General Dentistry

Twin Falls, ID

Dental Cleanings

How often do you hear that you should have your teeth cleaned twice a year? Probably more than you can count. While important, they’re easy to put off. Many people believe that they simply don’t need them. After all, if you brush and floss your teeth every day, why should you bother? What can two cleanings a year possibly do that you can’t do at home? The answer is that they can do a lot. At Summit Dental Care, we can provide you with the routine cleanings you need to maintain a healthy mouth.

What Happens During A Cleaning?

Routine cleaning is a simple procedure. One of our dental hygienists will begin by scraping the crowns of your teeth and along your gumline. This process, called scaling, is done to eliminate plaque, bacteria, tartar, and other debris such as food particles. While brushing and flossing are also meant to remove plaque and bacteria, you might miss harder to reach areas. We can completely clean every area of your teeth. After scaling, your teeth are then polished, which gives them a smooth, shiny, clean look and feel. Finally, your teeth are thoroughly flossed.

Are Cleanings Painful?

In most cases, dental cleanings are not painful. All you should feel is the pressure from the scaling. However, if you have sensitive teeth or irritated gum tissue, you may feel some discomfort. If you are worried about pain during your dental cleaning, please do not hesitate to make your concerns known.

Protecting Your Oral Health

One of the biggest benefits of regular cleanings is that they help to protect your oral health. Cleaning buildup from the surfaces of your teeth protects your teeth from decay and cavities. It also removes buildup from along your gumline, which prevents the irritation and inflammation that can otherwise lead to gingivitis and gum disease. By preventing these issues from developing, you avoid experiencing more the more significant complications that they can cause. You also save money by not having to undergo treatment for these issues.

Improving Your Smile

Regular dental cleanings and dental exams can help to improve the quality of your smile. Scraping the surfaces of your teeth and polishing them removes surface stains, which helps to whiten your teeth. Removing plaque and bacteria also helps to freshen your breath. By helping to improve the quality of your smile, we can help to give you a boost of confidence.

Preventing Serious Health Problems

Believe it or not, the health of your mouth is linked to the health of your entire body. Oral health issues such as gum disease, oral cancer, and tooth infections are linked to serious health complications such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease. Gum disease is linked to respiratory complications and can worsen existing issues. It is also linked to pregnancy complications. Dental cleanings help to reduce your risk for cavities and gum disease. In turn, your cleanings can also help to reduce your risk of developing health-related issues.

The ADA recommends having your teeth cleaned every 6 months. If it’s time for your next dental cleaning, call Summit Dental Care at (208) 733-9999 to schedule an appointment today.

Dental Exams

You probably don’t think twice about visiting the doctor regularly for a routine checkup. After all, these visits are crucial for making sure that your body is healthy. Did you know that regular dental exams are just as important? Exams allow us to check over your mouth to see if there is anything wrong and take the steps necessary to remedy any issues we find before they get worse. If it’s time for your next dental checkup, Summit Dental Care is here to help.

Why You Need Regular Dental Exams

Just like a routine physical, a dental exam is crucial for making sure that your mouth is healthy. With regular visits, we can assess the condition of your mouth. We are highly experienced at detecting the early warning signs of numerous different oral health issues. By spotting issues early, we can take immediate action to stop their progression and protect your mouth from more serious consequences.

What If My Mouth Feels Fine?

Even if your mouth feels perfectly fine and you don’t think that there is anything wrong, it is still important to have regular dental visits. This is because most issues do not exhibit symptoms in the earliest stages. If symptoms are present, they are often barely noticeable, and therefore go overlooked. Without an exam, you might never know that there is anything wrong. By the time symptoms begin to make themselves known, the issue has progressed into something more significant. What could have been an easy, inexpensive fix suddenly requires more invasive, more expensive care.

What Happens During The Exam?

Dental exams are pretty simple. We start by looking over your teeth and gums. What we are looking for is any signs of decay, cavities, chips, cracks, and other damage to your teeth. We look at your gums to spot redness, swelling, recession, and periodontal pockets. In addition to looking over your teeth and gums, we also examine the other soft tissues of your mouth. We check for any sort of abnormalities, such as unusual patches of tissue and lumps. Thus, we are looking for are the early warning signs of oral cancer. Even if you do not have high-risk factors for oral cancer, screenings are still important. Detecting oral cancer in the early stages can be life-saving.

Do I Need X-Rays?

X-rays are an integral part of helping us to spot issues. They allow us to see parts of your mouth that are otherwise impossible to see. X-rays are generally recommended annually. If you have certain risk factors, however, or you are exhibiting symptoms of certain oral health issues, we may recommend them more frequently.

What Happens If There Is Something Wrong?

If we do find something wrong, we will take note of it and discuss your treatment options. For instance, if we spot a cavity, we may discuss options such as a filling or an inlay. If we spot warning signs of gum disease, we may recommend scaling and root planing. After determining a treatment plan, we will then get you scheduled to have the issue treated as soon as possible to restore and protect the health of your mouth.

Just like with dental cleanings, you should have your mouth examined every 6 months to make sure that your smile stays healthy and beautiful. For more information, and to schedule your next dental exam, call Summit Dental Care at (208) 733-9999 today.

Oral Cancer Screenings

Oral cancer is cancer that originates in your mouth. While it does not often get as much attention as other forms of cancer, it is still a serious condition that can be fatal if not detected and treated right away. At Summit Dental Care, we can help to detect the early warning signs of oral cancer, enabling you to get the treatment you need right away, with oral cancer screenings.

Who Gets Oral Cancer Screenings?

Oral cancer screenings are part of your standard dental exams. Typically, everyone is given an oral cancer screening starting around the age of 18. Screenings may be done earlier for those who start smoking before 18. They are generally recommended annually. For those who have more risk factors for oral cancer, however, they may be performed biannually.

Why Do I Need An Oral Cancer Screening?

Oral cancer screenings are an important part of your routine dental exams. The earliest warning signs are typically very difficult to detect on your own. If you do develop oral cancer, it may go unnoticed for quite some time. When symptoms do become more prevalent, cancer may have worsened and spread. As it advances and spreads, it becomes more difficult to treat. It can even be fatal.

How Do I Know If I’m At Risk For Oral Cancer?

There are certain factors that can put you at a greater risk of developing oral cancer. One of the biggest factors is smoking and using other tobacco products. Those who drink heavily are also at an increased risk. Other risk factors include family history, sex, and your age. Just because you do not have any significant risk factors; however, that does not mean you cannot develop oral cancer. The disease can impact anyone, so regular screenings are incredibly important.

Is An Oral Cancer Screening Painful?

Your oral cancer screening is not painful at all. You might never even notice that the screening is being done. We look over the soft tissues in your mouth, looking for unusual coloration, growths, and anything else that looks suspicious. We look at your lips, cheeks, tongue, and palate. You may feel us move your tongue so we can check underneath it. We also feel your neck and throat for swelling and growths.

What Happens If Signs Of Oral Cancer Are Detected?

If we do find signs of oral cancer, it is important not to panic. A more thorough examination will be needed. While what we find could be oral cancer, it is also possible that is another issue entirely, or it is nothing at all. One of the most common ways to diagnose oral cancer is with what is called a soft tissue biopsy. This is a process in which we remove a small amount of tissue from the abnormality so that we can examine it under a microscope. This will allow us to determine the presence of cancerous cells. Should you be diagnosed with oral cancer, we can then help you to get the treatment you need right away. Treatments may include surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy.
Detecting oral cancer early is essential for protecting your health, and can even be life-saving. For more information, call Summit Dental Care at (208) 733-9999 today.