Cosmetic & Emergency
Terry Hayes DDS, Bryan Benbow DDS

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): General & Family Dentistry

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General & Family Dentistry

Even if you brush and floss after every meal, you should still go see your dentist for a professional cleaning and check-up at least once a year. It is recommended that you go every 6 months to make sure your teeth are healthy and that there aren’t any hidden issues. If you have a more severe dental problem, you might need to go more frequently, depending on the severity of your condition.

Absolutely! We offer 24-hour emergency dental care to people in Collierville, Memphis, and surrounding areas. We can accommodate same-day visits, as well as after-hours appointments if needed. We have an after-hours number to call directly in the event of an emergency.

Cavities are caused by a combination of things, including not brushing your teeth well or often, bacteria, sugary drinks, and more. However, there are ways to help prevent cavities from forming in the first place. Brush with fluoride toothpaste after eating, and be sure to use a fluoride mouthwash as well. Avoid frequent drinking and snacking throughout the day, especially with sugary foods. Make sure you are using proper brushing techniques to get rid of the plaque on your teeth. Ask your dentist to show you how if you aren’t sure you are using proper technique.  

Plaque is the sticky film that is constantly forming on your teeth. It can be colorless or pale yellow. Plaque forms on your gum line and between your teeth when your saliva is combined with food and liquids. It is filled with millions of bacteria, so it’s important that plaque is removed from your teeth regularly. The easiest way to remove plaque is to brush and floss your teeth at least twice per day. If you don’t remove plaque when it’s soft, it hardens and become much more difficult to get rid of, leading to tartar at your gumline.

X-rays are just as important as your regular dental cleanings. X-rays provide images of your teeth that are very informative to your dentist. Your dentist will be able to see problems that might not be visible to the eye, such as tooth decay, cavities, impacted teeth, etc. While X-rays are considered safe and are a routine practice, women who are pregnant or think they may be pregnant should avoid them.

Brushing your teeth will clean most of the surface area of your teeth, but it can’t quite get to the areas between them. By flossing regularly, you are removing plaque and extra food particles from your teeth, preventing plaque buildup and tartar. Ideally, you should floss every time you brush your teeth. We recommend flossing once per day at a minimum.

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