FAQs

When choosing a dental office, having questions is natural! It’s a big decision. We welcome you to read through our most frequently asked questions. If you do not see yours listed, call our office. We are happy to help.

What if I do not have dental insurance?

No problem! Many people today find that dental insurance doesn’t always cover all their oral health needs, yet policies can be really expensive. You might be surprised to learn that many of our patients do not have dental insurance.

To meet the needs of our patients, we offer an in-house dental savings plan that gives you a way to easily afford your preventive and routine care. If you know you have some necessary dental treatment on the horizon, we can help you fit it into your budget in a manageable way.

The best part of being an insurance-free patient is that you and Dr. David Stern will have the final say on what treatment will work best for you without the intervention of an insurance company that often denies claims based on annual limits, waiting periods, and frequency limits.

You and your dentist should be the ones determining what is best for your oral health. If you ever have a question about how to fit your dental care into your budget, contact us. We work with patients all the time to make dental care easy, affordable, and accessible.

By working together, we can keep your smile healthy and beautiful!

What can I do about these ugly fillings?

Amalgam (or silver) fillings are becoming a thing of the past. They require the removal of a greater amount of healthy tooth structure and can cast a dark shadow across your otherwise beautiful smile. Many patients feel self-conscious that these large fillings are visible when they laugh or smile and are seeking alternatives.

At Jarrettsville Family Dentistry, we offer many different tooth-colored restorations to keep your smile looking great and provide protection. Tooth-colored fillings allow us to fill cavities without the need for silver amalgam. When you have a large filling that breaks down or requires replacement, we also offer porcelain crowns to provide more protection.

We can discuss your goals for your smile and replace your dark restorations with natural-looking alternatives. While there may not be any immediate health concerns with keeping your silver fillings, some patients question the safety of mercury-containing amalgams.

Dr. Stern wants to hear your concerns, provide good information, and offer solutions to give you a smile you feel proud of. Contact us today to set up an exam in our office. Once he has the opportunity to examine your teeth, he can offer the solutions that will work best for you.

Do you accept payment plans?

At Jarrettsville Family Dentistry, our goal is to keep you and your family healthy. We never want money to be an obstacle to getting the care that you need. That is why we developed financial programs to make dentistry more affordable for our patients.

We accept all of the traditional payment methods: cash, checks, credit cards. But what if you need a significant amount of work and cannot pay all at once? We provide an in-house savings plan to help patients afford their dental care. The beauty of this plan is that it works for all patients, whether you have insurance or not! We can help you set up a savings plan that can go toward any treatment you might want including cosmetic dentistry, which is almost never covered by insurance.

We also work with a third-party financing company called CareCredit. CareCredit offers both short-term interest free payment plans as well as long-term options that can make your payments even more affordable over time. We can go over these options with you and help you apply online for pre-approval.

If you have concerns about whether you can afford your dental care, please talk to one of our helpful team members. We offer creative options so that you can get the care you need now and break the payments down over time.

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When should I first bring my child to the dentist?

We love seeing children in our office!

Parents often wonder when is the best time for a child to have their first dental visit. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Academy of Pediatrics both recommend that your child have his or her first dental appointment by their first birthday. We welcome you to bring your child in at that time or when they have their first tooth.

These early childhood visits serve a couple of valuable purposes to benefit your child:

Monitor development – We can make sure your child’s growth is on track for their age and that the teeth are developing properly.

Prevention – By getting an early start, we create a good foundation to prevent many common dental problems – especially decay. Decay is the most common childhood disease, but it is largely preventable!

Making a positive impression – Fear and anxiety are learned behaviors when it comes to dental visits. When we start young, work toward preventing or minimizing dental conditions, and create a fun, happy, relaxed environment for your child, we can make dental care positive for your little one.

Behavioral adjustments – Thumb sucking, poor diet, sleeping with a bottle, and other challenges can cause problems in the future. We can discuss ways to help your child develop healthy habits and eliminate harmful ones so your child’s smile stays healthy.

How often should I replace my toothbrush?

Your toothbrush should be replaced every three months, or sooner if it starts to look frayed or worn. If your toothbrush looks frayed quickly, you are probably using too much pressure to brush.

Your toothbrush has a tough job, and using it correctly will help you get the most out of it. When you brush your teeth, do not use heavy pressure. The tips of your bristles do the cleaning. Angle the bristles toward your gum line and use gentle back and forth motions to remove any food particles from your gums. Spend 30 seconds per quadrant making sure to reach all areas and chewing surfaces of your teeth.

Brushing at least twice daily and flossing once daily, in addition to your regular dental cleanings, will help you keep your teeth and gums healthy.

