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Tuesday, 07 February 2023 14:15

Can You Get Rid of Gingivitis

Almost half of the adults in the US have some type of gum disease. Fortunately, gingivitis, which is the initial stage of gum disease, can be reversed by having proper oral hygiene. Schedule regular dental check-ups to eliminate plaque and tartar, which are the leading causes of gum disease. There is no overnight solution for healthy gums, but forming good habits will help to maintain oral health in the long run.

What Does Gingivitis Look Like?

Gingivitis causes redness of the gingiva, or the gum line that meets the base of your teeth. It typically causes inflammation, making gums appear puffy. Gingivitis also causes bleeding gums more often during brushing or flossing, with bad breath as a common symptom as well.

Why Does Gingivitis Occur?

To address gingivitis, it is important to recognize the root cause. Plaque, an invisible layer of bacteria, tends to thrive in the mouth as it finds nourishment in the sugar that remains on your teeth and gums. This creates an acidic environment that damages both the enamel and the gums. It is important to clean away plaque and tartar quickly to reverse gingivitis before it progresses to a more severe form of gum disease. If the condition is not treated in time, only some of the symptoms can be managed.

How To Prevent Gingivitis

Fortunately, there are several measures you can take to prevent gingivitis. Gently brush your teeth with a soft-bristled toothbrush for a minimum of two minutes each time. This will clean all the surfaces of your teeth. Brushing too hard can damage your enamel, so be sure to be gentle. For best results, brush your teeth twice a day and make sure to brush before you go to sleep to prevent plaque buildup. Dental plaque tends to hide in hard-to-reach spaces between teeth and can cause cavities and gum irritation if not removed. To avoid this, it is also important to floss each tooth daily to remove plaque and reduce the amount of harmful bacteria in the mouth.

Does Mouthwash Help Gingivitis?

If you're looking to reduce your risk of gingivitis, it's essential to avoid foods and drinks that are high in sugar. This means steering clear of soda, sports drinks, energy drinks, popsicles, dried fruits, and caramel. When you consume sugary items, your teeth may become coated in plaque and tartar, giving them a fuzzy feeling. For this reason, we recommend limiting your sugar intake. Having clean teeth and good oral hygiene are essential to prevent cavities and gingivitis. Use a mouth rinse that contains fluoride and is labeled as antibacterial, antiseptic, or antigingivitis. This will help protect your teeth and make them more resistant to acid attacks caused by plaque. Establishing good oral care at an early age is important for maintaining healthy teeth and gums for life.

Make Sure You Don't Miss Your Dental Appointment

We can provide a thorough teeth cleaning and examination at our dental office to help prevent gingivitis. We use a scaler tool to eliminate plaque and tartar during teeth cleanings. Additionally, X-rays may be taken to view any internal issues. It is advised to have this type of appointment every six months to maintain optimal oral health. Our staff is here to help you obtain the best possible oral health and wellness. When caught early, gum disease can be reversed. When your gums become swollen, sore, or bleeding, you should call our office immediately. To request an appointment with our Ooltewah dentist office, call us at (423) 238-8887 or send us a message here.
Wednesday, 21 December 2022 19:42

Keeping the Smiles of Chattanooga Healthy

At Tedford Family Dentistry in Ooltewah, TN, we understand the importance of preventive dentistry in keeping the smiles of Chattanooga bright. With our comprehensive services, we provide patients with the knowledge and care necessary to maintain healthy teeth and gums.

Our commitment to your oral health includes regular examinations and professional cleanings as well as brushing and flossing guidance. By following our personalized plans, you can reduce your risk of gum disease, cavities, and enamel damage that can occur from a lifetime of wear. To ensure you keep your sparkling smile for years to come, contact us today to explore the world of preventive dentistry!

Are these exams and x-rays truly necessary?

Regular dental checkups are an important part of preventive dentistry and one of the best ways to protect your teeth. During these appointments, a qualified dentist like Dr. Tedford will carefully examine your mouth and use x-rays to assess the overall state of your dental health. The exam provides an opportunity for early detection of various conditions such as cavities and sensitivity, giving your dentist an opportunity to recommend treatments that can help reduce or prevent the development of these issues. Carefully following these preventive measures is essential for patients of all ages in order to maintain proper oral hygiene and ensure good long-term health.

