Dental Health

October is National Dental Hygiene Month

Posted on October 1, 2014. Filed under: Childrens Dental Health, Dental Care, Dental Health, Dental Hygiene Tips, Dental Hygienist, gum disease, healthy teeth, Kids Dental Health, Kids Oral Health, National Dental Hygiene Month, Oral Health, Smile Savers Dentistry | Tags: , , , , , , |

Dental Hygienist Bonnie CarrollOctober is National Dental Hygiene Month, so it’s a great time of the year for me to remind you about the importance of your oral health care. Did you know that in addition to brushing and flossing your teeth daily, using an antiseptic mouthwash will also help improve your oral health? It’s true!

Rinsing your mouth with an anti-microbial mouth rinse every day is an important step that you can take to help prevent gum disease. If you stop and think about it, your teeth only account for less than half of your mouth! So, twice daily brushing and flossing alone can’t get rid of all plaque and germs.

Be sure to finish your daily oral health care routine with an antiseptic mouthwash that carries the ADA Seal of Acceptance. You can also talk to me during your next appointment to determine which mouth rinse is best for you.

And if I haven’t seen you in my chair in a while, now is the time to make your appointment for your periodic exam. Remember, skipping your regular exams and cleanings could cause you some unnecessary pain and expense down the road. Call the Smile Savers Dentistry office today and make an appointment at 410-730-6460.

Bonnie Carroll is a Dental Hygienist at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia, Maryland.

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The Periodic Oral Exam – by Dr. Daniel C. Stewart

Posted on August 25, 2014. Filed under: Dental Health, Dr. Daniel Stewart, Oral Health, Smile Savers Dentistry | Tags: , , , , |

Dr. Daniel Stewart at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia MarylandMany times patients think they are just coming in for their six month cleaning. While that may be true, the more important reason for coming in is the periodic oral exam. If you come in every 6 months for your “cleaning,” good for you! If you don’t, think about the following.

I have found over the last 25 years that most people believe that if there is no pain in their mouth, then all is well and there is no need to see me. While this may be true for a muscle or joint, this is not the case for the mouth.

Teeth and gums are really resilient. You can eat ice cream and then drink coffee with little effects. You can eat crusty bread without tearing up your mouth. Your teeth are made to be tough. So when there is pain when you eat, it is usually too late to keep it simple. By the time a tooth hurts, infection is usually in the nerve. By the time your gums hurt because of gum disease, so much bone has been eaten away, the tooth may need to be extracted.

So, don’t skip your periodic evaluations. It could save you some unnecessary pain and expense down the line. If you are due (or OVER due) for your next exam, call the Smile Savers Dentistry office today and make an appointment at 410-730-6460.

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When Should My Child First Visit the Dentist?

Posted on July 16, 2014. Filed under: Childrens Dental Health, Dental Care, Dental Health, General Dentistry, Kids Dental Health, Kids Oral Health, Pediatric Dentistry, Smile Savers Dentistry | Tags: , , , , |

Currently, 30% of all children suffer from tooth decay. A recent study was conducted of nearly 500 parents with kids under the age of 12, to see how much or little they knew about dentistry. The results showed that about half of the parents didn’t take their kids to visit the dentist on a regular basis.
Child Dentist Columbia MD
Only half of dads and 63% of moms made sure that their children regularly brushed their teeth. 20% of the parents incorrectly thought that they only had to take their children to the dentist when their teeth appeared. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that you bring your child in to see us by his/her first birthday. Although this may sound early, we can teach you proper pediatric oral hygiene techniques, check for cavities, and watch for developmental problems.

And if your child is active in sports as they get older, we highly recommend a custom-made mouthguard. According to the ADA, an athlete is 60 times more likely to suffer dental harm when not wearing one of these protective devices. At Smile Savers Dentistry, we can have a mouthguard custom-made specifically for your child using a model of his or her teeth that will offer greater protection than an off-the-shelf model.

Read more about pediatric dentistry. And if it is time for your kiddos to visit the dentist, give us a call at 410-730-6460.

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What Can a Dental X-Ray Really Tell Us?

