Dr. David De Ainza, DDS, PC

Call us directly: 503.223.5223

833 SW 11th Avenue, Suite 500 Contact Us


1. How can I get my teeth whiter? Does whitening hurt my teeth?
There are two types of stain that affect teeth. Extrinsic stain is acquired through our diet, habits, and environment. These types of stains can come from highly pigmented foods and beverages, tobacco use, and less than optimal hygiene. They can be removed/controlled by regular thorough brushing, use of electric toothbrush, and professional cleanings. Whitening toothpastes help with removing these types of stains. Intrinsic stains are deeper, inherent discoloration—yellow, brown, and gray tones. Theses can be lessened and in some cases removed with professional whitening products. Whitening products contain peroxide in a gel form that interacts with stain and pigments within the teeth. With repeated use for about 2 weeks most people will see the results of lighter, whiter teeth. There are professional strength gels and custom fit trays that can be made at our office. There are potent in office treatments. And there are OTC alternatives, such as Crest White Strips, that have potential to whiten, but to a lesser degree and/or require more time. Whitening performed as instructed, with quality products will not harm enamel. Side effects such as gum irritation and tooth sensitivity are possible. These are generally short lived and manageable with proper precautions and desensitizing products.

2. What is the best toothbrush and toothpaste to use?
We recommend electric toothbrushes, such as those made by Sonicare or Oral B. Manual toothbrushes work fine as well. Choose one with a soft bristle texture and appropriate size for good access to your back teeth. OTC toothpaste to some degree is quite similar, so go with your personal preference. Prescription toothpastes generally have 5000ppm fluoride concentration and some contain remineralizing agents that contain calcium-derived products. These types of toothpastes can prevent tooth decay and reverse smaller areas of early decay. For sensitive gums toothpaste called Biotene works well. It is detergent free which is kinder to the gums.

3. What causes tooth sensitivity? And how can I make my teeth less sensitive?
Possible causes include worn/eroded tooth enamel, exposed root surfaces, worn fillings, tooth decay, cracked teeth. For sensitivity due to enamel erosion or gum recession, desensitizing gels and toothpastes can be helpful. OTC toothpastes that containing potassium nitrate (Sensodyne) can be helpful. Prescription toothpastes that contain higher fluoride concentration and remineralizing ingredients (Mi Paste, Clinpro 5000) can seal microscopic pores in teeth and make them harder.

4. Why do my gums bleed?
Generally, bleeding gums are a sign of acute or chronic irritation that is a result local factors. These factors include plaque, calculus, deep, poorly adapted fillings and/or crowns. This inflammatory process is characterized as gingivitis.

Regular brushing twice a day for at least 2 minutes each time and regular flossing should reduce nearly all bleeding if its done consistently. In some cases patients who take aspirin therapy or other blood thinners will see easier bleeding. Pregnant women are also more susceptible.

5. What are dental implants? Are they safe? Do you do them?
Dental implants are a permanent replacement for missing teeth. They can be used to replace single or multiple teeth, as well as support dentures. They are constructed out of surgical grade titanium and are placed by a surgeon into the jawbone. Afterwards a prosthetic, such as a crown, bridge, or denture can be attached to the implant fixture. The crowns are typically made of porcelain and can be very durable and esthetically pleasing. Implants are safe and predictable. Our office restores the prosthetic portion of the implant (crown, bridge, or denture). We work in concert with reputable local oral surgeons and periodontists.

6. Do you do cosmetic work?
Yes. We provide services such as veneers, tooth colored fillings (composites), and teeth whitening. For cosmetic gum tissue work, appropriate referrals can be made.

7. Composite (white) vs. amalgam (silver) fillings?
Controversy over what type of filling is better remains. Both materials have pros and cons. The United States FDA has continued to confirm the safety and effectiveness of dental amalgam. That being said, amalgam has a role, but it’s not for everyone and its use is becoming progressively smaller as composite materials and placement techniques improve. Composite is a great alternative, especially in situations where cosmetics are important and smaller tooth preserving preparations can be used.

Durability is comparable. Longevity depends on the individual tooth, patient’s overall dentition, and habits. More specifics can be discussed in person.

8. Why do I need a crown?
Crowns are necessary for the following reasons…to fix a severely fractured tooth; prevent fracture of a tooth with a large, failing filling; protect and seal a posterior tooth following root canal treatment. There are various types of materials that can be used. Pros and cons of materials can be discussed in person.

9. Do I have gum disease? How can it be treated?
Gum Disease or Periodontal Disease is a chronic infection of the supporting structures of the teeth, which includes the gingiva (gums), periodontal ligament, and the jawbone. This chronic infection results leads to inflammation, which manifests as gum bleeding, gum recession, and bone loss. Gum disease can be caused by poor hygiene, and exacerbated other health and social factors. Diabetes and smoking are risk factors. Some believe there is a genetic susceptibility component to gum disease. Lack of dental care, poor dental care, and improper tooth alignment can also complicate things. Fortunately, gum disease can be treated. Regular and thorough cleanings to remove irritating deposits and inflamed tissue. Instructions in proper home care. In some cases, specialty referral is indicated.

10. Do you treat children? And When should I first bring my child to the dentist?
Yes, our office welcomes children. Dr. DeAinza is comfortable and skilled at treating children for basic dental care. Dr DeAinza has worked in a pediatric dental setting prior to entering private practice. Generally, it is recommended to bring your child for their first visit around age 1 to evaluate the developing teeth. Recall approximately annually until about age 4-5 when we will begin teeth cleanings on a semi annual basis.

11. What does my insurance cover?
A detailed printout from the insurance company can be obtained to explain this in detail, along with annual limits and waiting periods. Our front office can assist you with this, or make a call on your behalf.

12. How much will it cost?
We will provide a treatment estimate, detailing costs, and any insurance coverage if applicable. Fees are set to be competitive with the area and offer value.

13. Are you accepting new patients?
Yes. We welcome new patients. Most of our new patients are referrals from existing patients. We appreciate this.

14. What can I expect at my first visit?
A comprehensive exam of teeth and soft tissues. A review of medical and dental history. Any necessary x-rays or digital photos will be taken. In most cases, a dental cleaning will also be performed.

15. Do I have to have x-rays? How frequently will I need x-rays?
X-rays are necessary for any comprehensive exam. They are required prior to performing restorative treatment on any teeth.

The amount and type will depend on the individual and needs to be seen. In general, it’s the standard of care to obtain a full mouth series or a panoramic and bitewing x-rays on new patients for comprehensive evaluation. If patients have relatively current x-rays from another office, those can be used. Going forward, the x-ray interval for “checkup” x-rays is individualized based on the patient’s history and risk level.