My Blog

Posts for: May, 2016

By Ronald L. Schoepflin, D.D.S.
May 27, 2016
Category: Oral Health
EvenCelebritiesLikeJenniferLawrenceArentImmuneFromBadBreath

Exchanging passionate kisses with big-screen star Jennifer Lawrence might sound like a dream come true. But according to Liam Hemsworth, her Hunger Games co-star, it could also be a nightmare… because J.Law’s breath wasn’t always fresh. “Anytime I had to kiss Jennifer was pretty uncomfortable,” Hemsworth said on The Tonight Show.

Lawrence said the problem resulted from her inadvertently consuming tuna or garlic before the lip-locking scenes; fortunately, the two stars were able to share a laugh about it later. But for many people, bad breath is no joke. It can lead to embarrassment and social difficulties — and it occasionally signifies a more serious problem. So what causes bad breath, and what can you do about it?

In 9 out of 10 cases, bad breath originates in the mouth. (In rare situations, it results from a medical issue in another part of the body, such as liver disease or a lung infection.) The foul odors associated with bad breath can be temporarily masked with mouthwash or breath mints — but in order to really control it, we need to find out exactly what’s causing the problem, and address its source.

As Lawrence and Hemsworth found out, some foods and beverages can indeed cause a malodorous mouth. Onions, garlic, alcohol and coffee are deservedly blamed for this. Tobacco products are also big contributors to bad breath — which is one more reason to quit. But fasting isn’t the answer either: stop eating for long enough and another set of foul-smelling substances will be released. Your best bet is to stay well hydrated and snack on crisp, fresh foods like celery, apples or parsley.

And speaking of hydration (or the lack of it): Mouth dryness and reduced salivary flow during the nighttime hours is what causes “morning breath.” Certain health issues and some medications can also cause “dry mouth,” or xerostomia. Drinking plenty of water can encourage the production of healthy saliva — but if that’s not enough, tell us about it: We may recommend switching medications (if possible), chewing xylitol gum or using a saliva substitute.

Finally, maintaining excellent oral hygiene is a great way to avoid bad breath. The goal of oral hygiene is to control the harmful bacteria that live in your mouth. These microorganisms can cause gum disease, tooth decay, and bad breath — so keeping them in check is good for your overall oral health. Remember to brush twice and floss once daily, stay away from sugary foods and beverages, and visit the dental office regularly for checkups and professional cleanings.

So did J.Law apologize for the malodorous makeout session? Not exactly. “[For] Bradley Cooper, Christian Bale, yeah, I’ll brush my teeth,” she laughed.

Hemsworth jokingly agreed: “If I was kissing Christian Bale I probably would have brushed my teeth too. With you, it’s like, ‘Eh. Whatever.’”

If you would like more information about bad breath and oral hygiene, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Bad Breath: More than Just Embarrassing.”


Dental bridges are one of the most popular, cost-effective and reliable ways to replace teeth lost to gum disease, decay or injury. dental bridgesPermanent and natural-looking, bridges restore your smile to full function.

Dental crowns restore failing teeth. These full "caps" cover teeth that are damaged due to fractures, multiple fillings or extensive decay, among other problems. Dr. Ronald Schoepflin in Port Orchard, WA also place crowns as dental implant restorations and to cover the teeth which anchor fixed bridgework.

Bridgework Specifics

Your Port Orchard, WA dentist, Dr. Schoepflin, says there are several kinds of bridges, including:

  • conventional--comprised of one or more false teeth or pontics, anchored by dental crowns on adjacent natural teeth on either side of the appliance
  • cantilever--made up of one or more false teeth suspended from crowned natural teeth on just one side of the appliance (often used at the very back of the mouth)
  • resin-bonded--or Maryland, with one or more artificial teeth bonded to adjacent teeth via metal "wings"
  • implant-supported--also referred to as an implant bridge--made up of custom-crafted porcelain teeth supported by multiple dental implants

All but implant bridges require some removal or preparation of enamel on supporting teeth. Dental impressions and x-rays assist Dr. Schoepflin in formulating a treatment plan for the dental lab to follow in crafting the bridgework.

Crown Specifics

Dentists craft dental crowns from a variety of materials--gold for maximum strength, porcelain fused to metal and all porcelain for maximum aesthetics. Dental crowns cover and protect failing teeth or dental implants. Tooth-shaped and colored, crowns fill smile gaps to confer natural chewing, appearance, and support to neighboring teeth and underlying bone.

Just like bridgework, oral impressions and x-rays provide the necessary information to craft dental crowns. Your Port Orchard, WA dentist places crowns on prepared teeth, cementing them in place and adjusting the biting surfaces.

With good brushing and flossing at home and with semi-annual examinations and professional cleanings at Schoepflin Dental Excellence, crowns and bridges should serve patients well for 7 to 10 years or more.

Fill Those Smile Gaps

Don't let an ailing tooth fail. Protect it with a beautiful dental crown! Or, if you are missing one or more teeth, consider bridgework. Dr. Schoepflin will help you choose the right tooth replacement option to serve your healthy smile for many years. Contact his office today to arrange a consultation: (360) 871-2959.


By Ronald L. Schoepflin, D.D.S.
May 12, 2016
Category: Oral Health
4ReasonsWhyYouMayNeedtoSeeaPeriodontistforYourGumDisease

After treating you for periodontal (gum) disease for some time, we may suggest you see a periodontist, a specialist in gum conditions and diseases. There are a number of reasons for a referral, including the specific type of gum disease you may have developed.

Here are 4 more reasons why seeing a periodontist might be advantageous at this stage in your dental care.

Advanced treatment. All dentists are skilled in basic treatment procedures for gum disease, particularly removing plaque and calculus (hardened plaque deposits) that cause and sustain infections. But if your disease has advanced deeper below the gum line and has resulted in infection-filled void pockets between teeth and gums or in gum recession (the tissues shrinking back from the teeth), you may need more advanced techniques and equipment provided by a periodontist.

Advanced Cleanings. Regular, twice-a-year office cleanings are part of every dental care program. But depending on the severity of your gum disease (and your own hygiene efforts) you may need more frequent and advanced cleanings to keep recurring infections at bay. A periodontist can provide this, as well as help you develop a daily hygiene plan that meets your needs.

Your general health. There are a number of systemic conditions like diabetes, cardiovascular disease or pregnancy that can affect gum health. Many of these issues are tied to tissue inflammation, a major component of chronic gum disease, as well as slower tissue healing. As specialists in the gums and their relationship with the rest of the body, a periodontist can develop a treatment approach that coordinates with these other health issues.

Future restoration preparation. One of our treatment goals with gum disease is to try to prolong the life of natural teeth for as long as possible. In reality, though, some or all of your teeth may have a shortened life expectancy. If a comprehensive dental restoration is in your future, a periodontist can help prepare your gums for the inevitable. They may also be able to repair or restore gum tissues that enhance the appearance of a restoration to create a more attractive smile.

If you would like more information on advanced treatment for periodontal disease, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Referral to a Dental Specialist.”