Posted on July 2, 2014. Filed under: Dental Health, Dental Hygienist, Dental X-ray, General Dentistry, Smile Savers Dentistry | Tags: , , , , , |

dental x-ray at Smile Savers DentistryAt Smile Savers Dentistry we use digital X-ray technology, which means the images are sent to a computer and saved, rather than the more traditional method where they are stored on film. This technology allows the amount of radiation transmitted during the X-ray procedure to be less than traditional methods.

Dental X-rays are pictures of the teeth, bones, and soft tissues around them that help us find problems with the teeth, mouth, and jaw. X-ray pictures can show cavities, hidden dental structures (such as wisdom teeth), and bone loss that cannot be seen during a visual examination.

Dental X-rays are usually done as part of your routine hygiene appointment and allows us catch dental issues before they start and even have a chance to get worse. Dental X-rays are scheduled when you need them based on your age, risk for disease, and signs of disease.

If you are due for your hygiene appointment or are looking for a new dentist in the Columbia, MD area, call our office today to schedule your appointment: 410-730-6460.

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LANAP for Gum Disease, A Better Alternative to Surgery

Posted on June 9, 2014. Filed under: Dental Care, Dental Health, Dental Treatment, gum disease, Gum Surgery, LANAP, Oral Health, Smile Savers Dentistry | Tags: , , , , |

If you are looking for help in correcting your gum disease, come in to our Columbia dentist office for a LANAP consultation.
gum disease treatment baltimore
At Smile Savers Dentistry, we have a dental laser that treats periodontal disease without all of the cutting, sutures, and discomfort of traditional, aggressive gum surgery. We have seen miraculous results over the past four years with LANAP. We had a patient say that in one month post-op that he couldn’t remember the last time when he didn’t see bleeding when he brushed! Another patient told us her previous dentist would have had all her teeth extracted and dentures placed. But after LANAP, she still has all of her teeth and they are healthy again.

Quite simply, the FDA approved laser is able to form a clean, closed, and stable environment which allows the body to heal itself naturally and regenerate lost bone. This laser-based approach to treating gum disease makes it easier for you to return your gums to health and the process is far more comfortable than gum surgery.

LANAP is safe for patients with health concerns such as diabetes, HIV, hemophilia, or those taking medications such as Courmadin or Cyclosyporin. The laser treatment is generally no more expensive than traditional gum surgery. However, gum disease treatment plans will always vary with the stage of your periodontal disease, bone loss, and chartings.

If you would like to learn more about LANAP and see if you are a candidate for this safe and gentle treatment for gum disease, please call the Smile Savers Dentistry office to schedule a consultation with Dr. Daniel Stewart: 410-730-6460.

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Are You at Risk for Tooth Loss as You Get Older?

Posted on February 24, 2014. Filed under: Dental Care, Dental Health, Dental Hygiene Tips, General Dentistry, healthy teeth, Oral Health and Nutrition, Quality Dental Care, Smile Savers Dentistry | Tags: , , , , , , |

When you think about your oral health, do you have visions of emergency dental extractions, dentures floating in a glass, hours in a dental chair, enduring expensive dental implants, etc.? Although tooth loss is somewhat common, it’s not an inevitable part of the natural aging process.

dental exam columbia md

Dental Exam – Columbia, MD

Many times the loss of a tooth is through our own doing, either from poor oral hygiene, by using them as a tool, or from disease. Your teeth should never be used as a tool for things like removing lids or tearing off tags. Other no-nos include cracking ice cubes or nut shells, chewing on pencils or cutting thread.

Diseases like diabetes, arthritis and hypertension can put you at risk for periodontal disease and tooth loss. Poor nutrition and smoking can also contribute to the health factors that can cause dental problems. It’s also important to have regular, quality dental check-ups if you are pregnant because of changing hormones.

Coming in to the dentist office on a regular basis for cleanings and exams helps to prevent tooth loss. Generally, unless you are told you have periodontal disease, appointments twice a year should do the trick as long as you are receiving a complete evaluation during one of those visits. If you are due for a dental exam and cleaning, call Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia, MD at 410-730-6460. We are accepting new and emergency dental patients.

