Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How can we help you?

We want you to feel confident in your choice of Salem Dental to take care of your family’s smiles. We welcome your questions and hope that you will give us a call for more information or to book an appointment. Our helpful team will you get scheduled. In the meantime, here are a few of our most common questions.

We look forward to hearing from you and welcoming you to our dental practice.

Cosmetic Dentistry

Is Cosmetic Dentistry Expensive?



Just a decade ago, cosmetic dentistry was something reserved for the wealthy and famous. Fortunately, modern dentistry techniques and philosophies have advanced to recognize that every person who wishes to have a beautiful smile can benefit from cosmetic dentistry. After all, we live in a competitive world, and having the added confidence of a dazzling smile can benefit you in social and professional situations.


Cosmetic Dentistry Options

At Salem Dental, we offer the full range of smile-enhancing procedures made for every budget and lifestyle. Teeth whitening, bonding, and gum reshaping can occur in a single dental appointment and for an affordable fee that fits into any budget.

Other restorative procedures used to improve the color, shape, strength, length, or alignment of teeth can take a bit longer, but with our financing options are available to just about any patient motivated to improve their smiles.

Finding the best cosmetic dentistry options for you

If you are not happy with your teeth in photos or when you look in the mirror, let Dr. Brinton or Dr. Seth go over some of our most popular options. Veneers and Clear Correct Clear Aligners clear braces are modern options that have your convenience and your ideal smile in mind.

The best place to start is with a cosmetic dentistry consultation. Give our Salem, OR dental office a call to book your visit. These are exciting times and we can’t wait to see your satisfaction with your brand-new look.

Crowns and Bridges

Why do i need a crown instead of a filling?



Each dental restoration serves a unique purpose, and at Salem Dental our dentists will explain each of your options, share x-rays and photos, and help you make a choice that will give you the results you want. 

Many people believe that they only have one option. Our creative dental team will meet you where you are, accounting for your budget, oral health, and long-term goals.


Dr. Brinton and Dr. Seth may recommend dental crowns for a variety of reasons including:

  • Worn down teeth
  • Cracked of fractured teeth
  • Teeth with root canal treatment
  • Discolored or unattractive teeth
  • Deeply decayed teeth
  • Cosmetic dentistry purposes

Benefits of Dental Crowns

Fillings, onlays, inlays, and bonding all repair teeth, but lack the stability and protective nature of a crown. Dental crowns cover your entire tooth structure and absorb the force of chewing. A dental crown repairs teeth, prolongs their service, and can help you avoid dental extraction.

To determine the type of restoration that will repair your tooth, we welcome you to contact our Salem, OR dental office to book an appointment. We reserve time in our practice for new patients and emergency situations so that you never need to wait for the dentistry you need immediately.

Preventive and General Dentistry

How do you help anxious patients?


If you have dental anxiety, our Salem dentists can help. Often, dental fear stems from an early childhood experience that was frightening or painful. You will be happy to know that dentistry has come a long way since then, and patient comfort is now a priority in family dental practices.


An Experienced, Caring Team

We hope to show you the new face of dentistry. Not only is our team helpful, kind, and compassionate, but their experience also helps you feel confident about your care. We use the latest technology to show you your teeth and explain treatment options so that you feel fully informed and know what to expect.

We will make sure you are properly anesthetized for every procedure and will never get started before you are completely comfortable. We can take breaks throughout your appointment if you need to stretch, ask questions, or want a drink of water.


Sedation Dentistry for Nervous Patients

For patients who want a little additional help relaxing, we offer nitrous oxide sedation. Nitrous oxide, also called laughing gas, provides a mild form of sedation. We administer the sedative through a small nose mask and can control the levels of sedation throughout your visit. Once we stop the flow of gas, the sedative quickly leaves the body, and you will be able to drive yourself home from your dental appointment.


IV Sedation

IV sedation, also known as intravenous sedation, is a form of conscious sedation that can be administered by a qualified dental professional to help patients relax and manage anxiety during dental procedures. During IV sedation, medication is delivered directly into the patient’s bloodstream through an IV line, resulting in a deep state of relaxation and calm. While the patient remains conscious and able to respond to commands, they may feel drowsy and have little to no memory of the procedure afterward. IV sedation is often recommended for patients with dental phobia or those undergoing lengthy or complex dental procedures. It is a safe and effective option for many patients and can help make their dental experience more comfortable and stress-free.

How often do i need a dental cleaning?



Each patient is an individual, so we tailor your dental recommendations based on your oral health needs, your medical health, and your goals for your smile. For most children and healthy adults, two visits twice per year that include a dental cleaning, exam, and yearly x-rays are usually enough to keep teeth and gums healthy

If you have a history of periodontal disease, 3-4 visits per year could be helpful. Once periodontal disease occurs, patients are more likely to develop an infection again. Certain medications, conditions like dry mouth, and even hormonal fluctuations such as those during pregnancy can require more diligent home and professional dental attention.


Dental Exams with Veneers, implants and crowns

If you have a lot of dentistry, veneers, dental implants, or a number of dental crowns, you might opt for an extra dental cleaning and exam each year in our Salem dental office as additional insurance on your investment.

Patients who have complete dentures still need to have a dental appointment at least once per year to monitor changes in bone and for a potentially life-saving oral cancer screening.

We are happy to discuss your needs with you at your initial dental exam and work out a plan to keep you healthy and looking your best.

Why do I need a dental x-rays?



At Salem Dental, our dentists, Dr. Abigail Rapchick, and Dr. Seth Huish can often identify oral conditions upon an oral examination. Decay, fractures, and wear are commonly visible to the naked eye or with high-powered loupes (magnifying glasses), but some diseases lurk below the surface of the enamel or are hidden by the gums or bone.

It is because these diseases can hide that we need assistance seeing what is happening inside the teeth and bone. Dental x-rays reveal oral health issues in their earliest stages when they are easier and more affordable to treat. 

Since decay and infection do not cause significant pain until they are well advanced, we recommend routine dental x-rays to keep your teeth and gums healthy.


Are Dental X-Rays Safe?

Since our x-rays are a digital system, you can rest assured that they are safe. The x-ray system we use emits up to 80 percent less radiation than previous film x-rays, and because they do not require developing, they eliminate many dangerous chemicals from our practice and ultimately our environment.

When you weigh the risks of x-rays alongside the benefits, it is easy to see that they are a necessary part of your preventive dental routine. If you want to talk about x-rays and their necessity, call or stop by our Salem, OR dental office.

Root Canal Treatment

Will my root canal hurt?



Root canal treatment is often associated with pain, and many of the patients that come through our Salem dental office door would prefer to avoid a root canal if possible. Root canals, however, are actually designed to alleviate pain and swelling, and will also give our dentists the opportunity to save your tooth.


Experienced Dentists for a Comfortable Experience

If you are nervous about your root canal treatment, let us know. Our dentists are compassionate and comforting. Both have a gentle treatment style with patients, and our entire team will work together to reassure you and make your root canal procedure completely comfortable.

Because we invest in the latest technology, root canal therapy is far faster and more successful using the latest rotary instruments. These flexible and versatile tips reduce treatment time, pain, and improve the outcome.


Sedation Dentistry for Root Canals

Our Salem dentists offer nitrous oxide sedation. Nitrous oxide is sometimes called laughing gas and increases feelings of well-being and serenity. When you are relaxed, the local anesthetic works better, and your fears about dentistry can melt away.

Don’t feel embarrassed or ashamed if you have dental phobia. Anxiety about dentistry is so common that we make patient comfort and personalized care a central part of our practice philosophy. If you have a toothache or swelling, contact Salem Dental right away.