Fort Walton Beach Preventive Dentistry
At Hodges Dental Clinics, we pride ourselves on maintaining a laidback atmosphere where patients feel at ease during their dental care. Restorative and cosmetic treatment solutions are always available at our offices, but Dr. Benjamin Hodges hopes to help you avoid needing them whenever possible with quality preventive care. These services are designed to keep your oral health thriving throughout the years allowing our team to locate potential problems and threats and address them when they’re still in the earliest stages. Contact either our Fort Walton Beach or Pensacola, FL location today to schedule your first appointment!
Even patients with great oral hygiene routines at home fall victim to dental problems that go unnoticed far too long. That’s where six-month check-ups and cleanings with our team come in. These visits are designed to help Dr. Hodges fully understand your unique smile and locate any concerns that need professional attention as soon as possible. With the help of our modern technology, he’ll inspect each tooth, the gums, the bite, existing restorations, and more as thoroughly as possible. Then, he can make individualized recommendations for treatment that fit your personal needs and preferences.
Getting rid of pesky plaque and tartar through routine cleanings is also important for your smile’s health! Our great hygiene department makes this process as smooth and comfortable as possible, and you’re sure to leave feeling refreshed by the experience.
Periodontal disease (more commonly known as gum disease) often seems harmless in the early stages causing gums to become a little red and puffy. Left to its own devices, this condition can quickly get out of control causing serious infection and even tooth loss down the road. At Hodges Dental Clinics, we take this threat seriously, and routine screenings help us identify it early on so any damage is minimized. Early stages of gum disease can often be treated with more frequent professional cleanings and a diligent homecare routine, while patients with moderate to severe cases may need root scaling and planing (a process that involves removing decay from under the gum line and the tooth root surfaces), antibiotic therapy, and surgical intervention.
Digital X-Rays are a big improvement over the traditional technology! Instead of having to wait and wait while film is developed in a darkroom, our dental team can now instantly capture and transfer images of your teeth and gums in seconds for easy viewing; we even magnify and color-code them so patients clearly understand what they’re looking at. They’re safer, too – patients are exposed to 90% less radiation overall during this process.
Oral Cancer Screenings
Oral cancer is a very dangerous health condition – in fact, one person dies from it every hour on average. This happens because many cases aren’t identified until they’ve reached advanced, destructive stages resulting in little hope for the patient. In Fort Walton Beach and Pensacola, our team makes every effort to help with this process providing routine screenings designed to locate areas of soft tissue that could contain cancerous cells.
While diagnosing oral cancer can be tricky, there are some tell-tale symptoms that patients should watch out for when caring for their teeth and gums at home. These include:
- Red or white patches within the mouth
- Lumps, crusts, or thickened areas in the mouth
- Oral sores that bleed easily and heal slowly
- Difficulty chewing or swallowing
- Tongue pain
Do you often wake up with serious headaches or damaged teeth with no known cause? These are common signs of bruxism, which is more commonly known as teeth clenching/grinding. Countless stressed-out adults from all over the country struggle with bruxism, especially when they’re resting. Thankfully, a custom nightguard from Hodges Dental Clinics can provide relief. By wearing this oral appliance while they sleep, patients minimize grinding and protect teeth from breakage and other serious problems down the road.
Dental sealants are a great preventive service for younger patients with teeth in need of a little extra protection, as well as adults who are oversensitive to tooth decay. Our team will “seal” the tooth with a tough plastic material keeping bacteria and food particles out of the deep chewing grooves on back teeth and reducing the risk of cavities.
Do you play a sport that could potentially lead to being hit by an object or another person? Your smile could be in big danger in these instances. Instead of turning to bulky, one-size-fits-all sportsguards for protection, ask Dr. Hodges and the rest of our team about a customized appliance! Our sportsguards provide more comfort and security allowing patients to breathe and speak easily.