Ryan Kay, DMD, MS

Sensitive and Reliable Dental Care from a Team You Can Trust.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Dental Cleanings

How can we help you?

When you choose a new dental office, you probably have numerous questions about what we offer, what to expect, and about our team. We listed some of our most common questions here, but if yours is not listed, we encourage you to call our office for more details. You can also use our handy contact form and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Dental Cleanings

Sugar and Oral Health | Encinitas DentistIf you are looking for a dentist in Encinitas, CA and have questions about the best way to protect your oral health, we can help! 

Since childhood, we have been told that sugar is the worst thing for your teeth. It is true that sugar can feed bacteria that cause decay. Recent research shows that there is something more problematic for your teeth than sugar alone. Sugar mixed with an acidic substance, such as soda or juice, can cause even more decay. 

Decay is caused when bacteria create an acidic environment in your mouth that softens your enamel. Bacteria feed on sugary and starchy substances. With the added acid from soda and juice, you may suffer from decay much more quickly.

Encinitas dentist, Dr. Ryan Kay, helps to protect against decay by creating a preventive treatment plan designed for your lifestyle. 

This may include the following treatments to protect your teeth:

  • Dental exams
  • Digital dental x-rays
  • Professional dental cleanings
  • Fluoride
  • Dental sealants
  • Nutritional counseling

For more information or to learn more about preventive dentistry, contact us to schedule your next dental appointment. We encourage curious patients and look forward to helping you maintain a healthy, beautiful smile.

Encinitas Dentist | Gum Disease According to the CDC, half of Americans have gum disease despite it being one of the most preventable conditions. While certain medications, hormones, genetics, and circumstances can cause gum disease, the most common cause originates with poor home care, too few professional dental cleanings, or lifestyle choices such as drug or tobacco use.

Your body will give you signs even with the earliest form of gum disease, called gingivitis. When we catch gum disease at this early stage, it is often reversible. More serious gum disease, called periodontitis, requires specialized treatment to help you get back on track. No matter where you are, we can help to improve your health. 

Some of the most common signs of gum disease include:

  • Bleeding gums when you brush or floss
  • Sore, red, or swollen gums
  • Gum recession
  • New spaces between your teeth
  • Loose teeth
  • Pus around your gumline
  • Persistent bad breath

Fortunately, Ryan Kay DMD offers gentle, effective solutions to treat your gum disease so that you can protect your overall health. Did you know that researchers linked gum disease to other serious conditions such as heart disease, strokes, and diabetes? Give us a call so that we can work with you to restore your periodontal health and protect the beauty of your smile.

How often you have an exam and teeth cleaning depends largely upon your dental health. While many adults and children can maintain their dental health with visits twice a year, certain conditions may require more frequent visits to maintain optimum wellness.

Dental Cleaning & Check Up | Encinitas CAIf you have a large amount of dentistry or if you have a tendency to build plaque and tartar quickly, you may achieve better overall results with cleanings every three to four months. Sometimes patients even prefer to come in for an extra cleaning because they enjoy that fresh smooth feeling of clean teeth. 

Patients with a history of periodontal disease are more susceptible to a reoccurrence. Dr. Kay or one of our hygienists might recommend a more frequent recall to keep your periodontal disease under control. Keeping frequent professional cleaning visits allows us to monitor your condition, note any changes, and also remove the plaque and bacteria on your teeth and gums.

For some of our senior patients, frequent dental cleanings can help prevent tooth loss. For many patients, as they age, they lose dexterity and have a harder time cleaning their own teeth effectively. We can recommend products and techniques and also help keep your teeth clean and healthy so you can continue to eat the foods you love. 

Coming to the dentist for more frequent professional cleanings may sound like a hassle, but it is a small investment in time and money to protect your health.



Meaning of Toothache | Encinitas DentistIf you have ever had a toothache, you know that it can really disrupt your day and make it difficult to concentrate on anything else. You might have to cancel events, be unable to sleep, and even miss work. Toothaches can often worsen over time.

When you have a toothache, it is your body’s way of alerting you to a problem. Because the nerves in your teeth are protected under a strong layer of enamel and a layer of dentin, by the time you have tooth pain, it could mean a serious condition.

At Ryan Kay DMD, we treat dental emergencies fast – often on the same day you call. By addressing your condition quickly, we can often save your tooth and protect your smile.

Common causes of toothaches include:

  • A cracked or damaged tooth
  • Infection
  • A broken restoration
  • Clenching and grinding (bruxism)
  • Deep decay
  • A misaligned bite

If you experience an emergency dentist in Encinitas, CA, contact our dental office at the first sign of a problem. Dr. Ryan Kay will evaluate your condition and provide you with treatment options to restore your comfort and your smile.

We invite new and existing patients to contact us when they experience a dental emergency in Encinitas, CA.

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