain can be relieved through injections of medication into the joint. There are a variety of medications that may be injected from pain relievers to corticosteroids. 
  • Surgery. In some cases, severe TMJ/TMD can require surgical procedures to correct. Surgery can be done to reconstruct the joint or release a locked jaw. 

Surgical procedures would be the last resort if no other type of treatment has been effective at relieving pain or restoring range of motion in the jaw. In most cases, jaw surgery is minimally invasive and considered to be a minor procedure. 

Experiencing TMJ Symptoms? Contact Savannah Dental Solutions 

If you are experiencing pain in your jaw or limited range of motion, Savannah Dental Solutions can help. TMJ/TMD can be painful, but it is treatable. The best treatment for TMJ is not necessarily the same for everyone. Based on your symptoms and your personal experience with jaw pain, we will find the treatment option for you and put a stop to your pain at the source. 

Call (912) 354-1366 or contact us today to schedule an appointment at Savannah Dental Solutions. We look forward to helping you find the best way to relieve your TMJ symptoms. 

How to Choose the Best Pediatric Dentist for Your Child

Are you looking for a children’s dentist in Savannah, GA? When it comes to your child, you want to find the best pediatric dentist in the area. So how do you find them? What do you look for? 

Female Dentist Showing Young Patient How to Brush Teeth

There are certain qualities that set some pediatric dentists apart from the rest. Pediatric dentistry is different. Children need specific things from a dentist that may not apply to adults. Here’s what to look for when it comes to selecting a pediatric dentist. 

Sensitivity to Children’s Feelings

Children often need a special touch, a higher level of understanding and compassion. They may be little, but they have big emotions. Anxiety or fear of going to the dentist is perfectly normal and a lot of kids experience it. Their first experience at the dentist or at a new dental office can set the tone for the way they will feel about going to the dentist for the rest of their life. And the importance of lifelong dental care is crucial to a person’s oral health as well as their overall health. Choose wisely. 

Experience Working with Children

Choose a pediatric dental practice that has been in business for a while. Plenty of experience is necessary when it comes to children. All kids are different and won’t necessarily act the same way regarding the dentist, but an experienced dentist and support staff will know what techniques have worked in the past to help kids feel comfortable. A dentist who has experience working with children will also know the best ways to help young patients learn proper dental hygiene to keep their teeth clean and healthy between dental visits. 

Qualifications

Before you choose a dentist, take the time to look at their qualifications. Of course they should have a degree from a reputable dental school and be licensed in the state where they are practicing. In order to practice pediatric dentistry, a dentist must also complete a certification with the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. Make sure any dentist you consider has all of the necessary qualifications. 

In-Network with Your Insurance

If you have dental insurance for your kids there are certain dental practices that are considered to be in-network with your insurance provider. In-network means that the dental practice and the insurance company have an agreement when it comes to the cost of care and coverage. You will end up paying less out of pocket if you choose a dentist who is in-network with your insurance. Some dental practices may accept your insurance without being in-network. This means your insurance will still cover some of the cost of your dental care, but possibly not as much. Going out of network is possible, but may require some research to compare the cost. 

Savannah Dental Solutions Provides Care for the Whole Family

Another quality to look for in a dentist is convenience. Some pediatric dentists only serve children and others only serve adults. But Savannah Dental Solutions provides care for all ages so that families can get their dental care at one convenient location. Appointments can be made together to save trips. Parents can also set a positive example for their kids when it comes to dental cleanings and proper oral hygiene. 

At Savannah Dental Solutions, we treat children the compassion and understanding they deserve so that they develop a positive view of the dentist. We have years of experience working with children and know how to help them feel comfortable. Our dentists and staff are highly qualified and our practice works with a long list of insurance providers to make your care affordable. 

If you’re looking for the best pediatric dentist in Savannah, call (912) 354-1366 or contact us to schedule an appointment. We look forward to providing your family with excellent dental care and helping your kids get the right start to a lifetime of dental health. 