Preventive dentistry is crucial for the smiles of Chattanooga’s children.

Regular examinations and cleanings can go a long way toward preventing tooth decay, gum disease, and other dental issues. For young children, in particular, receiving such treatments regularly is even more important. Providing early encounters with the dentist has been shown to help them form (and maintain) positive impressions of dental hygiene practices later in life. Moreover, teeth that are well-maintained from a young age tend to be much stronger and healthier for longer.

Following each teeth cleaning appointment, it is also recommended that parents ensure their children continue the good habits by brushing twice daily, flossing once a day, and avoiding sugary snacks that can contribute to tooth decay. With the right attention both inside and outside of the office, preventive dentistry treatment can lead to strong teeth and excellent oral hygiene for years to come.

Let your smile join the other beautiful smiles of Chattanooga!

At our family dentistry office, we prioritize your dental health, offering preventive care services to the Ooltewah, Collegedale, Chattanooga, and Cleveland TN communities. Our skilled team of professionals works with you to assess the state of your oral health, make recommendations and develop a unique plan to help preserve your smile! Together we can detect minor problems before they become more prominent and costlier issues that are more difficult to fix. Take control of your oral well-being today - contact us to schedule your visit with our experienced family dentist!
Wednesday, 09 November 2022 17:18

Cosmetic Dentistry Near McDonald Tennessee

Confidence is everything, and our cosmetic dentistry staff near McDonald Tennessee has the skills to get you feeling confident about your smile! We take special care to ensure your teeth are aligned properly and have multiple opportunities to help you achieve cleaner-looking bites all around. Some examples of options we provide include:

Teeth Whitening Near McDonald Tennessee

The appearance of your teeth is dependent on the color and reflectiveness from the surrounding tissue, as well as any dark stains gathered over time. Thinner enamel allows more dentin to show through, which can lead to darker-looking not-so-pearly whites! The tooth whitening we provide near McDonald Tennessee is a popular cosmetic dental procedure that decreases stains and discoloration on teeth. Many people opt for this service to ensure their smiles are always picture-perfect!

Tooth Reshaping Near McDonald Tennessee

Tooth reshaping, also called contouring, can fix minor cosmetic dental problems like slightly misshapen teeth. Our office near McDonald Tennessee treats this by gently removing tooth enamel with a laser or drill. You'll be able to smile proudly, knowing you received quality work from experts with the experience necessary to bring out your best features!

Dental Implants Near McDonald Tennessee

To accommodate tooth loss, dental implants can replace a tooth's root with an artificial root. Metal posts or frames are surgically positioned under the gums into the jawbone. The placement of these dental implants allows for reliable replacements of missing teeth. In most cases, the results aren't just an improved smile, but a more youthful appearance as well.

Dental Veneers Near McDonald Tennessee

Dental veneers are a quick and easy way to fix many different types of dental problems. They come in the form of thin pieces of porcelain that can be bonded onto your teeth, providing them with a strength similar to enamel. Dental veneers can be very beneficial whenever there are gaps between teeth or when multiple teeth are missing altogether.

Visit Tedford Family Dentistry Near McDonald Tennesee

You deserve to have a smile that lights up the world, and it’s possible by improving your dental health! No matter what type of stain or discoloration you are struggling with, we will combat them together through proven procedures like bleaching and laser treatments. Make an appointment today for your cosmetic consultation near McDonald Tennessee!

Tedford Family Dentistry is the dentist of East Brainerd that the community has come to know and trust with their family's dental care. Regardless of the age of the family member, we can assist in keeping their teeth in tip-top shape!

Pediatric Dental Care

Pediatric dental care is an essential part of a child's overall health and development. Primary teeth begin to erupt between six and twelve months of age and continue to erupt until around age three. This is a crucial time for children to receive proper dental care, learn healthy oral hygiene habits, and have any potential problems with their teeth or jaw development detected and treated early. 

