Posts for category: Oral Health

By Dow Dental
August 17, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral hygiene   Dental Visits  

Dentist VisitFind out why routine dental checkups are important for everyone.

Visiting your dentist should be a part of your routine by now. However, if there is a reason you haven’t been visiting the dentist regularly, it’s important that you understand why you shouldn’t just ignore these routine check-ups even if you think your teeth and gums are healthy. So, how often should you visit our Springfield, OR, dentists, Drs. Douglas and Coleman Dow? Well, that depends…

When to See a Dentist Regularly

All healthy individuals should get dental cleanings and exams every six months (or twice a year). From the time a child turns 1 year old, they should start visiting a dentist in Springfield. After all, even young children can develop gum disease or cavities, and making sure they come in regularly for cleanings will help reduce their risk. So no matter if you are an incredible brusher or flosser, you experience a lot of plaque buildup or not or you have beautiful teeth, you will still need to see a dentist for routine checkups.

Of course, there are certain factors that may require you to visit the dentist more regularly (about every 3-4 months). This includes menopausal or pregnant women, as hormone fluctuations can also increase your risk for gum disease. Smokers are also at an increased risk for developing decay, gum disease, and oral cancer. By coming in for routine checkups we can detect these issues early on when they are much easier to treat and are less likely to cause serious complications.

Also, those who have active gum disease will need to come in more often for scaling and root planing (a deep cleaning that removes plaque and tartar buildup from the gums and the roots of the teeth).

When to See a Dentist Immediately

While these checkups every six months are designed to prevent issues from happening, it’s important that you recognize a dental emergency so that you know when to come in right away for treatment. Issues not to ignore include:

  • A toothache
  • Bleeding, swollen or tender gums
  • Fractured or cracked tooth
  • Partially dislodged tooth
  • Knocked-out tooth
  • Damaged dental restoration (e.g. filling or crown)
  • Broken braces

Dow Dental is dedicated to providing comprehensive and thorough dental care to families all over the Springfield, OR, area. If you need to schedule an appointment for you or someone in your family don’t hesitate to reach out today.

If you are brushing and flossing daily, is that enough to keep your smile healthy? Surprisingly, the answer is no. That’s because bacteriaDental Cleaning live in your mouth and cause damage which you can’t see. Your smile needs careful monitoring, including professional dental cleanings at least twice each year. Drs. Coleman and Douglas Dow at Dow Dental in Springfield, OR, can help keep your teeth healthy with professional cleanings.

Your gums and teeth are bombarded by bacteria every day, causing infection, inflammation and disease. The bacteria produce toxins that cause tooth decay, gum disease, and eventually periodontal disease. Brushing after each meal and flossing every day help to remove the bacteria, reducing its ability to cause damage.

To keep your mouth healthy, you also need to add regular professional dental cleaning appointments from your dental hygienist. Your dental hygienist in Springfield, OR, will:

  • Carefully monitor and measure your gums to check for any soft tissue or bone loss surrounding your teeth.
  • Check for bleeding in your gums, which is a first sign of gum inflammation and disease.
  • Use state-of-the-art tools including ultrasonic devices to clean your teeth free of bacteria, debris, and hard calcified deposits known as calculus or tartar.
  • Polish your teeth, giving you a dazzling smile.
  • Provide cleaning tools, techniques, and tips so you can clean your teeth well at home.

You should plan on visiting your dentist once every six months, or once every three to four months if you have periodontal disease. You should visit your dentist for a thorough dental examination and x-rays at least once each year to keep your smile healthy and looking great.

Professional dental cleanings are vitally important to your smile, because you can’t take care of your mouth all by yourself. You need help from the experts, your dentist and dental hygienist. For more information about dental hygiene and dental services, call Dr. Coleman Dow and Dr. Douglas Dow at Dow Dental in Springfield, OR, today!

