Why are mouthguards important for fall sports?

As summer turns into fall and students return to school, cheer up any active child with the promise of fall sports. Be it football, soccer or cross country, the advent of the sports season is a recurring highlight of every autumn.

mouthguards in north bend

Dentists, however, are not so enthusiastic. This is because the beginning of fall sports also means an increased number of dental emergencies. To alleviate dentists’ fears and to keep your family athlete safe from harm, Above Dental professionals Dr. Brice and Dr. Lee recommend that every fall sports player invest in a mouthguard to protect their teeth.

Sports and Dental Emergencies

The potential danger lurking in every sports game is well-known. Mothers across the nation harbor some fear that the next player to crash unexpectedly or break something will be their child. However, when most parents think about sport-related injuries, they think about damage done to the limbs, not damage done to the teeth.

The lack of attention to dental emergencies is surprising because the majority of tooth-related emergencies actually stem from sport-related events. We like to think our teeth are infallible, but the truth is that a hard, expected blow to the face can very easily cause damage to a tooth. And while a chipped, cracked or knocked out tooth might not seem like as big of a deal as a broken arm or leg, its effects can be just as profound.

A chipped, cracked, avulsed (knocked-out) or otherwise damaged tooth can affect a person’s eating and even speaking habits. Missing teeth could have ripple effects across the mouth (even causing the jawbone to lose mass over time), and chips or cracks could become much more serious. On balance, dental emergencies and tooth-related injuries are some of the most problematic and yet most overlooked damages a sports player can experience.

The Solution: a Mouthguard

Luckily, tooth injuries are easy to prevent. Simply wearing a mouthguard when engaging in activities that could lead to unexpected falls or blunt trauma can do wonders in preventing tooth damage. Simple, cheap mouthguards can be purchased at a local pharmacy, and wearing those alone should keep the majority of dental emergencies at bay.

Of course, if your family member is particularly prone to accidents, you could invest in a more expensive but stronger mouthguard customized by a dentist. These mouthguards tend to fit better while being more protective, making them a good long-term investment for any family.

If you’re thinking about getting a custom-made mouthguard or if you or a family member ever experience a dental emergency, make sure to contact a dentist immediately! Above Dental dentists Dr. Brice and Dr. Lee will not hesitate to treat a patient with a painful tooth injury, and they’ll be more than happy to discuss preventative measures as well. Simply call (541) 982-2173 or visit the website to set up an appointment today!


The Importance of Your Neck and Your Oral Health

Your neck is extremely important because it’s what keeps our heads attached to our bodies. If you cut through the neck, the head will be severed from the body and the person will die. Your neck plays a very large role in your oral health, believe it or not, which makes it important to every part of our body. For example, cancer in the head or the neck creates a large problem for your oral health, especially through radiation and chemotherapy treatments and procedures.

Neck Cancer and Your Oral Health

Doctors conduct radiation treatment and therapy in the neck because it helps to kill the cancer cells. However, radiation in the neck can often harm the normal, regular cells. This is especially true when it comes to the cells that are in your mouth, which can give off side effects, such as problems with your gums and your teeth. This is also the same for the moist, soft lining in your mouth, your jaw bones and your salivary glands.

These side effects can damage and hurt your ability to swallow, eat and speak, and will put you at a higher risk for infection. This can be extremely dangerous if you are currently undergoing, or will be going through, cancer treatment. If these side effects become more severe, you may have to postpone or stop your radiation treatment altogether. This includes any treatment you are receiving for the cancer in your neck, really.

The Various Problems Caused by Neck Radiation

The following issues are typically caused by neck radiation, so if you are going through chemo or radiation and are wondering why the following problems have begun or are occurring over a period of time.

  • Dry mouth
  • Cavities
  • Sore gums or soreness of the mouth overall
  • Infections in your gums, such as gum disease or even an abscess
  • Loss of taste or loss of taste buds
  • Stiffness in the jaw, or lockjaw
  • Changes in the way your jaw is structured or problems with your jaw bone

Over time you will be able to see and feel the majority of these problems, but if you are experiencing discomfort in your mouth in general, then it’s time to visit your dentist immediately.

Visit Your Dentist

Before you undergo any treatment for the cancer in your neck, you absolutely must visit your dentist. Your neck is one of the most important parts of your body, and when cancer strikes in that general area, you’re going to have a large impact on your oral health, as well.

