Nicholson Dental Care | Cosmetic and General Dentistry in Portland, Oregon

Personalized & Comfortable

Health Centered & Preventive Dentistry

Prevention is always better than treatment. By actively preventing disease and decay through regular home care, professional dental cleanings and regular exams, you will maintain a healthy, beautiful smile.

In addition, effective prevention can help you avoid costly treatments in the future to remove decay, restore teeth and treat gum disease. Regular prevention is truly your best investment.

Non-Mercury Fillings

We do not use restorative materials that contain mercury. When removing old mercury fillings, we use isolation techniques to help prevent exposure. Dr Nicholson was one of the first dentists in the Portland area to use a filtering system for the drain water from his clinic to filter and remove mercury as a result of old mercury fillings being removed and replaced.

Cleanings & Exams

The prevention of disease.

Professional Cleanings:

Professional cleanings (dental prophylaxis) performed by a certified dental hygienist form the foundation for preventing gum disease and tooth decay. In a professional cleaning, your hygienist will:

  • Remove plaque from the teeth – Plaque is a sticky substance that forms in the mouth from food, saliva and bacteria. Plaque sticks to teeth and causes tooth decay and gum disease.
  • Remove calculus (tartar) above the gum line – Calculus is plaque that has hardened on the tooth surface and is difficult to remove. (Calculus below the gum line indicates gum disease and requires a different procedure to remove it.)
  • Polish and remove stains from teeth

Dental Examinations:

Dental examinations help to diagnose disease before it becomes hazardous to your health. In addition, regular examinations can save you money by alleviating problems while they are small and before they become expensive to repair, or in some cases, impossible to repair. Your dental examinations generally include the following:

  • Oral cancer screening
  • Gum disease evaluation
  • Visual examination of tooth decay
  • Examination of diagnostic x-rays to see cysts, tumors, invisible decay and other problems that can't be seen by the naked eye
  • Evaluation of status of current restorations (fillings and others)

We cannot express enough how important it is to see your dentist regularly. Remember, preventing disease is always better than treating disease.

Gum Disease

Gum Disease

Gum disease (Periodontal Disease) is responsible for about 70% of adult tooth loss. It is characterized by swollen, inflamed gums surrounding the teeth. Plaque, a sticky substance that forms in the mouth from food, saliva and bacteria gets inside the space between the gum line and the tooth. If not removed, plaque hardens into a substance called calculus or tarter that is very difficult to remove.

Eventually, the bacteria in the plaque and tarter eat away at the fibers that hold the gums to the teeth, creating deep pockets. As bacteria spread, the pockets become deeper until the bacteria finally eat away the bone that holds the tooth in place.

Think of it as if bugs are eating away at the soil around a tree trunk. Eventually, they eat away all of the soil and part of the tree's roots, causing the tree to collapse.

Digital Radiographs

X-Rays

How do X-Rays Help?

Dental x-rays or radiographs are very important. They allow the dentist to see things about your oral health that cannot be seen by the naked eye. These items include cysts (sacks of fluid that form on the roots of teeth), cancerous and non-cancerous tumors, invisible decay that occurs between teeth, and the location of teeth that haven't grown all the way in.

By using an x-ray to diagnose these problems, we can help save you money in the long run from surgeries or other treatments that might become necessary if we didn't find the problem. In some cases, where dental x-rays show the location of tumorous growths, x-rays can be responsible for saving your life.

Are Dental X-Rays Safe?

Modern dental x-ray machines are very safe. The amount of radiation exposure your body receives on an airplane flight from Los Angeles to New York exceeds the amount of exposure you will receive from a modern dental x-ray machine. Contrast this minimal exposure with the risk of not finding an illness until it is too late, and you can see why we prescribe regular diagnostic x-rays.

Our office uses digital radiographs, keepiing exposure to the lowest levels possible. Additionally, these eliminate the chemical waste typically produced as a result of the older film-based x-rays.

4413 SE 39th Avenue | Portland, Oregon 97202 | 503.777.2284

Nicholson Dental Care provides advanced general, cosmetic and restorative dentistry to the greater Portland, Oregon area. Dr. Nicholson serves the Southeast Portland, Eastmoreland, Hosford-Abernethy, Mt. Tabor, Sellwood-Moreland, Sunnyside (Hawthorne), Richmond, Clinton City Park, South Tabor, East Moreland, Brentwood, Darlington, Woodstock, Reed College, Oregon Health Sciences University areas by providing exceptional dental care to all patients.
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