General & Family Dentistry for Jacksonville, FL
We offer the basics of preventive dental care and so much more!
Every healthy smile is built on a solid foundation of preventive care. When you visit us regularly — that is, even when you don’t think anything is necessarily “wrong” — we can help you avoid tooth decay, gum disease, and a host of other issues that put your healthy, complete smile at risk. No matter your age, Dr. Jacqueline West begins all treatment plans with a focus on prevention. Keep reading to find out just how important that is!
Checkups & Cleanings
The checkup and cleaning is the bedrock of preventive dentistry, and for that reason, we recommend patients of all ages receive one at least every six months. It is during this appointment that we get the chance to remove problem-causing plaque and tartar as well as perform a tooth-by-tooth examination to look for tooth decay and other issues. We can also use X-rays to give us a peek below the surface to have a more complete picture of your oral health as well.
Children require a special approach when it comes to dental care, as they are at a higher risk of developing cavities until their tooth enamel fully hardens around age 14. We know what it takes to put your little one’s smile on the path to a lifetime of oral health — including the special, friendly approach children need to enjoy relaxing visits! Kids love visiting Dr. West and the team at West Dentistry, and that means you will, too.
Dental sealants are translucent coverings that are painted directly onto the chewing surfaces of the back teeth (molars and premolars). They create a barrier between the tooth enamel and food particles and bacteria that can easily become lodged in these irregular surfaces, providing significant protection against tooth decay. Dental sealants are especially helpful for children and cavity-prone adults. They are applied in a matter of minutes and can provide years and years of cavity prevention.
Nightguards for Bruxism
Are you currently dealing with nighttime teeth grinding and jaw clenching, also known as bruxism? If so, then you are at risk of breaking or damaging your teeth as well as developing facial pain, headaches, and several other uncomfortable side effects. Patients who have bruxism can benefit from a custom-fitted nightguard provided by their Jacksonville dentist. This protective device cushions the tooth enamel against teeth grinding and jaw clenching, keeping your smile healthy and whole while you sleep.
Mouthguards & Sportsguards
Whether it’s on the field, court, or in the rink, contact sports are the #1 cause of tooth injuries and dental emergencies such as knocked out, dislodged, and broken teeth. That fact should be a concern for any athlete, no matter your age or level of play. Fortunately, a customized mouthguard or sportsguard from Dr. West can provide significant protection against sports-related injuries. People who engage in heavy-hitting activities like football, wrestling, boxing, and others should certainly consider making this worthwhile investment.
Oral Cancer Screening
The rates of oral cancer are rising throughout the United States, and the disease is affecting more young, healthy patients than ever before. Early detection can greatly improve the odds of successful treatment, and that is why Dr. West recommends adults of all ages receive routine oral cancer screenings. During this exam (which she can perform as part of your regular checkup), Dr. West will check for irregularities that could indicate precancerous or cancerous cells, and she’ll let you know what to do next if she finds a suspicious area.
Fluoride is well-known for its benefits to oral health, because it remineralizes the tooth enamel to help protect it from developing weak spots that can easily turn into cavities. Fluoride has been added to most tap water sources in the United States, and if you use a toothpaste that has been approved by the American Dental Association, you benefit from it there, too. We can provide additional help with a topical fluoride treatment at your six-month checkup and cleaning as well.
Toothpastes & Mouthwashes
One common question our patients ask during preventive checkups is about toothpaste, like do we recommend a certain type? And, is using mouthwash really necessary? The answer is… it depends. Mouthwash is no substitute for brushing and flossing, but it can help keep your mouth fresher and cleaner than those two things alone. We can recommend a special formula of toothpaste and mouthwash depending on your specific oral health needs, like sensitivity, whitening, fluoride-free, etc.