Dental FAQ

Do I need X-rays?

To provide optimal care, we take bitewing X-rays once a year and a panoramic X-ray every three years. Because we use a digital system, our patients are exposed to about 80-percent less radiation than with a traditional radiograph. X-rays and intraoral photographs help us track your oral health and address problems early, when conservative dentistry can correct most issues. If you haven’t had a checkup and X-rays in a while, call our Bethesda dental office for an appointment.

We offer bridgework, partials, full dentures, and dental 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, and a thorough assessment of your dentition, the dentist can help you decide which replacement option will be best for you.

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 the patient 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 hygiene treatment to stop 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, and respiratory problems. Untreated, gum disease can escalate to create significant damage to your health, so call for an assessment now. We will help you keep your teeth and gums healthy for life!

I have been told that I grind my teeth while I sleep, and/or I clench my teeth a lot. Is this harmful?

Absolutely. Grinding and clenching teeth actually has a name; the condition is called bruxism. It can cause tooth wear and damage, like cracked and chipped teeth. These problems lead to pain and can also negatively affect how your upper and lower teeth fit together, which is known as occlusion. When occlusion is off, the jaw joints, or TMJ joints, can become stressed, which may lead to additional pain problems. Instead of dealing with all of these potential problems, let us create a custom oral appliance to stop your bruxism. Simply wear the appliance while you sleep or when you tend to grind your teeth. If you experience pain or occlusion problems, we can restore your teeth and bite as well. Call today for a consultation!

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.

I’ve been snoring for years and haven’t noticed any problems, why should I be concerned?

Snoring is a sign that you’re not breathing properly, and may cause serious risks to your health. One out of eight people who snore have sleep apnea, a serious medical condition that increases risks of heart attack and stroke. Individuals with sleep apnea don’t realize it, but while they sleep oxygen flow to the brain and heart stops completely for up to ten seconds. This can cause serious damage to the body, in addition to causing daytime drowsiness and irritability.

How do I know if I have sleep apnea?

If you snore habitually, sleep restlessly, gasp for air at night, or feel drowsy or fatigued in the daytime you may have sleep apnea. You can take this simple test to determine your level of likelihood.

Does your office use lasers?

Yes. Our soft-tissue laser allows us to treat gum disease, perform crown lengthening, harvest and place gum grafts, reduce gum tissue for esthetics, and do biopsies. You will need no stitches after laser surgery, and bleeding is minimal. Most patients recover more quickly after laser surgery than they do following traditional surgery.

Our hard tissue laser removes decay, replacing the traditional dental drill. We can also do bone grafts with this laser.

After my root canal, will I experience sensitivity to hot and cold?

After a successful root canal, patients may experience some sensitivity. The sensation should subside over time. If after a week or two you still have problems, call us so that we can evaluate the situation and help you find relief!

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 pedodontists (for children). We refer to only trusted professionals with whom we have a good rapport.

Do you accept dental insurance?

We file dental insurance electronically and estimate benefits. Please prepare to pay your co-pay or deductible at your visit. If, after the insurance company pays their portion, you have a balance, we will adjust your account accordingly and notify you. If you have questions about your dental insurance, just give us a call.

How can I pay for my dental work?

We accept cash, check, credit cards, and we also work with CareCredit and Springstone for patient financing. If you have questions about payment arrangements or your bill, don’t hesitate to call us!

Your Smile is Our Passion
Bethesda’s Premier Cosmetic Dentist

With oral health built on a solid foundation, you’ll enjoy a lifetime of smiles. Come experience the personalized care, quality materials, and contemporary technology that make dental visits rewarding. Call us today to schedule your consultation with Dr. Greenbaum. Be sure to visit our gallery and review before-and-after photos while you’re here. Bethesda Center for Family and Cosmetic Dentistry serves patients from Rockville, Potomac, Chevy Chase, Northern Virginia, and surrounding areas.