- Please bring a valid, government-issued identification card such as a State Driver’s License or ID, Military ID, etc.
- Please take the time to download and fill out our New Patient Forms before arriving for your first appointment.
- If you have dental insurance, please bring your insurance card and make sure you read and understand Our Policy Regarding Dental Insurance.
- We recommend arriving 10-15 minutes early before your first appointment to allow us time to enter your information into our system and address any additional paperwork or other needs.
While every appointment is different, generally you can count on spending one to one-and-a-half hours in the dental chair. If it is your first appointment, you may spend a little more time as we take X-rays and go over your medical history. However, you can save a lot of time by filling out our New Patient Forms before your arrival.
If you need any prescription medication for your appointment, please be sure to call and discuss your needs with our staff BEFORE the day your appointment. We are happy to discuss your needs and will let you know if we can provide the medications or if you need to contact your primary care physician for a prescription.
As this may take a few days, be sure to discuss your concerns with us well in advance of your appointment. Depending on what medication you require, you may need to arrange for transportation before and after your appointment as well.
The best way to prevent expensive treatments for serious dental issues is to schedule regular check-ups every six months. When you wait until you are experiencing symptoms of a problem to see a dentist, it often ends up costing much more time and money.
For example, a cavity may not cause you any pain until it reaches the root, at which point a root canal becomes necessary. This is a much more expensive and time-consuming procedure. When you see your dentist every six months, these types of problems are identified as early as possible when treatment is easy and more affordable.
Yes! Flossing is the only way to get plaque and bacteria out from between your teeth. Over time, the acid these bacteria produce will eat away at your enamel, leading to tooth decay, cavities and other dental issues.
Cavities, technically known as dental caries, are damaged areas of a tooth that develop into holes over time. There are several steps you can take to limit the incidence of cavities:
- Brush your teeth for two or three minutes, three times a day, especially after meals
- Floss between your teeth at least once a day
- Use toothpaste containing fluoride
- Limit sugary foods and drinks
- Visit Orange Beach Family Dentistry every six months for a checkup!
There many aspects of your oral health that cannot be determined simply by looking at the outside of your teeth. To find out what’s happening below the surface, we will take oral X-rays of your teeth and jaw. This procedure allows us to visualize hidden areas of decay, infections in teeth or bones, signs of periodontal disease, abscesses or developmental abnormalities.
At Orange Beach Family Dentistry, we recommend using toothpaste that contains fluoride to help prevent tooth decay. It works by making the enamel on your teeth more resistant to the effects of acid created by bacteria in plaque. Fluoride can also help to reverse the early stages of tooth decay, and works to prevent the degenerative bone loss associated with osteoporosis.
Fluoride is a naturally-occuring mineral found in foods such as kale, spinach, apples, brewed tea, milk and several varieties of fish. Many cities in the US add fluoride to the drinking water supply to help reduce tooth decay. In certain cases, we may recommend fluoride treatments for our patients.
Many patients find relief from sensitive teeth by using over-the-counter toothpaste specially formulated to reduce sensitivity. Most brands contain potassium nitrate or strontium chloride, which generally provide results after daily use for two weeks. To help alleviate symptoms and help the toothpaste work better, avoid highly acidic foods such as citrus fruit, tea and soda.
For patients with highly sensitive teeth, there are a variety of treatments available that can be applied to reduce the condition. Make an appointment today to speak with Dr. Lauren about your available options.
In many cases, bleeding gums are an early sign of periodontal disease or gingivitis. If you notice your gums bleeding after brushing your teeth, make an appointment for a full evaluation with Dr. Lauren.
Smoking is one of the most common causes of stains and yellowing teeth. However, there are several types of food and beverages that are particularly effective at staining your teeth, too:
Hot Coffee and Tea — Coffee and tea both contain elements that will stain your teeth. However, the heat of these beverages make the situation even worse: As the drink warms your teeth it causes them to expand, making them more porous and allowing the stains to penetrate deeper.
Acidic Foods — Acidic foods can cause the pores in the enamel of your teeth to open, allowing stains to move deeper into the enamel.
Yes! While dental decay is no longer an issue, you may still experience problems with the fit or comfort of your appliances. Some denture wearers may also develop sores or other issues which should be assessed by a dentist. While you are here, we will evaluate the fit and condition of your appliances and perform an oral cancer screening.