The Long-Term Effects of Stress on Your Oral Health

Posted by on Sep 11, 2019 in Cosmetic Dentistry, Dental Hygiene | Comments Off on The Long-Term Effects of Stress on Your Oral Health

We’ve all been told to avoid stress at one point or another, but usually, it’s in reference to our bodily health. However, stress can actually cause oral health problems. There are several ways stress can affect our oral health, so there is another reason to keep it in check. Since oral health can be negatively affected by stress, why don’t you sit back, relax, and have a quick read about the detriments of stress to your oral health?

Stress Can Cause Bruxism

Bruxism is also known as grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw. Stress has been shown to be a cause of bruxism in adults and even children. If you have ever caught yourself with a sore jaw after dealing with stressful events, it may be possible you are a sufferer of teeth grinding. Bruxism caused by stress can easily be solved with some stress management. This may mean getting one of those little squeeze aids on your desk or taking frequent walk away from your desk. The long-term effects of bruxism can be quite severe. It is normal to develop TMD from bruxism, which is a disorder of the jaw muscle that help open and close the mouth.

Sores in the Mouth

Stress can actually cause problems inside your mouth too. It has been reported that some people can experience mouth ulcers due to stress. This happens because stress can affect the levels of vitamins and mineral in our bodies making it harder to heal from minor wounds. If these minor wounds end up in your mouth, they could develop into a serious problem if not taken care of immediately.

Gum Disease and Tooth Decay

Since stress can cause bruxism, it has the possibility to cause gum disease and tooth decay. After long periods of applying pressure on your teeth, they can become weakened and break. If not taken care of, these broken teeth become more susceptible to tooth decay and eventually gum disease. They become more prone to decay because the bacteria in your mouth will have an easier time remaining in your mouth after you brush because of the irregular surfaces of the chipped tooth. This is why it is important to take care of not only your teeth grinding habit right away but also any stress too. If you’re interested in other ways stress can affect your oral health, please call our office number at 479-646-0706 and we will be happy to answer any questions you have.

The Worst Drinks for Dental Health

Posted by on Sep 4, 2019 in Cosmetic Dentistry, Dental Hygiene | Comments Off on The Worst Drinks for Dental Health

Most people don’t think of the damage drinks cause to their oral health. After all, you don’t chew a drink, so what can it do to your teeth, right? Unfortunately, certain drinks cause oral health issues, including cavities, stained teeth, and gum disease. Knowing which drinks cause such destruction can help you choose wisely.


The sugar in soda works alongside the bacteria in your mouth to create acid. The acid eats away at your tooth’s enamel. Too much erosion and you may experience tooth sensitivities, or have tooth decay. Even without the sugar, soda has an acidic nature all on its own. This means that even diet soda can damage your teeth. Once the acid hits your tooth enamel, it affects your teeth for at least 20 minutes. If you drink soda frequently, you can see how easy it is to damage your teeth.

Fruit Juice

Fruit juice isn’t as healthy as it seems. Juice doesn’t have the same fiber content as the fruit itself, making it mostly sugar-based. Juice usually has a more acidic nature too. The combination of sugar and acid eat away at the enamel on your teeth. Drinking juice often can lead to worn down enamel, which leads to sensitive teeth and sometimes tooth decay.


Coffee causes a few concerns. If you drink it black, you run the risk of staining your teeth. Sometimes the stains are superficial and we can remove them in the office with a standard cleaning. Frequent coffee drinkers, though, may have stains that go beyond the surface enamel, requiring professional teeth whitening to remove the stains (if possible).

If you drink your coffee with sugar, you increase the damage coffee causes. The sugar creates an acidic environment with the bacteria in your saliva, causing enamel erosion. You may experience cavities or even gum disease as a result.

Sports Drinks

Many athletes turn to a refreshing sports drink to replenish their electrolytes after sweating. While the idea may seem good, the sugar and acid content in the drinks greatly outweigh any benefits the drink itself may offer your physical health.

Sports drinks have a high sugar and acid content, eating away at your enamel. Purified, coconut, or electrolyte water without the added sugar offers the same benefits without the risk of damage to your oral health.

If you do consume any of these drinks, always follow it with a glass of water, or better yet, brush your teeth. Keeping your regular dental cleanings and exams also helps keep your teeth in optimal condition – call River Valley Smile Center at 479-646-0706 for an appointment today!

The Ultimate Guide to Foods to Eat After Dental Implant Surgery

Posted by on Aug 28, 2019 in Dentures, Oral Surgery | Comments Off on The Ultimate Guide to Foods to Eat After Dental Implant Surgery

Anytime you have oral surgery, taking care of yourself in recovery is crucial. A large part of recovery is keeping a proper diet, especially after dental implant surgery. A proper diet helps your mouth heal and helps you avoid digestive issues while you recover. Knowing what you can eat and when will help you have a seamless recovery process.

The First Two Days

Your diet should consist of liquids for the first couple of days after dental implant surgery. Liquid foods, such as broths, Jell-O, yogurt, pudding, and ice cream help you stay nourished while avoiding damage to the surgical areas. If you eat any food with particles, you run the risk of the particles getting stuck in the surgical site, putting you at risk of an infection.

The Next Few Days

After a couple of days, you can graduate to ‘soft foods.’ You still want to avoid foods with particles or even those that you have to chew to keep the surgical site safe. Slowly add foods, such as mashed potatoes, cottage cheese, oatmeal, eggs, overcooked pasta, and fluffy pancakes to your diet. We recommend trying one new thing at a time to see how your mouth and your digestive system handle it.

