North River Dental Care


Misconceptions about Root Canal Therapy

Drawing of the inner anatomy of a tooth to show its root canals

If tooth decay, damage, and infection are left untreated, these can cause serious complications, such as tooth loss, jawbone deterioration, and systemic inflammation and infection. Root canal treatment removes a damaged pulp (the inner layer of the tooth) and flushes out infection to preserve the natural tooth and prevent the infection from spreading further.

Root canal therapy is sometimes misunderstood by patients. Here are some common misconceptions about this restorative treatment:

1. "Root Canals Are Very Painful"

Many patients worry that root canal therapy is a long and painful procedure. Your dentist will carefully numb the area around the affected tooth so that your root canal treatment will be virtually painless. ...

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How to Improve Your Oral Health

Brunette woman smiles while holding a magnifying glass to her teeth

To achieve and maintain a beautiful and healthy smile, you need good oral health habits and a consistent daily oral hygiene routine. In this post, we share some simple ways to improve your oral health and dental hygiene routine.

1. Use Proper Brushing Technique

Some patients brush their teeth by sawing their toothbrush back and forth over their teeth. This can cause enamel damage and gum irritation. Instead, gently brush your teeth using tiny circles, spending 30 seconds in each quarter of the mouth. Be sure to brush every surface of your teeth, back and front. Do you dread brushing your teeth? Invest in an electric toothbrush, which takes much of the ...

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Should I Worry About Missing Teeth?

Drawing of an upper arch with a missing tooth that needs a dental implant tooth replacement

Our team at North River Dental Care is here to help you make informed decisions about your oral healthcare. In this blog post, we discuss what can happen if you do not replace missing adult teeth.

Jawbone Degradation

Bones are in a state of constant remodeling. Cells called osteoblasts build up bone and cells called osteoclasts deconstruct it. For bones to stay strong, these processes must be balanced. Your natural teeth support and strengthen the jawbone by transferring chewing forces to its bone structure, which stimulate the bone-building osteoblasts. But without root stimulation from the missing teeth, the destructive osteoclasts become more active. Consequently, the jawbone will weaken and begin to deteriorate ...

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Why Do Dirty Teeth Feel Fuzzy?

If you rub your tongue against the front of your teeth, you may feel a fuzzy film if it’s been a while since you’ve brushed. This is particularly true early in the morning or late at night. This film is called plaque, which is the buildup of bacteria on teeth. These bacteria feast upon your dietary sugar and produce acidic byproducts that damage enamel. The accumulation of plaque increases your risk of bad breath, tooth decay, cavities, and gum disease.

In contrast, you may notice a squeaky clean feeling when you’ve just had a dental cleaning. That’s because we use special tools to scrape off plaque and tartar (hardened plaque). Here ...

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Signs & Symptoms of Gum Disease

Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults over the age of 35. Fortunately, it is both preventable and treatable. In this blog post, we review the signs and symptoms of gum disease and treatment options.

What Is Gum Disease?

Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is a progressive dental disease that can negatively impact your gingival tissue, periodontal ligaments, underlying jawbone, and your teeth. It starts as gingivitis and advances to periodontitis. Gum disease is caused by an overgrowth of bacteria under the gumline. These bacteria produce toxins that irritate and eventually destroy the tissues supporting your teeth. Without treatment, the gums separate from the teeth, increasing your risk ...

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Which Is Best: PPO, HMO, or Dental Membership Plan?

Green piggy bank for a post about saving money with dental insurance or an in-office membership plan

At North River Dental Care, our mission is to provide high-quality, affordable dental care to patients throughout the Fredericksburg area. In this blog post, we compare PPO vs. HMO dental insurance. And for those interested in foregoing traditional dental insurance, we discuss the benefits of enrolling in our in-office dental membership plan.

Dental Insurance: PPO vs. HMO

While dental PPO plans usually have higher out-of-pocket costs than their HMO counterparts, they offer patients more flexibility in selecting dentists or dental specialists without needing a referral from your primary dentist. Some plans even offer reimbursement for out-of-network dentists. In exchange for that flexibility, you will have a higher premium and may be required ...

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What Causes Cavities?

Brunette woman cringes in pain and touches her cheek because a cavity is causing a toothache

At North River Dental Care, we strive to help our patients prevent dental disease with superb oral health habits. Tooth decay and cavities are common dental issues. In this blog post, we discuss what causes cavities and how you can prevent them.

Cavity Formation 101

When bacteria in your mouth feast upon your dietary sugars and starches, they produce acids. Over time, these acids dissolve the mineral structure of your tooth enamel, which is the protective outer layer of your teeth. If weakened enamel is not sufficiently remineralized, it will deteriorate and develop pits and holes called cavities. Both baby teeth and adult teeth can develop cavities if the right preventive steps ...

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How to Keep Your Teeth White If You Drink Coffee, Tea or Soda

Brunette woman in a lavender shirt wonders how to protect her teeth from stains when drinking coffee

Many patients can’t imagine going without their daily caffeinated beverage. But over time, these liquids can discolor and damage your teeth. For example, coffee and tea contain dark pigmented compounds called tannins that stick to teeth, causing stains. And soda contains sugar and acid that will slowly erode your enamel, increasing your risk of tooth decay.

We recommend drinking water whenever possible to stay hydrated. Water promotes saliva production to keep your mouth healthy. Plus, it is essential for a strong body. But if you do drink coffee, tea, or soda, be sure to do so in moderation and to follow the following tips.

Rinse with Water

When enjoying any beverage other than ...

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The Power of a Smile

Brunette man smiles and points to his healthy smile against a yellow background

A smile is a facial expression in which the corners of the mouth curve upward and the eyes brighten and crinkle at the corners. Sometimes the teeth show. It communicates approval, amusement, and happiness. Smiling can even help you feel these positive emotions!

In this blog post, we discuss the power of a smile.

Mood Booster

A wide, beaming smile can inspire the confidence of yourself and those around you. Research has shown that smiling is contagious, so smiling at another person can set off a chain reaction of smiles. Whether you’re at work, in the grocery store, or walking at the park, one smile can improve the mood of many people.

Next time ...

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5 Ways Dentures Improve Your Overall Health

A woman holds dentures in her hands to discuss how dentures can improve a patient's overall health

Full and partial dentures are a cost-effective tooth replacement solution for missing teeth. But dentures do more than simply improve the appearance of your smile! Here are five ways dentures can help your overall health.

1. Boosts Confidence

People that are missing teeth tend to feel shy or embarrassed about it. Dentures can make you more confident. Not only can dentures improve the appearance of your smile, but you will feel better about yourself. You will no longer avoid smiling, talking, or meeting new people because of insecurity about your teeth.

2. Helps with Speaking

A gap in your teeth can cause speaking issues, and you may not be easy to understand because of ...

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