Dental Education: Spring Cleaning is Not Just for Your Home
April 1, 2019
Well now that it’s April, spring has sprung! Flowers are popping up and trees are showing their buds!
Many people take this as an opportunity for a fresh start, to clear away clutter that’s been plaguing them for the past year. But, “Spring Cleaning” is not just for your home! Spring is a wonderful time to look into an oral health overhaul!
Several things can lead to neglecting your oral health: laziness (yes, just admit it), lack of insurance or financial ability, apathy, schedules, and many other reasons. Now is the PERFECT time to get back on track!
What can you do for a fresh start:
Change your toothbrush or toothbrush head! This should typically be done every three months; if you’ve forgotten, now is the time!
Schedule your cleaning! If you’ve been putting it off, here is your reminder! Your dental office WANTS to see you and help you stay or get healthy!
Check expiration dates on mouthwashes or toothpastes…YES-they can expire! This expiration date will let you know when the components will lose their efficacy. In other words, the power of fluoride may be reduced, or the potassium nitrate that helps fight sensitivity to hot or cold may not be accomplishing the job it should.
Build a new routine! Do you forget to brush at night because you are too tired, too busy, or too lazy? Well, now is the time to develop that oral healthcare routine. Let’s build that brighter, healthier smile today.
Let’s SPRING into action and start this new season off right!
If you need help with establishing a great routine for yourself, your dental professionals are ready, willing, and able to help out. We care about your oral health just as much as you do, and want to help you succeed in keeping your body healthy. Not keeping your mouth healthy has been linked to many negative health issues, and we want to keep you around for years and years to come!
COMTREA has several locations and wonderful, friendly, and caring staff that are here for you to accomplish your oral health “Spring Cleaning” goals! Give us a call today at 1-877-COMTREA.
Dental Education: How to Get Rid of Bad Breath
February 27, 2019
Have you ever had consistent bad breath that just didn’t seem to go away with brushing, flossing, or rinsing with mouthwash? Could it be what you eat? Your home care habits? Or something more serious? Let’s go into what causes bad breath and what you can do.
Bad breath can come in many forms: morning breath, coffee breath, periodontal disease, food stuck between your teeth, or inadequate home care. Any of these can have an effect, but some are more serious.
Less serious halitosis, or bad breath, can be caused by short-term issues: not brushing your teeth, not flossing food particles from your teeth, drinking coffee, or eating certain foods like onions or garlic. You can increase the frequency of proper brushing, start flossing to remove food particles, and add an ADA approved mouthwash to your routine. You can also try to avoid foods and drinks that may have that negative affect such as morning coffee, onions at lunch, or garlic bread at dinner.
Other more serious issues can occur in which halitosis would be a symptom. Periodontal disease, which is caused from a lack of regular home care and regular visits to your dentist, is the deterioration of bone that holds your teeth in place. If left untreated, this could result in removing teeth. In addition, some medical conditions and genetics can make this breakdown happen faster. Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss and is usually preventable. This disease may affect other aspects of health including Alzheimer’s, arteriosclerosis, and more.
Some other issues may be: tonsil stones, GERD, acid reflux, other GI issues, or a plethora of other issues.
Ultimately, if you find yourself doing the “sniff test” and discovering that you may indeed have bad breath, please see your dental professionals and don’t be afraid to discuss this with them.
The Beating Facts of the American Heart
February 26, 2019
In the month of February, we are surrounded by roses, chocolates, and most importantly, hearts. This is the time to not only share what is in our hearts, but also to recognize its physical condition. American Heart Month brings awareness to an issue that continues to drastically increase.
Nearly 33% of adults in the United States have high blood cholesterol, a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Symptoms, such as high cholesterol and blood pressure, can lead to potentially fatal outcomes.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States. Every year, 1 in 4 deaths are caused by heart disease.
Due to the prevalence of heart disease, it is important to regularly check the condition of your heart. There are multiple ways to check your heart health such as a scheduled appointment through your primary care provider or a through a simple at-home test.
“There are many different tests and assessments a provider can perform to evaluate a patient's heart health like monitoring blood pressure, Electrocardiogram, Echocardiogram, and stress tests”, states Bess Stephens, Nurse Practitioner at COMTREA Health Center.
Along with seeing your provider, it is also recommended to monitor your heart while at home. “A blood pressure monitor is a great way to watch your heart health, and is typically available to purchase at any local drugstore. A healthy blood pressure is less than 120/80”, continues Stephens.
Exercising and eating a healthy diet are also major influences in maintaining the well-being of your heart. Some suggestions from Stephens are to, “Limit foods that are high in saturated fats and sodium. Incorporate the right amount of fruits, veggies, and whole grains in your diet; this will assist in maintaining a healthy body weight”.
Stephens strongly advises against smoking, limiting alcohol consumption, getting enough sleep, and managing stress. These behaviors can lead to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or heart disease.
COMTREA Health Center, along with many other health care organizations in Jefferson County, exist to provide assistance with your heart health.
COMTREA Offering Walk-in Behavioral Health Care
February 22, 2019
COMTREA Leadership and community members before cutting the ribbon at COMTREA Welcome Center.
(Left to right) Tony Sokolic, Linda Hurley, Margo Pigg, Sue Curfman, Dr. Raymond V. Cummiskey, Colton Baker, Becky Ruth, Dennis Gannon, and Timothy Fasnacht.
200 residents each month are now receiving walk-in behavioral health services in Jefferson County. COMTREA Welcome Center located in Crystal City offers walk-in care on a first-come first-served basis for mental health and substance use treatment.
“In 2017, COMTREA was designated as a Certified Community Behavioral Health Center,” said Sue Curfman, CEO of COMTREA. “With that designation, we were tasked to find ways to provide walk-in access for individuals seeking behavioral health care. We have done that through our Welcome Center.”
At the Ribbon Cutting and Open House on February 22, 2019, attendees toured the facility, met with COMTREA leadership, and heard from Sue Curfman, CEO of COMTREA, Margo Pigg, Chief Behavioral Health Officer at COMTREA, Tim Fasnacht, Welcome Center Assessment Manager at COMTREA, and Colton Baker, Recovery Coach at COMTREA.
Since opening on February 5, 2018, COMTREA Welcome Center has completed 3,400 screenings with 2,372 individuals receiving further assessment.
New clients can receive care Monday through Friday from 7:30-11:00 AM with a limited number of assessments available each day. Residents should bring proof of Missouri residency; if eligible, staff will coordinate treatment that best meets the individual’s needs. The center is located at 2310 North Truman Blvd in Crystal City, Missouri.
The facility is designed to separate adult and youth services to ensure all clients feel comfortable. Staff are trained to provide personalized care, even in emergency life situations.
COMTREA takes all forms of insurance, and provides one-on-one meetings to help navigate and apply for Medicaid or a sliding fee scale.
COMTREA serves Jefferson County from twenty locations as a Certified Community Behavioral Health Center and a Federally Qualified Health Center offering health care services in primary care, dental care, and psychiatry, and community services such as mental health, substance use treatment, children’s advocacy, school liaison services, canine therapy, and a domestic violence shelter.
In emergencies, call the Behavioral Health Response Hotline at 1-800-811-4760 or call 911.