The Dental Center of South Bend
1005 East LaSalle Avenue, South Bend, IN 46617

FAQs

Q. What causes tooth loss?

A. Tooth decay and periodontal disease are the most common causes of tooth loss. Tooth decay takes place when most of the tooth’s mineral makeup has been dissolved away and a hole (cavity) has formed. While tooth decay primarily affects children, periodontal disease, or gum disease, affects mostly adults. Periodontal disease is an infection of the gums caused by the buildup of plaque, and its earliest stage is known as gingivitis.

Q. How many times a day should I brush my teeth?

A. Most dental professionals recommend that you brush your teeth at least twice a day. Brushing after every meal (and flossing at least once a day) is also a good way to maintain dental health

Q. When should a child have his/her first dental appointment?

A. A child should have his first dental appointment no later than his third birthday. Many dentists recommend a child have his first appointment when the first tooth comes in.

Q. Is it important to floss your teeth?

A. Yes. flossing once a day prevents the buildup of plaque and deters the onset of gingivitis and periodontal disease.

Q. What is cosmetic dentistry?

A. Also known as “aesthetic dentistry” cosmetic dentistry is a branch of dentistry that implements many different procedures to improve the beauty of your smile.

Q. What is a root canal?

A. Root canal is necessary when the nerve or blood supply of the tooth (also known as the pulp) is infected due to injury or decay. Root canal treatment involves removal of the diseased pulp, followed by the cleaning and sealing of the pulp chamber and root canal.

Q. What are dentures and who needs them?

A. Dentures are a partial or complete set of artificial teeth used to occupy the upper or lower jaw, usually attached to a plate. Simply put, dentures are a set of false teeth. If you have lost most or all of your teeth, you are a perfect candidate for complete dentures. If you still have some natural teeth remaining, a partial denture is recommended to help improve chewing ability, speech, and support for facial muscles.

Q. What causes oral cancer and what are some of the warning signs?

A. Tobacco (cigarettes, pipes, cigars, chewing tobacco, and snuff) is the most common cause of oral cancer. Combining tobacco use with heavy drinking can also foster the development of oral cancer. Bad hygiene, prolonged irritation of the oral cavity, and extended exposure to strong sunlight on the lips are among other causes of the disease. Many dentists believe vitamins A and E can help prevent the acquisition of oral cancer. Early symptoms of oral cancer include: a sore on the lip, in the mouth, or in the throat that does not heal; a lump on the lip, in the mouth, or in the throat; a red or white patch found anywhere in the mouth; unusual pain or bleeding in the mouth; swelling of the mouth; and any difficulty or discomfort felt in chewing or swallowing.

Q. What are the treatments for periodontal disease?

A. If periodontal disease is caught at an early stage (when it has not progressed beyond the point of gingivitis), it can be treated with scaling and root-planing (removing plaque around the tooth and smoothing the roots’ surfaces). If the disease progresses to a later stage, the patient may need surgical treatment, which involves cutting the gums, eliminating the hardened plaque build-up, and repairing the damaged bone.

Q. What causes oral cancer and what are some of the warning signs?

A. Tobacco (cigarettes, pipes, cigars, chewing tobacco, and snuff) is the most common cause of oral cancer. Combining tobacco use with heavy drinking can also foster the development of oral cancer. Bad hygiene, prolonged irritation of the oral cavity, and extended exposure to strong sunlight on the lips are among other causes of the disease. Many dentists believe vitamins A and E can help prevent the acquisition of oral cancer. Early symptoms of oral cancer include: a sore on the lip, in the mouth, or in the throat that does not heal; a lump on the lip, in the mouth, or in the throat; a red or white patch found anywhere in the mouth; unusual pain or bleeding in the mouth; swelling of the mouth; and any difficulty or discomfort felt in chewing or swallowing.

Q. What is gingivitis?

A. Gingivitis is inflammation of the gums around the roots of the teeth. It marks the early stage of periodontal disease and it is characterized by red, swollen gums.

Q. Who needs to have their wisdom teeth extracted?

A. Anyone who is in danger of developing impacted wisdom teeth (third molars that only partially erupt or get trapped or stuck in the jaw) should have them removed so that they do not damage adjacent molars and cause other oral problems. In addition, anyone who is getting dentures should have their wisdom teeth removed.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
Today my son had unexpected extraction’s, due to infection. Dr. Jess, and another woman I can’t remember her name, dark hair, made a super traumatic event so much easier. My son was Waylon, and I […]
Brittany T.
Deanna is very thorough and does an excellent job explaining the work being performed. The hygienist that shares work space with Deanna has cleaned my teeth in the past and is great as well.
Jeff J.
Staff is very personable and friendly.
Sherry D.
Marge was great. She tried several different X-rays to see what my issues were. Dr. Metzler is great. I don’t want to see anyone else.
Jane B.
Very friendly staff, will be Back! Fast appointment, for a limited exam!
Amber K.
Friendly office, great service.
Janet B.
Your office staff was friendly and helpful. I was treated like a valued guest in your office.
Deanna G.
The service was excellent from the moment I walked in. The entire staff had a genuine, welcoming smile and seemed to care about every client. I have rarely seen such authentic friendliness and caring […]
Lori H.
Good dental care and friendly service.
Brett P.
Terry is amazing! Friendly and efficient with a gentle touch. I had no problem scheduling my appointments.
Kimberly C.
Always a great experience.
Rebecca T.
I have been going to the Dental Center for years. I love that they hygientist are all friendly and quick. At my last appointment I had to bring my son who has special needs. The hygientist, Terry, […]
Dawn V.
Polite and efficient staff, and I especially liked meeting the new dentist, Dr. Patel, I believe, as he was very welcoming and professional.
Margaret C.
Good information provided by hygienist and Dr. Patel on how to improve my already strong dental care habits.
Mike M.
Dr Carrol was the best oral surgeon i have ever seen. I asked him to be gentle when giving the numbing shot and was very gentle when extracting the tooth. I have had little to no pain afterwards. No […]
Isreal D.
We have been with The Dental Center for about 6 years now and have never been let down with the quality of service and knowledge. Thank you!
Clarissa L.
Prompt service, little wait time, great hygienist
Monica N.
I enjoy the smiley faces and the friendliness every time I walk in for my appointment….
Lavern W.
Good service
Dorinda B.
Quick in and out. Polite staff and dentist.
Lynnda M.
Office Hours
Mon. – 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tue. – 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wed. – 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thu. – 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Fri. – 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Sat. – Closed
Sun. – Closed
Phone: (574) 367-7000
Fax: (574) 245-7530
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For appointments, call us at: (574) 367-7000 or
Request an Appointment
For appointments, call: (574) 367-7000
Office Hours
  • Monday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Tuesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Wednesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Thursday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Friday 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
  • Saturday Closed
  • Sunday Closed
Get in touch:
  • Phone: (574) 367-7000
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