How to Find the Best Dentist in Savannah for Your Family

Are you looking for a dentist in the Savannah area who would be best for your family? Finding a new dentist can be difficult, especially if you’re new to the area and don’t know very many people yet or much about the area. But regardless of where you live, the qualities that make a good family dentist are the same. 

Portrait of Female Dentist Standing in Office

Consider these tips to help you find the best dentist in Savannah.

Ask a Coworker, Neighbor, or Friend for a Recommendation

In order to find a dentist you can trust to provide a positive experience, ask someone you know for a recommendation. Even if you’ve just moved to the area and you don’t know very many people, ask a coworker, a neighbor, or a new friend if they know of a good dentist in the area. Most people are glad to refer you to their dentist if they are happy with the level of care and service they receive there. 

Find a Dentist Who Can Treat the Whole Family

Some dentists only treat adults and won’t accept children under a certain age. Others are pediatric dentists who only work with children up to a certain age. But the best option is a dentist who can treat the whole family from small children to adults of all ages. While a pediatric dentist specializes in dental care for kids, eventually there will need to be a transition to an adult dentist. However, starting with a family dentist means there’s no need to change later on. And you can conveniently schedule appointments for everyone at the same time if you prefer. 

Choose a Dentist Who Offers a Wide Range of Services

Even if your dental care is usually relatively simple, you never know when something can go wrong that will require a more complex procedure. If you choose a dentist who can perform a comprehensive range of services you can avoid having to see a specialist for in-depth procedures that your regular dentist is not equipped to handle. 

Ask Your Previous Dentist for a Referral

Sometimes dentists know of dental practices in other cities who they can recommend. Maybe they went to dental school together and can vouch for their skill and work ethic. Or perhaps they’ve heard of a renown dentist from the area you are moving to who is known for their innovative procedures. It doesn’t hurt to ask.

Request a List of In-Network Dentists from your Insurance Provider

Going to a dentist who is in-network with your dental insurance provider can save you a lot of money. In-network means that the dentist not only accepts your insurance plan, but they may have negotiated pricing agreements for patients covered under their policies. 

Do Some Research and Read Reviews Online

Take the time to research any dentist that is recommended to you before making an appointment. You can save a lot of time and hassle by reading reviews and gathering information to make sure the dentist you are considering offers top quality care and is able to meet your specific dental needs and the needs of your family. 

Make Sure They Accept Financing Options for Payment

If you need a complex procedure that is partially covered by your insurance or not covered at all, you should know how the dentist accepts payment. A caring dentist will make your treatment affordable by accepting and even offering financing options. 

Trust Your Family’s Oral Health to Savannah Dental Solutions 

If you’re looking for the best dentist in Savannah for your family, Savannah Dental Solutions offers comprehensive services for children through adults, including preventive dentistry, restorative dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, and more. Our dentists and staff have the compassion and experience to take care of your family’s dental health. 

Call (912) 354-1366 or contact us today to schedule a consultation. We are currently accepting new patients and look forward to working with your family. 

Should My Child Have an Orthodontics Evaluation?

Are you wondering if your child may need to see an orthodontist? Maybe your dentist has pointed out some potential issues with your child’s teeth and has recommended an orthodontic evaluation. Perhaps you’ve noticed that your child’s teeth aren’t coming in straight or look crowded. Whether or not you have any concerns about your child’s teeth, you should not hesitate to schedule a consultation. 

Crooked Smile of Young Girl

At What Age Should My Child Have an Orthodontic Evaluation?

There’s no certain age when every child should have an orthodontic evaluation. The right tie should be determined by the child’s dental age more than their actual age. Once the front permanent teeth have erupted and appear to be fully in place and if there appear to be any orthodontic issues, such as crowding, your dentist may recommend that your child see an orthodontist

The average age range for a first time orthodontic evaluation is 7-9 years old. While it may not be time for braces just yet, there may be other early orthodontic treatments that can be done that will prevent problems from developing or escalating into more serious conditions. A little prevention can go a long way. 

