General Dentist in Cupertino
Ryan Senft, DDS provides general dental services in Cupertino, CA. Call 408-996-8595 to learn more and schedule your appointment.
Preventive dentistry is the most important service we provide at our practice. With preventive dental care, not only can you avoid needing more costly restorative procedures, but your oral health and your overall health are connected in ways we’re only just beginning to understand. Emerging research shows potential links between gum disease and cardiovascular health, and it’s believed that inflammation in the mouth can lead to inflammation elsewhere in the body.
When you visit your dentist every six months for dental exams and cleanings, we can catch potential oral health issues before they become serious problems. Patients who see their dentist regularly have fewer lost teeth, experience less tooth decay, and are less susceptible to gum disease.
Whether it’s been six months since your last dental check-up or six years, we welcome you at our practice. Call us today at 408-996-8595 to schedule your appointment.
Comprehensive Evaluation / Oral Examination
An oral examination is a visual inspection of the mouth, head, and neck, performed to detect abnormalities. Radiographs allow for a more complete examination, helping the doctor to detect cavities, problems in existing dental restorations, gum and bone recession or other abnormal conditions within the mouth, head and neck area.
A dental cleaning, also known as an oral prophylaxis, is the removal of dental plaque and tartar (calculus) from the teeth. Specialized instruments are used to gently remove these deposits without harming the teeth. First, an ultrasonic device that emits vibrations and is cooled by water is used to loosen larger pieces of tartar. Next, hand tools are used to manually remove smaller deposits and smooth the tooth surfaces. Once all the tooth surfaces have been cleaned of tartar and plaque, the teeth are polished.
Many sports require athletes to use a mouthguard to protect their teeth while practicing and playing. Frequently used in contact sports, the mouthguard covers the gums and teeth to provide protection for lips, gums, teeth, and arches. A properly fitted mouthguard can reduce the severity of dental injuries.
Nightguards are removable acrylic appliances that can be used to relieve TMJ pain and other discomforts caused by grinding the teeth (bruxism). They are usually worn at night to adjust the jaw to prevent grinding during sleep.
Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling and root planing is a non-surgical procedure used to treat gum disease. During the scaling process, specialized dental instruments are used to remove dental plaque and calculus from beneath the gums. Planing is the procedure used to smooth the tooth roots after the scaling process. Root planing helps the gums heal and reattach themselves to a cleaner and smoother root surface.
Root Canal Treatment
Root canals are most often necessary when decay has reached the nerve of the tooth or the tooth has become infected. When root canal therapy is performed, infected or inflamed pulp is removed from the tooth chamber. The inside of the tooth is then cleaned and disinfected before being filled and sealed to limit the possibility of future infection. Soon after the root canal is performed, the tooth is restored with a dental crown or filling to protect the tooth and restore normal tooth function.
A tooth that cannot be saved with restorative procedures may need to be removed. Before removal of the tooth, the area will be numbed with anesthesia. The tooth is loosened from the jawbone and surrounding ligaments and tissues with a gentle rocking motion. Once it is loose, it is gently removed. Stitches may be necessary after the removal of a tooth.
If you’d like to schedule a dental exam and cleaning or learn more about any of our general dentistry services, call us today at 408-996-8595 to schedule an appointment.
Frequently Asked Questions About General Dentistry
Is dental cleaning painful?
Dental cleaning shouldn’t be painful, although it may be uncomfortable at times, particularly when there is a lot of tartar to remove. The good news is that when you visit us every six months for cleanings, brush your teeth for two minutes twice a day, and floss at least once a day, the amount of tartar on your teeth should be minimal.
What is included in a dental cleaning?
Dental cleaning involves tooth scaling, which removes accumulated plaque and tartar from the surfaces of your teeth, and then tooth polishing, which creates a smooth surface that makes it more difficult for new plaque and tartar to accumulate.
Can gum disease be cured?
Yes, in its earliest stages, gum disease can be cured. Scaling and root planing often succeeds in reversing gum disease by removing plaque from below the gumline and smoothing the roots of the teeth to eliminate the deep pockets where bacteria collects. This stops the progression of gum disease in its tracks and allows the inflamed tissue to heal.
What are the first signs of gum disease?
The first signs of gum disease are red, swollen, and bleeding gums. It’s important to get prompt treatment at this stage of the disease before permanent damage to soft tissues, bone, and teeth occurs.
Is it better to get a root canal or tooth extraction?
If you have a choice between the two options, it’s always advisable to opt for the root canal. Although root canals have a reputation for being painful, modern endodontic techniques and anesthesia make the procedure no more painful than having a cavity filled. A root canal allows us to save your natural tooth, which is the goal of dentistry. With an extraction, bone loss may eventually occur, leading to a weakened bite, malocclusion, and compromised oral health.
When should I go to the dentist for wisdom tooth pain?
If you’re experiencing wisdom tooth pain, you should go to the dentist promptly. Most patients need their wisdom teeth removed. If you’re one of the rare people who has sufficient room for wisdom teeth to erupt without issue, they’re still vulnerable to decay and gum disease due to their location in the back of the mouth, so it’s a good idea to make an appointment.
Call 408-996-8595 to schedule your appointment.