Frequently Asked Questions

Browse our frequently asked questions to learn more about our practice and policies.

Appointments

What are your office hours?

Laguna Oaks Dental is open Monday through Friday from 9 AM to 6 PM and Saturday by appointment only. We are closed on Sundays.

Please note that our office will be closed in observance of the following holidays:

New Year’s Day, President’s Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving and the Friday after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day.

How do I schedule an appointment?

For your convenience, we offer the following methods to schedule your appointments:

  • Online scheduling: To request appointment availability, please click here to fill out the form. Our scheduling coordinator will contact you to confirm your appointment.
  • Call our office at (916) 647-4151.
  • Email us at info@lagunaoaksdental.com with your preferred date or day of the week and time range, and our scheduling coordinator will contact you to confirm your appointment.
How often should I schedule regular check-ups?

The American Dental Association recommends twice-yearly exams and cleanings. Some people may need more frequent check-ups based on their dental needs. After your first exam, we’ll be able to determine the best frequency for your dental health.

What do I need to bring to my first appointment?
  • Completed new patient forms. To download, click here.
  • Insurance card/information
  • List of current medications and medical conditions
  • X-rays taken in the last 6 months (if available)
What if I need to reschedule?

Please call our office at least 24 hours in advance of your appointment. We’ll work with you to help you find another date that fits your schedule.

What if I need emergency dental care?

If you have pain or an emergency situation, every attempt will be made to see you within 24 hours. 

Insurance/Financial

What payment options do you offer?

Laguna Oaks Dental offers several payment options:

  • Cash, check or credit card at the time of service
  • Payment plans – For major treatments, we will work with you to develop a payment plan.
  • Insurance – For your convenience, we will submit your insurance claims.
Do you require payment at the time of the visit?

If you have insurance through one of our approved providers, only your estimated portion of the fees will be required at the time of service.

If you do not have insurance, we will require payment at the time of service or as specified in your payment plan.

Do you accept insurance?

Yes, we accept most major insurance plans. Please contact our office to verify your insurance is one of our accepted providers.

Do you accept Medicare?

Yes, we are pleased to accept Medicare payments.

Do you accept CareCredit payments?

We are pleased to accept CareCredit, a medical credit card that can be used for dental health expenses. For more information, please ask our staff or visit the website at www.CareCredit.com.

Do you offer financing options?

Yes, we offer both short-term, interest-free financing and longer term financing with low monthly payments. We will be happy to work with you to find the best payment option for you!

Treatments

What services do you provide?

Laguna Oaks Dental provides general, pediatric, cosmetic and restorative dental services. Please click on our Services tab for more details.

What happens during my first visit?

We will conduct a thorough examination during your first visit to determine the best course of action to achieve dental health and your goals. We will:

  • Take full mouth x-rays to identify any current problems and to use as a baseline on future visits to detect early signs of problems
  • Assess gum condition and health
  • Examine teeth for cavities and condition of old dental restorations
  • Perform a head and neck exam, including salivary glands and lymph nodes, for swelling or other abnormalities
  • Screen for oral cancer and TMJ (jaw joint).
  • Clean and polish your teeth
Why do I need to discuss my medical conditions with my dentist?

Many health conditions are indicated in the mouth and can affect oral health, so your medical information is very important in diagnosing issues with your teeth, gums, and mouth.

How often do fillings need to be replaced?

Fillings can last for many years, but over time they wear down, discolor, crack and sometimes fall out. Early detection of problems with fillings can help you avoid getting cavities under the filling and causing more serious decay. Let us know if you’re experiencing any pain. We’ll check your fillings at every visit to determine if any need to be replaced.

Do you use composite (tooth colored) or amalgam (silver) fillings?

Composite fillings are widely preferred to amalgam today to fill new cavities and replace old fillings needing repair. However, there are some instances when amalgam is still recommended, based on your individual health profile. In addition, some insurance providers will not approve composite fillings in posterior teeth, which would increase your out-of-pocket expenses.

Are x-rays necessary?

Absolutely. Dental x-rays are essential, preventative, diagnostic tools. Many oral conditions occur between teeth or under the gums or bones, undetectable by the human eye, and may have no early signs or symptoms. Left untreated, these conditions can create serious dental and general health problems, including loss of teeth and heart problems. Early detection with x-rays can make treatment much less painful, faster, and less expensive. The American Dental Association recommends getting a full series every three years.

Sedation

What types of sedation do you use?

Many dental procedures can be completed under local anesthesia. However, to help more anxious patients relax, or for more complex procedures, we use nitrous oxide.

What is Inhalation Sedation?

Known as nitrous oxide or “laughing gas,” you’ll experience a feeling of euphoria after just 2-3 minutes of breathing in the gas. You’ll be aware of your surroundings and able to respond to questions. Inhalation sedation has very few side effects and is eliminated from the body within 3 to 5 minutes after the gas supply is stopped.

Children

When should I start cleaning and brushing my child's teeth?

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, you should begin cleaning your child’s gums with a soft cloth soon after birth. As soon as the first tooth appears, start brushing twice daily with a soft infant toothbrush and just a smear of toothpaste. When you come in for your child’s first visit, we’ll show you how to brush properly.

At what age should I schedule my child’s first visit?

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends visiting the dentist as soon as the first tooth appears, or by the child’s first birthday. We can look for potential problems and help your child get to know us as their friend. These early visits can make your child’s experience with a dentist a positive one.

Can my teenager come alone to the appointment?

Please note that patients under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at all visits. We want to meet with both of you to discuss findings and treatments, and to address your questions and concerns.

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