What is Two-Phase Orthodontics?

You may have heard the term “two-phase orthodontics” used by dentists or orthodontists. This term refers to the fact that orthodontic treatment often achieves better results when it is divided into two phases. 

The first phase refers to early orthodontics, the treatments that are most often done between the ages of 7 and 9. The second phase, which most commonly involves braces, takes place between the ages of 10 and 14. Phase I prepares the teeth for Phase II, making the second phase much more effective. The first phase also prevents orthodontic issues from causing irreversible damage to the permanent teeth in the childhood years. 

Is it Ever Too Late to Have an Orthodontic Evaluation?

No, it’s never too late to have your teeth evaluated by an orthodontist. If your child is already past the age range for the first phase of orthodontics, don’t worry. Your child’s teeth can still be corrected later in their adolescent or teenage years. 

Even if you’re an adult, it is still possible to have your orthodontic issues corrected. If you want straighter teeth or you have suffered some of the effects of a misaligned bite pattern (such as headaches or jaw pain), you can start orthodontic treatment at any time in your life. 

What are the Different Types of Orthodontic Treatment?

Early orthodontics can involve a variety of different orthodontic treatments such as palate expanders and retainers that take advantage of the child’s growth in order to reshape or expand the jaw to make room for crowded teeth or to adjust the bite. 

Later orthodontic treatment typically involves braces or clear teeth alignment systems such as Invisalign or ClearCorrect. Both teens and adults like the fact that Invisalign and ClearCorrect are virtually invisible so that you can straighten your teeth more subtly. The clear plastic aligners are also more comfortable and convenient because you can easily remove them to eat or brush your teeth. 

Savannah Dental Solutions Also Provides Orthodontics 

Every child should have an orthodontic evaluation to determine if orthodontic treatment is necessary. The majority of children need some form or orthodontic correction. The good news is that you don’t need to leave Savannah Dental Solutions to have an orthodontic evaluation. We provide orthodontic screenings and care for children, teens, and adults. We offer both Invisalign and ClearCorrect teeth alignment systems. 

Call (912) 354-1366 or contact us today to schedule an orthodontic evaluation. We look forward to helping you achieve and maintain healthy, straight, teeth. 

Do You Have Gum Disease?

Many people who have gum disease are not aware of it. Gum disease is a bacterial infection of the gums. It is relatively painless in the early stages and the other symptoms are mild and not very noticeable. So how do you know if you have gum disease? 

There are a few signs and symptoms of gum disease that are detectable when you know what to look for. Consider whether or not you have noticed any of the following indications of gum disease.

Bleeding Gums

Do you notice some blood in the sink when you spit after brushing your teeth? This is not normal. You could be brushing too hard, but more likely it’s a sign of gum disease. Flossing your teeth for the first time in a long time could cause some slight bleeding, but just regular brushing and flossing should not produce blood. Infected gums bleed because they are inflamed from bacterial infection. Unless you have a mouth injury or unless a child has lost a baby tooth, healthy gums should not bleed. 

Red or Swollen Gums

Your gums don’t have to be bleeding to show signs of gum disease. You may notice that your gums appear redder than normal rather than the light pink color they should be. This is a sign of inflammation, a side effect of gum disease. Your gums may also appear swollen or puffy, which is also due to the bacterial infection that is gum disease. If you floss or brush in the places where your gums are swollen, it’s possible that they could start to bleed. 

Bad Breath

Gum disease can cause you to have bad breath. The bacteria in your mouth release toxins that produce an odor. When a higher than usual concentration of bacteria is present, the odor is more potent. You may not notice your own breath, but if a well-meaning loved one points it out, if you notice a foul taste in your mouth, or if friends and coworkers start offering you gum or mints a lot, you may have undiagnosed gum disease. 

