Preventative Dentistry

At the dental office of John C. Snow, DDS, we offer dental care for the whole family. Children as young as 3 years of age, teens, and adults can all benefit from high-quality general, restorative, and cosmetic dentistry services offered during our convenient appointment times to accommodate your family.

Dental Exams

At the heart of any prevention program is a complete dental exam.  This exam often includes dental x-rays.  We use this information to inform you about the overall condition of your mouth and any dental care that is needed.  Afterwards, we clean your teeth to remove stain, plaque, and tartar buildup.

Most people need a routine dental cleaning and exam twice a year; others who build up heavy stain and tartar or are battling dreaded gum disease need to have their teeth cleaned more often.

Digital X-rays

One of the most powerful diagnostic tools we use is digital x-ray technology. Our state-of-the-art digital dental x-ray system quickly produces clear, sharp images allowing for accurate detection of dental concerns. Digital x-rays are typically taken yearly and as needed.

Dental Cleaning

Every six months, you should schedule a routine dental cleaning & exam with Dr. Snow to reduce the chance of developing serious oral health problems. During dental cleanings, plaque and tartar build-up will be removed from tooth surfaces, between teeth, and along the gum line. Preventive treatments, such as fluoride treatments and sealants, may be suggested during the cleaning to strengthen teeth and provide additional protection from decay.

According to the American Dental Association, checkups should be scheduled twice each year to screen for periodontal disease, oral cancer, cracks in the teeth, tooth decay, or old dental work that needs to be replaced.

Periodontal Disease | Gum Disease

One out of every two American adults aged 30 and over has periodontal (gum) disease, according to recent findings from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Unhealthy gums are a red flag; they can be a warning sign of future tooth loss and the potential for stroke and heart disease. Patients can prevent gum disease by simply practicing good dental hygiene and attending routine checkups with Dr. Snow and his team of caring professionals.

Without proper cleanings and regular flossing, plaque and tartar buildup can allow bacteria and disease to flourish in our mouths, especially within the gums. At Adams Dental Group, it is our goal to eliminate the potential for gingivitis and gum disease with customized oral hygiene treatment plans that include risk assessment, cleanings, gum pocket measurement, and thorough gum tissue examination. Untreated gum infections can lead to gum recession, bleeding gums, tooth movement, tooth loss, and even risks to your overall health. Routine checkups are vital to early detection, treatment, and control of these common dental health concerns.

Warning signs of Gum Disease:

  • Gums that bleed when you brush or floss
  • Red, swollen or tender gums
  • Gums that have pulled away from your teeth
  • Bad breath that doesn’t go away
  • Pus between your teeth and gums
  • A change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
  • A change in the fit of partial dentures

How Can You Prevent Periodontal Disease?

  • Brush your teeth twice each day
  • Floss to remove plaque and food from areas your toothbrush can’t reach
  • Eat a healthy diet and limit snacks
  • Have a dental cleaning every 6 months

These things can increase your risk for Periodontal Disease:

  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Tobacco
  • Diseases, such as diabetes, that lowers your body’s resistance to infection
  • Many medications, such as steroids and blood pressure drugs, can affect your gums
  • Teens, pregnant women and those taking birth control pills and are experiencing changes in their hormone levels
  • Genes may play a role, if you have a family history of gum disease, be extra alert for changes in your gums

If risks are detected, Dr. Snow will recommend the appropriate treatment to get your periodontal health back on track. Periodontal care may include deep cleaning (scaling and root planing) and the application of antibiotics to eliminate disease.

Oral Cancer Screening

Regular screenings for oral cancer during your routine dental checkups are the most effective way to recognize any irregularities as early as possible. During the oral cancer screening process, Dr. Snow looks for signs of cancer or precancerous conditions present within the tissues of the mouth. If abnormalities are detected, further testing with be recommended.

