CLEANING & PREVENTION COSMETIC DENTISTRY & RESTORATIONS IMPLANTS SMOKING CESSATION EMERGENCY CARE
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Common Questions
Building History

Dr. Dale C. Whilden
Dr. Sarah C. Brevet
64 Main Ave
Ocean Grove, NJ 07756
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Phone: (732) 774-8700
 
Office Hours:

Mon 9:00am - 8:30pm
Tues 9:00am - 5:00pm
Wed 8:00am - 5:00pm
Thur 9:00am - 5:00pm
Fri 9:00am - 5:00pm
Sat* 8:00am - 1:00pm

*Two Saturdays per Month

Flossing
Cleaning & Prevention Overview
Brushing
Flossing
Mouth Rinses
Gum Disease
Cleanings
Exams

 

Cleaning & Prevention Overview
Prevention and early detection are the key to avoiding tooth decay and gum disease. A good home regimen, in addition to regular check-ups and visits, can spare you many expensive dental treatments. Prevention starts with controlling plaque, a colorless bacteria that sticks to the surface of your teeth, and calculus, a harder mineral deposit. These are the main sources of decay and disease. By maintaining a proper routine of daily hygiene, you can avoid most oral maladies. Our hygienists are available to assist you with your hygiene and management of your gums.

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Brushing
As damaging as plaque can be, it is easily removed by mechanical brushing. Plaque deposits build up on the teeth fairly quickly after eating and drinking, and, if they are not brushed away at least once or twice a day, they can lead to tooth decay and periodontal diseases. It takes just one day for bacteria to build up enough to make your mouth susceptible to disease.

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Flossing
Daily flossing is an effective way to clean teeth where regular brushing can't reach. To floss properly, take 18" of dental floss, wrap it around the middle finger of each hand, and pinch it between your thumb and index finger. Pull the floss taut, then slide it gently between each tooth and under the gum line. Slide the floss up and down the side of each tooth to remove plaque buildup. Be sure to use a clean section of floss as you move from tooth to tooth.

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Mouth Rinses
Over-the-counter mouth rinses can help to fight bad breath, remove loose food particles after brushing, and freshen the mouth. However, mouth rinses are never a substitute for brushing, flossing, or regular dental examinations, and may disguise warning signs of periodontal disease.

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Gum Disease
Diagnosis
Early signs of gum disease include redness, swelling, or inflammation around the gum line. If these warning signs appear, your dentist will check for hardened plaque, also known as tartar or calculus, below the gumline. Finally, your dentist may use a tool called a probe to test gums for bleeding and measure periodontal pockets. When gums are unhealthy, they pull away from the teeth, forming these pockets. If the periodontal pockets are deeper than 3mm, advanced periodontal disease is confirmed.

Treatments
Deep cleaning can effectively control and reverse early gum disease by removing the germs that lead to infection. This deep cleaning involves techniques called scaling and root planing. Scaling involves scraping away plaque and tartar from above and below the gumline. Planing involves smoothing out rough surfaces of teeth which can foster the bacterial growth that leads to infection. After clean, smooth teeth are restored, patients will notice reduced redness and inflammation. Dentists may prescribe antibiotics or mouth rinses to further reduce any remaining bacteria after scaling and planing procedures are performed.

Periodontal Disease
Periodontal disease is marked by the breakdown of structures that surround, secure, and support the teeth. These structures include the bone, gums, and fibers which anchor the teeth to the gums. Periodontal disease is usually a result of untreated plaque buildup, and is the number one cause of tooth loss in adults. However, regular checkups and a strong home care regimen easily prevent periodontal disease.

Gingivitis
Gingivitis is the early stage of periodontal disease, when only the soft tissues of the mouth are affected. Plaque buildup leads to tartar and bacteria below the gumline, which leads to inflamed, irritated, or bleeding gums. The good news is, gingivitis is reversible. A good professional cleaning, followed by regular brushing, flossing, and checkups, restores gums to good health by removing plaque and bacteria.

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Cleanings
Regular dental cleanings, performed by a certified dental hygienist, are a crucial part of preventative dental care. By removing plaque and tartar, our dental hygienists enhance your oral health and minimize your risk of gingivitis and periodontal disease. Our certified dental hygienists will utilize a manual device to scale away moderate plaque and tartar buildup, or an ultrasonic device to scale away heavier buildup. The cleaning is finished with polishing, a pleasant procedure that deep cleans the surface of teeth, removes stains, and leaves the mouth feeling clean and refreshed.

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Exams
No matter how diligent you are in your home dental care regimen, you should still get a dental exam and cleaning twice per year. The importance of regular dental exams cannot be overemphasized - dental exams are the cornerstone of good dental health. In particular, regular checkups are essential for early detection of more serious problems. Recent research indicates a correlation between gum disease and heart disease. Early detection makes treatment easier, less expensive, and more effective. In your twice-yearly dental exam, your dentist will perform the following routine checks:

  • Examine and assess gum health; test for gum disease.
  • Examine any existing tooth decay.
  • Take and analyze x-rays, which may reveal decay, tumors, cysts, and other problems.
  • Screen for the presence of oral cancer.
  • Verify the stability of any existing fillings or other restorations.

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