Receding Gums

When gum disease becomes more severe the gums will start to recede, or pull away from the teeth. If you notice that your teeth are becoming longer or that there is a line on your teeth where your gums used to be, you might have some recession due to gum disease. 

Sensitive Teeth

When gum disease causes your gums to recede, the soft root portion of your tooth can become exposed. The root is not covered with the same thick enamel as the crown portion of your tooth, which means it is sensitive to cold, heat, and sweets. Once it is no longer protected under the gums it can cause severe sensitivity. If you notice that your teeth are suddenly becoming more sensitive, look for other signs of gum disease. 

Loose Teeth

When gum disease progresses the gums can recede far enough that your teeth can become loose and even fall out. If your permanent teeth are loose at all or appear to have shifted, it could be due to advanced gum disease. 

Treatment

There are a few different steps to the treatment of gum disease. The first is a thorough cleaning of your teeth above and below the gum line. Special tools are used to perform a process called scaling, which refers to the removal of plaque that has hardened on the teeth. Root planing is another possible part of gum disease treatment, where the roots of your teeth are smoothed out so that there are no pockets for bacteria to hide. Your gums are then able to reattach to a smooth surface. 

Medication may be required in some form to treat the infection, such as oral antibiotics or an antibiotic gel that can be applied directly to the gums. 

Prevention 

Preventive dentistry is designed to do just as its name suggests, prevent common dental problems like gum disease. By brushing and flossing your teeth daily at home and visiting your dentist on a regular schedule (twice a year), you will increase your chances of preventing gum disease. If you notice any of the above symptoms of gum disease, contact your dentist right away so that it can be treated before it gets worse. 

Savannah Dental Solutions 

You can prevent gum disease by visiting Savannah Dental Solutions. Our preventive services are designed to keep common dental issues, like gum disease, from becoming a problem for you. Keep up with regular dental appointments and take care of your teeth at home in between and you can experience a lifetime of good oral health.  

Call (912) 354-1366 or contact us today to schedule an appointment. We look forward to helping you maintain health teeth and gums for life. 

Common Dental Problems in Aging Adults

Aging doesn’t have to slow you down. But it may mean you need to pay more attention to your physical health, including the condition of your teeth. As you age your dental health may start to decline a bit, which is completely normal. A little extra maintenance and care can go a long way. 

Here are some of the common dental problems you may face as you age. 

Increased Risk of Cavities

Just as your bones can weaken as you age, your teeth may gradually weaken also. Over time, even with proper dental care, tooth enamel naturally wears down making your teeth more susceptible to cavities. Acidic foods and a lifetime of biting and chewing take their toll on your teeth. Gums recede over time as well, exposing the softer roots of your teeth that can more easily decay. 

These are all reasons your risk of cavities increases as you age. It is important to visit the dentist regularly and follow proper dental hygiene at home, now more than ever. 

Dry Mouth

Another of the common dental problems that come with aging is dry mouth. Dry mouth can result from certain medications you may be taking. Medication for high blood pressure, cholesterol, asthma, allergies, anxiety, depression, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s are some of the most common ones that can cause dry mouth. Adequate saliva is necessary to naturally rinse teeth and keep the bacteria levels consistent in your mouth. 

If you suffer from dry mouth, it’s important to talk to your dentist about it and tell them all of the medications you’re taking. Drink plenty of water throughout the day, use an oral moisturizing spray or mouthwash, and chew sugarless gum to stimulate saliva production. You could even use a humidifier when the air is dry. Your dentist may recommend an adjustment in your medication or dosage and apply a fluoride treatment after your regular cleanings. 

Gum Disease

Bacteria in the mouth can infect the gums, causing gum disease. Gum disease is more common in older adults because it is often painless and aging causes nerve endings to be less sensitive in the mouth. Once you feel the effects of gum disease, it may already be advanced. The good news is that gum disease is easily treated and prevented with proper dental care and regular visits to your dentist.

