The Care that you Need...by People that you Trust.
J.Thomas Russell DDS
1030 Xenia Avenue,Yellow Springs, Ohio
Call: (937) 767-7731
How to Find the Right Dentist for You
Why is oral fitness important?Today’s Soldiers need to stay physically fit and healthy in order to support their unit’s preparations and deploy rapidly toany region of the globe. Combat-ready Soldiers need healthy mouths for:1. Communication (speaking, smiling, or whistling). The teeth work with the lips and tongue to make the soundsthat we use for talking.2. Energy intake (tasting, chewing, and swallowing). A healthy, high-fiber diet requires chewing. Your body canget more vitamins and nutrients from food after it has been chewed.Oral diseases interfere with these functions, and can cause severe, life-threatening illness. Every time a Soldier has to betransported out of the area of operations for dental treatment, they expose themselves and their fellow Soldiers to attacksfrom insurgents. Soldiers who do not take care of their mouths could put their buddies in the line of fire.There are three major causes of dental casualties during training anddeployments:• Painful or infected wisdom teeth• Periodontal disease (gum disease)• Dental caries (tooth decay)Why do we have wisdom teeth?Wisdom teeth, also called third molars, come in last, usually between the agesof 17 and 25. Wisdom teeth are just as useful and valuable as other back teethif they come in straight, and the gum heals around them.What causes wisdom tooth problems?If there is not enough room in the jaw for a wisdom tooth, it can become trappedpart way beneath the gums. Wisdom teeth are often tipped sideways, and cannot come in all the way. Tipped or partially covered wisdom teeth are calledimpacted. They are hard to clean. The area around the tooth traps food andplaque. Bacteria or germs grow in the plaque and cause the tooth to become decayed, or cause the gums around thetooth to become swollen and infected. They can cause the tooth next to them to become decayed or develop gumdisease, also.The gums over this erupting wisdomtooth are swollen and painfulUnfortunately, many Soldiers stop cleaning their mouths every day duringdeployment. Many also use harmful oral habits, such as tobacco use andexcessive consumption of sugary drinks or snacks, to stay alert or deal withthe stress of deployment. Soldiers who do not take care of their mouthsduring deployment can develop severe wisdom tooth problems that requiremedical evacuation and emergency surgery.Wisdom teeth that do not come in at all can cause serious problems also.The sac around the developing tooth can turn into a tumor that expands anddestroys the nearby bones and teeth.What are the symptoms of wisdom teeth problems?As with all oral diseases, wisdom tooth problems are like ticking time bYou usually cannot tell that you have a problem until it causes:ombs.This erupting wisdom tooth has becomeinfected• Crowding of the other teeth • Inability to sleep • Pain• Difficulty eating • Swelling of the gums, mouth, face or neckWisdom teeth that do not come in at all often do not cause any symptoms, even when they develop tumors or otherproblems. Unerupted wisdom teeth should be x-rayed every few years and watched carefully for problems.U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive MedicineDirectorate of Health Promotion and Wellness410-436-4656 or DSN 584-4656Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD 21010-5403How can you prevent wisdom tooth problems?When wisdom teeth are erupting and the gums are sore, rinse with saltwater several times a day to keep the area clean and aid healing. Mix 1⁄2tsp. of salt with 8 oz. of warm water.Avoid becoming a dental casualty by attaining Dental Class 1 (no dentaltreatment needed) before you deploy. Have a dental exam and a cleaningevery year to detect and treat wisdom tooth problems as soon as possible.If the dentist decides that your wisdom teeth need to come out, have themtaken out as soon as possible. Younger people recover from surgerymore quickly and have fewer complications.The most common complication following wisdom tooth extraction is a “drysocket”. This happens when the blood clot that has formed in theextraction site falls out and exposes the bone. The condition is painful andslows down healing. Dry socket can be caused by smoking, high estrogenlevels, and poor oral health care habits. To prevent dry socket:• Stop smoking for at least 24 hours before and after wisdom teethextractions.This wisdom tooth did not come in, and madea large cyst that hollowed out thesurrounding jawbone• Females taking oral contraceptives should schedule extractions during days 23 to 28 of their cycle.• Avoid drinking soda (carbonated beverages), spitting, sucking on a straw for several days.• Avoid eating foods that can remain in the mouth such as popcorn, peanuts and pasta for several days. Eating softfoods such as mashed potatoes, clear soup and pudding helps ensure food particles do not interfere with thenormal formation and healing of the blood clots.• Swish gently with salt water after meals to keep the mouth free of excess bacteria.If your wisdom teeth come in straight, and you can keep them clean, you can keep them your whole life. Protect them byusing Combat Stress Control techniques to deal with the stress of deployment, instead of harmful oral habits. Just like agood motor sergeant uses a PMCS schedule (preventive maintenance, checks and services) to keep his/her vehiclesrunning, you need to PMCS your mouth every day during deployment to stay fit and healthy!DAILYClean Your Mouth Watch What You Put In Your MouthFloss daily to clean between teeth where a toothbrushcan’t reachAvoid or cut back on tobacco. Smokeless tobacco wears away yourgums and increases your risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Itcauses white leathery patches that can turn into oral cancer.Smoking can cause gum disease, bone loss, tooth loss, and oralcancer.Brush after meals or before sleeping to remove fooddebris, plaque buildup and bacteria. Use a toothbrush witha small head that fits around the back teeth and can cleaneverywhere.Eat healthy foods from the 5 major food groups. Your mouth needsnutrients such as vitamins A, C, D, E, B2, Niacin, B6, B12, Folic Acid,and minerals such as Zinc, Iron, and Calcium to repair the lining ofyour mouth, maintain your gums, and prevent bone loss around yourteeth.Use fluoride toothpaste and a gentle, circular motion for 2minutes