After One Week

After seven days, you can go back to your normal diet, but with caution. Avoid spicy, frigid, boiling, acidic, and hard foods. You should also avoid sticky foods or anything with seeds or nuts that could get stuck in the pockets.

Eventually, you’ll be able to work your way back up to your normal diet, but taking it slow will allow your mouth to heal quickly. The faster your mouth heals, the faster we can place the artificial teeth on the implants, allowing you to resume your normal life once again.

Dental implants offer a realistic replacement for your missing teeth, but it takes time. The surgical placement of the implants is the most invasive part of the process and proper healing relies on your cooperation. Getting proper nutrients while avoiding foods that could damage the surgical site can help you recover the fastest.

Call the professionals at River View Smile Center at 479-646-0706 to get answers to your questions about dental implant surgery or to make your appointment for a consultation. We look forward to helping you restore your smile with realistic dental implants.


Benefits You Didn’t Know About Composite Fillings

Posted by on Aug 21, 2019 in Cosmetic Dentistry, Dental Hygiene | Comments Off on Benefits You Didn’t Know About Composite Fillings

Having a cavity today doesn’t automatically mean you need an obvious silver (amalgam) filling today. At River View Smile Center, we offer our patients several filling options, including composite fillings. While not the right choice for every situation, composite fillings do have their benefits.

A More Pleasing Cosmetic Appearance

Composite fillings offer a less obvious way to fill a cavity. Unlike with silver fillings, other than you and our staff, no one will know that you had a cavity. Composite fillings resemble the enamel of your other teeth, so it blends right in with the rest of your mouth, whereas silver fillings stand out when you talk or smile. In fact, we use composite fillings often in front teeth in order to avoid compromising a patient’s smile.

Keep More of Your Natural Tooth

Composite fillings require less removal of your tooth’s enamel. After we remove the decayed portion of your tooth, we can fill it with the composite filling. Because composite resin bonds well with your enamel, you can have a stronger tooth after the filling. Silver (amalgam) fillings, on the other hand, require removal of an excessive part of your tooth, leaving you with a weaker tooth that may have issues down the road if the filling breaks or comes loose.

You May Have Less Tooth Sensitivity

Removing less of your tooth’s enamel leaves more protection of the interior of your tooth (the dentin). You may experience less tooth sensitivity because of this. Exposed dentin makes eating or drinking hot or cold foods difficult because the extreme temperatures hit the nerve of the tooth, causing pain/sensitivity. Composite fillings help reduce this risk.

We Can Easily Repair a Composite Filling

Life happens and fillings crack. Unlike silver fillings, we can simply repair the cracked filling rather than removing the entire filling and starting from scratch. Resin fillings require very little drilling, so you don’t have to worry about dealing with another invasive procedure and recovery time after repairing the filling.

We offer composite resin fillings for anterior teeth as well as mildly decayed posterior teeth. The natural appearance and strength composite fillings provide help restore your decayed teeth while maintaining the aesthetic appeal of your smile. Call the experts at River Valley Smile Center at 479-646-0706 to learn more about your options for fillings to see if composite resin may be a good option for you.

How to End Bad Breath

Posted by on Aug 14, 2019 in Dental Hygiene | Comments Off on How to End Bad Breath

More than half of Americans today suffer from bad breath, according to the American Dental Association. Even if you don’t regularly eat garlic and onions (the most common offenders), you may still suffer from bad breath. Luckily, simple techniques can help you eliminate it.

Keep up Your Dental Hygiene

Brushing your teeth at least twice a day helps keep bad breath away. Brushing your teeth eliminates the food debris in and around your teeth that eventually turns into enamel-eating bacteria. We also recommend that you try flossing at the end of each day. This helps eliminate the debris that sits between your teeth that brushing doesn’t reach. Any food left behind creates a breeding ground for bacteria and causes bad breath.

Use a Germ-Killing Mouth Wash

A minty mouth seems like the answer to fresh breath, but it’s only a Band-Aid over the issue. Choose a mouthwash with antiseptic properties that kills the germs causing the bad breath. Otherwise, you simply mask the odor and may even make it worse.

Stop Smoking

Everyone knows smoking damages your lungs, but it also damages your oral health. Smoking dries out your mouth and leaves behind toxins in the mouth, throat, and lungs, which contribute, to bad breath. Because the toxins go beyond the mouth, smoker’s breath can even remain after brushing your teeth. Quitting the habit is the only way to eliminate smoker’s breath.

Avoid a Dry Mouth

Staying hydrated does more than help your physical health; it helps your oral health too. Water helps wash down any food particles or bacteria that reside in your mouth, reducing the risk of bad breath. Some patients suffer from a dry mouth as a side effect of the medication they take, no matter how much they drink. We encourage you to talk to your doctor about other medication options if this happens to you.

Increase Your Saliva Flow

Eating helps your saliva production. If you fast between meals, you may find that you have bad breath when you are hungry. Sidestep this issue by chewing on crunchy, healthy snacks in between meals, such as carrots, celery, or apples. The increased saliva production can help wash away the bacteria in your mouth, reducing the risk of bad breath.

Most importantly, keep your regular dental checkups and cleanings. Professional removal of the bacteria, plaque, and tartar in your mouth can help reduce the risk of chronic bad breath. Call River Valley Smile Center at 479-646-0706 for your appointment and let us help you put an end to your bad breath.