Teeth

Save Face: April is National Facial Protection Month

Posted on April 15, 2015. Filed under: mouth guard, National National Facial Protection Month, Teeth | Tags: , , , , , , |

Save Face with a Mouth GuardThis month we’re spreading the word to remind both kids and adults: as you suit up for outdoor activities this spring, don’t forget to protect your face and head. Many oral and facial sports-related injuries can be easily prevented with the use of helmets and mouth guards. Did you know that just by wearing a mouth guard, you reduce the risk of knocking out teeth or breaking your jaw?

Chances are if your kids play in organized sports, their coach, or the organization itself, may already require that they wear a mouth guard. Any time that you’re engaged in an activity where your face can come in contact with something hard – another player, a ball, the pavement – it’s a time that you should be wearing a mouth guard!

Mouth guards are a smart investment in your dental health. Repairing the teeth and jaw can be painful and can cost thousands of dollars. Many injuries can be far less severe or even prevented altogether by the simple act of wearing a mouth guard.

There are three types of mouth guards available:

Stock or commercial mouth guards: Inexpensive and sold in major department and sporting goods stores. These cannot be modified to fit the individual’s mouth. Least effective in terms of protection.

Mouth-formed or “Boil-and-Bite”: Cost effective. Available from department and sporting goods stores. Tend to wear quickly and may need to be replaced during the sports season.

Custom-made: Made from a full mouth impression taken in the dentist’s office. Provides the most protection and comfort (Covers all teeth and cushions the jaw.) but is also more expensive than commercially made sports guards.

Protect your smile! Mouth guards are a good idea all year long. Because different sports involve risk and potential injury, talk to us at Smile Savers Dentistry near Ellicott City MD before selecting a mouth guard to meet the needs of your child’s specific activity. Call 410-730-6460 to make an appointment.

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A Word From Dental Hygienist Liz: Prescription Toothpaste Now Available at Smile Savers Dentistry

Posted on September 12, 2012. Filed under: Clinpro 5000, Dental Health, Dental Hygiene Tips, Dental Hygienist, Fluoride Treatment, General Dentistry, healthy teeth, Oral Health, Prescription Toothpaste, Teeth | Tags: , , , , |

Friendly Dental Hygienist at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia MarylandWe are excited to now be offering prescription anti-cavity toothpaste right here at Smile Savers Dentistry. Clinpro 5000 toothpaste delivers more fluoride, helps strengthen enamel and repairs early lesions better than conventional 5000 ppm prescription fluoride toothpastes. This prescription toothpaste helps to eliminate sensitivity, can reduce sensitivity before whitening, strengthens enamel, helps reverse white spot lestions and helps further prevent caries for high caries risk patients.

The optimized formula in Clinpro 5000 toothpaste makes it an outstanding choice. It contains fluoride as well as calcium and phosphate, which are components naturally found in saliva. Clinpro 5000 inhibits demineralization and enhances remineralization. The flouride in the toothpaste inhibits the process by which bacteria metabolize carbs and sugars to help reduce the formation of caries. Clinpro 5000 delivers more fluoride to the tooth than other leading brands tested!

Please ask me about this toothpaste during your next cleaning or, if you don’t want to wait, call or stop by the Smile Savers Dentistry office for a tube. We are offering the 4 oz. flip-top tube in the pleasant tasting, spearmint flavored paste for $25. Cheaper than Amazon!

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A Word From Dental Assistant C.J.: Want to Keep Your Teeth Strong and Healthy?

Posted on August 1, 2012. Filed under: Dental Assistant, Dental Health, Dental Hygiene Tips, General Dentistry, healthy teeth, Kids Oral Health, Oral Health, Smile Savers Dentistry, Teeth | Tags: , , , |

CJ Burwell at Smile Savers Dentistry
Your teeth may be strong but they can’t compete with abuse or neglect. Here are several suggestions on things you should avoid – to keep you from heading straight to our Columbia MD dentist office well before you are due for your checkup!

Don’t brush your teeth immediately after eating. You can brush away tooth enamel that has become soft after your meal. It is better to wait 30-60 minutes before you brush.

Don’t use your teeth as a tool. You can crack, chip or break a tooth by popping off bottle caps or even ripping open a bag of chips.

Don’t skip your checkups! Check in with your dentist every six months. Allowing more time between visits will give plaque a chance to form tartar and the plaque will then go deeper into your gums.

Don’t overindulge in a lot of sugary sodas, sports drinks and fruit juices. Also watch your coffee, tea and red wine intake. Drink water and when possible … use a straw to avoid tooth staining.

Don’t smoke! Smoking is bad for your teeth and gums. And the nicotine stains can make teeth more susceptible to bacteria. Smoking can also lead to periodontal and bone disease.

