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The Madison Free Clinic is pleased to be able to offer limited dental care to our patients. Services include examinations, acute problems such as extractions, preparations for dentures, prescriptions, and more. For more information, please call us during business hours at 540-948-3667 or email intake@madisonfreeclinic.org.


Left untreated, some serious health problems caused by bad oral health can include Cardiovascular Disease, Dementia, Respiratory Infections, Diabetes, Pregnancy Complications, Infertility, Erectile Dysfunction, Cancer, Kidney Disease, and Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Symptoms of declining oral health may include the following common problems...
 

Bad Breath

Bad breath, also called halitosis, can be downright embarrassing. According to dental studies, about 85 percent of people with persistent bad breath have a dental condition that is to blame.1 Gum disease, cavities, oral cancer, dry mouth, and bacteria on the tongue are some of the dental problems that can cause bad breath.

Using mouthwash to cover up bad breath when a dental problem is present will only mask the odor and not cure it. If you have chronic bad breath, visit your dentist to rule out any of these problems.

 Causes of Bad Breath


Tooth Decay

Tooth decay, also known as cavities, is the second only to the common cold as the most prevalent disease in the United States.2 Tooth decay occurs when plaque, the sticky substance that forms on teeth, combines with the sugars and/or starches of the food you eat. This combination produces acids that attack tooth enamel.

You can get cavities at any age—they aren't just for children. As you age, you can develop cavities as your tooth enamel erodes. Dry mouth due to age or medications can also lead to cavities.

The best way to prevent tooth decay is by brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and going to your regular dental check-ups.

Eating healthy foods and avoiding snacks and drinks that are high in sugar are also ways to prevent decay. Your dentist can recommend further treatments that may help reduce your risk.

 How to Prevent Tooth Decay


Gum (Periodontal) Disease

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is an infection of the gums surrounding the teeth. It is also one of the main causes of tooth loss among adults. Some studies have indicated that there may be a link between heart disease and periodontal disease.3

Everyone is at risk for gum disease, but it usually occurs after age 30. Smoking is one of the most significant risk factors. Diabetes and dry mouth also increase your risk. The symptoms include bad breath, red, swollen, tender, or bleeding gums, sensitive teeth, and painful chewing.4

You should see your dentist if you have any signs of gum disease so you can get treatment to prevent further complications, such as tooth loss.

The two major stages of gum disease are gingivitis and periodontitis. Regular dental check-ups along with brushing at least twice a day and flossing daily play an important role in preventing gum disease.

 

Oral Cancer

Oral cancer is a serious and deadly disease that affects millions of people. The Oral Cancer Foundation estimates that someone in the United States dies every hour from oral cancer, but it is often curable if diagnosed and treated in the early stages. It is most often seen in people over the age of 40.5

The biggest risk factors are tobacco and alcohol use, including chewing tobacco. HPV—a sexually transmitted wart virus—also increases the risk.6

The symptoms of mouth or throat cancer include sores, lumps, or rough areas in the mouth. You may also have a change in your bite and difficulty chewing or moving your tongue or jaw.

Regular dental visits can help catch oral cancer early. You may ask your dentist whether an oral cancer exam is part of their usual checkup.

If you notice any of the symptoms of oral cancer or have trouble chewing, swallowing, or moving your tongue or jaw, see your dentist.

 

Mouth Sores

There are several types of mouth sores and they can be pesky and bothersome. Unless a mouth sore lasts more than two weeks, it is usually nothing to worry about and will disappear on its own.

Common mouth sores are canker sores (aphthous ulcers) that occur inside the mouth and not on the lips. They are not contagious and can be triggered by many different causes. They are only a concern if they don't go away after two weeks.7

Fever blisters or cold sores are caused by the Herpes simplex virus and occur on the edge of the outer lips. They are contagious and will come and go but are not completely curable.8

Mouth sores are also seen in oral thrush or candidiasis, a yeast infection of the mouth that can be seen in infants, denture wearers, people with diabetes, and during cancer treatment.

 

Tooth Erosion

Tooth erosion is the loss of tooth structure and is caused by acid attacking the enamel. Tooth erosion signs and symptoms can range from sensitivity to more severe problems such as cracking. Tooth erosion is more common than people might think, but it can also be easily prevented.

 Signs of Tooth Erosion

 

Tooth Sensitivity

Tooth sensitivity is a common problem that affects millions of people. Basically, tooth sensitivity involves experiencing pain or discomfort to your teeth from sweets, cold air, hot drinks, cold drinks or ice cream.

Some people with sensitive teeth even experience discomfort from brushing and flossing. The good news is that sensitive teeth can be treated.

Sensitive teeth can also be a sign of a cracked tooth or a ​tooth abscess, which needs to be treated by your dentist to prevent losing a tooth or getting an infection in your jaw bone.

If you suddenly develop tooth sensitivity, make an appointment with your dentist to see if there is a source that needs to be treated.


Toothaches and Dental Emergencies

While many toothaches and dental emergencies can be easily avoided just by regular visits to the dentist, accidents can and do happen. Having a dental emergency can be very painful and scary.

Common problems that require an urgent trip to your dentist include a broken or cracked tooth, an abscessed tooth, or a tooth knocked out in an accident.

Go to a hospital for trauma care if you have a fractured or dislocated jaw or severe cuts to your tongue, lips, or mouth. If you have a tooth abscess that is causing difficulty swallowing or you have developed a fever or facial swelling, get emergency care as well.

 

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REMINDER

Getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever during 2020-2021 to protect yourself and the people around you from the flu, and to help reduce the strain on healthcare systems responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A flu vaccine is needed every season for two reasons. First, a person’s immune protection from vaccination declines over time, so an annual vaccine is needed for optimal protection. Second, because flu viruses are constantly changing, flu vaccines may be updated from one season to the next to protect against the viruses that research suggests may be most common during the upcoming flu season.

The 2020-2021 vaccine is now available for Madison Free Clinic patients during regular business hours. To schedule an appointment, please call our office at 540-948-3667.

To apply or renew your application, please complete the Patient Application/Renewal form on our website.

Madison Free Clinic, Inc.
125 N MAIN ST, MADISON VA 22727
540-948-3667
info@madisonfreeclinic.org

The mission of the Madison Free Clinic is to deliver ‘Medicine of the Highest Order’ in order to improve the well-being of patients and communities by delivering innovative, compassionate patient- and family-centered healthcare, enriched by education, science, and technology.

Our staff cares deeply about our patients’ long-term health. Every patient is viewed not as a problem to be solved or a charge to be cared for, but as an equal and empowered partner. co-responsible for the attainment of his or her health goals.

We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization enabling uninsured adults of Madison County, Virginia to be provided With medical care and non-narcotic medications. The clinic also provides limited dental and vision care. in addition to nutritional counseling.

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Madison Free Clinic, Inc. · PO Box 914 · 125 N Main St · Madison, VA 22727-0914 · USA

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