By Dow Dental
April 10, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral hygiene  

You want a bright, white smile and fresh breath. Yes, your teeth and gums really do shape the image you project to those around you. oral hygieneResearch from the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry backs this up, and how you care for your teeth impacts how it looks and functions. Your Springfield, OR dentists, Dr. Douglas Dow and Dr. Coleman Dow, ask all their patients to practice careful oral hygiene for the healthiest smiles possible. Is your at-home routine what it needs to be?

Plaque and tartar

One is soft and sticky, and the other is hard. Both from food residues stuck between teeth and under the gums. When allowed to build up, these germ-filled biofilms lead to cavities and gum disease, the leading causes of tooth loss in the United States, says the American Academy of Periodontology. The Centers for Disease Control elaborates that half of all Americans lose at least one tooth by the ages of 20 to 64.

Fortunately, good oral hygiene habits--brushing, flossing, and a nutritious diet--greatly reduce plaque and tartar. Complemented by exams and hygienic cleanings at Dow Dental, your smile can look good and stay healthy for your entire life.

Oral hygiene standards

Actually, they're pretty simple. The American Dental Association, along with your Springfield dentists, says patients of all ages should brush their teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste (ages three and up) and a medium-sized soft brush. Angle the bristles at a 45-degree angle to tooth surfaces and proceed gently and systematically around the mouth, cleaning tongue-side and chewing surfaces, too. Don't forget to clean your tongue and other soft tissues, too.

Floss once a day. Again, gentleness and thoroughness are key. When using strand floss, wrap an 18-inch segment around opposing index fingers, and pull the floss taut between the thumbs. Insert the floss between two teeth and move the floss up and down. Proceed around the top and bottom teeth, flossing all interdental spaces, including smile gaps from missing teeth.

Regarding diet, avoid foods and beverages with a high sugar content. Limit starches, and increase your intake of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. High protein meats, poultry, and fish provide necessary protein, and dairy products supply calcium for strong bones and teeth. Wash your healthy diet down with plenty of water to hydrate your mouth and increase beneficial saliva.

You'll see results

If you keep high standards for your oral hygiene, you'll enjoy a healthy, long-lasting smile that looks and feels great. Learn more when you come to Dow Dental in Springfield, OR for your routine check-up. If it's time for your appointment, make it by calling the office team at (541) 726-9644.

By Dow Dental
April 10, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral hygiene  

When visiting your dentists Drs. Coleman Dow and Douglas Dow in Springfield, Oregon, you're typically asked about your brushing and mouthwashflossing habits. Whether you rinse with mouthwash, however, isn't usually included in the questions. Below is some information on mouthwash and whether you should add it to your dental hygiene routine.

Why is mouthwash used?

Most people use mouthwash to freshen their breath, either after brushing and flossing or as a "quick fix." But since there are several different types of mouthwash with varying ingredients, its actual purpose depends on what kind you use. For example, antiseptic mouthwash helps to cut down the accumulation of plaque on surfaces of the teeth and on the gums. Fluoride-enhanced mouthwash offers additional cavity protection. People with sensitive teeth can use a rinse that contains a desensitizer. Whitening mouthwash, often recommended after a bleaching treatment, has hydrogen peroxide to help keep stains at bay. You should consult your Springfield dentist at Dow Dental before using any sort of specialized mouthwash to make sure you're using the best product for your unique dental needs.

Who should not use mouthwash?

Consistent use of alcohol-based mouthwash may erode the protective coating on the surface of the teeth. Many professionals believe that those with gum disease, chronic bad breath, or a propensity toward tooth decay are the only people who really need to use mouthwash on a daily basis.

Regardless of the type of mouthwash recommended for you, a rinse should never be used to replace brushing or flossing, as your teeth need the direct contact from the bristles and floss for proper plaque removal. Otherwise, your Springfield dentists, Dr. Coleman Dow and Dr. Douglas Dow, suggest using mouthwash as directed as a way to boost your oral hygiene routine. Contact Dow Dental in Springfield, Oregon, with any further questions you may have!