Frequently Asked Questions

For your convenience, we have compiled a list of our most frequently asked questions.
If you do not see the answer to your question here, please contact us at (780) 939-5224.

You should bring your dental insurance information, a list of your medications and allergies, and any medical conditions that you have. You will be required to fill out a medical/dental questionnaire that can be printed from the website here.
During your first appointment you will have a series of routine X-rays taken that check for cavities. If you have recent X-rays, they can be emailed to our clinic upon your request. If you have any specific concerns, such as tooth pain, broken or missing teeth, or wisdom teeth troubles, further X-rays will be taken to visualize these areas of concern. Dr. Horricks or Dr. Lafleur will then do a visual examination of your mouth and teeth, and discuss his findings with you along with possible options for treatment. In most cases, only dental hygiene (cleaning) will be provided on the day of the first appointment. When you are finished with the dentist, at your request the front desk team will provide you with an estimate for the treatment decided upon, and will book your next appointment for the start of treatment.
The cost of dental treatment varies depending on the treatment modality selected. For example, to replace missing teeth, a partial denture is less costly than implants. Dr. Horricks or Dr. Lafleur will discuss the various treatment options with you and inform you of the difference in cost. An estimate for all work to be done can be provided upon request.
X-rays allow Dr. Horricks or Dr. Lafleur to visualize oral structures that are not visible by just looking in the mouth. Many problems can be found before they become painful and/or much more difficult (and expensive) to fix. These include:
• Small cavities
• Infections in the bone
• Abscesses and cysts
• Periodontitis (advanced gum disease)
• Some types of tumors
The newer digital dental X-ray films use far less radiation than previous non-digital films, and are very safe. Most people are exposed to about 3.000 mSV (millisievert) of radiation per year from natural sources such as from outer space and minerals in the soil. The total amount of radiation from bitewings (4 dental X-rays – the usual number of X-rays taken during a check-up) is about 0.038 mSV. Compared to the average amount of radiation from natural sources, dental X-rays only make up about 1% of the total amount of radiation that most people are exposed to in one year.
Most people should have a check-up and cleaning once every 12 months. If you tend to build up plaque and calculus quickly, the Dental Hygienist at Dr. Horricks Family Dentistry may recommend an increased frequency for regular check-ups/cleanings, usually every 6 months. Special circumstances such as being in braces may necessitate more frequent hygiene visits as well.
Teeth that have had a root canal are dead because the living tissue inside the tooth has been removed and only the hard outer layers of dentin and enamel remain. During the root canal process, the tooth is cleaned and the canal spaces are widened, leading to less structural integrity and the teeth then become more prone to fractures of the root and/or cusps. Placing full coverage crowns are the best option to prevent possible fracture or breakage, ensuring many more years of service from the tooth.
Yes, amalgam fillings are safe. Amalgam fillings are the oldest and most researched filling material in use today. While there is some controversy about the mercury content of the amalgam fillings, numerous peer-reviewed studies have proven that mercury is not released from amalgam fillings into the body, and thus poses no threat.
People of all ages can experience anxiety over dental treatment. Older patients may be less able to cope with the stress due to certain physical conditions such as vision or hearing loss. No matter what your age, it is important to discuss your fears with your dentist. Once your dentist knows what your fears are, they will be better able to work with you to determine the best ways to make you less anxious and more comfortable.
A daily oral care routine that consists of brushing and flossing helps prevent gingivitis. Floss removes plaque and food particles that a toothbrush cannot reach.
Brushing at all ages prevents plaque build-up, tooth decay and periodontal disease. Brush every morning and especially before bedtime. Also try to brush after every meal to maintain optimal dental health.
No. Long term studies have not shown any damage to teeth or supporting structures.
To decide what is best for you, check with your dentist or hygienist. Cosmetic procedures such as porcelain veneers and dental crowns are available.
Mouth guards are coverings worn over teeth to protect them from injury. Athletes are much more likely to damage their teeth if not wearing a mouth guard during athletic activities. Wearing a mouth guard also reduces your risk of concussion. Night guards are recommended for people who grind their teeth at night.
Bring your child in for his/her first dental checkup/chair-ride when he/she is 2 or 3 years old.
Depending on the alignment and growth of your teeth, you may need to get your wisdom teeth removed. Consult your dentist to find out what is best for you and Dr. Horricks or Dr. Lafleur will recommend your best choice of treatment.

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