COVID-19 Safety Message: Visit our practice with confidence – your safety is our top concern.
We’ve reopened in accordance with CDC, O.S.H.A., and State Dental Board guidelines to responsibly resume seeing our patients for regular dental appointments and treatment. We want to assure you of the measures we take to maintain a clean and safe environment so you can continue to receive needed dental care without fear or concern.
Whether you need a routine dental exam and teeth cleaning in Miami or require more extensive dental services to restore your smile and improve your health, our team at Dental Center at Baptist is ready to assist you.
Your dental health is essential to allowing you to speak with confidence, eat with ease and laugh with delight. Dental health problems can make you self-conscious about your teeth and interfere with life’s enjoyments.
So, whether it’s been 10 months or 10 years since your last visit to the dentist, we’re eager to help you get back on track without feeling embarrassed about the condition of your teeth. Whether it’s been a few months or several years since you last saw a dentist, we can get your smile back on track.
We offer a relaxed, comfortable environment and welcome your questions about our dental procedures. Our aim is to have you trust us with your dental health – now and in the future.
During your first dental exam at Dental Center at Baptist, your dentist will look for signs of:
- Tooth decay
- Teeth grinding
- Bone loss
- Oral cancer
- Periodontal (gum) disease
Teeth Cleaning in Baptist
There’s nothing compared to the fresh feeling you get after having your teeth professionally cleaned. However, professional cleanings also serve a vital role in your dental health. They remove bacteria-spreading plaque and calculus that can lead to serious problems.
Plaque is a colorless layer of bacteria that builds on your teeth every time you eat or drink. It contains bacteria that converts the sugars in foods and beverages into acids that erode the tooth enamel. This process is called tooth decay and the result can be a hole in your tooth known as a cavity.
Your mother knew what she was talking about when she constantly admonished you to brush after meals. Brushing and flossing helps keep plaque from forming. However, the most vigorous brushing can’t remove all of the plaque. In less than 24 hours, plaque hardens into a substance called calculus; it’s also known as tartar. Only a professional teeth cleaning can remove plaque and calculus from the surfaces of the teeth and in hard-to-reach places between the teeth.
While basic professional cleanings should be part of your preventative dental care routine and are often covered by dental insurance, basic cleanings only remove plaque, calculus and stains from the visible surface of your teeth above the gum line. Your teeth below the gum line are equally susceptible to the ravages of bacteria.
Periodontal, or gum, disease is caused by bacteria that makes it way to your teeth below your gums. This is a progressive, chronic disease that affects 50 percent of Americans over the age of 30 and 70 percent over age 65.
You may have periodontal disease and not even know it. It often has no symptoms. Other times it presents itself with gums that bleed after brushing and flossing or gums that are red and tender.
The first stage of periodontal disease is called gingivitis. At this stage, periodontal disease is easily treatable and any damage caused by the disease can be reversed. If the infection is in the early stages, the hygienist can treat it during your hygiene visit. If it’s more advanced, the dentist may recommend you see a gum specialist called a periodontist for treatment.
The type of teeth cleaning you need depends on the health of your teeth and gums. Here are some examples of the types of dental treatment for hygiene:
- Prophylaxis: People who only need their teeth cleaned above the gum line to remove plaque, calculus and surface stains should have a prophylaxis teeth cleaning, also known as a “prophy” or a healthy-mouth cleaning. This is the type of teeth cleaning most often covered by dental insurance.
- Gingivitis Therapy: Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease, and is the only stage that is reversible. In addition to the prophy, the hygienist or dentist will provide additional services to remove plaque on the teeth just below the gum line.
- Scaling & Root Planing: People who are diagnosed with an active gum infection (periodontal disease) need treatment both above and below the gum line to remove the harmful bacteria. Scaling & root planing (SRP) is a non-surgical treatment that removes bacteria and smooths out exposed root surfaces. SRP may take more than one office visit to complete and may involve the application of an antibiotic. After the treatments, the dentist may prescribe a periodontal maintenance routine, including more frequent cleanings, to manage the disease.
Cleaning Teeth Below the Gum Line
Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. The same bacteria that attacks the enamel on your teeth also targets the ligaments, tissue and bone that hold teeth in place under the gums. As the disease progresses, the gum tissue pulls away from the tooth, creating “pockets” around the tooth where more bacteria can gather.
Scaling & root planing and other forms of periodontal treatment can treat the infection but can’t repair the damage. Once the disease progresses beyond gingivitis, it can only be managed.
Our dentist and hygienist at Dental Center at Baptist will be happy to answer any questions you have.
Bad Breath Management
If you habitually rinse with mouthwash and pop breath mints in your mouth, you’re not alone. Millions of people suffer from bad breath each year. The medical term is halitosis, and it affects 25 percent of the U.S. population.
While bad breath can be related to whatever foods you’ve eaten recently, it’s more often caused by germs in your mouth. When bacteria erodes the teeth, the damaged cells can release an odor. This embarrassing problem can be remedied with professional teeth cleanings and gum treatments along with regular brushing, flossing and rinsing with a mouthwash at home.
Oral Cancer Screening
You will be offered an oral cancer screening on your first visit to our office. This potentially life-saving screening is recommended t for everyone over the age of 18. It consists of a fast, easy test that allows the dentist to detect signs of oral cancer that can’t be seen with the naked eye.
Oral cancer often has no symptoms in its early stages, which makes it especially dangerous. By the time symptoms are visible, the disease may be in the later stages. The death rate for oral cancer is higher than that of more commonly known cancers including cervical cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, testicular cancer and thyroid cancer. Early detection is key.
Teeth Grinding & Night Guards
Teeth grinding, which is also called bruxism, is a common condition that affects up to 40 million Americans. If it’s severe enough, it can wear down the enamel of your teeth. Indications that you may be grinding your teeth in your sleep are:
- Morning headaches
- A sore jaw when you wake up
- Chipped or cracked teeth
- Tooth sensitivity
Teeth grinding is often caused by stress but it also can be the result of crooked teeth or a “bad bite.” Our dentist can fit you with a mouth guard to protect your teeth while you sleep.
Call Today to Schedule a Dental Exam
Call Dental Center at Baptist today at (305) 921-0511 to schedule a comprehensive dental exam. We offer convenient days and times to accommodate your busy schedule.