Oral Cancer

As you age your risk of developing oral cancer increases. This is another reason it is crucial to visit your dentist on a twice yearly schedule. Your dentist will carefully screen you for oral cancer as part of your routine dental exam. Mouth cancer is often painless and patients are not aware that they have it until it is detected by a dentist. When detected early, oral cancer has a high survival rate. It often appears as red or white patches on the inside of your cheeks or lips or on your tongue. Tell your dentist right away if you notice any suspicious spots. 

Deterioration of Existing Dental Work

Another common dental issue that comes with age is problems with old dental work. If you have a cavity that was filled many years ago, the filling may fall out or need to be replaced. Crowns or bridges can sometimes loosen and need to be refitted. Your dentist may recognize dental work that needs to be replaced before it falls out or causes a problem during a routine cleaning.

Savannah Dental Solutions Provides Oral Care for Seniors

At Savannah Dental Solutions we understand the increased risk of dental issues in older adults. Through our adult dentistry services, we take care to look for the common dental problems seniors face so that we can be proactive in treating them in order to minimize discomfort and long term effects. 

Call (912) 354-1366 or contact us today to schedule an appointment. We look forward to helping you maintain your dental health as you age. 

All About Dental Crowns

Are you in need of a dental crown? Whether your dentist recommends it for a severely decayed tooth or you have a tooth that has been damaged in some way, a crown is a very common solution. A crown is an artificial tooth, sometimes known as a cap, that fits over the existing tooth to strengthen and protect it. 

Dentist Performing Dental Crown Procedure

Benefits of Dental Crowns

There are many benefits to getting a tooth crown as a restoration procedure, such as:

  • Root Preservation. One of the biggest advantages of a crown is that the existing tooth root is preserved and can continue to function as it normally would without the crown. 
  • – Natural look. Crowns are made of porcelain, ceramic, or resin, all of which closely resemble natural tooth material. Crowns can be made to match the color, size, and shape of your existing teeth for a natural look. 
  • Natural function. Crowns function just like your natural teeth. You can usually eat anything you were able to eat before with your natural tooth. 
  • – Easy maintenance. You brush and floss your teeth with a crown in place just as you do the rest of your teeth. There are no special instructions for crown maintenance. 

Reasons for Dental Crowns

There are a variety of different reasons that a dentist may recommend a tooth crown for a patient, including:

  • Severe decay. If you have a tooth or multiple teeth that are severely decayed to the point where a filling would not be sufficient, a crown may be recommended. 
  • – Cracked tooth. A crack in a tooth may require a crown if the crack is deep enough. Sometimes a crack can be corrected with a filling, but there’s a chance the crack will worsen without a crown. 
  • Broken tooth. A broken tooth can usually be corrected with a crown if the break does not go below the gum line and as long as there is enough tooth left to attach the crown. In some cases the remaining tooth will be built up with resin so that there is enough material to support the crown.  
  • – Failing cavity filling. If you have an old filling in a tooth that falls out or a tooth that has a significant amount of filling, it may need to be replaced with a crown. 
  • – Support for a dental bridge. A bridge is an artificial tooth that replaces a missing tooth. A bridge is usually secured by crowns that are placed over the healthy teeth on either side of the missing tooth. 

What a Crown Procedure Entails

To be fitted for a crown, the natural tooth must first be filed down to a smaller size. This can usually be done with local anesthesia as with a cavity filling. An impression is then made of the tooth and sent to a lab to create the crown. A temporary crown will be placed over the tooth for a few weeks until the permanent crown comes in from the lab. When it comes in you’ll go back to the dentist to have it fitted. If the crown fits properly it will be permanently cemented into place. 

Why Get a Crown Instead of Having the Tooth Pulled?