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Teeth Grinding and Your Oral Health

Posted on February 5, 2014. Filed under: bruxism, Dental Care, Dental Health, dental night guard, Dental Treatment, General Dentistry, healthy teeth, mouth guard, teeth grinding | Tags: , , , , , |

Smile Savers Dentistry Columbia MDOccasional teeth grinding (bruxism) doesn’t generally cause harm, but when it is occurring on a regular basis, your teeth can become damaged and other oral health complications could develop.

Most people grind or clench their teeth from time to time, and although grinding can be caused by anxiety or stress, most times it occurs while asleep and is most likely caused by an abnormal bite or missing/misaligned teeth. Most people are usually unaware that they grind their teeth because it generally occurs while they are sleeping. But a sore jaw or constant, dull headache can be signs of bruxism.

Chronic teeth grinding can often lead to fracturing, loosening or loss of teeth. If left untreated, bruxism can lead to expensive dental work like bridges, crowns, root canals and even dentures. It can also affect your jaw or result in hearing loss, and it could even change the appearance of your face.

There are a few solutions you can try to help prevent grinding like avoiding caffeine and alcohol and training yourself to not clench or grind your teeth during the day. If stress seems to be the cause of the grinding, perhaps start an exercise program or seek stress counseling. Another solution is to get fitted with a night guard. The night guard will protect your teeth from grinding while you sleep.

If you suspect you are grinding your teeth (or are being told that you are!), come in to the office for an exam. Call Smile Savers Dentistry at 410-730-6460 to make an appointment and to take advantage of our special offer for February: $100 off a custom night guard.

Expires 2/28/14
Offer Expires: 2/28/14

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A Word from Dental Hygienist Bonnie Carroll, RDH: The Importance of Dental Hygiene

Posted on December 11, 2013. Filed under: Dental Care, Dental Health, Dental Hygiene Tips, Dental Hygienist, General Dentistry, healthy teeth, Oral Health, Smile Savers Dentistry | Tags: , , , , , |

Bonnie Carroll at Smile Savers DentistryWe like to educate our patients on the importance of keeping up with your regular dental cleaning visits. At Smile Savers Dentistry, we use the latest technology and take the time to gather information about your oral health status.

Your oral hygiene is not only important for the health of your teeth and gums, but also for the health of your entire body! Your mouth acts as a portal of all things traveling through your body. More than 75% of Americans have some form of periodontal disease (gum disease), but only 60% are aware of the problem. Periodontal disease has been linked to many systemic diseases such as diabetes, osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s disease to name a few.

When patients come in for their cleanings, there are many things that the dentist and hygienist look at to advise the patient about their oral care. At Smile Savers Dentistry we perform several procedures for diagnostic purposes.

One of the procedures that is used to help keep you at optimal oral health are X-rays (bite wings and a panoramic). The bite wings are taken once a year and they are used to check the spaces between your teeth for decay and bone levels around the teeth. The panoramic X-ray is taken every 3 years and this X-ray shows us the whole mouth and your joints and sinuses.
dentalpatient-sm

Then there is periodontal charting which is done once a year to measure the bone level around the teeth by doing this regularly your dental professionals are able to catch periodontal disease in its early stages and design a proper treatment plan to get you back to optimal oral health. As for the microscope evaluation, we use this as a tool to take a sample of the plaque bacteria that is in your mouth and blow it up to viewing size under the microscope showing you what is exactly going on at a microscopic level in your mouth.

Last but not least is a periodic exam that Dr. Stewart performs for your routine oral health and cancer screening. It’s also to evaluate X-rays and treatment that may be needed to keep your teeth and gums healthy, as well as your entire body.

If you are overdue for your exam and cleaning, call Smile Savers Dentistry at 410-730-6460 for your appointment. I look forward to seeing you!

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Healthy Teeth Tips For Your Thanksgiving Dinner from Smile Savers Dentistry

Posted on November 25, 2013. Filed under: Dental Health, healthy teeth, Oral Health, Oral Health and Nutrition, Smile Savers Dentistry | Tags: , , , , |

Healthy Teeth Advice from Smile Savers DentistryThe Thanksgiving holiday is a time to enjoy the company of your family and friends, and of course to enjoy (sometimes too much) delicious food. It’s really not the time to think of your diet or your oral health, for that matter. Don’t worry, we’re not going to be the voice of doom and gloom for the holidays.