Early dental visits also allow parents to learn how to best care for their child's teeth, and how to avoid or address common issues such as cavities, tooth decay, and the effects of pacifier use, thumb-sucking, or baby bottling on teeth and jaw development. Ensuring that children receive the proper dental care during this crucial time can help them develop healthy habits that will last a lifetime.

Preventive Dentistry

Preventive dentistry is all about maintaining good oral hygiene and educating people of all ages on how to keep their teeth and gums healthy. This includes daily brushing and flossing, teeth cleanings, and examinations. Preventive care can also help detect problems early when they are most easily treated. By taking proactive steps to care for your teeth and gums, you can help prevent serious dental problems down the road.

Senior Dental Care

One of the most important things you can do as you age is to pay attention to your oral health. After years of use, your teeth and gums can become weaker, making them more susceptible to decay and disease. Senior dental care is essential to maintaining a healthy smile, and Dr. Tedford is committed to providing his patients with the latest technology and gentle care. Whether you need a routine cleaning or more advanced treatment, he will work with you to create a plan that meets your individual needs.

Tedford Family Dentistry is the Dentist of East Brainerd

Tedford Family Dentistry is the dentist of East Brainerd for good reason, we are your one-stop shop for any dental needs. Dr. Tedford and our skilled staff are dedicated to providing patients with quality results and gentle dental care at an affordable price. We offer a variety of services such as teeth cleanings, fillings, crowns, and more. We also have a wide selection of dental products to choose from, so you can find the perfect fit for your smile.

When it comes to your smile, the importance of preventative care cannot be overstated. For many people, dental cleanings are something to be avoided. In reality, there are many reasons why they shouldn't be. Your Tedford Family dentist in Ooltewah TN is always happy to help, regardless of the date of your last visit.

Gum disease can be prevented by a dentist in Ooltewah TN.

Did you know that one of the best ways to detect gum disease is by visiting your dentist regularly? Gum disease has multiple stages, and we're able to detect early phases in patients before symptoms like red and swollen gums appear. By diagnosing gum disease early, we can put a treatment plan in place to save your teeth.

Plaque can be prevented by a dentist in Ooltewah TN.

If you've ever been to a dentist and been informed of plaque buildup, even though you brush and floss multiple times a day, then you know how frustrating plaque can be. It’s a sticky substance that adheres to your teeth and contains all sorts of bacteria you don’t want in your mouth. That buildup of plaque often leads to tartar, which causes your teeth to discolor. Unfortunately, removing plaque or tartar is only possible with the help of a dentist.

Tooth decay can be stopped by a dentist in Ooltewah TN.

Tooth decay leads to many problems including sensitivity, pain, and even tooth loss in extreme cases. If the tooth is beyond repair, it can be costly to replace the decayed tooth with a dental implant. Regular dental checkups allow us to spot any causes of decaying teeth so that we can save them before it's too late.

Get in touch with your dentist in Ooltewah TN!

Our dentists at Tedford Family Dentistry are prepared to help you with your unique smile, whether you're always on time for cleanings or it's been a while since you had one. We're the best place for dental care in the Ooltewah area, so schedule a cleaning with us today!
Friday, 26 May 2023 14:08

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions
What are veneers made from?

The thin shells are created from porcelain or resin and can be customized for a desirable color and shape.

What caused my gums to recede?

Over time, it is natural and common for gums to recede.

Can bridges fall out?

No, bridges are non-removable, they are permanently cemented in place.

How many shades of whitening can be applied in a single session?

Our teeth whitening procedures are used to brighten the appearance of a patient’s smile by as many as 5 to 10 shades in one session.

I have a receded jawbone, can I get dental implants?

Even if your jawbone has receded, bone implants might be an option that allows you to be a candidate for implants.

Don't dentures slip around in the mouth?

Our technology at Tedford Family Dentistry anchors the denture plate so securely that it won’t wander.

How can I avoid needing dental surgery?

Basic preventative care and regular checkups will help you fix dental pains before surgery becomes necessary.