If you use an electric toothbrush such as Oral-B or Sonicare, they each come with recommendations for replacing the specialty heads, usually every three to six months.

Ultimately, your own judgment is best. Your toothbrush should be in good shape to ensure it is doing its job. Anytime it looks worn, throw a new one in your shopping basket. Also, since the bacteria that cause decay and gum disease can be transferred from person to person, it is a good idea to avoid sharing your toothbrush.

How often do I need to go to the dentist?

The frequency of your dental appointments depends largely upon your oral health and the amount of dentistry you have. For some patients, twice-yearly visits are enough to keep you on track with your oral health and for other patients, more frequent dental cleanings can help keep periodontal disease under control and prevent tooth loss.

Certain conditions such as pregnancy, hormonal changes, diabetes, taking certain medications, and having dry mouth may also require you to have more than two dental cleanings per year. With the proper care and recovery, you can often return to your regular schedule later.

Patients undergoing cancer treatment require specialized care. We will work closely with your doctor to ensure that you have the treatment you need to stay healthy. We will also provide valuable information about oral care while undergoing cancer treatment.

The best way to find out what will work for you is to schedule an appointment with Dr. David Stern for a comprehensive oral evaluation. After a complete exam, he will create your individual preventive care plan. No two patients are alike. When we create an oral health care plan, we do it with your unique needs in mind.

Come in and see us. We will be happy to answer your questions and address any concerns you may have.

How can I replace a missing tooth?

Missing teeth can be replaced in a number of ways. The first, and usually best, option is a dental implant. A dental implant looks, feels, and functions exactly like your other teeth and is the most successful and predictable way to replace any missing part of the body!

The second option is a bridge or a fixed partial denture. This is done by using the teeth next to the missing tooth as anchors to hold the missing tooth in place. The reason why, if we can, we prefer dental implants is a bridge causes the adjacent teeth to have dental treatment that they might otherwise might need.

The third and final option is a removable partial denture. The denture will be fabricated to exactly fit your gums and mouth to allow you to eat and smile again.

If you have any further questions, please call us 410-692-6132 today for a consult with Dr David Stern!

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Do root canals really hurt?

No. Root canals, just like fillings, crowns, implants, or most other dental procedures are done while under local anesthetic. Dr David Stern will make sure that you are completely numb before he starts any treatment. Root canals have a bad reputation, primarily due to the pain that usually occurs BEFORE the treatment is completed. Many times teeth that are in pain need root canal treatment and will usually fill much better after treatment is completed.

If you are in pain or think you need a root canal, call our office today 410-692-6132 to schedule an appointment with Dr David Stern.

Does whitening my teeth really destroy the enamel?

No. Over time our teeth change colors. The enamel (which is the outer and whiter layer of our teeth) becomes thinner and the dentin (the inner and more yellow layer) becomes more visible. That plus the fact that the enamel has many pores to pick up stains (especially from tea, coffee, and red wine) are some of the reasons why our teeth become darker. What whitening does, is break up the stains into smaller pieces making the stains less noticeable and your teeth brighter. It does not destroy your enamel or your teeth.

We believe that everyone should have the brightest smile they want! That is why we offer our “Whitening for Life” program. Its very simple. For $150 our patients get custom formed trays and the entire whitening kit. Then, as long as patients keep their recommended recare visits, we will provide touch-up whitening gel for free for life!

If you are interested in our “Whitening for Life” program or just have questions about whitening in general, call our office at 410-692-6132 today!

What if I don’t want to x-rays taken at my visit?

Great question! We always try to meet our patients needs as best we can, whenever we can. We strive to follow the ALARA rule. ALARA stands for As Low As Reasonably Achievable. This is a radiation safety rule to minimize radiation doses as much as possible. Our patients safety is of the utmost importance to us and we will only recommend x-rays when we determine that they are needed for your optimal oral health. This is also the reason why we use digital dental x-rays. This enables us to take better quality x-rays at a fraction of the radiation of the traditional film x-rays.

If you have any questions about our digital dental x-rays, or just x-rays in general, please do not hesitate to call us today at 410-692-6132.

What are my options for changing how my teeth look?

in dentistry today there are a number of ways to change the color, shape, and length of teeth to give you the smile you want. Whether it is simple bleaching to get rid of staining to veneers or crowns to give you a smile makeover, we cater to our patients wants and needs to get them the smile they deserve.

If you have questions about how to change your teeth call us today at 401-692-6132.

Do you treat children or do we need to find a separate dentist for our kids?

We welcome patients of all ages! From your children to your grandparents, we offer high-quality dentistry for patients of all life stages. By welcoming families, we support the health of our community and build long-term relationships that our patients truly value.