Salem Dental
Dr. Seth Huish

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How can we help you?

Are you researching a family or cosmetic dentist in Salem, OR to look after your smile? With the many dentists available, choosing the right one can feel overwhelming. We are honored that you are considering Salem Dental for your family’s dentistry. 

We want you to feel confident in your choice of Salem Dental. Please look over our frequently asked questions below and if you still have questions, please give us a call. We are always happy to help.

Cosmetic Dentistry

Teeth Whitening Salem ORIf you have tried over-the-counter teeth whitening products with less than ideal results, you might now wonder if professional teeth whitening might offer a better outcome. We offer customized teeth whitening options in our Salem, OR dental practice that will give you exceptional results safely.

Many store-bought teeth whitening options contain abrasives, which can ultimately damage your enamel. Since enamel thins as we age, preserving it whenever possible is essential.

Our teeth whitening options are safe and effective. In most cases, patients can expect to see 3 to 8 shades of improvement throughout treatment.

The Teeth Whitening Process

We will take impressions of your teeth to create your custom teeth whitening trays. Along with plenty of whitening gel, we will provide instructions on the proper use and how to avoid common side effects like sore gums and teeth sensitivity.

Tooth sensitivity after whitening

If sensitivity develops, be sure to use only the recommended amount of whitening gel – just a small dot for each tooth. Following the instructions precisely will prevent the gel from seeping out of the trays.

You can also take a day or two off in between your at-home teeth whitening sessions to reduce sensitivity. 

If you want to learn more about a whiter smile, contact Salem Dental today.

Dental Crowns and Bridges

Toothbrush | Salem OR Dental CrownsNow that you have your brand new dental crown, you probably want to get the most out of your investment, and taking proper care of it at home is a great place to start. Be sure to brush and floss your teeth following American Dental Association recommendations.

Tips for brushing with a dental crown

  • Brush each surface of every tooth
  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste
  • Brush teeth for a full two minutes each day
  • Floss in between each tooth daily

The primary material that makes up dental crowns and bridges is similar in strength to your teeth enamel – which means they are subject to the same damage as natural teeth. Teeth grinding, ice chewing, and biting into hard candy or fruit pits all put your dental restorations at risk.

If you grind your teeth, we will create a custom nightguard to prolong the life of your dentistry and your teeth.

Professional dentistry complements your home care. Having regular dental exams and cleanings will protect your dentistry and prevent oral conditions from putting your teeth at risk. Even with adequate brushing and flossing, you will still require a dental hygienist to remove tartar from hard to reach places.

We will always discuss how to care for the dental restorations we provide as part of our comprehensive approach to looking after your smile.

Dental Implants

Dental Implants Diagram | Salem ORUnlike dental bridges or dentures, dental implants require adequate time to complete. 

Most patients find that their results are well worth the wait and rave about their smiles.

Why choose dental implants?

Dental implants are the most stable and long-term solution to missing teeth because they integrate with your jawbone and become a functional and reliable part of your complete dental system. They are the most natural and lifelike way to replace missing teeth.

Opting for dental implants also improves your food options. You have no restrictions because your implants will not move or shift while you chew.

Do you qualify for dental implants?

A full evaluation will determine if you are a good candidate for dental implants. Most patients will qualify for implants even if they have bone loss. Additional treatments, such as bone grafting and sinus lifts make dental implant treatment possible.

In some cases, we can immediately restore a dental implant, but in most cases, allowing 3 to 4 months for your dental implant to fuse with your jawbone will improve the outcome.

To learn if dental implants are an option for you, and to receive an accurate timeline regarding your treatment, we welcome you to contact our Salem, OR dental office to book a dental implant consultation with Dr. Seth Huish.

Emergencies and Root Canals

Root Canal | Salem ORJust as an infection can develop in any area of the body, your teeth are no different. You can prevent the need for a root canal by seeking preventive and general dentistry to treat any gum disease, decay, or fractures

How Does a Root Canal Happen?

Root canal treatment becomes necessary when an infection develops near the nerve or root tip of the tooth. Common symptoms include swelling, pain, and sensitivity. Often, the pain will worsen with time unless you seek a Salem dentist who performs root canals.

Will Root Canal Treatment Hurt?

Many people associate root canal therapy with pain, but this tooth-saving procedure should feel no different than a dental filling and will help you get back on the road to recovery fast.

At Salem Dental, Dr. Huish performs hundreds of root canals each year and takes great pride in providing efficient, comfortable dentistry when you need it most.

Because root canal treatment removes the tissues and fibers inside the teeth canals, reinforcing your root canal tooth with a dental crown will protect it from the daily forces caused by chewing. We offer tooth-colored dental crowns to prolong the life of your tooth and to help you get the most out of your treatment.

If you have a toothache or swelling, contact us to book an emergency dental appointment. We provide same-day dental appointments whenever possible.

