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833 SW 11th Ave, Suite 405 Portland, OR 97205
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Family and Preventive Dentistry

Dr. Martha Rich The mouth is both a mirror and a gateway for the health of the rest of your body. Our goal is not only to fix whatever might be broken, but also to teach you and your family how to achieve and maintain a state of health. No matter what difficulties you may have had in the past in caring for your mouth, we are here to help you move forward through restoration and into a phase of prevention.

There are two fundamental, ongoing processes in the mouth that are responsible for the majority of damage to the teeth and gums: Forces generated by clenching and grinding (bruxing), and bacterial plaque or biofilm. Successfully limiting these two destructive processes is the key to preventing nearly 95% of dental disease, but it isn't only your mouth that may benefit.

Controlling and preventing the spread of dental disease may also help in the management, and perhaps even the prevention, of many other chronic inflammatory conditions. Research has shown that diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and even Alzheimer's are often associated with inflammatory disease in the mouth, commonly known as periodontal or gum disease. Oral bacteria have been found in the scrapings of atherosclerotic plaques from blood vessels, and patients with rheumatoid arthritis are eight times as likely to also have gum disease as patients without an autoimmune disorder. While the ultimate cause of many of these conditions remains unknown, it is clear that preventing the spread of bacterial plaque is an important part of maintaining health, whether you have another chronic condition or not.

Necessary dental treatment only gets more complicated and expensive if delayed. Every service we offer, from orthodontics to dental sleep medicine, is designed to address issues at the earliest stage possible to prevent further damage and complications. However, there are some services that are offered primarily for the purposes of controlling the two main destructive forces of the mouth (clenching and grinding, and bacterial plaque).

A mother and daughter brush their teeth together in front of a mirror Those services include:
•  Mercury-free preventive resins and restorations.
•  Functional support of proper growth and development.
•  pH balancing.
•  Custom-fabricated nightguards.
•  Instruction on diet, nutrition, and proper home-care.
•  Regularly scheduled dental cleanings.
•  Regular monitoring for decay and overall mouth health.

Preventive dentistry isn't just about the treatment you receive in the dental office. Healthy mouths and bodies begin at home. Diet, lifestyle, and personal hygiene each play a significant role in the prevention of dental and systemic disease. Parents who model good habits in these areas for their children often experience greater success in helping their children develop healthy habits of their own. For more information on some of the best preventive medicine you and your family can practice at home, please take a look at the following articles:

A Parent's Guide to Oral Health for Kids and Teens
How to Brush and Floss Your Teeth
Sugar and Your Body
Drinks That Eat Teeth
Home Care for Your Jaw

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Dr. Martha Rich, DMD | | (503) 228-6870
833 SW 11th Ave, Suite 405 Portland, OR 97205
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Dr. Martha Rich, DMD, 833 SW 11th Ave, Suite 405 Portland, OR 97205, (503) 228-6870,, 5/14/2024, Page Keywords: dentist Portland OR,