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Tips To Keep Your Teeth Clean While On A Summer Adventure

July 5th, 2017

Summer break is officially here, which means it’s time to head out on those adventures and trips you’ve been planning for months!  Whether you’re about to take a road trip, go camping with friends, or spend the week on the beach, your normal routine may get thrown off. But that doesn't mean your dental hygiene has to fall by the wayside. In fact, the health of your teeth and gums should never fall by the wayside. Follow these tips to keep your teeth clean all summer long, even when you don’t have running water and haven’t showered in days.

Test and boil your water

Not all adventures will allow you access to running water and you may run out of your supply. If you anticipate this happening, have a test kit and pot ready. You can purchase a test kit from your local sporting good store or online. Testing and boiling the water means clean drinking, free of contaminants that can be found in rivers and lakes.

Go travel size!

Backpacking for a week and trying to pack as light as possible? Cut down on weight and save room for other accessories with a travel sized toothbrush and toothpaste. Yes, we know your regular toothbrush and toothpaste is small as it is, but when you are backpacking, any weight you can cut and space you can save is worth the purchase.

Store your toothbrush in a clean place

Storing your toothbrush properly is important for two reasons:

  1. It keeps your brush clean and dry.

  2. And, the smell of mint toothpaste can attract animals.

Keeping your toothbrush clean while also blocking the mint smell and keeping the critters away is the way to go. For shorter adventures like day hikes, consider using a ziplock bag. This way you can easily throw the bag away once you get home. For longer trips, when you are going to be gone multiple nights, invest in a plastic toothbrush container that you can find at almost any drug store. They are cheap, easy to clean and can be used for all your summer adventures!

Brush away from your campsite

After you’ve roasted your hot dogs and indulged in a s’more or five, your teeth are going to need some TLC. When you go to brush your teeth for the night, make sure you do so far away from where you set up camp. As we already mentioned before, that mint smell that leaves are breath so fresh and clean also has a way of drawing in unwanted furry friends. The last thing you want is a bear waking you up at 3am because he found the scent of your toothpaste within your campsite

How to choose a mouth guard

August 2nd, 2016

Summer is in full swing! Which means there is plenty of active fun in the sun to be had. While we definitely support joining a local football team, taking the mountain bike out for a spin, or shooting some hoops, these sports all pose risks to your dental health that you’d be better off avoiding. Fortunately, there’s an easy fix: wearing a mouthguard allows you to participate in virtually any sport you wish while ensuring that your teeth are as safe from harm--and expensive dental work--as possible.

Which sports require a mouthguard?

Currently, the U.S. National Collegiate Athletic Association requires the use of mouthguards only for ice hockey, lacrosse, field hockey and football. However, the American Dental Association recommends the use of a mouth guard for 29 sports/exercise activities. These include the four activities already mentioned, plus acrobatics, basketball, boxing, discus throwing, gymnastics, handball, martial arts, racquetball, rugby, shot putting, skateboarding, skiing, skydiving, soccer, squash, surfing, volleyball, water polo, weightlifting and wrestling. Essentially, whenever there's a chance of contact with other players or hard surfaces, wearing a mouth guard makes sense.

Why wear a mouthguard?

Mouthguards can buffer damage to the teeth, cheeks, lips, tongue, brackets, and/or other fixed appliances from blows and physical contact, thereby limiting the risk of soft tissue damage. A good-fitting mouth guard may be especially important if you wear braces, have fixed anterior bridgework, or just want to protect your teeth and smile from potential trauma. Failing to wear a mouthguard can result in chipped or broken teeth, root and bone damage, and tooth loss, as well as serious injuries such as jaw fracture, cerebral hemorrhage, concussion and neck injuries in situations when the lower jaw jams into the upper jaw.

Why many people don’t wear mouthguards

Lack of awareness

One of the main reasons why young athletes don’t wear mouthguards is because it is not mandatory. In most cases, a child will not be the one who actually wants to wear a mouthguard, so it is often the adult’s responsibility to enforce its use. Coaches and parents may fail to realize the safety value of wearing mouthguards and are unaware of the level of contact and potential for serious dental injuries involved in children’s sports. Gender bias may also play a role, as some people mistakenly think that female athletes are less aggressive, less at-risk of injury and, therefore, less likely to need a mouthguard.

Comfort

Another determining factor is that many mouthguards may not fit correctly, are uncomfortable, or compromise image (the notion that it's not "cool" to wear mouth guards). The "hassle" factor in remembering to wear them, properly caring for them, and dealing with the inconvenience of impaired breathing or speech – also contributes to non-use. However, all of these issues should not be a concern when you have the right mouthguard fit to your specific needs.

Cost

Finally, although mouthguards come in various price ranges, cost may be another consideration--especially for custom-fitted mouth guards. Talk to your dentist about different options available to you. In the end, a good mouthguard will only cost a fraction of what it would be to repair a major dental issue from a sports-related accident.