5 New Year's Resolutions to Boost Dental Health.jpg“Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.” –Oprah Winfrey

With the new year on the horizon, it’s time for us to start planning our resolutions. A new year also means a fresh start for each of us in many ways, and an opportunity to improve ourselves by whatever means we set our minds to. Interestingly enough, there are many new year’s resolution options that can actually help boost your dental health, and here are just a few to consider for the upcoming calendar year!

1– Floss More!

Flossing is one of those things we all KNOW we should be doing at least once per day, but it’s pretty easy to blow it off, or skip it when we’re in a rush or tired and more than ready for bed. That said, resolving to floss your teeth more is a great way to improve overall dental health, eliminating food particles and bacteria from the mouth that can lead to decay and other dental problems.

2– Regular Dental Exams

This potential resolution will be a relatively simple one to honor seeing as you only really need to visit the dentist for dental cleanings and exams twice per year (barring any problems). Making a commitment to see your dentist every six months can be a big step forward in your dental health journey. Cleanings help keep your pearly whites in their best condition, and your checkup and x-rays will help ensure any problems with your teeth or gums are detected and treated early.

3– Get a Night Guard

Another new year’s resolution that can help preserve your dental health is getting and regularly wearing a night guard while you sleep. The only real way to guard against the grind and preserve the integrity of your teeth is to wear a mouthguard while sleeping. Your Tedford family dentist can get you fitted for a custom night guard to prevent tooth damage, jaw tension, headings, and other dental problems by minimizing the effects of grinding and clenching throughout the night. This is a wise investment, and though the night guard may take some getting used to, it will be more than worth it in the long haul.

4– Avoid Stains!

Perhaps your teeth aren’t quite as white as you’d like them to be? If this is the case with you, you could resolve to avoid drinks and foods that can stain your teeth over time. Coffee, tea, wine, and other food and drink can take their toll on teeth, but you can protect your teeth from these stains by avoiding these items whenever possible to protect the cosmetic appeal of your smile.

5– Drink More Water

Isn’t this something we could all stand to do? Probably. Water is like a dear friend to the human body. Getting enough water can result in more energy, healthier skin, better digestion, and much more. Drinking more water can also help boost your dental health by rinsing away food particles that can cause decay, and by introducing your teeth to more fluoride, which is in a lot of drinking water.

No matter what you settle on for this year’s resolutions, our team at Tedford Family Dentistry wishes you all the best in the upcoming year, and we’re here to support you and your family for all your dental health needs. Contact us if you need a cleaning or exam, and cheers to a new year.
Tuesday, 02 November 2021 16:59

5 Dental Tips for the Holiday Season

Dental Tips for the Holidays

The last remaining months of the year are filled with family, friends, and food– yes, with the holidays comes a full spread of delicious eats and treats that you’ve likely been anticipating all year long. Though you’re surely excited to indulge in all the foods, drinks, and desserts you love while you celebrate the holidays, it’s important to prioritize your oral health during this time as well. So here are five dental tips to bear in mind this holiday season to keep your teeth and gums healthy and happy.

1– Maintain Your Daily Oral Care Routine

Even though the holidays can be a major disruption to our everyday schedules, it’s important to stick to your regular routine as it pertains to oral health. Make sure you continue to brush at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, and that you floss at least once per day too!

2– Don’t Skip Dental Appointments

Of course, the end of the year is easily the busiest of times, but that isn’t reason enough to blow off your regular dental visits. Keep your teeth healthy and cavity free, and your gums in ship shape by keeping those always-important dental check ups and cleanings.

3– Drink Plenty of Water

Drinking water has a slew of health benefits, but is especially important during the holiday season. This busy time of year often has us running ragged, and staying hydrated can help boost our immune systems, keep our skin looking its best, and help keep your teeth and gums healthy. Water washes away food debris and bacteria, and often has fluoride in it to help strengthen teeth while you drink it.

Dental Tips for the Holidays

4– Avoid Grazing

It’s easy during this time of year at holiday parties and family gatherings to eat a little here and there, and graze on the snacks and treats abounding. That said, grazing is not great for your teeth and gums. When you eat, your body produces an acid that aids in the breakdown of food, and that acid is not ideal for tooth health. This is why it’s a good idea for meal times to have distinct beginnings and ends to allow for your teeth to get a break from this process. It’s also a good idea to try to brush or rinse after eating whenever possible.

