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Welcome from Doc D

1st day photo Eric and Tabitha

Thank you for such a lovely welcome!

Thank you to all our many, many patients for giving us such a warm welcome! These past two months have been great. I truly appreciate everyone’s kind words, gifts, and outstanding reviews. We come with a motto that says “We Treat People, Not Teeth,” which is indicative of how we approach patient care. We strive to provide our patients with individualized dental care. God made us so unique a cookie cutter approach can’t be used. We aim to do high quality dentistry, by caring for every individual that walks through the doors. We work to always give you a warm friendly welcome, address all your needs and concerns, answer your questions, and make you comfortable while you are here.

The staff has been so wonderful in welcoming Tabitha and I! We are all enjoying getting to know each other. The staff has also worked with Martine and Erica (from our Biltmore location) to get to know me and my quirks.

I am excited about what the future holds and look forward to meeting each and every one of you.

~Doc D.

 

 

Introducing Dr. Dollinger

Dear Friends,
Since opening McChristian Dental in August 2012, I have been hoping to find a like minded, highly skilled dentist to join my practice. Therefore I am thrilled to announce Dr. Eric Dollinger will be joining McChristian Dental as of July 5th, 2016. We share the same philosophy of providing quality dentistry with the best interest of our patient as our top priority. He is a dentist of high integrity who seeks to treat people, not just teeth. I think you will be impressed, as I have been, with his concern for your overall health and comfort.

A native of Western North Carolina, Dr. Dollinger graduated Magna cum laude from UNC Asheville with a degree in biology. He then attended UNC Chapel Hill School of Dentistry where he earned his Doctor of Dental S
urgery Degree, with honors. Dr. Dollinger has been practicing dentistry for 13 years in Asheville. He is also currently the North Carolina Dental Society’s First District President. As an avid learner, he actively pursues continuing education in the fields of preventative, restorative, and implant dentistry. He is experienced, energetic, loves people, and enjoys dentistry.

He and his wife, Tabitha, have been married for 18 years. They have two sons, Noah and Jason. Dr. Dollinger is very active in his church and enjoys working with the youth. Living in Western North Carolina and serving our community are two areas that he and Tabitha are passionate about.

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On a personal note, Dr. Dollinger’s purchase of the practice will allow Ann and me to work less, have more time for our grandchildren, and pursue the kind of traveling our patients have done! Your stories and adventures have inspired and motivated us. I will be working reduced hours over the coming months, however, I plan to continue working on a limited basis over the next year or so.

I have been blessed to already work with a competent and compassionate team, and am happy to add a skilled and caring dentist in Dr. Dollinger. It is my sincerest wish that you welcome Dr. Dollinger as we continue providing Patient-centereed / Family-oriented / Quality-focused dental care to our patients.

Thank you for your support and friendship over the years. As always, if you have any questions during this transition, please feel free to call!

Sincerely, Dr. Mac

(In case we have an incorrect address for any of our patients, we wanted to post this letter online. We love each of our patients and have worked to insure clear communication! The above letter was mailed to our patients the last week of June)

A new year, an updated website, a new blog.

2016.

A new year, an updated website, a new blog.

There have been so many advances and changes in dentistry over the past few decades, we thought it would be beneficial to discuss it regularly on a blog instead of only communicating that information at dental visits. My goal is to discuss topics about which I am frequently asked. I hope my posts are informative and thought provoking.

To kick things off, I want to write about what is one of the most important changes we have seen in dentistry. There have been many technological advances in dentistry the last 20-30 years, but overriding their contribution is how dentistry is now thought of in relation to overall health. This seems like it would be obvious, but the relationship between the health of the mouth and the health of the body has been largely ignored until the last decade or so.

In 1989, a study showed how oral health was a contributing factor to heart disease. Since then, many studies have identified gum disease as a significant risk factor for cancer, stroke, diabetes, lung diseases, as well as heart disease. To be clear, there is not a direct cause and effect relationship (i.e. the presence of gum disease does not mean you will definitely get any of the diseases), but the evidence shows it will increase your risk.

In posts to come, I will write more about these specific disease groups. Today, I will paint a picture to reorient thinking about the importance of the health of the mouth.

The mouth is full of microorganisms: good bacteria, bad bacteria, fungi, and viruses. We don’t think of it that way until we are sick and are working hard to get rid of the bad bacteria in our body through supplements or antibiotics. Each of us has at least 200 different kinds of microbes in our mouth. Most of the microbes in our mouth are beneficial. However, if the bad ones are allowed to proliferate, they cause cavities, gingivitis, infections, and loss of bone around the teeth. The truth is, our mouth will never be sterile and will always have bad bacteria. It is estimated we swallow about 100 billion microbes a day! These microbes are kept in check through our efforts to keep our mouth clean and by keeping our immune system strong.

Here are three ways the condition of our mouth affects our overall health. If diseases of the teeth or gums are untreated, teeth will be lost. There is a direct connection between keeping your teeth and a longer, healthier life. It makes sense; we chew better with our own teeth! Better chewing breaks down food to make it easier for our digestive system to work. We get more nutrients out of food when we can chew effectively!

Oral infections also tax our immune system, which impacts our overall health. When we have an infection of any kind, our immune system is mobilized to fight it. Our immune response has only so many resources and if it is weakened, it is not as effective. This is why it is now recommended to have your teeth cleaned before any chemo or radiation treatments for cancer. When going through cancer treatments, the immune system is overwhelmed and we do not want any “immune energy” spent on fighting mouth problems. Be aware that active gum disease makes you more prone to any illness, because our immune response is already busy fighting bad microbes in the mouth.

Lastly, the bacteria in our mouth can get into the blood stream through diseased gums (do your gums bleed when you brush or floss?) and into our lungs when breathing. This is the connection to heart and lung disease. (More on that another time!)

So, what is the point? The mouth is not isolated from the rest of the body.

Keeping our mouth healthy has beneficial effects for the short and long term. An unhealthy mouth affects our overall health and our longevity. With the tools for clean teeth and gums easily accessible for use at home, we can all work everyday to improve our health.

Until next time, choose healthy!

Dr. Mac