Frequently Asked Questions
Why are regular checkups recommended, even for people with great oral health?
At your checkup, we'll look for cavities in the earliest stages, before you see or feel them. Early detection allows us to provide the most conservative treatment, which saves you time, expense, and possible discomfort. We also screen for oral cancer, a disease that will affect more than 30-thousand Americans this year. Oral cancer is deadly, but early detection offers an 80-percent cure rate. Gum disease is another sneaky problem that we try to catch early. It has been linked to stroke, heart attack, diabetes, and other health risks, and it is the leading cause of tooth loss in American adults.
My gums bleed after I brush. Is this something to be concerned about?
Bleeding is usually a sign of a problem. When gums bleed, the cause usually stems from either brushing too hard or from early-stage gum disease, called gingivitis. We can consult with you on the proper toothbrush and pressure for safe, effective daily oral care. If your gums show signs of gum disease, we may recommend a deep scaling treatment to arrest the disease and return your gums to good health. Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss for American adults, and it has been linked to many overall health conditions, including stroke & heart attack. Untreated, gum disease can escalate, so call for an assessment now. We can help you keep your teeth and gums healthy for life!
Crowns, veneers, onlays, inlays, and partials…Where can I learn more about these procedures?
Our services page provides quite a bit of information on these procedures. However, if you have questions about these or other dental services, don't hesitate to call us. We would be happy to explain any aspect of your dental care or our service offerings.
What are my options to replace missing teeth?
We offer bridgework, partials, full dentures, and implant restorations to replace missing teeth. Learn more about these services on our services page, then call for a consultation. With X-rays, intraoral photos, diagnostic models and a thorough assessment of your dentition, Dr. Whiteley can help you decide which replacement option will be best for you.
I have not been to the dentist in years, and I’m ashamed to let a professional see the condition of my mouth. Is your staff judgmental?
First of all, congratulations on your wise decision to prioritize dental healthcare. Your mouth is a big part of your overall health, quality of life, and self-esteem. We will not judge you, but help you by addressing your oral problems, explaining treatment options, then scheduling a plan of action that suits your schedule and your budget.
What do you do to maintain a safe and sterilized environment?
Your safety is important to us, so we sterilize our reusable instruments in an autoclave and use disposable products as often as possible. Each of our treatment rooms is cleaned thoroughly between patient visits. We adhere to guidelines set by the CDC and OSHA and perform weekly tests on our sterilization equipment.
Do you refer patients to specialists?
While we are trained and equipped to handle many dental issues in our office, when a specialist would better serve you, we'll refer. Some dental specialists are oral surgeons, periodontists (supporting structures), endodontists (internal tooth problems), orthodontists (for moving teeth), and pediatric dentists (for children). We refer to only trusted professionals with whom we have a good rapport. In most cases, Dr. Whiteley will work with the specialist, overseeing your case in an interdisciplinary approach to dental care. This allows him to understand what's happening with your oral health and work with the specialist for the best possible outcome.
What payment methods do you accept, and what are your financing options?
Payment for services is requested at the time of your office visit. For your convenience, we accept cash, checks, VISA, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express. We do offer bank financing for extended payment plans through CareCredit.
If I have dental insurance, what will I need to pay?
There are literally thousands of insurance plans with various levels of benefits, co-payments, maximums, restrictions, etc. If you have dental insurance, we will calculate the estimated co-payment due at your visit and submit your insurance claim for you. We do ask that you provide the information necessary for us to do so prior to your appointment. If you have questions about insurance, fees, or financial arrangements, please call us.
Do you take my dental insurance?
Though we are not “in-network” providers with any specific dental insurance plan, we can work with most dental plans that allow you to see the dentist of your choice or go “out-of-network”.
Does my insurance cover that?
Dental insurance coverage is extremely diverse. Some policies cover only a small percentage of fees, while others cover 50 percent or greater for various procedures. In general, the more you or your employer pays in premiums, the better the coverage. Even with the best plans, cosmetic treatment is usually not a covered benefit. We can work with CareCredit financing to help make cosmetic dentistry affordable. If you have questions, give us a call.