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.
If you’ve been putting off visiting the dentist due to embarrassment about the condition of your teeth, wait no more.
Our team at Towncare Dental of Ft. Myers is eager to help you restore your smile whether it’s been months or years since your last dental visit.
Everyone wants to be able to speak with confidence, eat with ease and laugh heartily without being self-conscious about their teeth. So, even if it’s been awhile since you’ve seen a dentist, we’re eager to help you get your dental health back on track.
During your first dental exam at Towncare Dental of Ft. Myers, your dentist will look for signs of:
- Tooth decay
- Teeth grinding
- Bone loss
- Oral cancer
- Periodontal (gum) disease
We strive to maintain a relaxed, comfortable environment where patients feel free to ask questions. Many of our patients have been coming to us for years because they trust us to keep their mouth, teeth and gums healthy. We look forward to building that same relationship based on trust with you.
Teeth Cleaning in Fort Myers
Most of the calls to our dental office are from people seeking appointments for a professional teeth cleaning. It’s the one dental procedure people look forward to receiving. There’s nothing like that fresh feeling of clean teeth.
But you may not be aware that professional teeth cleanings play an important role in your dental health. They remove the plaque and calculus that can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
Plaque is a sticky, colorless coating that clings to your teeth each time you eat and drink. Within less than 24 hours, plaque can harden into a substance called calculus, or tartar. Both plaque and tartar contain bacteria that converts sugars in food and drink into acids that attack the enamel on your teeth and cause tooth decay including cavities, which are literally holes in the teeth.
Brushing and flossing after meals removes plaque and prevents bacteria-filled tartar from building up on your teeth. But only a professional teeth cleaning can remove all of the plaque and tartar, especially between teeth. This is why dentists recommend you have your teeth professionally cleaned twice a year. Most dental insurance cover these cleanings, known as prophylaxis cleanings.
During the prophylaxis, or “prophy,” the hygienist will remove the plaque and tartar on your teeth that are visible above the gum line. This not only helps to prevent tooth decay but prevents the bacteria from making its way beneath your gums where it can continue to decay your teeth and cause an infection known as periodontal, or gum, disease.
Cleaning Teeth Below the Gum Line
If your gums are red and puffy or bleed after brushing and flossing, you may have the first stage of gum disease called gingivitis.
These symptoms require prompt attention by your dentist because gingivitis is the only stage of gum disease that can be treated and cured. At this stage, the dentist or hygienist can take steps to kill the bacteria beneath your gum line and prevent the disease from progressing into a chronic and irreversible condition.
Periodontal disease is a major oral health problem. According to the very common; half of Americans over the age of 30 have some form of gum disease according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), half of Americans over the age of 30 have some stage of the disease and 70 percent of people over age 65 are battling gum disease.
Some people have no symptoms of the disease. They don’t know they have it until it is detected by their dentist. Others notice that their gums bleed when they brush and floss. As the infection worsens, they may have bad breath, a receding gum line and teeth shifting out of position.
That’s because the same bacteria that breaks down sugar to cause tooth decay also attack the ligaments, tissue and bone that hold teeth in place under the gums. Eventually, the gum tissue pulls away from the tooth, creating “pockets” around the tooth where more bacteria can gather.
When you’ve been diagnosed with an active gum infection indicating a more advanced stage of periodontal disease, your dentist may recommend a procedure called scaling & root planing. This is a non-surgical treatment to remove bacteria below the gum line and smooth out exposed root surfaces. Your dentist also may apply an antibiotic to your gums to fight the bacteria. SRP may take multiple visits to your dental office to complete.
Following the SRP treatments, your dentist may recommend more frequent professional teeth cleanings to help manage the disease. However, these treatments cannot repair the damage that has already occurred. Gingivitis is the only stage in which damage can be reversed.
Periodontal disease is a chronic, systemic disease, similar to other chronic diseases like diabetes. If left untreated, it will ultimately result in tooth loss. If the disease is advanced, your dentist may recommend you see a gum specialist called a periodontist for treatment.
Bad Breath Management
A love of garlic and raw onions aren’t the only reasons for bad breath. Halitosis, the medical term for bad breath, can be caused by bacteria in your mouth. When bacteria causes dental decay, the damaged cells can release an unpleasant odor.
Halitosis impacts 25 percent of the U.S. population. Fortunately, it can be controlled with regular professional cleanings and a regular home care routine that includes brushing, flossing and rinsing with a mouthwash after meals.
Oral Cancer Screening
You may not hear as much about oral cancer as other forms of the disease, but oral cancer can be deadlier than more commonly known cancers such as testicular cancer, cervical cancer and thyroid cancer.
On your first visit to our office, we will do an oral cancer screening, a quick, painless test that allows the dentist to see signs of oral cancer that are not visible to the naked eye.
This life-saving screening is recommended to everyone over the age of 18.
Oral cancer often has no symptoms in its early stages, which makes it particularly dangerous. By the time symptoms are apparent, the disease may have progressed and spread to other locations.
Teeth Grinding & Night Guards
If you wake in the morning with a headache and a sore jaw, you may be grinding your teeth in your sleep. Teeth grinding, also called bruxism, affects up to 40 million Americans. It is often caused by stress. However, it can also be the result of crooked teeth or a “bad bite.” If it’s severe enough, it can wear down the enamel of your teeth.
Our dentist will look for signs of teeth grinding and may ask you if you have any of these symptoms:
- Morning headaches
- Waking up with a sore jaw
- Chipped or cracked teeth
- Tooth sensitivity
Our dentist can fit you with a mouth guard to protect your teeth while you sleep.
Call Today to Schedule a Dental Exam
Call Towncare Dental of Ft. Myers today at (239) 243-9238 to schedule a convenient day and time for your comprehensive dental exam. We look forward to helping you get your dental health back on track.