5– Keep Some Floss Handy

Another pro tip, especially during the holiday season, is to keep some dental floss in your bag or pocket. Not only is it a great idea to pop into the bathroom for a quick floss after meals, but you’ll also be totally prepared if you have an unfortunate spinach dip situation, or something else stuck in your teeth when you’re trying to socialize at the company Christmas party.

These are small and simple ways you can prioritize your oral health during this usually-hectic time of year. Of course, if you have any issues or concerns, contact our team at Tedford Family Dentistry. We’re always here to help! Cheers to the most wonderful time of the year, and to taking the best possible care of our holiday smiles no matter what the calendar brings!

Senior Oral Health

We all know that dental health habits are important at any age, but as we grow older, we may face more oral health concerns than we did in our earlier years. This is why it’s important to establish and maintain great dental hygiene routines and to foster a relationship with a great dentist to help meet dental challenges as they come.

Aging and Dental Health

What happens to our teeth as we get older? The fact of the matter is, as our bodies age, we sometimes find ourselves dealing with ailments that were not a problem in our youth. This can apply to our teeth and gums as well. Most of these dental problems that can arise in seniors are easy to identify, resolve, and even prevent when you know what signs and symptoms to be on the lookout for. Here are a few things to be aware of when it comes to senior oral health.


Attrition simply means wear and tear, something your teeth see a lot of over the years as they help you chew your food, speak, and function normally. Years of use, eating, grinding, and general aging can take their toll on your teeth. Also as your healthy tooth enamel wears down over time, they leave your teeth more susceptible to decay and cavities.

Dry Mouth

Aging in and of itself does not necessarily make the symptoms of dry mouth more likely; however, certain factors that come along with it can, such as chronic conditions, medications you may take, and so on. If you are experiencing dry mouth, it can be indicative of issues you’ll need to address with your dentist.

Gum Disease

Gum disease happens to be one of the leading causes of tooth loss in adults. Also referred to as periodontal disease, this dental issue is caused by plaque forming on the teeth, and being left untreated. Gum disease symptoms include red, puffy, or bleeding gums, consistently bad breath, pain, and tooth sensitivity, all of which can be prevented by diligent oral care. Gum disease is also reversible when detected and treated early.


Some also find that tooth sensitivity is more of an issue as they age. Gums naturally recede over time, and that can leave areas of tooth exposed that are not well-protected by enamel. Sometimes sensitivity can be an indication of a bigger problem such as a cavity or a cracked or fractured tooth.

Tooth Root Decay

Often as a result of gum disease, the roots of your teeth can become exposed as gums recede over time. This can cause tooth decay to develop at an increased rate, which can then lead to a whole host of other dental problems that will require the attention of your dentist.

Senior oral health tips

Tips for Senior Oral Health

Of course, maintaining oral health for seniors looks a lot like it does for folks at any age, and keeping your teeth and gums in prime condition just takes a little bit of effort. Combat dental problems that can become more likely with age through the following practices:

  • Brush and floss daily! You should be brushing your teeth at least twice each day for at least two minutes using an FDA-approved toothpaste that contains fluoride. Floss at least once per day too.
  • See your dentist regularly. Don’t skip those dental check ups. Regular dental exams and x-rays are a critical part of maintaining your oral health, and preventative care is always the best kind.
  • Use an antibacterial mouthwash. Mouthwash might not be part of your regular oral care routine, but maybe it should be. Swishing with an oral rinse can help reduce the build-up of plaque while killing bacteria that can lead to other issues. Plus, it leaves you with fresh breath!
  • Avoid tobacco use. The use of tobacco products has been linked to an increased risk of oral and throat cancer, as well as many other serious health conditions. Chewing tobacco can even lead to more decay in the mouth.
  • Be mindful of sugar intake. Candy, soda, and sugary, starchy snacks can also contribute to tooth decay. Be aware of how often you indulge in these items, and when you do, try to brush your teeth shortly thereafter.
  • Up your calcium intake. The American Dental Association suggests that older adults need 1,000 mg of calcium per day to prevent osteoporosis, which can, of course, affect the bones surrounding your teeth.
  • Take care of your dentures. If you wear dentures, it’s important to remember that they require special care. Make sure you carefully follow your dentist’s instructions regarding how to clean and care for your dentures, and reach out if you have any problems.