Emergency Dentist in Salem OREmergencies of any type are inconvenient and can be scary, and the same goes for dental emergencies. There may be blood and pain involved that can leave you feeling overwhelmed and panicked. However, you don't have to worry about dental emergencies in Salem when you have a dental team you can rely on.

Dr. Seth Huish and his team at Salem Dental are well equipped to help in emergencies, such as:

  • A tooth knocked out
  • Toothaches and dental pain
  • Broken or cracked teeth
  • Lost or broken restorations (fillings, crowns, veneers)

We offer early morning and evening appointments to accommodate emergency patients, and we can often provide same-day treatment if it's necessary. We also have instructions for you to follow if your dental emergency takes place after our business hours.

Please understand that dental emergencies won't resolve on their own, so don't wait to call us. For example, dental pain may be indicating an infection that could affect surrounding teeth or other critical areas of the body if it's left untreated. 

Even if you're not sure if your situation is a real emergency, we encourage you to call Salem, OR dental office at (503) 378-1212, and we'll be happy to assess your condition over the phone.

General and Preventive Dentistry

Man at Dentist | Dental Cleanings Salem ORAs with all of the dentistry we provide at Salem Dental, our dental cleanings are customized based on each patient’s unique needs. For people who have a healthy dental history and no history of periodontal (gum) disease, twice-yearly dental cleanings will support a healthy smile.

When patients have active periodontal disease, we recommend more frequent, thorough dental cleanings to promote healing. Following a deep dental cleaning, active maintenance every 3 to 4 months will help keep you on the path to healing and prevent bone loss.

Dental Exams for Senior Patients

As patients age, they may begin to produce more tartar buildup on the teeth that is difficult to manage. Senior patients often receive inadequate professional dentistry and suffer the consequences – including tooth loss, bone loss, and poor health.

Your Dental Exam

Our hygienists don’t just clean teeth; they are a wealth of information when it comes to home care and how to keep your teeth and gums healthy. At each visit, your hygienist will evaluate your gum health, remove tartar from the teeth, and polish them to a shine, which removes surface stains from food and coffee drinks.

You will leave our Salem dental office with that clean, fresh feeling that only comes from having your teeth cleaned by an experienced dental hygienist.

Dental X-Rays | Salem ORIf you have an exam with your Salem, OR dentist, you might wonder why dental x-rays are even necessary. The truth is that only a small percentage of your tooth is visible through a visual exam. Much of your tooth is hidden by protective enamel and lies beneath the gumline. That is why dental x-rays are an essential part of your preventive dental care.

Digital X-Rays

Because we use digital dental x-rays in our Salem dental practice, you can count on the highest quality images and the highest level of safety available. Digital dental x-rays emit up to 80 percent less radiation, and with the digital capabilities they provide, Dr. Seth Huish can identify many oral conditions in their earliest stages when they are less costly and easier to treat.

How Often Will You Need X-Rays

We recommend x-rays based on your needs and dental history. Young people and adults with fewer dental restorations and no current oral conditions may only need x-rays every year. If a dental emergency or change in your oral health develops, our team may recommend additional images to diagnose accurately.

In many cases, dental insurance companies require before-and-after images when recommending dental crowns and other restorations.

Is it time for your next dental appointment? Contact Salem Dental today. We always welcome new patients.

Tooth-Colored Fillings

If you've had a metal filling in the past, you know how unsightly they can be for your smile! Today's material of choice for dental fillings in Salem is tooth-colored composite resin, which is a mixture of glass and plastic particles that can be customized to match your tooth seamlessly. 

However, tooth-colored fillings offer more benefits than just aesthetics. Unlike metal amalgam, composite material is bonded directly to your tooth, which provides durability. It also means that Dr. Huish doesn't have to remove as much of your natural tooth structure for placement. It is always our goal to preserve as much of your natural tooth as possible.

The natural properties of metal cause it to expand and contract with temperature changes, which means that over time, your metal filling eventually pulls away from your tooth. This allows bacteria back inside your tooth and causes a breakdown. Composite resin is not temperature sensitive, and it won't pull away from your tooth and leave it susceptible to tooth decay.

If you need to restore a cavity, don't delay calling Salem Dental. Tooth decay that is left untreated can progress further into your tooth and cause more significant problems like a tooth infection.

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Covid-19 Update

Governor Kate Brown issued non-essential closure of businesses; dentistry is considered essential and we are open. If you have urgent needs or are not sure if something is classified as urgent, please do not hesitate to call us. We are answering phones, answering questions and treating patients. Doctor Huish is available for you when times are good or bad. If you call after hours, press 5 on the phone system and it will contact him directly on his cell phone. He wants to share the message that if a tooth goes untreated, it may progress into a bigger problem. Our goal is to prevent dental emergencies and keep you out of hospitals/emergency rooms. Please be cautious and stay healthy.

- Salem Dental