Accessible Version
Mario A. Godinez DDS
A Great Dentist

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How can we help you?

If you have questions about your dental health, we have answers! We love taking the time to answer our patients' questions because we believe that the more you understand about your oral health, the better decisions you can make about the procedures that are right for you.

Here are a few questions we hear most often. If you don't find your answer here, please call us at (760) 632-2410.


Dental insurance is an excellent tool to help you defray the cost of some treatment procedures. Our team is happy to help you understand the extent of your benefits and coverage as each plan varies and can be tricky to decipher. 

Some basic things to understand about dental insurance is that it typically doesn't cover anything at 100 percent except your preventive six-month cleanings and checkups. That's why these visits are so vital to your dental health. They allow us to detect any concerns as early as possible and keep your teeth clean and plaque-free at as little cost to you as possible.

If you find yourself with a tooth that needs a filling or crown, your dental insurance typically pays for a percentage of the cost. We are always very upfront about the price of your treatment and estimates of your insurance coverage, so you understand your out-of-pocket expense before completing your procedure. Just like you, we don't like financial surprises!

We are happy to file claims to your insurance on your behalf, and we work with most major dental insurance companies. If you have questions about your insurance, or your treatment plan, or your payment options, please contact our Encinitas dental office today.

Dental Implants

A dental implant is an excellent treatment option for replacing one or multiple missing teeth. In fact, it is considered the gold standard in the industry for tooth replacement because an implant restores both your tooth and your root, essentially giving you back the appearance and function of a natural tooth.

Dr. Godinez works with top oral surgeons in the area for the placement phase of your tooth implant and monitors the healing and integration of your implant after your surgery. When your dental implant is fully integrated and fused with your jawbone, he will create a restoration to complete your smile. This might be a custom porcelain crown that blends seamlessly with your smile for a single tooth replacement. Or, it could be a dental bridge or denture if you are replacing multiple missing teeth.

Tooth implants not only restore function and aesthetics to your smile, but they also protect the health of your jawbone by acting just like a root and keeping it stimulated for growth and regeneration.

If you would like to learn more about tooth implants in Encinitas and how they can benefit your oral health, call your team at Mario A. Godinez DDS today at (760) 632-2410.

General Dentistry

Great question! We empower our patients to make their own decisions about the treatment that's right for them, and when you should complete it.

With that said, if Dr. Godinez recommends treatment for you, it is probably best to get it done as soon as you can.

For example, when we recommend a dental filling for you, it means that there is active tooth decay inside your tooth. If you're proactive about completing your treatment, a dental filling is typically sufficient to restore your tooth to health.

If tooth decay is left untreated, it progresses further into your tooth causes more damage. This could mean the need for a more substantial filling, or worse, it could reach the nerve of your tooth and cause an infection. Now, you'll probably be in pain, and you'll need root canal treatment to alleviate your infection and discomfort and preserve your tooth.

Our goal is for you to have the least invasive and most comfortable treatment procedures. When you are proactive about visiting Dr. Godinez every six months for teeth cleanings and examinations, we can help you avoid problems like tooth decay and gum disease, which saves you time and money in the long run.

Contact your Encinitas dental office today if it's time to schedule your next dental appointment.

Your gums are an essential foundation for the health of your teeth. When you lose that support, your teeth are at risk.

Many factors can cause your gums to recede, such as:  

  • Vigorous brushing - Brushing your teeth too hard can damage delicate gum tissue
  • Genetics - Some people are more prone to gum disease due to genetics
  • Poor dental hygiene - Lack of regular brushing and flossing causes plaque buildup that can result in gum disease
  • Grinding your teeth - Clenching or grinding your teeth (bruxism) can lead to gum recession
  • Hormones - Changing hormones during pregnancy, puberty or menopause can affect the health of your gums
  • A misaligned bite - Crooked teeth or an incorrect bite can lead to gum problems

The most significant cause of gum recession, however, is periodontal (gum) disease. This is an infection of the gums and bone that support your teeth that will eventually result in tooth loss if it's not effectively managed with periodontal maintenance.

Your best defense against gum disease is routine teeth cleanings and checkups with your Encinitas dentist every six months. During your examination, Dr. Godinez will screen you for gum disease so we can detect it and treat it as early as possible.

Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that helps to strengthen and protect your teeth from tooth decay. Dr. Godinez typically recommends fluoride treatments for children, but adults who are prone to tooth decay or cavities can also benefit from fluoride treatments or using fluoride toothpaste.

You might find fluoride added to the drinking water in your town; however, it usually isn't enough to protect teeth from tooth decay and cavities. This is when your Encinitas dentist might suggest a fluoride treatment where we will apply it directly to your teeth and allow it to strengthen and remineralize them.

Fluoride is particularly helpful for teeth that have been affected by tooth decay. If tooth decay is just starting, sometimes fluoride can help to reverse its effects.

For children, using fluoride toothpaste is another way to help build and strengthen their teeth. Children can begin to use fluoride toothpaste as soon as they can spit after brushing around the age of two or three years old. Until that point, parents should use a toothpaste that is safe for their child to swallow. 

If you have questions about fluoride and if it might benefit you, contact our dental office today at (760) 632-2410 for more information.

Tooth-Colored Fillings

Questions have arisen about the safety of amalgam metal fillings. Metal amalgam fillings are 50 percent mercury, which can release a vapor during chewing, placement, or removal of your fillings.

While there is no sufficient evidence that metal in your dental fillings is harmful to your health or body, Dr. Godinez chooses to use only composite resin to restore cavities.

Composite resin is a durable alternative to metal amalgam fillings because it bonds directly onto your tooth. It also allows us to preserve more of your natural tooth since it doesn't require Dr. Godinez to remove as much tooth structure to place it.

Metal also responds to temperature changes by expanding and contracting, which means that your metal fillings break down and pull away from your tooth over time. When this happens, it is an opening for bacteria to get back inside your tooth and cause damage or decay. For this reason, many people choose to remove their metal fillings and replace them with composite resin.

Composite resin is also tooth-colored, which makes it easy for Dr. Godinez to match the shade of your tooth, so no one will ever notice your dental filling. 

If you'd like to learn more about tooth-colored fillings in Encinitas, contact our dental office today.

Not finding what you need?
If you have difficulty using our website, please email us or call us at (760) 632-2410
View the ADA Accessibility Statement