A Trusted Family Dentist
Family dentists offer something special for parents and children -- like comprehensive dental care in a friendly, welcoming environment. You’ll know you’ve found the right family dental practice when even the most reluctant members of your crew feel right at home having their smiles looked at. At Indy Dental Group, we are pleased to offer comprehensive dentistry from the comfort of our modern dental practice. Keep reading to learn more about why family dentistry is important. We’ve got the answers to common questions for parents like you!
What are the benefits of visiting a family dentist?
Your life gets a lot easier when you and your loved ones visit the same dentist. It can be a challenge to keep track of visiting multiple dental practices for each member of your family. There are different forms to fill out, questions to ask, names to remember, not to mention separate offices that may be all over town. One of the beautiful things about choosing a family dentist is that they are experts in performing a variety of dental services, from your little ones’ very first checkups and cleanings to your own periodontal or restorative needs. What’s more, a family dental practice like ours understands that your time is valuable -- and we can often schedule block appointments so everyone can have their checkups and cleanings taken care of back to back on the same day. Now that’s convenience you will appreciate!
How often should I bring my family to the dentist?
The American Dental Association’s stance is that patients should see the dentist as often as recommended by their dentist. At Indy Dental Group, we recommend that patients of all ages visit the dentist at least every six months for a checkup and cleaning -- because in most cases, once a year just isn’t enough. People who are at a higher risk of tooth decay or other oral health hazards may benefit from even more frequent visits. Kids should undergo routine appointments because they are at a higher risk of developing cavities until their tooth enamel fully hardens, which does not happen until around age 14. Dental caries (aka cavities) is actually the most common disease affecting children in our country -- but we can help to stop them. The earlier we detect a weak spot on the enamel, the faster we can nip it in the bud. In some cases, a cavity can actually be reversed to prevent the need for a filling altogether. And as far as your own smile needs go, coming in for a visit every six months will allow us to help you prevent tooth decay, worn dental work, and gum disease, which adults are especially prone to.
What is the best toothpaste for my family?
There are a number of options available with toothpastes and mouthwashes, from extra sensitive to whitening, anti-tartar, and just about everything in between. It can feel overwhelming to decide on just one -- but as long as you choose a formula that has been approved by the American Dental Association, you can feel confident in your decision. Toothpaste formulas with this seal of approval are guaranteed to contain fluoride, the mineral that is important in the prevention of cavities and tartar buildup. Aside from this important consideration, you can choose more specific formulas based on your family’s needs. Anti-sensitivity toothpastes can help to reduce discomfort caused by hot and cold sensations, for example. Your child may be more excited about brushing if you choose one that has his or her favorite movie character on the front, and children’s toothpastes often come in fun flavors little ones appreciate. In short, you can’t really go wrong as long as the toothpaste has fluoride -- but please feel free to talk to us any time for a more specific recommendation.
Does the type of toothbrush make a difference?
Just like a painter needs the best tools to create a masterpiece, you, too need the proper gear to keep your smile clean and healthy -- and it all starts with your toothbrush. The bristles matter: choose soft bristles to prevent wear and tear of the tooth enamel and gum recession. And while you can achieve the same level of clean with a manual toothbrush that you can with an electric one, many people do not. Investing in an electric toothbrush may cost you a little more upfront, but it will also help to make sure you brush for the full two minutes, every single time. Plus, since electric toothbrush heads pulsate or rotate on their own, this option can also help to keep you from brushing your teeth too hard and injuring your gums. Whether you choose an electric or a manual toothbrush, make sure you replace it (or the brush head) every three to four months or as soon as its bristles begin to show signs of wear. Disinfect or replace your toothbrush after you have been sick.
Is flossing really all that important?
In short: absolutely. A study came out some time ago that said flossing maybe wasn’t so important after all -- but that could not be further from the truth. In fact, people who perform this habit regularly are more likely to enjoy good oral health and have fewer cavities and a reduced risk of gum disease as well. This is because dental floss is the only way to reach between your teeth and get all the food particles and bacteria your toothbrush has left behind. Flossing should begin for children as soon as two teeth are touching each other and be performed at least once a day after that.
Want to start flossing? It’s simple: just make a habit out of it! Most people know they should floss, they just can’t remember to do it. The key is triggering the habit after you have brushed your teeth, so leave the box of dental floss out somewhere you are sure to see it at night after you have used your toothbrush. You may also want to set an alarm on your phone, or leave a note on your mirror -- whatever it takes to make this necessary oral hygiene habit stick.
What do I do if my child is scared of going to the dentist?
Many children are frightened in new places, so it makes sense that the dentist’s office would be one that would make them a little nervous. Fortunately, that’s one of the big advantages of visiting a family dentist like us here at Indy Dental Group. Our doctors and staff are skilled in providing a warm, friendly approach for little patients -- it’s something parents and children alike can appreciate.
In addition to choosing an excellent family dentist, here are some tips you can keep in mind at home to help reduce your child’s fear or anxiety in the lead up to his or her next dental appointment.
- Talk to them openly and in non-threatening language about what their visit to the dentist will be like. Let your child ask any questions he or she may have about what will happen.
- Role play the dental appointment -- you “play” the dentist and your child the patient.
- Find children’s books about visiting the dentist and read them together.
- Lead by example by brushing and flossing your teeth regularly.
- Make sure you do not to speak negatively about your own dental experiences.
How can I make visiting the dentist fit into the budget?
As with most big decisions, your family’s budget is one of the most important factors as you choose a dentist. At Indy Dental Group, we work hard to help you use all the dental insurance benefits you are owed. You can use your PPO plan and we will partner closely with you to ensure you receive the full reimbursement for any treatments you receive.
For patients who do not have dental insurance or for those who do have coverage but could still use a little help paying for out-of-pocket costs, patient financing is available through CareCredit. This is a third-party financing agency that works like a credit card you use for medical expenses. Simply swipe it at the time you receive the services and then make smaller payments on the bill over time.
We also accept payment via all major credit cards (American Express, Visa, MasterCard, Discover), cash, and checks.
Where can I find the best dentist serving Indianapolis?
If you are ready to visit a family dentist, we invite you to contact the Indy Dental Group! We have a team of skilled doctors and dental professionals waiting to provide you and your loved ones with the very best care. For questions or to schedule an appointment for you or a loved one, please get in touch with our office today.