Dental FAQs

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Early orthodontic dentistry for family

Parkcrest Dental Group FAQs

What is Dentistry?

Dentistry is the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of conditions and diseases of the teeth, gums, and mouth. Dental health can have a big impact on the health of your entire body, and is an extremely important aspect of overall wellness.

Who is a dentist?

A dentist is a specialist who works to diagnose, treat, and prevent oral health problems. Our dentists in Springfield, Mo at Parkcrest Dental Group have each completed at least eight years of schooling and received a DDS (Doctor of Dental Surgery) degree. We are also pleased to provide pediatric dentistry and orthodontic services in our office. Dentists who specialize in pediatric dentistry, orthodontic dentistry, cosmetic dentistry or sedation dentistry have completed additional training in their field and have become dental specialists.

Why is Parkcrest Dental Group right for me and my family?

Our practice at Parkcrest Dental Group is a multi-specialty practice with six general dentists, one board certified pediatric dental specialist, as well as a board certified orthodontist. All of our general dentists have completed countless hours of training designed to provide beautiful, quality cosmetic services. Our board certified pediatric dentist specializes in caring for children from infancy through their teen years, and has received the proper education and training needed to work with young kids, and our board certified orthodontist is able to create beautifully straight smiles to last a lifetime!

Here at Parkcrest Dental Group, we offer a variety of services so you and your family can have all your dental needs met in one location without ever going to another dental practice! Parkcrest also offers appointments for patients Monday – Fridays with some orthodontic availability on one Saturday a month. Proudly serving the southwest Missouri area for over 40 years, we are committed to providing beautiful healthy smiles for many more years. We specialize in “Making great smiles easy” with total care and total caring for the whole family!

What type of dental treatment is provided at your office?

Our team at Parkcrest Dental Group offers the highest quality general dentistry services by providing dental care using the most up-to-date technology and procedures. Our team has experience providing treatment in all aspects of dentistry, including implant dentistry, sedation dentistry, pediatric services, orthodontics, Invisalign®, root canals, dentures, fillings, crowns, cleanings, periodontal therapy, and much more. We enjoy creating beautiful, healthy smiles for every one of our patients!

What do you do to ensure my comfort?

Our office offers a welcoming, comfortable setting that you’ll notice from the first time you enter our dental practice! We want you to feel welcomed, relaxed, and comfortable when you come to see us at Parkcrest Dental Group. As an added benefit to our patients, we also offer both oral and IV sedation dentistry. In the event of an after-hours dental emergency, one of our Parkcrest Dental Group doctors is always on call for our established patients, 24 hours a day.

Why is visiting the dentist important?

Visiting the dentists at Parkcrest Dental Group regularly will help keep your mouth healthy and support overall body wellness. Dental care is important because it helps to ensure that the mouth-body connection is being monitored for changes, keeps patients on track with healthy habits that can affect or be affected by systemic issues throughout the body, and gives added peace of mind knowing that your mouth is in great shape!

I don’t seem to have any problems with my teeth … do I still need to see a dentist?

Yes! You may not think you are experiencing issues with your mouth, but it’s still important to see our Springfield dentists regularly because problems may not be readily detectable without the help of a dental professional. Your smile is important and visiting the dentists regularly will ensure that you keep your smile happy, healthy, and beautiful for years! Parkcrest Dental Group’s dentists offer many treatment choices that can help you smile with confidence.

How should I take care of my teeth between dental checkups?

  • Exhibit consistent home care habits through brushing twice a day and flossing daily
  • Use a fluoride toothpaste
  • Consider professional teeth whitening options
  • Invest in your smile by purchasing a quality electric toothbrush

At what age should children begin to see the dentist?

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends that children first see a dentist as early as six months of age and no later than one year of age. Baby teeth are extremely important and while your child’s baby teeth are coming in, your dentist can examine the health of these first few teeth to determine if development of the dentition is healthy. Early visits at Parkcrest Dental Group can also help children establish a pattern of “happy visits” making it easier to keep your kids on track with their future dental care. It is important to keep up with routine visits, and children should be scheduled for checkups every six months. Our pediatric dental specialist Dr. Stuart Scott will give you all the information you need to ensure that your child grows up with a healthy smile to last a lifetime!

