What Is General Dentistry?

Dental Exam

An exam is an evaluation preformed by Dr. Westervelt to determine any changes in the patient’s dental status since the last exam. Dr. Westervelt will review x-rays, check existing restorations, oral cancer and periodontal screening.


Xrays are important, diagnostic, and preventive tools that provide essential information. These allow Dr. Westervelt to make an accurate diagnosis that may otherwise go unseen in a regular exam.


Homecare is one of the most important parts of your dental care. Homecare is the patients responsibility to keep the teeth and gums healthy in between your preventive maintenance appointments. Regular brushing twice a day, careful flossing, along with regular cleanings, will help maintain the health of your teeth and gums.

Preventive Maintenance (Cleaning)

A preventive maintenance appointment is preformed by your Hygienist every 6 months to prevent excessive plaque and calculus build up; along with the removal of any staining. If needed, there are cleanings that are more involved, such as:

  • Debridement is the removal of plaque and calculus that interferes with Dr. Westervelt's ability to perform an oral exam.
  • Scaling and Root Planning is a theriputic procedure designed to remove plaque and calculus below the gum tissue, to promote healing.
  • Periodontal Maintenance is the removal of bacterial plaque and calculus from supragingival and subgingival areas, following scaling and root planning. This procedure continues at varying intervals (3-4 months), determined by your Hygienist and Dr. Westervelt.


A crown covers the entire tooth and surface restoring it to it’s original size and shape. The crown strengthens the tooth structure that cannot be restored with fillings or other restorations. Reasons for Crowns:

  • Broken or Fractured tooth
  • Decayed tooth
  • Large or compromised filling
  • Root canaled tooth
  • Excessive wear

A crown requires at least two office visits. The initial visit, the tooth is prepared, an impression taken and a temporary placed. The second visit, we remove the temporary and fit the crown. Any adjustments needed will be made and the crown will be permanently cemented.


All of your teeth play an important role in appearance, speaking, chewing and in maintaining the alignment of other teeth. Correction of tooth loss is necessary to maintain proper function of your mouth. A bridge is one of a few different options for correcting tooth loss.

A bridge is a device which fills the gap where teeth are absent; by attaching to the adjacent teeth. These anchor teeth are called the abutments; the artificial tooth taking the place of the gap is called the pontic.

Attending regular dental appointments along with great home care, will keep the bridge and surrounding teeth clean. This is of great importance as the bridge relies on neighboring teeth for support.

Dental Implants

Dr. Westervelt restores implants with the crown after they have been placed by a Specialist. We only refer to highly qualified dental surgeons for implant surgery.

Bonded Fillings

Bonded fillings are a tooth colored composite resin used to restore the function, integrity and aesthetics of a compromised tooth. Reasons for Bonded Fillings:

  • Broken or Fractured tooth
  • Decayed tooth
  • Wear

The tooth is prepared for the procedure and thoroughly cleaned before the new filling is placed. The composite resin is placed, shaped, adjusted and polished to a natural shape and appearance.

Good oral hygiene, eating habits, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new fillings.

Oral Surgery (Extractions)

An Extraction is preformed for many reasons. Some of the most common are sever decay, broken or fractured beyond repair, orthodontic reasons or sever bone loss. These missing teeth can be replaced with bridges, partials, dentures, or implants.

Root Canals (Endodontics)

We have several highly qualified local endodontists who work with Dr. Westervelt to perform root canals.

Night Guards and Mouth Guards

Custom night guards and mouth guards are made of a flexible material and shaped to fit your teeth.
Night guards are recommended for patients that clench or grind their teeth.

Mouth guards are used to protect teeth and the jaw during physical activities and sports. These guards also protect the tongue, lips and cheeks.