Frequently Asked Questions
You have dental questions, and we have the answers! Below, you’ll find answers to some of the most common questions we receive every day. If you have one that we haven’t covered here, feel free to just give us a call and ask! We’re always ready to talk dentistry with you.
How do I know when it's time to come in for a checkup?
On average, everyone age 4 and above should have at least two checkups and cleanings every year. While brushing and flossing at home is essential, periodic checkups are very important when it comes to catching and treating more advanced dental problems before they have a chance to really do harm.
How can I have whiter teeth?
When it comes to whitening your smile, you have options, ranging from at-home treatments to ones we can provide right here in the office. Dr. Danice Nelsen Couch can help you figure out the best way to brighten your smile based on the current shade of your teeth. Once that has been decided, you’ll spend about 1 to 4 weeks undergoing a series of simple whitening treatments. In most cases, patients can expect to end up with a smile that’s at least 2 shades whiter on our dental shade chart, which trust us, makes a huge difference!
What about my children? At what age should they see a dentist?
We recommend that a child should have their first official checkup and cleaning around the age of 3 or 4. To help them feel more comfortable in our office, we suggest bringing them to one of your own appointments or that of an older sibling beforehand so they can become acquainted with the new sights and smells of a dental practice. This will also help them form a trusting relationship with our team and dental care in general right from the very start.
What different payment options do you accept?
Our practice accepts payments made with cash, checks, all major credit cards, and CareCredit. We also accept a long list of insurance plans, and we can go over your benefits with you before your first visit.
If you would be interested in financing your care with CareCredit, you can explore their different plans and apply for one by clicking on the link on our new patients page.
What makes you different from any other dental practice I can visit?
This is a fair question! When you choose to visit us, we’ll think of you as a complete person, not just another set of teeth to fix and clean. Our mission is to help you achieve and then maintain the healthiest, most beautiful smile possible. In order to do this, we’ll take the time to go over your dental history and help you understand all of your treatment options so that you always feel like you’re in the driver’s seat. We believe patient education is important because dental care is much less intimidating when you understand what is going on!
Is it bad if my gums bleed after I brush my teeth?
While bleeding gums following brushing certainly isn’t a good thing, the condition may or may not actually require any attention on our part. In many cases, bleeding gums can be caused by brushing with too much force or using a hard-bristled tooth brush. Soft-bristles and a lighter touch may help stop the bleeding! If not, then you may have gum disease, which is a bacterial infection of the gums and roots of the teeth. In this case, you should indeed give us a call so we can evaluate your situation and figure out the best course of treatment.
I really don't like visiting the dentist. Is there anything you can do to help me relax?
Certainly! We completely understand that some folks really don’t like visiting the dentist, so our goal is to create a very calm and relaxing experience for every patient. This is why we have TVs in each room along with headphones so you can listen to the music of your choice. For more involved procedures, patients can also benefit from sedation that will help any nerves quickly melt away.
My breath stinks, and I brush every day. Is there something you can do to help?
It sounds like you may be struggling with halitosis, or persistent bad breath. Millions of people are currently dealing with the same problem, but fortunately, there are numerous things you can do to get it under control. Start by brushing 3 times a day, flossing consistently, and don’t forget to clean your tongue as well, as food particles and bacteria on it can largely influence how your breath smells. If this doesn’t help, be sure to give us a call, as we can offer several solutions.
We can provide you with what is called a tongue scraper, which is specially designed to do exactly what you think. We might also recommend that you use a prescription-strength mouthwash or toothpaste that specifically designed to breakup odor-causing compounds in the mouth.
Or, if we suspect that your bad breath is due to a systemic problem such as an infection or underlying condition, then we may recommend that you visit your family physician.
I want my front teeth to look better, but I don't want to wear braces. What can you do to help?
Dr. Danice Nelsen Couch can help improve the look of your front teeth in a number of ways that don’t involve braces. For slightly crooked or unevenly worn teeth, she can use a bit of direct bonding or porcelain veneers to give you that bright, uniform look you desire. Or, she’s also able to offer Invisalign, an orthodontic treatment that uses clear aligners as oppose to brackets and wires to straighten the teeth. To figure out which option would be best for you, just give our office a call.
My spouse snores and keeps me up all night. I've heard that a dentist might be able to prescribe an appliance that prevents snoring. Is this true?
Snoring can be rough on any relationship! It can be caused by a number of factors, so we encourage you to have your spouse come see Dr. Danice for a consultation so we can figure out what is making them snore. In some cases, snoring is actually a sign that a person is suffering from sleep apnea, which is a very serious disorder that can endanger their overall health. Or, they may simply have enlarged anatomical structures in their mouth (such as their tonsils, adenoids, or uvula) that vibrate as air rushes past them. Dr. Danice can address either problem by prescribing the use of a special appliance called a “Somnodent®.” This gently holds the mouth and throat in an open position while a person sleeps, and this will help prevent snoring from the very first night.