San Francisco Dentist


Below are some of the most frequently asked questions patients have about dentistry and oral health issues. If you have any other questions, or would like to schedule an appointment, we would love to hear from you.


  • General questions
  • Questions about dental implants
  • Questions about dentures
  • Questions about teeth whitening
General questions

How often should I return for care?

After the initial placement, you may require minor adjustments. This can typically be accomplished in 1-2 visits. Subsequently, you will be scheduled every 3-6 months to examine the restorations and the supporting tissues to ensure they are healthy. If you have some natural teeth remaining, you should return for ongoing dental care and professional cleaning. Our office will advise you regarding the recommended recall interval depending on your individual situation.

Will my speech or chewing ability be affected when I get new teeth?

As with any new dental prosthesis, there’s an adjustment period. Initially, a soft diet is recommended, and hard or sticky food should be avoided. Cutting food into smaller pieces can be helpful. You may also notice some salivary and taste changes associated with your replacement teeth. These are to be expected with a new prosthesis. You will adjust to these changes with time and notice improvement in your speech and function.

What are the consequences of missing teeth?
Tooth loss negatively impacts your appearance and function. These negative effects continue to progress with time and may complicate future treatment if not addressed in a timely fashion.

Effects of missing teeth include:

  • Shifting of adjacent and opposing teeth
  • Increased forces on other teeth
  • Difficulty in chewing
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Changes in facial appearance
Questions about dental implants

What are the advantages of dental implants?
Dental implants help prevent some of the undesirable consequences of tooth loss. They help preserve your jawbone and prevent deterioration of the tissues around the teeth.
Implant restorations most closely resemble natural teeth. They also help restore functionality and aesthetics caused by tooth loss.

What is involved with an implant procedure?
There are 2 stages for an implant procedure:

Surgical: after a thorough workup involving digital imaging, a guide is used for the surgical placement of the implant. This if followed by a period of healing, usually 2-3 months, during which the implant integrates with the jaw bone.

Restorative: an impression is made to capture the position of the implant and the surrounding tissue detail that is then used to make your restoration, whether it’s a crown, bridge or denture.

Am I candidate for dental implants?
There are several factors that influence implant treatment, including general and oral health as well as the quality and quantity of the remaining bone and gum tissues. Those factors will be evaluated during your consultation appointment to determine if implants are right for you.

Questions about dentures

Should I make denture repairs at home?
It is recommended that you return to our office for repairs and adjustments when necessary. Simple denture repairs can be completed at the office. Your denture can also be checked for fit and your mouth can be examined to ensure that all the tissues are healthy.

Should I use denture adhesive?
A well-fitting appliance will adhere to the oral tissues with the help of your saliva. Using a denture adhesive may not necessarily improve the fit of the denture. Please consult our office before using denture adhesive.

How do I clean my dentures?
To clean your dentures, you should use a brush specially designed for dentures. Regular toothpaste should not be used, because it may be too abrasive for dentures. After removing and cleaning the prosthesis, rinse it and submerge it in a denture-cleaning solution.

If you wear a partial denture, you should continue to floss and brush your natural teeth, especially the area around clasps, where food particles and bacteria may be trapped, causing these abutment teeth to be more susceptible to decay.

How long will it take to get used to dentures?
Adapting to dentures varies from one patient to another. There is no specific time frame for the adjustment process. New denture wearers usually go through a longer adjustment period compared to patients who have been wearing dentures for extended periods of time.

Questions about teeth whitening

Can I use whitening toothpaste to whiten my teeth?
Commercially available whitening toothpaste can whiten your teeth, but their effect is limited and have to be used for a longer period to achieve the desired result. Also, most of these products contain abrasive particles that may roughen your teeth, making them more susceptible to staining.

Will my fillings and crowns be bleached as well?
Bleaching works only on natural teeth. It doesn’t change the color of fillings or crowns.

How can I get my teeth bleached?
There are 2 methods to bleach teeth: in the office or at home. In-office bleaching can be completed in about 45-60 minutes and you can see immediate results. It involves applying a whitening gel to your teeth to remove external stains. At home bleaching requires the use of a whitening gel that is applied in a “bleaching tray” which fits over your teeth, worn for a few hours each day and is monitored by the dentist. It usually takes 1-2 weeks to see results.





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