Posts for: August, 2017
A new school year is right around the corner.Â Here's something to add to your back-to-school list: Schedule a dental visit for your child. There are several good reasons for this:
1. Hidden Problems
Nearly 1 of 5 school-age children has untreated tooth decay. If decay progresses, it can interfere with eating, speaking, sleeping and learning. A checkup at the dental office can uncover a small problem before it turns into a much bigger issue.
2. Oral Hygiene
A back-to-school appointment is the ideal opportunity to get a professional cleaning. In addition, we can check on whether your child's oral hygiene efforts are up to par — and give pointers where needed.
3. Mouth Protection
Will your children be playing sports? If so, ask us about a custom mouthguard to help protect their teeth. If your child already has a mouthguard, we can check that the condition and fit are still adequate, given that your child is still growing.
4. Preventive Treatment
Speaking of protecting your child's teeth, an end-of-summer appointment is a good time to ask about preventive measures like tooth-strengthening fluoride treatments or protective dental sealants.
Make sure your child starts the new school year with strong, healthy teeth that will sparkle in school pictures. Please contact us to schedule a back-to-school dental appointment today!
If we could go back in time, we all probably have a few things we wish we could change. Recently, Dr. Travis Stork, emergency room physician and host of the syndicated TV show The Doctors, shared one of his do-over dreams with Dear Doctor magazine: “If I [could have] gone back and told myself as a teenager what to do, I would have worn a mouthguard, not only to protect my teeth but also to help potentially reduce risk of concussion.”
What prompted this wish? The fact that as a teenage basketball player, Stork received an elbow to the mouth that caused his two front teeth to be knocked out of place. The teeth were put back in position, but they soon became darker and began to hurt. Eventually, both were successfully restored with dental crowns. Still, it was a painful (and costly) injury — and one that could have been avoided.
You might not realize it, but when it comes to dental injuries, basketball ranks among the riskier sports. Yet it’s far from the only one. In fact, according to the American Dental Association (ADA), there are some two dozen others — including baseball, hockey, surfing and bicycling — that carry a heightened risk of dental injury. Whenever you’re playing those sports, the ADA recommends you wear a high-quality mouth guard.
Mouthguards have come a long way since they were introduced as protective equipment for boxers in the early 1900’s. Today, three different types are widely available: stock “off-the-shelf” types that come in just a few sizes; mouth-formed “boil-and-bite” types that you adapt to the general contours of your mouth; and custom-made high-quality mouthguards that are made just for you at the dental office.
Of all three types, the dentist-made mouthguards are consistently found to be the most comfortable and best-fitting, and the ones that offer your teeth the greatest protection. What’s more, recent studies suggest that custom-fabricated mouthguards can provide an additional defense against concussion — in fact, they are twice as effective as the other types. That’s why you’ll see more and more professional athletes (and plenty of amateurs as well) sporting custom-made mouthguards at games and practices.
“I would have saved myself a lot of dental heartache if I had worn a mouthguard,” noted Dr. Stork. So take his advice: Wear a mouthguard whenever you play sports — unless you’d like to meet him (or one of his medical colleagues) in a professional capacity…
Preventive care is important for maintaining good oral health. It keeps the teeth and gums healthy and can prevent gum disease, oral cancer and other problems. By maintaining good oral health through preventive care, overall health can improve as well. For instance, gum disease is linked to other health problems, such as heart disease. Maintaining good oral health can potentially reduce your risk of developing heart disease or other health problems. Dr. Jeffery Johnson and Dr. Jodi Johnson are your preventive care dentists in St. Louis, MO.
Improved Oral Health
Preventive care includes regular dental visits with professional teeth cleaning. Your St. Louis dentist has the professional skills and equipment to clean the teeth and gums more thoroughly than is possible at home. For instance, tartar buildup develops when plaque is not removed from the teeth. Tartar buildup cannot be cleaned away with regular brushing and flossing at home. Only a professional dental cleaning can remove tartar buildup. Removing tartar buildup helps prevent gingivitis and more advanced stages of gum disease.
Early Detection & Prevention of Other Diseases
In addition to improving oral health, preventive care can also help with early detection of other diseases in the body. The Academy of General Dentistry conducted a study in which links were discovered between poor oral health and various systemic diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease or pancreatic cancer. Poor oral health can potentially contribute to the development of such diseases. By maintaining good oral health, preventive care can potentially help prevent the development of other conditions in the body.
In addition to potentially preventing the development of other diseases in the body, preventive dental care is also important for early detection of other diseases. Some health conditions exhibit warning signs in the mouth. For instance, bone loss in the jaw area can be an indication of osteoporosis. By visiting a dentist regularly for preventive dental care, the dentist can help you maintain good oral health and potentially detect the early warning signs of other diseases so that you can seek medical treatment.
Preventive care is extremely important for maintaining good oral health. Dr. Jeffery Johnson and Dr. Jodi Johnson, your St. Louis, MO, dentists, can address all your dental needs, including preventive care. To schedule an appointment, call the office at (314) 427-7400.