When a tooth is decayed or damaged, many patients consider having the tooth pulled instead of restored with a crown to save money. But having the tooth removed can cause problems. Your other teeth may shift out of place when one is removed. The missing tooth can cause a weakness in your jaw at the site. It can also be harder to chew when you’re missing a tooth, potentially causing pain in the gums where the tooth was. 

Dental crowns can preserve teeth and last for many years, potentially for the rest of your life. The benefit is worth the cost, and whether or not you have dental insurance, financing and payment plans can make the cost more affordable. 

Where to Get a Dental Crown in Savannah, GA

If you’re in need of a tooth crown, Savannah Dental Solutions provides a full range of dental services from preventive care to cosmetic dentistry in Savannah for patients of all ages. We strive to make all procedures as comfortable and stress-free as possible. 

Call (912) 354-1366 or contact us today to schedule an appointment. We look forward to helping preserve your teeth for a lifetime. 

Brushing, Flossing, and Seeing the Dentist: A Schedule

Proper oral hygiene combined with professional dental care is the best way to achieve optimal dental health. When you take care of your teeth and see your dentist for teeth cleaning on a recommended schedule, you can keep your teeth healthy and in place for your lifetime. 

Dad and Son Brushing Their Teeth in the Bathroom

What is the recommended schedule for brushing, flossing, and seeing the dentist? Here are the recommendations from dental professionals. 

Brushing Your Teeth

Most dentists recommend brushing your teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste. Usually once in the morning and once at night before going to bed is enough. However, if you are at a higher risk of tooth decay or gum disease for any reason, it may help to brush after each meal. Removing food particles from your teeth and gums is the first step in preventing the buildup of tartar and plaque. Bacteria feed on these, which leads to cavities and gum disease. 

Is it possible to brush too much? Believe it or not, yes. There are negative consequences to brushing your teeth too frequently. Brushing excessively can wear away the enamel on your teeth, which weakens them, causes sensitivity, and increases the chances of developing cavities. Brushing too frequently can also damage your gums, causing them to become irritated, inflamed, and start to recede (pull away from the teeth). Avoid brushing more than 3 times a day. 

Flossing Your Teeth 

Most dentists recommend flossing your teeth once a day. Flossing removes food particles, tartar, and plaque from between your teeth and below the gum line. The area between your teeth, especially the back molars, is a prime spot for food to get stuck, which then turns into tartar and plaque. That feeds the bacteria in your mouth that can eventually cause cavities. 

Flossing also strengthens your gums, making them more resilient to irritation and gum disease. Gums are less likely to recede when you are flossing daily. Since your gums hold your teeth in place, if they start to pull away your teeth can become loose. Severe gum recession can even lead to the loss of teeth. 

As with brushing, flossing your teeth too much may damage your gums, so stick with a once a day schedule. 

Visiting the Dentist

The recommended schedule for regular dental cleanings is every 6 months. Most dental insurance plans cover two dental appointments for teeth cleaning each year. A routine teeth cleaning at the dentist’s office usually includes a thorough oral examination, removal of plaque, teeth polishing, flossing, and sometimes X-Rays. X-Rays of teeth are typically done only once a year, which is usually covered by dental insurance plans. The purpose of taking x-ray images is to identify cavities as well as to see below the gum line for any root issues. 

For some patients who are at a higher risk for oral health issues, the dentist may recommend that you have your teeth examined and cleaned more often. If you need any restorative procedures, such as cavity fillings, root canals, or crowns, you may have to go to the dentist between your scheduled cleanings to have those done. But once the procedure is complete you can usually resume your regular schedule. 

Stay on Schedule With Savannah Dental Solutions

Maintaining good dental health is much easier when you follow the recommended oral hygiene and teeth cleaning schedules. Whether you’re in need of a children’s dentist or one for the whole family, Savannah Dental Solutions is accepting new patients and welcoming former patients back. If you’ve let your dental care lapse due to lack of insurance or other reasons, we are glad to welcome you and help you restore and maintain your dental health. Whether or not you have insurance, we offer payment options to make your dental care more affordable. 