How often should I see the dentist for checkups?

Everyone should see their dentist at Parkcrest Dental Group for a regular checkup at least one time every six months. It is good to keep in mind that there are many patients who may be at increased risk for dental issues such as periodontal disease, oral cancer or other issues. Patients with these increased risk factors may be required to see the dentist more frequently to help better monitor their oral health. Your doctor will discuss this with you to help determine how often visits should be made for your regular checkups.

What is a cavity?

Cavities are holes that form on the tooth because of decay. They begin to form when plaque builds up on the outside of the tooth. If this plaque is left on teeth for long periods, it produces an acid which can damage the outer surface (or enamel) on your tooth, causing a cavity. Foods and beverages, especially those with sugar, lead to a faster degradation of the enamel. When cavities are left untreated, more serious oral health problem can occur. It is always a good idea to have your dentist at Parkcrest Dental Group check your teeth at the first sign of any discomfort, hole, or specific area of tooth discoloration. Cavities can often be prevented through proper brushing habits twice a day, and use of dental floss for the areas between the teeth at least once a day!

What is a filling?

A filling is a synthetic material that your dentist at Parkcrest Dental Group uses to restore tooth structure. Fillings are most often done after a cavity has been treated by first removing all of the tooth decay. Having a filling done is not typically painful, and your dentist will usually make you comfortable by first numbing that specific area of your mouth with an anesthetic. Fillings are made from a variety of different materials, but tooth-colored composite restorations are the most common due to their esthetics and strength.

How often should I brush my teeth?

According to your dentist at Parkcrest Dental Group and the American Dental Association, you should brush your teeth at least two times a day to help remove bacteria-causing plaque. Using a soft-bristled toothbrush and a fluoride toothpaste is also recommended. The best rule of thumb is to brush two times a day for two minutes each time, and to always remember to brush your tongue to remove bacteria and keep breath smelling fresh! For those with braces, we recommend brushing after every meal.

When should I change my toothbrush?

It is recommended that everyone change their toothbrush every three months, and make sure that if you are using an electric toothbrush you follow the manufacturer’s guidelines about brush heads. Patients with increased risk due to periodontal disease or other factors may be encouraged to change their toothbrush more frequently, such as every four to six weeks. This can help keep bacteria from spreading. After brushing, rinsing your toothbrush with hot water can kill germs and keep the brush clean. It is always a good idea to change toothbrushes immediately after experiencing any major illness.

What is gum disease?

Periodontal disease (or gum disease) is mostly caused by plaque and bacteria buildup, but can also be caused or influenced by tobacco use, teeth grinding, taking some medications, and genetic disposition. Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease, and, if detected, is treatable. Gingivitis is the swelling of gum tissue, and left untreated may progress to periodontal disease, which is a more advanced stage of gum disease that affects the bone that anchors your teeth in place. This resulting bone loss can eventually lead to losing teeth. Advanced gum disease is a permanent condition and is much easier and cost effective to treat in very early state. Brushing your teeth regularly and routine visits to your Parkcrest Dental Group provider will help prevent gingivitis and periodontal disease. Common signs of gum disease: pink in the sink upon brushing, loose or shifting teeth, chronic bad breath, a receding gum line, or red, swollen, or bleeding gums.

If I have braces, do I still need dental checkups every six months?

Yes! It is incredibly important that patients receiving orthodontic treatment visit their dentist regularly. While wearing braces, it is easy for food to get caught in places that a toothbrush can’t reach. When you are in braces our board certified orthodontist Dr. Steven Harrison will work closely with your dentist to make sure that your teeth stay clean and healthy during your entire orthodontic treatment.

How do I schedule my next checkup with Parkcrest Dental Group?

Simply call our Parkcrest Dental Group at 417-887-1220 today! Our friendly, dedicated business team will be happy to help schedule your next dental checkup at your convenience. If you are a new patient with us, please let us know so we can provide you with all the information you need to make your first dental visit with us a success!

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