Our team at Tedford Family Dentistry is here to support families in their oral health regardless of age. We offer preventative dental care for children, adults, and senior adults, and we want to help you achieve your greatest possible oral health at every age! Contact our team to schedule an exam or cleaning, or to address any dental issues you may be experiencing.

Friday, 28 April 2023 19:37

6 Tips for Healthy Gums

Tips for healthy gums

When it comes to oral health, it’s about so much more than just teeth. Your gums play a critical role in maintaining a healthy mouth, and even in ensuring your teeth remain healthy and strong. Even if your teeth are cavity free and aesthetically beautiful, that doesn’t mean you are immune to gum disease. Gum disease can oftentimes be completely painless, and therefore difficult to detect.

Understanding Gum Disease

Gum disease affects 47.2% of adults ages 30 and up, according to the CDC. It begins with plaque that builds up under and along the gum line, and can cause infections that hurt the gum and bone, leading to tooth decay and other issues. The presence of plaque can also cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Gingivitis can cause your gums to become red, tender, swollen, and inflamed, and can cause bleeding as well. As unpleasant as that sounds, the upside is that this damage is completely reversible.

Periodontitis, however, is a more advanced stage of gum disease, and can impact the bones that hold your teeth in place within the mouth. If left untreated, this can be the ruin of gums, bones, and tissues inside the mouth. The final and most serious stage of gum disease is advanced periodontitis, and in this phase, the fibers and bone supporting your teeth are destroyed. This can result in issues with your bite as well as tooth loss.

Per the American Dental Association (the ADA), signs that you may have gum disease include:
Consistently bad breath A consistently bad taste in your mouth Separating or loose permanent teeth Gums that easily bleed Gums that are red, swollen, or tender Gums that have pulled away from your teeth

Keeping Gums Healthy

A positive thing to note here is that gum disease is completely preventable, and here are a few tips for healthy gums that will help you evade these problems when it comes you your own oral health.


Just do it, ok? Floss your teeth at least once per day to help remove plaque and food particles that are beyond the reach of your toothbrush. It doesn’t really matter that much when you do it, just do it!


Brush at least twice a day, or even better yet, after every meal. Brushing your teeth removes food bits and plaque that can build up on your teeth and gums. You’ll also want to brush your tongue, which can be a hotspot for all sorts of problem-causing bacteria (and stinky breath). Your toothbrush should ideally have soft bristles and fit comfortably in your mouth.


Let your fluoride toothpaste be your oral health ride or die. Your toothpaste aisle might have you a little overwhelmed with options, but no matter what you do, be sure to choose a toothpaste that contains fluoride and has the ADA seal of acceptance. Type, flavor, brand is all completely your call.


The next tip for healthy gums is to use an over the counter therapeutic mouthwash. This can help reduce plaque, prevent gingivitis, and reduce the speed at which tartar develops in the mouth. More than that, the actual act of swishing and rinsing helps to loosen and remove food particles and debris that can take up residence in the mouth. Just remember mouthwash is not a suitable alternative to regular brushing and flossing, but an additional step that can do a lot of good!


Smoking is one of the worst things you can do for your gums. Smoking is strongly associated with the development of gum disease, and even makes it harder to fight off gum infections by weakening your immune system, according to the CDC. Smoking also makes it harder for your gums to heal after facing damage.


The final tip for healthy gums is to prioritize dental cleanings and exams. Your dentist can help diagnose any issues that arise early, and help ensure you get the treatments necessary for maintaining your overall oral health. Professional dental cleanings are also necessary for removing tartar build up on the teeth and along the gumline, which can cause problems if left untreated.

If it’s time for a dental check up, contact our team at Tedford Family Dentistry today, and we’ll get you taken care of. In the meantime, make your oral health a priority with these tips for healthy gums. We assure you, you won’t regret the extra effort!

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