By visiting your dentist before you can begin your radiation treatment and therapy on your neck, you will be able to effectively prevent multiple mouth problems that will be quite severe if they are not addressed. The side effects listed above will occur, especially if your mouth is not as healthy as it should be before your treatment begins.

Schedule an appointment with your dentist for a complete examination before your treatment. That way you can address and fix any oral problems that you are currently having. From there your dentist will be able to give you tips on how to handle the side effects and how to properly take care of your mouth during this difficult period.

Four Common Dental Issues

Check out this infographic about Four Common Dental Issues.

Dental issues

Women Pioneers in Dentistry

Women Pioneers in Dentistry

Women who made their living practicing dentistry, historically a male-dominated field, faced and conquered much to take their places beside their male counterparts. From stereotype-breaking practitioners to women-inventors, the female pioneers of dentistry had great influence in shaping the medical field we recognize today.


The earliest official female dentists practiced in Sweden, including a young Jewish woman named Amalia Assur. She gained special permission from the Swedish Royal Board of Health in 1852 to practice dentistry, even though the profession could not legally allow women to do so.

A mere three years later, Emeline Jones launched her own career in the United States, despite her husband’s misgivings. Like many other physicians at the time, Dr. Daniel Jones considered women unsuited to the detail required in dentistry. After studying for years in secrecy, filing and extracting hundreds of teeth in preparation, Emeline Jones was finally allowed to assist her husband in his practice. She later opened one of the best dental practices in Connecticut in 1876 and worked there until her retirement in 1915.


Some women not only practiced the art of dentistry, but also sought to improve upon the medical field. Although their inventions may not seem particularly unique or ground-breaking, these women still represent some of the most important female innovators of the time.

We know very few details about the earliest female inventors because of the difficulty in documentation. For example, Tabitha Babbitt is often credited for formulating a better way to make false teeth. However we know little about her specific methods. Likewise, we know little about Mary Ann Boughton’s contraption to make better air chambers on dental plates. All we have is the description in her patent of the technology.

However, we do know more about the recent inventions with proper documentation. One of the most prominent female figures in dental history is Elizabeth Morey. She is known for inventing the idea of a dental cap (a fake tooth fitted over a damaged tooth to maintain an even bite). But her progressive philosophy about what dentistry should be is even more influential. Unlike many of her male colleagues, Morey greatly advocated gentler dental practices and sought to save teeth when problems started to manifest. She avoided extracting and crushing teeth whenever possible, even without yet understanding all the complications that could arise from pulling teeth. Many modern dentists adopt her philosophy and work to retain as much natural tooth structure as possible.

Above Dental is proud of honor all these women during Women’s History Month who have braved a career in dentistry despite the odds.

Congratulations Nathan!

Congratulations Nathan!Nathan is the winner of the Halloween Candy Buy Back this year. He decided to donate his entire winnings to the Relay For Life. Great job Nathan!

Our Own Dr. Brice Made the News And He Wants Your Halloween Candy

Our very own Dr. Devin Brice made the local news. Here’s the story:

NORTH BEND, Ore. — A local dentist in North Bend is after your Halloween candy, but he’s no bully.
Dr. Devin Brice will pay $1 for every pound of Halloween candy received at his office Saturday.
The candy he collects will be sent to U.S. troops overseas and the kid who brings in the most candy will take home a $150, with an additional $150 sent to charity. 
You can take your candy to the Above Dental Office on Virginia in North Bend Saturday between 2-5 p.m.

5 Delicious DIY Holiday Recipes | Holiday Survival Guide

Get out your cooking utensils, and put on your aprons and chef hats – we have some fantastic DIY Holiday Recipes that will make anyone hungry!

Do you have a recipe of your own you’d like to share? Post it in the comments below or on our Facebook.

Happy Holidays from your dentist in North Bend,

– Dr. Devin Brice

Be Merry with These 5 Holiday Parties | Holiday Survival Guide

We all know the holiday season is an opportunity to spend well-deserved time with the family. However, why not kick it up a notch and host a fun holiday party everyone can enjoy!

In honor of our Holiday Survival Tips, we want your party to stand out among the rest. Add some of your own inspiration to these top 5 holiday parties.


