Charles Curtis wins iPod Nano

Congratulations to Charles Curtis and Charlie Wenz!  Charles Curtis won the drawing for the IPOD Nano, and Charlie Wenz won the IPON Shuffle.  Thank you so much to all of our patients who referred new patients between October 1st and December 23rd and were eligible for the drawing.

Dr. Moorhead presents iPod Nano to Charles Curtis
Charles Curtis accepts iPod Nano from Dr. Moorhead

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Local Phone: (606) 845-CARE (2273)

Toll Free (From the 606, 859, and 937 area codes): 1-888-917-CARE (2273)

Physical Location: 303 South Main Cross, Flemingsburg, KY

Mailing address: P.O. Box 474, Flemingsburg, KY 41041

Dentistry from the Heart

On the Saturday before Christmas, eleven volunteers gave up their entire day to provide free dental care for individuals in need.

I started this annual Free Treatment Day in 1983 as a way of giving back to the community and providing aid to the growing number of Americans who could not afford dental care.  Back then, I called it, “Unemployment day,” because unemployment was so high.  This year that name would have been appropriate as well, given the state of our economy.   As the years have passed and my practice has grown, so has the need.

We saw a total of fifty patients and provided nearly $15,000 in free dental care.  It was a fabulous day, with a tremendous show of support for our community from a wonderful group of volunteers.

Free Treatment Day 2008
Free Treatment Day 2008

In the photo, from left to right, are the volunteers who donated their services to make this day possible:  Kathy Bradley, Sarah Cropper, Hygienist Kathy Miller, Robin Ehrenberger, Dr. Tara Jefferson, of Brooksville, Amanda Faris, Christine Jones, Katie Teegarden,  Jennifer Hildebrand, Hygienist Susan Gilbert, and (me) Dr. Moorhead.

“This was an awesome experience,” said Dr. Tara Jefferson.  “It was so good to get to help all of these folks, and a great way to get in the Christmas spirit!”

This year’s charity effort was part of the Dentistry From the Heart network.  Formed in 2001, Dentistry From the Heart has helped over 5,000 people and given away over one million dollars of free dental work.

“This has become a holiday tradition that our entire team enjoys.  It’s the real meaning of Christmas,” says Amanda Faris, the team leader at Flemingsburg Dental Care.

I would like to thank all of the volunteers, and the many organizations that donated supplies for our Free Treatment Day, including Patterson Dental Supply, Pizza Hut, Dairy Queen, Ken’s New Market, Total Care Pharmacy and Walmart.

Below are some additional photos from the event.

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Local Phone: (606) 845-CARE (2273)

Toll Free (From the 606, 859, and 937 area codes): 1-888-917-CARE (2273)

Physical Location: 303 South Main Cross, Flemingsburg, KY

Mailing address: P.O. Box 474, Flemingsburg, KY 41041

Dr. Moorhead with the Lyndal Black family
Dr. Moorhead with the Lyndal Black family
Kathy Bradley, EDDA
Kathy Bradley, EDDA
Katie Teegarden with a grateful patient!
Katie Teegarden with a grateful patient!
Sarah Cropper pausing for a photo.
Sarah Cropper pausing for a photo.
Dr. Jefferson and Robin E. hard at work!
Dr. Jefferson and Robin E. hard at work!

Health Savings Accounts

In 2003, Congress created a help for medical and dental bills that is a tremendous tax savings, but five years later, very few people know about them.  A Health Savings Account (HSA) is a special tax-free savings account that is available to people who purchase high-deductible insurance plans.  To qualify, your insurance plan must have a deductible of $1,000.

With a Health Savings Account plan, you’ll save significant amounts of money annually on taxes, health insurance premiums and retirement savings all at the same time.  All of this can be accomplished without decreasing your real insurance protection or choices of doctors & specialists.   High deductible medical insurance plans are offered by almost all major carriers, and their monthly insurance premiums are usually less than one-half of standard plans.  They begin offering benefits once the $1,000 deductible is met.  The coverage of the plans vary, but they all have catastrophic care.

By placing the money that you save on insurance premiums in the HSA, you save to meet your deductible, and if your medical expenses for the year aren’t enough to meet the deductible, the money stays in your account – to cover medical expenses you want.  Like an IRA, the money can rollover at year end and earn tax-free interest.

In 2009, an individual will be able to contribute up to $3,000 per year tax-free to their Health Savings Account, and a family can contribute a total of $5,950.  You can use money placed in your HSA for medical bills, dental work for your entire family, eye care and a host of other eligible medical expenses.

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Local Phone: (606) 845-CARE (2273)

Toll Free (From the 606, 859, and 937 area codes): 1-888-917-CARE (2273)

Physical Location: 303 South Main Cross, Flemingsburg, KY

Mailing address: P.O. Box 474, Flemingsburg, KY 41041

Should I Buy Dental Insurance?

Many people in our area are not covered by dental insurance.  Several times a month, we hear patients wondering if they should buy dental insurance coverage before they proceed with their dental work.  This article will help you understand how dental insurance coverage works, and in what situations it can benefit you.

We all know that insurance companies have developed a reputation for putting themselves before their customers.  In reality, the customer for a dental insurance company is the employer who purchases a group insurance plan.  With the pressures on business from the high costs of medical insurance, dental insurance plans have suffered badly for several years.  In addition, more employers are offering dental insurance to their employees only if the employee pays for all or part of the premium.  So when is dental insurance advantageous?