Bacteria just loves sugar and starch! They feed on the sugar that enters your mouth and it causes the enamel of your teeth to break down, which results in sensitivity and pain! So, as you indulge this Thursday, try to follow some of these tips so that we don’t see you in the office until you are due for your next cleaning!

Avoid Grazing: It’s easy to graze during a holiday feast like Thanksgiving. The problem with grazing is two-fold. Because you are aimlessly reaching for appetizers and cookies, you have no real measure of the amount of food you are eating, which does not help your waistline. The sugars from the food can also sit in the plaque on your teeth. Try to rinse your mouth with warm water after snacking.

Say No Thanks to Sugary Drinks: Opt for water or unsweetened tea. Not only will your teeth thank you for being so protective, your waistline will thank you too. Another idea is to make a low-sugar, sparkling cranberry punch to serve with dinner.

Limit Teeth Staining Foods and Drinks: If you plan to be drinking red wine, pair it with some cheese cubes. Cheese provides a protective barrier between your tooth enamel and the red wine. Antioxidant-rich, brightly colored fruits and veggies, and coffee and tea can also cause staining.

Add Some Veggies and Crunch To Your Plate: Make a veggie platter to satisfy you and your guests as appetizers, over the more fattening options of chips and crackers. Prepare an inviting salad to enjoy before, or with, dinner. The crunchy veggies help in removing the plaque from your teeth and won’t add inches to your waistline. Substitute potatoes with sweet potatoes instead and serve fiber-rich broccoli for Thanksgiving dinner. These foods will aid in saliva secretion that helps in flushing out the accumulated acid from the other food.

After Dinner Drinks Do’s and Don’ts: Sorry coffee lovers, it’s better to choose tea over coffee after dinner. The polyphenols within the tea can help the veggies to get rid of the harmful acid producing bacteria in your mouth.

Carry a Toothbrush: If you’re not enjoying Thanksgiving at home, toss a toothbrush in your purse or coat jacket. Duck in to the bathroom and rinse your mouth with warm water and brush your way to a nice, fresh mouth for the end of the evening.

Remember, proper nutrition is essential to maintaining good oral health but that doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy the holiday food offerings! And of course it goes without saying, make sure you are scheduled for your routine checkup and cleaning here at Smile Savers Dentistry to avoid future dental issues. Call the office today at 410-730-6460 to make your 2014 appointment.

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A Word From Dental Assistant Deanna: Why You Can’t Ignore Cavities

Posted on October 23, 2013. Filed under: Dental Assistant, Dental Care, Dental Cavity, Dental Health, Dental Hygiene Tips, Dental Treatment, General Dentistry, healthy teeth, Oral Health, Oral Health and Nutrition | Tags: , , , , |

Deanna Roberts at Smile Savers DentistryAs Halloween approaches, it’s always tempting to eat the delicious candy that seems to appear just about everywhere you look. As we all know, sugar is directly related to cavities which are considered a disease. Cavities are decay, they damage and break down your teeth causing a hole to develop. This hole can be microscopic or it can be visible to the naked eye. It just depends on how bad the cavity is. When left untreated, cavities just get worse causing more pain and the chance of the tooth becoming so badly damaged that you lose it.
Candy and Cavities
I’ve been a dental assistant at Smile Savers Dentistry for over a year and I’ve also seen countless cases where patients wait too long to take care of a cavity and end up having to deal with needing an extraction, root canal or crown. All of these procedures will cost you more time and money along with added stress.

The main reason that I love my job at Smile Savers Dentistry so much is that I have the ability to help people. My main concern is that you are happy and healthy! I don’t want to see a simple cavity turn in to a root canal, and I especially don’t want to see anyone in pain, especially pain that could have been prevented. I would love for you to call our dentist office here in Columbia, MD at 410-730-6460. to talk about your treatment options and to see what is involved with fixing cavities. I will gladly answer any questions that you have and hopefully put your fears to rest.

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