Don’t pierce your tongue. You can chip or crack your front teeth. Just by talking you are moving your tongue around with the metal piercing constantly hitting in to your teeth.

If you are experiencing any dental issues, don’t hesitate to contact us at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia so we can take a look. Otherwise, I’ll see you at your next checkup!

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A Word From Dr. Stewart: Is Invisalign Right for You?

Posted on July 25, 2012. Filed under: Dental Braces, Dental Health, Dental Treatment, Invisalign, orthodontics, Smile Savers Dentistry, Teeth | Tags: , , , , , , |

Dr. Daniel Stewart at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia Maryland
You can get straight teeth without braces with Invisalign clear aligners. Unlike traditional dental braces, Invisalign aligners are clear, comfortable and removable. And no matter what stage you’re at in life, you’ll appreciate how this cutting-edge approach to treatment has so little affect on how you live but has a significant and positive impact on how you look and feel about yourself.

There are a lot of people who are under the impression that Invisalign is only effective for minor orthodontic issues. Invisalign has a 96% patient satisfaction rate that ranges from a broad range of cases, from overly crowded teeth to jaw problems and tooth misalignment, just to name a few. While each case is different, treatment with Invisalign generally takes a year for adults. The treatment is more comparable to braces for teens. And while the end result may appear the same, when you actually compare Invisalign to other teeth-straightening options. the advantages become very apparent.

Of course the bottom line for most patients is … what is this going to cost me? The cost for Invisalign is based on the specifics of your needs and ranges from $5,000 to $8,000. Factors include the complexity of your case, the length of the treatment and your orthodontic insurance coverage. Many dental insurance plans cover Invisalign just as they would other orthodontic treatments like braces. If your insurance does not cover all of your treatment costs or if cost is a concern for you, please talk to us about payment options.

And one other thing to know about having properly aligned teeth… According to the ADA, straightening your teeth can actually significantly affect your overall dental health. A smile can hardly be perfect if it’s not a healthy smile! Fortunately, with Invisalign, having a beautiful, confident smile and reducing your risk for tooth decay and gum disease go hand in hand. If you think you are a candidate for Invisalign, call our office today to schedule a consultation with me. I will be more than happy to answer all of your Invisalign questions!

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A Word From Dental Hygienist Natalie: Tooth Sensitivity

Posted on July 19, 2012. Filed under: Dental Hygiene Tips, Dental Hygienist, Dental Treatment, Oral Health, Smile Savers Dentistry, Teeth, Teeth Sensitivity, Tooth Sensitivity | Tags: , , , , |

Dental Hygienist Natalie at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia MarylandTooth sensitivity can come and go over time. If your teeth or a single tooth is sensitive or even painful when breathing in cold air – or with hot, cold, sweet or acidic foods and drinks, then you have sensitive teeth. Almost half the world’s population suffers from tooth sensitivity. However, tooth sensitivity issues can be treated with either in-office or at-home treatments. The type of treatment will depend on what is causing the sensitivity.

First, it’s important to share with your dentist or dental hygienist if you have a sensitive tooth so that your mouth can be examined to see if the problem is in fact tooth sensitivity (dentin hypersensitivity). If it is, they will help you choose the best form of treatment. Your dentist/hygienist may recommend that you use a low abrasion toothpaste that is made especially for sensitive teeth. You will have to brush with this paste twice a day to achieve results.

Your dentist may instead prescribe an inexpensive brush-on fluoride gel or a fluoride rinse, or a high fluoride level toothpaste that is formulated to make your teeth less sensitive and provides extra protection against decay. These tooth sensitivity treatments are done at home when you are brushing your teeth.

There are other treatments for sensitive teeth that your dentist or dental hygienist can provide in the dental office. These include treatments that are painted onto the teeth and fillings – such as fluoride varnish sealants and plastic resins.

You can reduce your chances of getting tooth sensitivity by keeping your mouth as healthy as possible with good oral hygiene to help prevent periodontal disease. Call our dental office in Columbia today if you are overdue for a cleaning or exam, or if you are experiencing tooth sensitivity.

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A Word From Dental Hygienist Natalie: Four Benefits of Electric Toothbrushes for Your Oral Hygiene

Posted on June 21, 2012. Filed under: Dental Hygiene Tips, Dental Hygienist, Electric toothbrush, Periodontal Disease, Smile Savers Dentistry, Teeth | Tags: , |

Dental Hygienist Natalie at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia Maryland

  • An electric toothbrush removes up to 80% more plaque then manual toothbrushes.
  • Electric toothbrush vibrations aid in stimulating the gums to firm up tighter and healthier to the tooth, preventing periodontal progression and disease.
  • Providing your teeth and gums with a better cleaning can help save money in dental restorations for your future.
  • Electric toothbrushes are proven more effective at removing coffee, wine and tea staining compared to manual brushes.

