Frequently Asked Questions.
It’s important to be knowledgeable about your dental health and your treatment; we encourage you to contact us when any questions arise. We want you to be informed because it helps us make sound decisions about treatments that are appropriate for your specific needs. No question is too small, and we will do our best to give you answers that provide you with the information you need.
For your convenience, we’ve listed some of the more frequently asked questions below. If you do not see your question answered here, please don’t hesitate to contact our office.
What is the best toothbrush to use?
At Cedar Road Dental, we strongly advocate prevention, and tooth brushing is an essential part of achieving and maintaining great oral health. Brushing thoroughly twice a day removes the debris that builds up on your teeth and leads to decay and periodontal disease.
If you’ve shopped for a toothbrush lately, you may have been overwhelmed by all the choices. There are basically two types of toothbrushes – electronic and manual. Both can clean your teeth effectively and thoroughly.
Kids may be more likely to brush with an electronic toothbrush, and people who have trouble using a manual toothbrush can certainly benefit from a powered version. A good rule of thumb is to choose the toothbrush that you and your family are most likely to use.
Prevention is the easiest and most affordable way to avoid cavities and periodontal disease. Professional cleanings twice a year at our Chesapeake dental office are important to make sure your teeth are really clean so that we can help you stay ahead of periodontal disease. At-home oral hygiene should include brushing twice a day and flossing once a day.
Please contact us today to schedule an appointment for a dental cleaning to protect your oral health.
Is my insurance going to cover this service?
As you may have guessed, dental insurance coverage can be a confusing topic for the average person. Coverage for dental services varies widely from one insurance company and policy to the next, and there really is no easy way to answer this question without more information about your specific policy and insurance provider.
Generally speaking, most insurance policies we’ve worked with at our Chesapeake dental office cover the cost of preventive services like professional cleanings, routine dental exams, and x-rays for you and your children. However, depending on your policy, you may be responsible for a portion of the cost of these treatments. In most cases, dental insurance does not cover cosmetic dental treatments like veneers and teeth whitening.
Our team has extensive experience working with different types of insurance, and we will make it as easy as possible for you to get treatment. If you have a question about a specific service, we will be happy to submit a pre-authorization request to your insurance provider to see if the procedure is likely to be covered under your policy.
We want you to be fully informed about your out-of-pocket expenses before we begin any type of treatment. Please don’t hesitate to contact our Chesapeake dental office if you have questions, and a friendly member of our team will be happy to help you get the answers you need.
Should I have my old silver fillings replaced?
Recently there has been some controversy in the news about the safety of silver (amalgam) fillings. Some people at our Chesapeake dental office have expressed concern about the fact that amalgam is a mixture of metals that includes mercury.
We want you to know that repeat studies have shown that there is no reason to be concerned about the presence of mercury in amalgam fillings. In fact, dental amalgam has been used safely in millions of fillings for over 100 years. So, unless you have been told that your silver (amalgam) fillings are cracked or otherwise damaged, it is not necessary to have them replaced.
But there is an aesthetic element to consider as silver fillings do tend to darken over time, making them more noticeable. If this is a concern for you, Dr. Zahir can replace your silver fillings with newer tooth-colored composite material that blends perfectly with your natural teeth.
If you’re concerned about your amalgam fillings, please call our Chesapeake dental office. After performing a thorough examination, we can help you decide which approach is best for your particular situation.
I’m worried about too many x-rays. Are they safe?
Dental x-rays are one of the most valuable diagnostic tools used at our Chesapeake dental office because they allow us to detect developing problems while they are still small and easy to treat.
Advances in dental technology include the use of digital radiography, which reduces your exposure by as much as 90% compared to traditional dental x-rays. Not only are digital x-rays safer, they are preferable to traditional x-rays because they give us a much more detailed view of what’s happening inside your teeth.
In regard to exposure from x-rays, it’s good to remember that even the sun exposes us to some level of radiation all the time. We have found that the small exposure that occurs with dental x-rays is offset by its diagnostic benefits. But your safety is of the utmost importance to us, and we provide all patients with a lead-lined apron for an extra layer of protection.
We want you to be comfortable with every aspect of your treatment at our Chesapeake dental office. If you still have any concerns about the safety of dental x-rays, please don’t hesitate to contact our office. A trained member of our professional team will be happy to answer all your questions.
Do I need to pre-medicate for my appointment?
You may have heard that it is recommended to take antibiotics before some dental procedures, referred to as “antibiotic prophylaxis.” This is certainly not appropriate for everyone, so why is it that dentists and healthcare providers recommend pre-medicating for some patients?
Bacteria are present in everyone’s mouth. Some dental treatments, and daily routines like brushing, flossing, and chewing, can allow bacteria to enter the bloodstream. For the majority of people, this is not a problem. If your immune system is healthy, these bacteria are not harmful. For some people, however, these bacteria may lead to infection elsewhere in the body.
Pre-medicating with antibiotics prior to certain treatments is recommended for a small number of people with specific heart conditions. You can refer to the American Heart Association or your primary healthcare provider for guidelines that identify those who should take antibiotics prior to dental care. Likewise, patients with recent joint replacements should be premeditated. The specific guidelines for these patients have recently been updated; we can give you guidance so don’t hesitate to ask.
There is no single answer that is appropriate for everyone. There are many health factors that need to be taken into account before making the decision to pre-medicate, and Dr.Zahir can assess your medical history, and consult with your family doctor or surgeon if necessary, to decide what is best for your needs.
Do you have payment options?
We are happy to accept cash, check, and major credit cards. Financing through CareCredit is also available, and we offer a 5% discount off services for payments made up-front.
Are you accepting new patients?
We are always happy to welcome new patients to our office! Please feel free to phone us at 757-548-0000 to arrange an appointment, or follow the link to our convenient online appointment scheduling form.
Do you give second opinions?
We believe you should be completely comfortable before proceeding with any proposed treatment. Dr. Zahir will be happy to assess your situation and provide a second opinion about the procedure you are considering.