A Healthy Smile is a Happy Smile

There are several steps you can take to ensure you enjoy optimal oral health for an entire lifetime. You may believe that simply brushing and occasionally flossing is enough to maintain a healthy smile. However, did you know that it is imperative to see the dentist for a checkup every six months as well? Dr. Ruth Bailey administers general dentistry procedures for her Knoxville, Bearden, and Sequoyah Hills,Tennessee patients, which keep smiles in tip-top shape. Dr. Bailey designed her practice with patient comfort in mind. She wanted to create a pleasant, welcoming atmosphere so patients feel good about seeking necessary dental care. Dr. Bailey meets with each patient personally, and gains an understanding of her patient in order to best serve their needs. To schedule your checkup and learn more about general dentistry, contact our Knoxville dental practice today.

You may be asking yourself: why it is so important to go to the dentist, if nothing is even wrong? The answer is: because the dentist can detect issues that you may not even be aware of. The key to good oral health is finding and treating problems in their earliest stage, so they do not worsen. During your routine checkup, Dr. Bailey and her friendly team will carry out the following procedures:

Examination – Dr. Bailey begins by visually inspecting the teeth and gums. She uses special diagnostic tools to evaluate every aspect of the mouth. She looks for any indication that decay or gum disease is present and makes note of any potential concerns.

X-Rays – We recommend that x-rays be taken once a year. X-rays can reveal problems occurring – to the teeth, gums, or jawbone – that aren’t visible to the naked eye, such as decay in-between teeth, impacted teeth, malocclusion, cysts or growths, bone loss, loose or cracked restorations, or infection.

Professional cleaning – Our hygienist administers a professional teeth cleaning, which is more powerful and effective than your daily at-home brushing. Using special dental equipment we are able to remove plaque and tarter buildup on the teeth and along the gum line. The teeth are then polished for an extra-healthy glow.

Preventive treatments – Dr. Bailey may recommend additional preventive treatments to protect the teeth from harmful bacteria. Fluoride in a gel form coats the teeth in order to strengthen them and fight disease. Or, dental sealants, a plastic coating that seals tiny cracks and grooves that are most susceptible to decay, may be applied to the molars. Preventive treatments are particularly useful for young children whose teeth are still developing and who may not have adopted the best oral hygiene habits yet.

If any problems are detected during your routine exam, Dr. Bailey will recommend the best course of treatment, which may include:

Dental filling – If Dr. Bailey discovers tooth decay, or a cavity, she will have to remove any decayed material and fill the cavity. She generally recommends tooth colored composite dental filling for the most natural look. The goal is to treat any decay while it is minor, so it does not worsen.

Root canal therapy – Decay that is left untreated spreads to the inner chambers of the tooth, where the tooth root exists. When this occurs, the patient often feels pain and discomfort. Root canal therapy is the process of removing any infected pulp and tissue from inside the tooth. The tooth is then filled with composite filling, or a dental crown is placed.

Periodontal treatment ­– There are several options for treating gum disease, the selection of which depends on the severity of the case. Dr. Bailey’s hygienists administer scaling and root planing for early onset of the condition. This involves using special instruments to deep clean underneath the gum line. Additionally, laser dentistry is an option available for treating gum disease.