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A sealant is a thin tooth-colored material placed on the chewing surface of back permanent teeth to help prevent cavities by filling in the deep grooves of the teeth. According to the American Dental Association (“ADA”), sealants can reduce cavities on permanent molars by 80%.

Dr. Johnson typically recommends sealants on the 6 year and 12 year molars right after permanent teeth have come in. Sealants can be placed by our hygienists following this quick process:

  1. We dry the tooth/teeth
  2. The material is placed
  3. A special light is used to harden the material

 

There are no needles involved, so it is a quick and painless process. Also, there are no restrictions on eating or drinking after the appointment. Sometimes sealants can wear down over time, but Dr. Johnson will touch them up, as needed, at no additional charge.

 

 

 

 

Starting on January 1, 2019, all North Dakota Blue Cross Blue Shield (“BCBS”) dental plans will still be managed by BCBS, but United Concordia will process the claims. Don’t worry, Saving Smiles was one of the first in the area to sign up and is already in-network with United Concordia!

New cards will be issued for the BCBS/United Concordia plans and will still have the BCBS logo, but the ID number will have 12 digits (previously had 9) and the back will say that claims go to Harrisburg, PA. Federal BCBS will maintain the same ID number, but claims will also go to United Concordia.

Employers may choose to leave BCBS and switch to another plan all together. In that instance, we are also still in-network with Delta Dental, Health Partners, Cigna PPO Plans, Total Dental Administrators and most plans with Metlife, The Guardian, Ameritas, Humana and Always Care.

We are excited to announce that Bailee has been added to our team of hygienists. She is a recent grad of the dental hygiene program at NDSCS. Originally from Moorhead, MN, Bailee likes shopping, trying new restaurants and staying active with her volleyball and curling leagues. Fun fact about Bailee? She was born on Friday the 13th!

Please help us welcome her on your next visit!

We finally found time to get out of the office and take new team photos. We are very excited to update our website with the beautiful smiles of our entire group! As always, Dan Francis, did a great job and it was so fun to be downtown around some iconic Fargo landmarks. Here is a sneak peek from the photo shoot!

 

 

 

 

 

Saving Smiles Dentistry - NickiThe next time you come to our office, you might recognize a new face at our front desk. Nicki, one of our awesome Registered Dental Hygienists, has moved into the patient coordinator role. With the experience she has from working with Dr. Johnson as both an assistant and a hygienist, we are excited for Nicki to help patients with most of the questions they have as they check in and out. Congrats Nicki, we are excited for you in your new role and for our patients to have your wealth of knowledge at the front desk!

 

 

 

Our entire team was able to find a day that worked to get out of the office, kick back and learn the fine art of hand lettering from Jenna with Memories by Meyers. Jenna had us practice our cursive writing and then gave us some good pointers on creating beautiful letters. She also selected a quote for our team to letter on water colors. How fitting for the Saving Smiles team was “There is always a reason to Smile”. 🙂

Check out the very talented Jenna here: https://www.facebook.com/MemoriesByMeyers/

 

 

 

In a previous post, we talked about ways that we can help ease the anxiety of going to the dentist. Nitrous oxide (aka laughing gas) was at the top of the list:

“This safe relaxing agent is breathed in through a mask that takes you to your happy place. Nerves are calmed. Teeth are taken care of, and you’re on your way.”

So, here are more details on what you need to know about laughing gas:

Nitrous oxide is a colorless and odorless gas that helps patients relax and become indifferent to discomfort. It is inhaled through a mask that fits over your nose. It works extremely fast and its effects are reversible. It doesn’t put you to sleep or take the place of local anesthetic.

Once your teeth are taken care of and the nitrous oxide has been turned off, you are placed on 100% oxygen for 5 to 10 minutes to purge the gas from your system. This helps you become alert and awake.

Nitrous oxide is safe for children and is often the preferred method of sedation for treating children. It is recommended that people with some conditions, such as first trimester of pregnancy and COPD, avoid the use of nitrous oxide. It is also recommended that you do not use nitrous oxide on an empty stomach. Possible side effects include headache, shivering/sweating, nausea and fatigue.

Have more questions? Give our office a call!

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Have you ever worried that you have bad breath? Some people waste time worrying, when their breath is fine. Others have terrible breath, and have no clue. Bad breath, or halitosis, can be embarrassing. Stocking up on gum, mints and mouthwash are only a temporary fix. The real root of the problem can be from poor dental health or health problems.

What causes bad breath? Here are a couple of the main sources:

  • Food – the breakdown of food can increase bacteria
  • Eating onions, garlic and other spices
  • Tobacco use
  • Poor dental hygiene
  • Dry mouth
  • Medications
  • Other mouth, nose and throat conditions/infections

 

How do you fix it?

  • Brush your teeth and tongue after eating
  • Brush and floss every morning and night
  • Replace your toothbrush every 3 months
  • Use mouthwash
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Go to the dentist at least twice per year
  • Stop smoking and using chewing tobacco products

 

If these suggestions don’t work, ask your dentist for help.

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