Frequently Asked Questions

Do I Have to Wear a Mask While in the Office?

Yes, according to the CDC, unless it has been 2 weeks since you were FULLY VACCINATED, then it is your choice to wear a mask or not.

What Is Dentistry?

Dentistry is the treatment and prevention of disorders and diseases of a patient’s teeth, gums, mouth, and jaw. Dentistry performed properly is necessary for complete oral health and it has a significant impact on the health of a patient’s entire body.

What Is a Dentist?

A dentist is a specialist who has been trained to diagnose, treat, and prevent oral health conditions and dental problems. Dr. Purdy has completed many years of dental schooling in order to practice dentistry. After completing required dental training and education, a dentist can receive either a DDS or DMD degree. DDS stands for Doctor of Dental Surgery and DMD stands for Doctor of Dental Medicine. Some doctors specialize in pediatric dentistry as well, which means they work with children from infancy up through teenage years. There are other specializations that a dentist may go to school for:

  • Oral and maxillofacial (includes pathology, radiology, and surgery)
  • Orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics
  • Endodontics (specialization in root canals)
  • Periodontics (specialization in gum disease)
  • Prosthodontics (specialization in dental implants)

Are Regular Dental Cleanings Necessary?

Here at John M. Purdy, DDS, we know how busy life can be. Fitting a dental appointment into a busy schedule can feel like a hassle, but it’s worth it. Brushing for two minutes twice a day and flossing daily will keep many oral health problems away; however, it’s not a complete guarantee. Scheduling a cleaning at John M. Purdy, DDS twice a year is highly recommended to maintain proper oral hygiene and catch problems before they become costly and painful.

Do I Need to See a Dentist Even If My Teeth Feel Fine?

It’s very important to schedule regular cleanings here at John M. Purdy, DDS. Dr. Purdy recommends coming in twice a year. Not all dental problems have obvious symptoms at first. Not only can we identify problems before they become a painful and expensive, we can also help to keep your smile looking fantastic. We know how important it is to feel comfortable with your smile. This is why we offer many treatments to help improve patient aesthetics.

What’s an initial appointment like at John M Purdy, DDS?

At John M. Purdy, DDS, an initial appointment will include a comprehensive oral examination, an oral cancer screening exam, professional X-rays to catch periodontal abnormalities such as cavities, abscesses or bone loss, and a cleaning by our amazing hygienist.

Dr. Purdy will coordinate with your hygienist and recommend a treatment plan for any problems that are found. We’ll also recommend any aesthetic and cosmetic treatments to improve your smile. Please call our office at (915) 593-1833 to schedule an appointment or for any additional questions.

When Should I Change My Toothbrush?

Dr. Purdy recommends at least every three months. If you’re using an electronic toothbrush, make sure to check the recommendation of the type of toothbrush because you may not have to change the head of the brush as often. If a patient has gum disease, Dr. Purdy recommends changing toothbrushes more often. Also, after brushing, it’s very important to wash and rinse your brush out with hot water, then store it upright somewhere it can dry between uses. This will kill germs and bacteria and keep your toothbrush clean.

What is gum disease?

Gum disease is also known as periodontal disease. Periodontal disease can be one of two conditions: Gingivitis or Periodontitis. Gingivitis is the inflammation of the gum and can easily be prevented through at-home dental hygienic efforts and regular cleanings with your hygienist. Periodontitis is a more devastating condition that occurs as inflammation of all supportive structures of the teeth including the gum. When not treated during the early stages, a buildup of bacteria-filled plaque and tartar can compromise your oral health and in turn your overall health. Individuals who suffer from conditions that suppress their immune system are more at risk of suffering from periodontal disease. A weak immune system leaves bacteria in the mouth to go undisturbed which can wreak havoc in the mouth and can allow bacteria to find their way into the bloodstream leading to other more serious problems. This is why Dr. Purdy is so adamant about telling his patients about the importance of oral hygiene and being consistent with routine dental cleanings.

How Do I Know If I Have Gum Disease?

Some of the most common signs of periodontal disease are the following:

  • Abscessed teeth
  • Extreme tooth sensitivity
  • Chronic bad breath
  • Loose teeth and/or loss of teeth
  • Red, swollen, or bleeding gums
  • Receding gumline

Risk factors that increase a person’s susceptibility to gum disease include smoking or chewing tobacco, teeth grinding, certain medications, and genetics. Advanced forms of periodontal disease can cause permanent damage in the form of bone and tooth loss. Dr. Purdy recommends brushing and flossing every day as well as scheduling dental appointments every six months as the best way to fight gum disease. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, please call us as soon as possible. You can reach us at (915) 593-1833 or email us to schedule a consultation. Your dental health is our highest concern

Do You Accept Insurance?

Here at John M. Purdy, DDS we accept most insurance and PPO plans, but check with us. Please call our office for more information about insurance at (915) 593-1833. Prior to calling, please have your insurance information ready. Also, please plan to pay your co-pay or deductible portion at the time of service.

What Payment Methods Do You Accept?

For your convenience here at John M. Purdy, DDS, we accept cash, check, cashier’s checks, Visa, Master Card, AmEx, and Discover. If none of these payment methods suits your needs, we also provide payment plans through our office or third-party financing through Care Credit. We also provide discounts for those able to pay in full at the time of service. If you have any more questions regarding payment methods, please give us a call at (915) 593-1833 and we’ll do our best to find the right solution for you.