Types of mouthguards

Stock

These can be purchased in sporting goods and drug stores and come pre-formed and ready to wear. Although they're the least expensive, they are also the worst fitting and least comfortable or protective. Made of rubber or polyvinyl, these pre-formed guards can be bulky, increase the tendency to gag, and make breathing and talking difficult because they require the jaw to be closed to hold them in place.

Mouth-formed

These can be either a shell liner or a boil-and-bite kind. The first type is lined with acrylic gel or rubber that molds to the teeth and sets to keep its shape. The second type, made of thermoplastic, is placed in boiling water then formed and molded to the contours of the teeth using the fingers, lips, tongue and biting pressure. Boil-and-bite mouthguards can be reheated and refitted if the fit isn't comfortable initially. These are also available online and in sporting goods stores. While they do provide a better fit than stock mouth guards, they can be bulky and do not offer the same fit and protection as a custom-fitted mouth guard.

Custom-fitted

These are more expensive than the other types of mouthguards, but they provide the greatest degree of fit, comfort, and protection because they are made from a cast to precisely fit your teeth. Your dentist makes an impression of your teeth and a dental laboratory technician – either in the dentist's office or at an off-site dental laboratory – uses the impression as a mold to create the custom-fitted mouth guard.

Still not sure if your child needs a mouthguard, or which type they should get? Want more advice on how to protect your teeth during athletic activities? Give us a call at (541) 848-6642 so that we can help you get the best protection for your particular needs.

Pole Pedal Paddle:The Ultimate Bend Event!

May 15th, 2013

It’s only May, but it’s starting to feel like summer here in Central Oregon. Restaurants are opening up their patios. Fun seekers throughout the area are unearthing their paddleboards, mountain bikes, and fly rods from the depths of their garages. We’ve already spotted a few brave souls floating the river! Ski season may be winding down, but we’re not ready to put away the winter gear yet. Especially because this weekend marks the 37th birthday of Bend’s signature event—The Pole Pedal Paddle.

Almost 3,000 racers competed in the event last year. It is comprised of six stages, for a total course distance of about 34 miles from Mt. Bachelor to the Les Schwab Amphitheater in Bend. It starts with an alpine leg to the exchange point at West Village Lodge. Then skate and classic skiers hit the Nordic trails for an 8-kilometer dash to the cycling exchange, where racers enjoy a scenic 22-mile ride down Century Drive into Bend. The next leg is a 5-mile run along the Deschutes River Trail to a 1.5-mile canoe/kayak leg at Farewell Bend Park in the Old Mill District. As if this weren’t enough, the race ends with a .5-mile sprint along the grassy banks of the river to the finish line. Pheew! Did I forget anything? They don’t have a skydiving leg. But they might as well add one while they’re at it.

The PPP is the ultimate relay race that attracts anyone and everyone, including Olympians, 5-year-olds, Oregon Adaptive Sports participants, women in tutus, men in military suits, and that one team in the Jamaican bobsled outfits. One of our favorite parts is seeing our Struble Orthodontics kids’ smiles as they cross the finish line at the Kid’s Mini PPP. If you don’t compete, head down to Farewell Bend to cheer the racers on and to enjoy the booths, live music, awesome food (and beer, of course).

While taking advantage of the great outdoor activities we are blessed to have in our town, the PPP also demonstrates the strong sense of community we have built. That’s why the event is the epitome of every good thing that Bend has to offer. And to make it even better, all the proceeds generated from the US Bank PPP support the programs of the Mt. Bachelor Sports Education Foundation (MBSEF). We hope to see you out there on May 18 for poling, pedaling, paddling and cheering!

Kids Rock the Races: A Dynamic Local Event!

April 25th, 2013

Kids-Rock-the-Races

There is no better time than summer in Bend for helping your child discover a love for sports! Lay It Out Events is sponsoring a great opportunity for children under 10 years old to discover their “inner athlete” with a safe and kid-friendly series of summer events: Kids Rock the Races! These five age-appropriate races from May through the end of July are offered alongside several local athletic events, the first of which is the Salmon Run on May 4th.

Struble Orthodontics loves to give away free stuff.
That’s why we’re partnering with Lay It Out Events to offer free kid’s registration passes for the races (a $10 value) while supplies last! We hope to see many of our patients showing off their beautiful smiles as they cross the finish line. Pick your race here and register, or stop by on your next appointment and pick one up. Like our Facebook page to see additional special offers!

Win fun prizes by entering the race!
The races are non-competitive and feature a kid’s passport, qualifying your child for a prize each time their passport is stamped at one of the events. Help your child develop an active and healthy lifestyle, while building friendships at the same time. This affordable event is the perfect opportunity to get the whole family outdoors to enjoy the beautiful weather. We hope to see you there!

American Association of Orthodontists American Board of Orthodontics Oregon Dental Association DamonSmile Invisalign iTero
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