Call (912) 354-1366 or contact us today to schedule an appointment. We look forward to seeing you at Savannah Dental Solutions.

A Brief Guide to Your New Patient Dental Appointment

Are you looking for a new dentist in Savannah? Whether you’re in need of a teeth cleaning or other dental procedure, Savannah Dental Solutions is currently accepting new patients. In case it’s been a while since your last dentist appointment, you may not know what to expect. Every dental office may be a little different, but most of the basics are the same. 

New Patient at First Dental Appointment

Before you arrive, consider this brief guide to your new patient dental appointment at Savannah Dental Solutions. 

Have your Dental Records Transferred to Us

One of the first things you’ll need to do is request that your previous dentist send over your dental records. If your previous dental office is still in business they will need your permission to release your records, either over the phone or in writing. These may be able to be faxed, emailed, or may need to be mailed for security reasons. 

Provide Us with your Dental Insurance Information

If you have dental insurance it is helpful for our office to get that information before your first appointment. This allows us to check a few things, such as whether or not we are in-network with your insurance company and what types of copayments and coverage you have. This helps us with billing and will help your first appointment to go more quickly. 

Give Us Honest Dental and Medical History

Of course your previous dental history is important for us to know in order to provide you with adequate care. But your medical history is also important. Dental health and overall health are closely linked, more so than many people realize. We need to know what medications you are taking and any preexisting medical conditions you have. Your medical information can factor into your dental care from preventive measures to complex procedures. 

What to Expect at your First Dentist Appointment

Once all of your paperwork is in order, your initial examination can begin. While in the dental chair you may be asked a few more questions, and then these steps will follow: 

  • – Examination of your facial structure
  • – Examination of your neck
  • – Checking your lymph nodes
  • – Checking your lower jaw joints or TMJ’s
  • – Examination of the gums
  • – Checking for loose teeth
  • – Examination of the tissue inside your mouth
  • – Checking your bite
  • – Checking for signs of tooth decay
  • – Checking for broken teeth
  • – Checking for damaged fillings
  • – Examination of existing dental work, bridges, fillings, crowns, implants, etc.
  • – Taking x-rays (if needed)
  • – Removing plaque and tartar
  • – Polishing teeth
  • – Flossing between teeth
  • – Providing instructions on improvements to dental hygiene
  • – Discussion about any cosmetic dentistry procedures you have requested
  • – Answering questions about your current condition

All of this gives the dentist a baseline of your current dental health. From here a plan for your future dental care can be developed. If you are in need of any restorative procedures such as fillings, crowns, or root canals, these will be scheduled for future appointment dates. If your teeth are in good condition, you will simply schedule your next teeth cleaning for 6 months out. 

Do You Have Dental Anxiety?

Dental anxiety is very common. If you’ve avoided going to the dentist because you are afraid or nervous, we are happy to accommodate you in any way possible to help you feel more at ease. We offer various levels of sedation dentistry to help your dentist appointment go more smoothly, such as:

  • Minimal sedation. This option allows you to be awake but relaxed. Nitrous oxide, known as “laughing gas” is one type of minimal sedation. 
  • – Moderate sedation. This option may involve taking an oral sedative that will relax you while you are still awake. You may remember part of your procedure or not much at all. 
  • – Deep sedation. This option involves being put to sleep via IV sedation. You won’t remember anything about the procedure, but you can be brought back to consciousness quickly and follow simple commands while under. You are still able to breathe on your own. 
  • – Complete Sedation. This involves general anesthesia via IV and also typically involves intubation to help you breathe while under. You will be completely unconscious for the entire procedure and awakened when it is complete. 

The level of sedation required may depend on the complexity of the procedure and the personal preference of the patient. 

Schedule Your First Appointment with Savannah Dental Solutions

If you’re looking for a new dentist in Savannah, GA, Savannah Dental Solutions is currently accepting new patients. We will help make the transition from your previous dental office as easy as possible. 

