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Cleaning/Hygiene [back to top]



A tooth cleaning starts with a quick exam. Using a small mirror, the hygienist will look at the teeth and gums for signs of gingivitis or other concerns.

Then they will use that same mirror and a tool called a scaler to help get rid of the plaque and tartar by the gums and between teeth. This will involve some scraping, but that’s normal.

After getting teeth tartar-free, the hygienist will clean and polish the teeth with a high-powered brush. This helps deep clean the teeth and get any tartar that might have been missed.

When the teeth are all clean, the hygienist will floss to get all those in-between spaces clean as well.

And lastly, a rinse from the hygienist finishes up the cleaning. Now you’re ready to show off that smile!

Dental Exams [back to top]

Regular exams are an important part of keeping your teeth healthy. A dentist will look over your teeth and check for cavities and gum disease. They also check your face, neck, jaw, and mouth for problems.

Fillings [back to top]

  • Amalgam (silver) fillings: Silver in color, these are used to fill cavities, the holes in teeth from decay. A dentist will remove the decay on the tooth and then shape the tooth for the filling. Next, the filling material will be mixed and create a putty. It will be placed and shaped in the hole/cavity and harden into a solid filling.
  • Composite (white) fillings: Created to match closely with the colors of your teeth, these are used to fill cavities. A dentist will remove the decay on the tooth and then shape the tooth for the filling. Next, the filling material will be mixed, shaped, and placed in the cavity to harden into a solid filling.

Fluoride varnish [back to top]

A fluoride treatment is used to help prevent tooth decay. It is a liquid or gel that is put right on the teeth where it hardens and puts fluoride right into the tooth enamel.

Oral hygiene instructions [back to top]

Oral Hygiene Instructions

School-based oral hygiene instructions

These include ways to keep your child’s smile healthy as well as preventive tips. Check out more info here on how to keep smiles and teeth healthy and happy!  (link to education page)

Pulpotomies (infant root canals) [back to top]

If tooth decay or injury reaches the dental pulp, or the innermost layer of the tooth, it can become painful and sensitive. If it’s not treated, it could get infected (abscess) and require extraction. During a pulpotomy, the decay will be removed from inside the dental pulp. After the decay is all removed, a crown might need to be put on the tooth. This is done to save a severely decayed tooth and is used to prevent a more serious infection that could cause tooth loss.

Sealants [back to top]

A thin protective coating that sticks to teeth. It can keep cavities from starting, and also stop decay from becoming a cavity.

Screenings [back to top]

School-based screening

School-based screening

Done in our School-Based Program, screenings are when a hygienist does a visual examination of the teeth and makes recommendations. If they see something that looks concerning, they will recommend the student makes an appointment at one of our clinics for diagnoses and treatment.

Silver Diamine Fluoride (SDF) [back to top]

SDF is a topical fluoride applied right on the cavity to stop the decay from getting worse. The silver ions in SDF disrupt the cavity-causing bacteria. It will stop the pain the decay in the tooth and is less invasive than other treatments. The downside of SDF is that it will leave a black stain on the tooth.

Stainless steel crowns [back to top]

Metal crowns, or caps, are placed over teeth that might have severe decay or damage like chipping or fracture. Stainless steel crowns are durable, strong and inexpensive, plus they are effective at stopping decay and saving baby teeth.

Tooth extraction [back to top]

Complete removal of a tooth, including the roots.

X-rays [back to top]

Bitewing x-ray

Bitewing x-ray

These images can show a dentist a lot about tooth health! Through x-rays, dentists can see the condition of teeth, roots, jaw placement and bone development. This helps them find and treat things before they become problems.

There are many different types of x-rays we do at OHP, each one tells the dentist something different about teeth.

Panoramic x-ray

Panoramic x-ray

  • Bitewings are used to detect decay between teeth and changes in bone density. They are also good at checking for cavities in the back of the mouth. A piece of the x-ray machine is put inside the mouth for the child to bite down to hold in place. We then use what looks like a ray gun to capture a quick x-ray. We can do these in schools as well as in clinics.
  • Occlusal x-rays show the roof and floor of the mouth. They are larger and can show the full tooth development and placement in the mouth by showing the arch of all the teeth in the jaw.
  • Panoramic x-rays get a picture of the entire mouth. For these, the child will stand in the center of the machine and the machine will move around them taking x-rays. Panoramic x-rays will tell the dentist the position of the teeth that have emerged as well as those that haven’t emerged yet.
  • Periapical (or PA) x-rays can see the whole tooth, including the root. These are done to make sure the root and bone structure are normal. We sometimes do these in our School-Based Programs, but only if we suspect an issue or the child is complaining about mouth pain.
Hospital treatment

Treatment in hospital

*Services in Hospital

Our hospital care services offered are the same as the services we do in clinic except the patient is under general anesthesia. We can work with other providers and sometimes schedule other procedures at the same time as dental work. Entry into our hospital program is by referral only. For more info, check out our Hospital Services page (link).

Services not provided – in some cases, we can provide referrals.

  • Adult dentistry
  • Cosmetic dentistry
  • Dentures or partials
  • Orthodontics (e.g., braces)
  • Oral surgery for orthodontics
  • Teeth whitening
  • Wisdom teeth extractions