FAQ

Dental FAQs

Answers to Common Questions

Child smilingWhich type of toothbrush should I use?

The brand of the toothbrush is not as critical as the type of bristle and the size of the head. A soft toothbrush with a small head is recommended because medium and hard brushes tend to cause irritation and contribute to recession of the gums, and a small head allows you to get around each tooth more completely and is less likely to injure your gums. It's unnecessary to "scrub" the teeth as long as you are brushing at least twice a day and visiting your dentist at least twice a year for cleanings. Many patients are starting to move towards electric toothbrushes. These brushes can be very effective for motivated patients. Of the toothbrushes available, we prefer the Sonicare and Oral-B electric toothbrushes.

Is one toothpaste better than others?

Generally, no. However, it's advisable to use a fluoride containing toothpaste to decrease the incidence of dental decay. We recommend our patients use what tastes good to them as long as it contains fluoride. Colgate Total is particularly effective in improving periodontal health and is a quality toothpaste to use daily.

How often should I floss?

Flossing of the teeth once per day helps to prevent cavities from forming between the teeth where your toothbrush can't reach. Flossing is also instrumental in helping to keep your gums healthy.

What's the difference between a "crown" and a "cap"?

These are restorations to repair a severely broken tooth by covering all or most of the tooth after removing old fillings, fractured tooth structure, and all decay. The restoration material is made of gold, porcelain, composites, or even stainless steel. Dentists refer to all of these restorations as "crowns". However, patients often refer to the tooth-colored ones as "caps" and the gold or stainless steel ones as "crowns".

What's the difference between a "bridge" and a "removable partial denture"?

Both bridges and partial dentures replace missing teeth. A bridge is permanently attached to abutment teeth or, in some cases, implants. A partial denture is attached by clasps to the teeth and is easily removed by the patient. Patients are usually more satisfied with bridges than with partial dentures.

What about "silver" fillings versus "white" fillings?

Although the U.S. Public Health Service issued a report in 1993 stating there is no health reason not to use amalgam (silver fillings), more patients today are requesting "white" or tooth-colored composite fillings. We also prefer tooth-colored fillings because they "bond" to the tooth structure and therefore help strengthen a tooth weakened by decay. While fillings are also usually less sensitive to temperature, and they also look better. However, "white" fillings cannot be used in every situation, and if a tooth is very badly broken-down, a crown will usually be necessary and provide better overall satisfaction for the patient.

Do I need to have a root canal just because I have to have a crown?

No. While most teeth which have had root canal treatments do need crowns to strengthen the teeth and to return the teeth to normal form and function, not every tooth needing a crown also needs to have a root canal.

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  • Jay M. Marks, DMD, FAGD Photo
    Jay M. Marks, DMD, FAGD
    Dr. Marks graduated from Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, NJ, Magna Cum Laude, with a Bachelor of Science Degree. He was a member of the Phi Zeta Kappa Honor Society, Phi Omega Epsilon Honor Society, and the Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society. Dr. Marks received his DMD Dental degree from Fairleigh Dickinson University School of Dental Medicine, also in Teaneck, New Jersey. Dr. Marks has held a number of teaching positions, including Student Teaching Fellow and FDU School of ...

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    “Dr. Marks is professional, knowledgeable, and has a concern about the overall condition of my teeth and how to keep a healthy mouth. I had an excellent experience with Dr. Marks and his staff - a diamond in the rough, that s for sure!”

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Dr. Jay M. Marks

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  • Best Dentistry Award 2020
    Best Dentistry Award 2020
  • AGD Primary Fellow
    AGD Primary Fellow
  • AWARD - American Dental Association
    AWARD - American Dental Association
  • AWARD - Connecticut State Dental Association
    AWARD - Connecticut State Dental Association
  • Dental Insider 2018
    Dental Insider 2018
  • Dental Insider 2020
    Dental Insider 2020
  • AWARD - National Consumer Advisory Board - 2019
    AWARD - National Consumer Advisory Board - 2019
  • AWARD - OpenCare Patient's Choke Winner
    AWARD - OpenCare Patient's Choke Winner
  • RECOGNITION - American Dental Association
    RECOGNITION - American Dental Association
  • RECOGNITION - CRA 20th Year
    RECOGNITION - CRA 20th Year
  • Connecticut State Dental Association
    Connecticut State Dental Association