What is the difference between a regular six-month cleaning and gum therapy?
The cleanings that you receive at your six-month examinations are preventive cleanings, meaning that they are performed to prevent the onset of tooth decay and periodontal (gum) disease. Gum therapies or gum cleanings are performed on those who have gingivitis or periodontal disease, and they are designed to halt the progression of gum disease. Gum cleanings are usually more intensive and can require several appointments, depending on the severity of the gum disease. For those who do have gum disease, Dr. Greg Atwood usually recommends receiving a gum cleaning once every three or four months.

What will my insurance cover?
This will be different for each treatment as well as for each individual. Different insurance companies have different levels of coverage, but our friendly and knowledgeable office team will be happy to provide you with an estimated co-payment cost during your appointment. We will also file your insurance paperwork for you so you have one less thing to worry about.

If I have a dental emergency, what should I do?
The first step is to remain calm and keep a clear head. The second step is to contact Atwood Family Dental as soon as possible. If a tooth has been knocked out, remember to keep it in a cup of milk or the victim’s saliva until you are able to reach our office. Do not try to clean off the tooth. For other emergencies, such as dental pain or toothaches, take ibuprofen for relief but do not place aspirin on the aching tooth. Again, try to visit our dental office as soon as possible. Our dentist in Odessa, Texas, can accommodate dental emergencies and we will do everything in our power to see you the same day.

How soon should I begin cleaning my baby’s teeth?
As a general rule, it is a good idea to begin cleaning your baby’s teeth early. It may even be beneficial to clean an infant’s gums using an infant toothbrush and water before any teeth have erupted. Once your child’s teeth start coming in, begin brushing them using fluoride toothpaste and a child’s toothbrush twice each day.