For patients who do not smoke or use tobacco, we suggest having an oral cancer screening once every year. We suggest at least two screenings each year for those patients who do smoke or use tobacco. Remember, the chance of surviving oral cancer, greatly increases with early detection and treatment.

Fluoride Treatments & Sealants

For years, dentists have been preventing cavities by applying fluoride and sealants to teeth.

  • Fluoride hardens teeth making the tooth more resistant to plaque bacteria, acids and sugars in the mouth, helping to prevent tooth decay. Dr. Snow can apply fluoride as gel, varnish or foam to the teeth.
  • Dental Sealants prevent cavities by acting like a barrier; a thin resin coatings that are applied to the deep cracks and canyons (pits) that are common on the biting surfaces of back teeth.   Dental sealants protect the susceptible areas by “sealing out” food and plaque.

With fluoride protecting the walls and sealants coating the surfaces, we have you covered.

Patient Education

This is where dental coaching comes in. Some people do well, and others need instructions on how to do a better job brushing, flossing and caring for their teeth. We love being able to help our patients and hope you will let us be your dental coach!

Early Dental Diagnosis

Most health and dental problems are preventable. Your mouth is the gateway to your entire body and its health can impact the overall health of your body.  We believe that brushing, flossing, and regular dental checkups are key to a beautiful smile and a happy, healthy you!

Mouth Guards | Night Guards

Mouth guards, also referred to as night guards, are an important tool for preventing clenching and grinding while you are sleeping.

Nighttime teeth clenching and grinding can place enormous amounts of destructive force and friction on the teeth, gums, and jaw and are becoming a big problem for many stressed out adults.  Signs include flattening of the front teeth, craters on the tops of teeth, or notches in the sides of teeth.

Extreme clenching and grinding can result in:

  • Worn, cracked or broken teeth
  • Gum recession
  • Tooth and jaw pain
  • Tired jaw muscles
  • Headaches

For patients experiencing these symptoms, Dr. Snow can create a custom night guard that stabilizes the bite and prevents clenching and grinding from occurring; this is typically the first and least invasive step in treating TMJ disorders and headaches that come from jaw stresses. Night guards are designed to be comfortable to wear, and patients typically notice a reduction in pain and a sounder night’s sleep soon after starting to wear the device. Many patients who finally get a custom mouth guard will tell us they don’t know how they ever lived without it.

Bruxism | Teeth Grinding

About 15% of people have a habit of grinding their teeth or clenching their jaws, a condition called bruxism. Most people do it in their sleep, so it often goes unnoticed until a family member hears the grinding sound or Dr. Snow notices symptoms. If diagnosed early enough, bruxism can be treated before it causes damage to the teeth.

In some cases, grinding occurs because the top and bottom teeth are not aligned properly. It may be a response to pain, such as an earache, or the result of a sleep disorder. Most often, bruxism is related to stress. Alcohol and caffeine intake can aggravate the condition, causing more severe grinding or clenching.

In many cases, bruxism doesn’t cause any damage. But if the grinding is severe enough, it can:

  • Wear down tooth enamel
  • Chip teeth
  • Increase temperature sensitivity
  • Erode gums and supporting bones
  • Break fillings or other dental work
  • Worsen temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction
  • Result in cosmetic damage

Look for these symptoms:

  • Teeth grinding, often very loud, during sleep
  • Jaw pain, headache or earache
  • Frequent contraction of muscles on the side of the face
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Teeth that look flat at the tips
  • Abnormal alignment of teeth

Sports Mouthguards:

If you or your child is playing any kind of sports, protect your teeth. An accidental punch, tackle, or kick in the mouth can damage your teeth.  Broken teeth and injuries to your lips, face, jaw or tongue can be minimized, because protective sports mouth guards help cushion a blow to the face since they are typically covering the upper teeth.

The best type of mouth guard is one that has been custom-made and fitted for your mouth by Dr. Snow.  Do your child and yourself a big favor and insist they wear a protective sports mouth guard. They can be made in a variety of thicknesses and team colors to make any athlete happy.