Prevention & Maintenance
Your dental journey at Elm Family Dentistry starts with a dental exam. One of our three experienced dentists will introduce themselves and lead you through a comprehensive examination of your oral health (with a link to your overall health too). We do our very best to see you on time and follow the motto: “One Patient, One Dentist, One Chair at a time.” This means you’ll have our undivided attention during your regular check-ups and exams.
A typical dental examination includes:
- Visual health check of your teeth and gums using an intraoral camera
- Focus on prevention with professional advice from your dentist
- Oral cancer screenings
- Faster, safer, more comfortable digital x-rays (as required)
- One-on-one consultation with a caring dentist
We echo the advice of the American Dental Association to see your dentist every six months for a check-up. This helps prevent small problems from developing and leading to more expensive health concerns.
Alongside your dental exams, we recommend seeing our dental hygienists for regular cleanings and periodontal advice. Our hygienists are fully trained in the art of preventing gum disease and keeping your teeth clean and healthy.
When you visit our hygiene team they will get to know you (and your family) and address any concerns you may have. In addition to providing a gentle, painless cleaning (designed to remove any missed plaque from your at-home brushing and flossing), our team also provides expert advice and recommendations on how to improve your daily oral health routine.
Please note that you’ll never be judged or lectured to, but rather, will gain a dental partner who genuinely cares about you and your oral health. We are by your side and enjoy spending time explaining our findings and recommendations.
Did you know periodontal disease (aka gum disease) could impact your overall health? Studies have shown a link between the disease and an increased risk of whole-body health concerns such as:
- Heart disease
There are many other conditions that this disease can be linked to. Therefore, our skilled dentists in West Springfield, MA have made it a goal to help as many patients reduce the risk of experiencing gum disease. How do we do this? Our dental hygienists and dentists discuss and identify these potential risks during your six-month exam and hygiene treatment.
If we see any early signs of gum disease, e.g., inflamed gums, bleeding, or sensitivity, then we’ll recommend immediate action. This may include a simple cleaning, a review of your hygiene routine and daily habits, or, if more severe, a visit to a periodontist. With periodontal/gum disease, prevention is the best cure. Let’s work together to keep your teeth and gums healthy.
Part of our commitment to your overall health includes assessing your teeth for the effects of bruxism (aka teeth grinding). If you suffer with this issue it can cause jaw pain, headaches, and disrupt your sleep. The good news is that our dentists can help identify early signs of this issue.
If you are suffering from bruxism, we recommend employing the use of a custom-made night guard and then visiting your primary care physician. A night guard is created using an impression of your teeth and is then comfortably placed into your mouth. Worn at night, the night guard prevents you from grinding your teeth together and can hold your jaw in the correct position.
In addition to night guards, we also offer sports guards for those playing contact sports. Again these mouthguards are custom-made and are available for children and adults. The goal of the sports guard is to prevent injury while allowing you to enjoy the sports you love!
As a courtesy, our doctors provide aftercare instructions for those using night guards.
Honestly the best dental office you will ever find. The staff is great, they will go out of their way to make your visit personal and professional.
Ellen J. (Actual Patient)
The number one cause of dental anxiety is an unhappy experience at the dentist during childhood. At Elm Family Dentistry, we take this very seriously and have created a special experience for our younger patients.
In addition to providing a wide range of family treatments, we welcome children to our office in a fun way. Before their first visit, we recommend children come along to their parent’s visit to get acquainted with the team and office atmosphere. We’ll let them ride on the dentist chair, use the motion-activated dental light, and get a feel for some of the equipment we use. By getting familiar with the office, they’ll see that we have fun and involve them in the appointment.
Once your child feels comfortable, we can schedule in their visit. During this appointment, we’ll review their homecare with you, take some x-rays, and may prescribe a fluoride treatment. When seeing our younger patients, we heavily emphasize prevention and work with you as a parent to keep your child healthy and happy. If problems do arise, such as cavities, rest-assured we use gentle treatments like air abrasion to make their experience comfortable and needle-free. We are here for your family and treat kids as if they were our own.
Cavities are one of the most common dental problems, and, although they are treatable, they are preventable too. One such way to reduce the development of cavities is dental sealants. This innovative treatment uses a special, clear gel to fill the grooves and fissures found on the surface of your teeth.
Normally these grooves can trap food debris and be difficult to brush, thus allowing decay to develop. Once the sealant is painted onto the tooth, the debris is deflected away and easily removed with regular brushing.
Sealants are very useful when used on the back teeth, as these are hard to reach during brushing – especially for younger patients. This preventive treatment is long lasting but will be assessed during each regular six-month exam.
When you hear the phrase “root canals” you may think of a painful but necessary dental procedure, and you’d be 50% correct. Root canals are necessary when the inside of your tooth becomes infected, however, there is no need for the procedure to be painful. With the use of modern technology and their advanced training, our West Springfield dentists can comfortably perform root canal therapy.
The procedure begins by numbing the area around your tooth and making sure it is clean. When you are ready, your dentist will gently remove the infected bacteria from inside your tooth (the pulp) and reinforce the strength of your tooth with a special resin.
Once the tooth is infection-free, we seal it and provide you with some helpful post-op instructions.
Dr. Gary Archambault was an early pioneer of air abrasion (aka particle beam technology). He has been using this piece of technology for more than 30 years on both children and adults. This modern treatment is like a compact dental sandblaster that can prevent smaller cavities from increasing in size and cause larger problems.
It is pain-free and replaces the need for anesthetic and traditional drills when placing fillings. Air abrasion provides a quieter, more relaxing experience for those patients needing cavity care. We’ll explain how the equipment works before starting the procedure and answer any questions you may have.
Do You Have a Dental Emergency?
Our dentists are available five days a week and do their best to see you the same day that you call. In addition, our office is open until 7:30 pm on both Tuesdays and Wednesdays.