Call (912) 354-1366 or contact us to make an appointment today. We look forward to providing you with quality dental care.  

A Guide to Dental Work During Pregnancy

When you’re pregnant it seems like everything changes, and you probably have a lot of questions. You question everything you do from what you eat to how to exercise and even how you sleep. If your regularly scheduled dental cleaning happens to fall during your pregnancy or you have a dental emergency arise, you may question whether or not it is safe to go to the dentist while pregnant. 

Pregnant Woman at Dentist Before Treatment

While it is normal to question dental work safety during pregnancy, the good news is that most dental procedures are still safe to have done. Be sure to let your dentist know that you are pregnant before or when you arrive so that the proper precautions can be taken. 

Is it Safe to Have X-Rays During Pregnancy?

According to the American College of Radiology, the amount of radiation that is delivered in one X-Ray is too low to cause any damage to a developing embryo or fetus. Even so, if X-Rays are simply routine and not absolutely necessary, it would be best to postpone them until your next visit. If you need emergency dental care that requires X-Rays to be taken, a lead apron is used to drape over your body so that the radiation does not pass through. 

The American Dental Association and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists collectively agree that X-Rays are safe during pregnancy as long as the proper shielding is used.

Are Medications Used in Dental Procedures Safe During Pregnancy?

One of the biggest concerns about undergoing dental procedures during pregnancy is the anesthesia and medications used during and after the procedure. One of the most common numbing agents, lidocaine, has been proven to cross through the placenta after administration. Of course, the risk is lower when only the minimum dosage is used.

It is for this reason that it is best to postpone any non-emergency dental work until after your pregnancy. But in the case of an emergency, where there is severe pain or a procedure needs to be done immediately to save a tooth, the benefit outweighs the risk. 

Antibiotics are prescribed following some dental procedures to prevent infection. Most antibiotics such as amoxicillin, penicillin, and clindamycin fall into category B for use during pregnancy. Category B drugs are considered to be safe to use during pregnancy. 

Should I Still Go to the Dentist For Routine Cleanings During Pregnancy?

Not only is it perfectly safe to have your teeth cleaned by your dentist during pregnancy, but it is also more important now. Pregnancy can harm your teeth in multiple ways. 

  • – The hormones that are present during pregnancy can cause your gums to swell, which increases your chances of developing gum disease and puts your teeth at a higher risk of decay. The prevention and treatment of gum disease is important, as it has been linked to preterm birth. 
  • – The growing fetus siphons nutrients from the mother, causing the mother’s nutrients to become depleted. Lack of tooth-strengthening minerals, such as calcium, can lead to weakened teeth that are more susceptible to cavities. 

Visiting the dentist while pregnant to have your teeth cleaned and examined is not only safe, but important for your oral health as well as your overall health and the health of your baby. 

Tips for Making your Dental Visit Comfortable During Pregnancy

If you’re concerned about your personal comfort during a dental visit, these tips can help. 

  • – Avoid going to the dentist during your third trimester, if possible, as lying on your back for prolonged periods of time may be uncomfortable. 
  • – Bring a pillow for extra back or neck support. 
  • – Keep your legs uncrossed while in the dental chair to promote healthy circulation. 
  • – Avoid going to the dentist in the first trimester if morning sickness is a major problem for you. 
  • – Ask what dentist conveniences are available to make you more comfortable during your visit. 

Trust Your Care To The Best Dentist in Savannah, GA

Proper dental care is more important than ever during your pregnancy. Trust your dental care during this time to the best dentist in Savannah, GA. Savannah Dental Solutions understands the unique circumstances of receiving dental care during your pregnancy and makes every effort to ensure your comfort and safety. 

Call (912) 354-1366 today or contact us to schedule an appointment. We look forward to helping you maintain your dental health during this special time in your life.