Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Straighten Your Smile in Six Months

The staff of Garrison Family Dentistry sees adolescent and adult patients alike who are unhappy with the appearance of their smile.  Patients may desire a perfectly straight look for their smile, but aren’t in need of braces to correct any serious orthodontic issues.  We offer adult braces that can straighten teeth in the same manner as traditional braces, but without the metallic look or extended treatment time.

Adult braces are an accelerated orthodontic treatment applied to achieve a cosmetic goal.  They are not prescribed to treat severe misalignment, and will not correct issues with the bite or jaw.  Clear brackets are used along with wires the color of natural teeth.  The final look is not totally invisible, but is much more subtle than traditional silver braces and doesn’t look metallic.  A typical treatment plan can be completed in only six months, and gives patients without any severe misalignment an opportunity to achieve the perfectly straight smile braces result in.  The best way to determine if this treatment is right for you is a consultation with your dentist, so contact us if you want to improve your smile!

To learn more about accelerated orthodontics and all the services we provide at our office, visit for more information. To schedule an appointment with Garrison Family Dentistry in Smithville, MO, call 816-532-8778.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Night Guards to Treat Bruxism

Bruxism is regular teeth grinding or clenching of the jaw. Stress can intensify bruxism, but it is most often caused by an abnormal bite or crooked teeth.  Some teeth grinders consciously grind their teeth and clench their jaw, but some only do so while asleep and may not even realize it. Waking up with a dull headache or experiencing pain and stiffness in your jaw are signs you may be grinding your teeth overnight, and shouldn’t be ignored.  Patients who continually grind their teeth often end up needing crowns, bridges, root canals and implants. In severe cases tooth loss can occur, and partial or complete dentures may be needed. Garrison Family Dentistry offers custom night guards to help patients overcome the negative effects of bruxism.

Night guards look similar to mouth guards worn for protection during sports, but they serve a different purpose. A dentist uses an impression of your teeth to ensure a custom fit, and the night guard is manufactured in a dental lab. Wearing a custom night guard protects the surface of the teeth, and also properly aligns the jaw to improve breathing and sleep. If you think you a custom night guard could help you, please contact us.

To learn more about night guards and all the services we provide at our office, visit for more information. To schedule an appointment with Garrison Family Dentistry in Smithville, MO, call 816-532-8778.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Acid Reflux and Oral Health

At Garrison Family Dentistry, we treat the causes of toothaches as well as their symptoms. One of the most common reasons for enamel erosion is acid reflux, which is formally known as gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. Besides damaging the surfaces of teeth, it also weakens the gums and impedes the production of saliva.

Hydrochloric acid is highly useful for digestion when in the stomach, which has mucus lining to protect it. But other body parts are not similarly protected, creating problems when the sphincter separating the stomach from the esophagus fails and acid escapes. The corrosion of tooth enamel is painful and cosmetically unpleasing, and the absence of saliva puts the mouth at risk of infection and makes it difficult for the patient to sleep or swallow.

Remineralization therapies such as fluoride treatments can undo some of the harm, and patients can stimulate new saliva production by chewing gum. (We recommend sugar-free, of course.)But to prevent acid reflux, patients will have to avoid eating large meals before bed and reduce their intake of tomatoes, citrus juice, garlic, alcohol, and other highly acidic foods and drinks. They may also need to ask their primary care provider if they can switch medications which may contribute to acid reflux.

Drs. Matthew Garrison and Anna Jones operate at Garrison Family Dentistry, 14790 N. 169 Highway, Smithville, Missouri, 64089. To schedule an appointment, call 816-532-8778 or visit and fill out a contact sheet.