Regular comprehensive examinations are essential to preventive dentistry and they happen constantly at Scarsdale Smiles. Every time Dr. Cox looks in your mouth, he’s reading the whole picture. The biggest comprehensive exam takes place at your first visit, where you get a thorough cleaning, and we take tons of digital images and x-rays of your mouth. Then Dr. Cox does a visual assessment of existing restorations and treatments and checks for oral cancer. It doesn’t end there! He keeps checking and looking and making sure things look healthy in your mouth, visit after visit.
Oral cancer is dangerous, but much easier to treat when we catch it early. Dr. Cox does a manual screen for oral cancer at every visit. That means he checks your face, head, neck, mouth, lips, and throat for anything that looks unusual. If he finds something, he’ll connect you with resources for additional tests and screening.
Digital x-rays significantly reduce the exposure to radiation, and have the advantage of being stored electronically, which means it’s easy for you, the patient, to have access to your dental x-rays. It also means it’s easy for Dr. Cox to share and discuss the images with you in the office.
These are small cameras that are used to take pictures of the inside of your mouth to help in diagnosis, treatment, and patient education and communication. What that means to you is you’ll always be well-informed and Dr. Cox can show you what he sees when he looks in your mouth.
Sometimes people have a gap between their two front teeth caused by an excess of tissue that attaches the upper lip to the gums. This tissue is called the frenulum. In these cases, a frenectomy can be performed. A frenectomy is when a dentist uses a laser to cut the frenulum, which allows the teeth to shift and close the gap naturally, and with the laser, the process is quick and easy. A frenectomy may be performed before braces are applied. Dr. Cox also uses the soft tissue laser to aid in healing cold sore and other ameliorative treatments.
During hygiene visits at Scarsdale Smiles, we clean your teeth thoroughly using a Cavitron ultrasonic scaler. That means sound waves are used to loosen plaque and tartar and remove them from your teeth. We recommend hygiene visits every six months, and brushing and flossing daily between visits. If you have questions about how to take care of your teeth and make them last a lifetime, just ask.
Gum disease, or periodontitis, is serious business. Sometimes, bacteria gets caught in the space between the gums and teeth and cause pockets to form in the gums. These pockets harbor bacteria that cause your gums to recede. This is dangerous in a number of ways: for one thing, gum disease has been linked to increased risk of heart disease and stroke! If Dr. Cox sees signs of gum disease, he’ll refer you to a highly qualified periodontist for treatment.
Fluoride is a mineral that strengthens tooth enamel and helps prevent decay. Fluoride treatments are especially important in children, and at Scarsdale Smiles, we provide them to all patients under age 16 at every visit and to adults as needed.
People who clench their teeth at night may be susceptible to a number of uncomfortable symptoms: headaches; upper-back pain; and cracked, worn teeth from the pressure clenching and grinding cause. That’s why Dr. Cox is equipped to make you a custom-fitted mouth guard to wear at night and protect your teeth. It’s also true that mouthguards worn during athletic training and games protect against mouth injuries and can even lessen the risk of concussions. Ask us to fit you or your favorite athlete for a mouthguard today.
Dental emergencies happen… just like all the other kinds of emergencies! We want you to feel safe in calling us if you have a dental emergency.
In case of a knocked out tooth, here are a few guidelines to follow:
1. Do not, under any circumstances touch the root or use alcohol or peroxide to clean the tooth.
2. If possible, gently return the tooth to its socket and use gauze under gentle bite pressure to catch blood and saliva.
3. If the tooth is dirty or cannot be returned to the socket, place it in a clean container and cover it with whole milk or saliva.
4. Time is of the essence. A tooth that is out of its socket for longer than 30 minutes greatly reduces the chance to save it. Act smart, but act fast.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, lack of sleep has been self-reported to cause problems with memory, concentration, work quality, and even driving. That’s why Dr. Cox is trained to prescribe the TAP (Thornton Adjustable Positioner) appliance for patients with sleep apnea. The TAP appliance is a bite guard that stops your airway from becoming obstructed during sleep. It is small and unobtrusive, adjustable while in the mouth, and custom made for your particular needs. If you think you have sleep apnea, ask Dr. Cox about the TAP appliance.