So while the upfront cost may be more than you would like to spend, I encourage you to make the investment for your own dental health future! If you have any questions about which electric toothbrush might be a good choice for you, feel free to stop by or call me at the dental office.

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A Word from Office Scheduler Kelly: Dental X-rays

Posted on June 6, 2012. Filed under: Dental Health, Dental Treatment, Dental X-ray, General Dentistry, Smile Savers Dentistry, Teeth | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Kelly Green at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia Maryland
Our patients are always asking “Why do I need to have dental X-rays taken?” The reason for these X-rays is they are another diagnostic tool that the dentist uses to check the health of your teeth and bone. The X-rays allow us to view any possible decay that could be forming between the teeth and how deep it can be, they also allow us to view the surrounding bone that your teeth are in to make sure no changes have occurred. Some examples of X-rays that are generally taken when you come in to the dental office are bitewings, Panorex, and P.A.s.

Our office usually takes four bitewings once a year, these X-rays allow us to view both your pre-molar region on the right and left side up and lower as well as the molar region on the upper and lower right and left side. These are the X-rays mainly used to check for any decay to be forming. The name bitewing refers to the little tab of paper or plastic situated in the center of the X-ray film; which when bitten on, allows the film to hover so that it captures an even amount of the needed information.

The Panorex; or “pan,” is only taken every three to five years. This X-ray gives the doctor a full mouth view and we are able to see all of the teeth as well as your sinuses and the tempomandibular joint. This X-ray is to check overall and to see if any bone changes have occurred. It is also used to check the overall health of your mouth.

And lastly the P.A., which stands for periapical film, is commonly used when patients come in and are having a problem with a certain tooth. With this X-ray we are able to get the full view of the tooth all the way from the crown of the tooth to the tip of the root and any surrounding bone.

X-rays are a wonderful tool for the doctor to use to help evaluate and improve your health. If you have questions about your dental X-ray exams, always feel free to discuss them with your dentist.

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A Word From Dr. Stewart: A Healthy Mouth

Posted on May 30, 2012. Filed under: Dental Health, Dental Treatment, General Dentistry, Kids Dental Health, Kids Oral Health, Oral Health, Oral Health and Nutrition, Smile Savers Dentistry, Teeth | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Dr. Daniel Stewart at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia MarylandMany of you who have been with me for a while understand that prevention is the best way to keep your oral health from deteriorating. On your “new patient” visit we gather all the data and form a treatment plan that will get you into optimum health. I tell you that my goal is to get you healthy as fast as possible and then put you on a regimented maintenance program so you don’t have to worry about emergency treatment or losing teeth.

What I have found is that fifty percent of you actually do this but the other thirty percenters don’t do the maintenance part. This worries me. Why spend all of that time, money and nervous energy getting the dental work done and then don’t maintain it? Nothing in this world stays the same, just look at my hairline.

So starting this month I am making it our duty here at Smile Savers Dentistry to contact those of you who have fallen off the wagon. Don’t get mad at us if you are called a few times, just call us back and make the appointment or give us a really good excuse why you can’t. We have two great caring pro-active dental hygienists Beth and Natalie who are awesome and are here to help keep you healthy and on track.

Don’t be one of those patients who needs to call me on the weekend!

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A Word From Dental Hygienist Beth: Know Your Teeth

Posted on May 23, 2012. Filed under: Dental Crown, Dental Health, Dental Hygienist, General Dentistry, Oral Health, Smile Savers Dentistry, Teeth, Tooth Anatomy | Tags: , , , |

Dental Hygienist Beth at Smile Savers Dentistry in Columbia Maryland
Do you know your teeth? Your teeth give your face its shape and add to the way you look. Not only do healthy teeth help you look good, they contribute to total body health and well-being. The shape of the arch inside of your mouth helps you talk. Many letters of the alphabet can’t be sounded without the help of teeth. Yes, your teeth do more than chew your food!

I’ve included a link to a tooth diagram as well as some definitions for the anatomy of a tooth.

    • Enamel: Hard tissue covering dentin of the crown of tooth.
    • Crown: That portion of tooth covered by enamel.
    • Pulp: Contains nerves and blood vessels that feed the tooth.
    • Dentin: Part of tooth that is under enamel and cementum. It consists of microscopic channels, called dentinal tubules, which radiate toward the cementum and enamel border. These tubules contain fluid which can increase the sensation of pain (like cold sensitivity) and the rate of tooth decay.
    • Cementum: Hard tissue covering the root of the tooth, it is attached to the bone by little elastic fibers called the periodontal ligament.
    • Periodontal Ligament: Fibers that attach tooth to bone. These fibers help soften compression during chewing.

If you are overdue for a cleaning or dental exam, call the Smile Savers Dentistry office today and make an appointment to see me!

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