1) The Ugly Sweater Party

There’s no hiding it. We all have that ugly sweater given by Aunt Shirley, which we immediately stashed in the attic. Well…wear it proudly at your Ugly Sweater Party—where the photos are priceless and everyone has a good laugh.

2) White Elephant Party

This is gag-gift giving at its finest. Instead of spending the time and effort to shop for friends, acquaintances, or employees, why not host a white elephant party where you can give the best present of them all: laughter and memorable moments.

If you are unsure how to throw a white elephant party, be sure to check out this website.

3) The Caroling Party

Have you been caught humming to the holiday classics? Open up those vocal chords with friends and family by hosting a Caroling Party. Meander to a karaoke bar or buy a home karaoke set, and belt out your holiday spirit—laughter with friends and family guaranteed!

4) Cocktail Party

Whether you love the fruity drinks or prefer a hard cider, we all have different tastes in cocktails. Why not take our taste buds to a whole new level by hosting a Cocktail Party? Ask your guests to bring their favorite cocktail recipes and let the merry times begin!

Get the juices flowing by checking out our Holiday Cocktail Recipes presentation.

5) Holiday Movie Marathon

Who doesn’t love a holiday classic? A Holiday Movie Marathon is an excellent way to gather your friends and families and share laughs and memories together. Tip: Be sure to keep your repertoire less than 5 movies to keep your party merry.

If you need a list of movies, read this article for 10 holiday classics.

Start planning your party and add your own flair to make it truly memorable! And remember to keep Dr. Brice, your Bend Cosmetic Dentist, of Above Dental in mind for all of your dental needs.

Share with us: What holiday parties are you throwing? Is there one you would you like to throw?

The Holiday Survival Guide

As you know, the upcoming holiday season can be a joyous time of year but also semi-stressful at times. Planning parties, meals, gifts, and can definitely take its toll on your schedule, health, and sanity.

That’s why we are excited to announce something that will be extremely beneficial to you during the upcoming holiday season: The Holiday Survival Guide.

The Holiday Survival Guide

We have spent countless hours creating a fantastic guide to benefit you patients during this fun but semi-stressful time of year.

Whether it’s outsmarting the hordes of ravenous shoppers on Black Friday or just battling hungry stomachs at the dinner table, the Holiday Survival Guide has the recipes, tips, and advice you need to make it through the season.

So sit back and let us help you not only survive the holidays but thrive during them as well.

Make sure to check back for weekly updates to the Holiday Survival Guide on our Facebook and Blog, starting the week of November 1st.

As your North Bend Dentist, Dr. Brice and the rest of the Above Dental team look out for our patients and our community. The Holiday Survival Guide is just another fun way to do that. Join the fun this season!

We’ll be sure to take care of you.

Happy Holidays!

– Above Dental

Why Searching Insurance Providers Is The Wrong Way to Find A Dentist In North Bend

Too many people take the lazy way out of searching for a dentist. They don’t take the time to call or even visit each one in town. Instead, they contact their insurance provider and ask for a list of dentists and then make a choice based on which one is closer. This is the convenient way of looking for a dentist and it’s a great time saver when you’re incredibly busy, but it’s no way to find a good dentist. While finding a dentist within your network is important, you will soon see that there are better ways to find the ideal dentist in North Bend.

Bad Rapport: What if you don’t get along with the dentist you’ve chosen? What if your dentist is mean, cruel or bad to your kids? When you choose your dentist in North Bend by your insurance provider only, you may be taking a real gamble with the dentist’s chair side manner.

Disorganized Office: How frustrating would it be for you to show up for your dental appointment only to find that the staff lost your file? Or worse, what if your file got mixed up with another patient’s and you’ve just scheduled an unnecessary root canal?  Your dentist in North Bend should be extremely organized and you can’t tell how organized a dentist is by calling your insurance provider. Instead, you need to make an office visit to see just how organized that dentist really is.

Substandard Tools: Your dentist should always use the most state-of-the-art dental tools and procedures on your smile and the smiles of your family members. If you choose your dentist by your insurance provider, you have no idea what you might be getting you and your family into. Make a visit to the dentist in question and ask to see the tools of the trade. That will tell you most of what you need to know when it comes to finding a good dentist in North Bend.

Don’t choose your dentist out of a hat. Make visits, get to know the dentist and the staff and only then are you sure to find the best dentist in North Bend.