Dental insurance is probably an excellent help if your employer covers the premium completely.  However, unlike medical insurance, most dental insurance plans only cover a maximum of $1,000 per year.  You may find it interesting that when the first dental insurance plans were offered around 1960, the average annual benefit was … $1,000 a year.  So accounting for inflation since 1960, today’s plans over less than $150 in 1960 dollars.  For patients that come into our office with more expensive problems, I like to tell my patients to consider their dental insurance as a $1,000 off coupon, rather than dental “insurance.”

But let’s say you have to pay for part or all of your insurance premium, or your employer doesn’t offer dental insurance and you are thinking about purchasing an individual plan.  For the insurance company to make a profit, they must charge enough premiums to cover your dental work, plus administrative fees, plus their profit.  If you must pay all of the premiums on your own, this makes it unlikely you can come out ahead.  If your employer pays for part of your benefits, the dental insurance might still be beneficial, but you’ll have to do some calculations.

Take some time to calculate how much you’ll pay in benefits per year, and compare that amount to the cost of your “two free cleanings and exams.”  In addition, if you are enrolling for the first time, you may have a waiting period before major work is completed, so that you’ve paid more insurance premiums before getting to enjoy many of the benefits of the plan.

I’ll be writing soon about the benefits of Health Savings Accounts that can provide tax-deductible benefits to pay for medical and dental expenses.  In addition, don’t forget that our office offers extended payment arrangements using several outside firms, so that your dentistry can be handled affordably.

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Local Phone: (606) 845-CARE (2273)

Toll Free (From the 606, 859, and 937 area codes): 1-888-917-CARE (2273)

Physical Location: 303 South Main Cross, Flemingsburg, KY

Mailing address: P.O. Box 474, Flemingsburg, KY 41041

Christmas Gifts from Flemingsburg Dental Care

With all of the talk of the problems with the economy, we’re doing something extra for our patients this month.  Patients who pre-pay in full for any treatment started in December will receive 10% off their entire fee.  We have a limited number of appointments available, so call 845-2273 before they’re gone!

This offer also applies for NEW PATIENTS!   We are always accepting new patients, and we greatly appreciate your referrals.  In fact, every referring patient will receive a special surprise gift!

Win a NEW iPod Nano or iPod Shuffle! For each referral you send who visits our office by December 20, 2008, your name will be entered multiple times in a drawing for a NEW iPod Nano, or iPod Shuffle!  Multiple prizes will be given away.

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P.S. – Remember that our 26th Annual Free Treatment Day is coming soon as well.  Please feel free to forward this post to your friends and family who need dental treatment, or would like to take advantage of these special offers.

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Local Phone: (606) 845-CARE (2273)

Toll Free (From the 606, 859, and 937 area codes): 1-888-917-CARE (2273)

Physical Location: 303 South Main Cross, Flemingsburg, KY

Mailing address: P.O. Box 474, Flemingsburg, KY 41041

26th Annual Free Dental Treatment Day

For the twenty-sixth Christmas, Flemingsburg Dental Care will be offering an early Christmas gift to families in Central and Eastern Kentucky. Dr. William J. Moorhead started his annual Free Treatment Day in 1982 as his way of giving back to the community and providing aid to the growing number of Americans who could not afford dental care. His team of dentists, sponsors and volunteers will host their twenty-sixth annual event on the Saturday before Christmas.

On Saturday, December 20th, Flemingsburg Dental Care will devote the entire day to providing free dental services such as cleanings, x-rays and fillings to individuals in need. This year, Dr. Moorhead has joined the “Dentistry From the Heart” network. Formed in 2001, Dentistry From the Heart has helped over 5,000 people and given away over one million dollars of free dental work.

“The Holiday season is for giving,” states Dr. Moorhead, who has been giving this gift every year since 1983, “and there are still many who just can’t afford the dental care they need.” “This has become a holiday tradition that our entire team enjoys. It’s the real meaning of Christmas,” says Amanda Faris, the team leader at Flemingsburg Dental Care. Last year, almost $8,000 in free dental care was provided.

“Since moving to our new larger office, we look forward to being able to help many more people this year than in the past.” Dr. Moorhead’s office moved to the former Public Library building this past spring.

This year, walk-in patients will be accepted on Free Treatment Day. For those that can be screened in advance, a brief appointment prior to the big day will be scheduled to determine what needs to be done. Dr. Moorhead especially encourages patients with toothaches to be seen for advance screening in case antibiotics are needed. The pre-screening appointments are free as well.

Patients with internet access can fill out their registration and history online. Go to FlemingsburgDental.com, and click on “New Patient Log In.” Only the form “Annual Free Treatment Day – Registration” is required.

The entire process is completely free. Patients are asked to provide proof of economic need such as an unemployment card or pay stub. Please call Flemingsburg Dental Care at (606) 845-CARE today for further information and to schedule your appointment.

Click here for television coverage from previous year’s event

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Local Phone: (606) 845-CARE (2273)

Toll Free (From the 606, 859, and 937 area codes): 1-888-917-CARE (2273)

Physical Location: 303 South Main Cross, Flemingsburg, KY

Mailing address: P.O. Box 474, Flemingsburg, KY 41041

Why Replace Missing Teeth?

Many people wonder why it’s necessary to replace missing teeth. Let’s see what happens when a tooth is lost and is not replaced.

For the sake of our example, we’ll presume you have a missing lower molar, as in the photo here. When we’re young and our teeth are erupting, they’re programmed to keep erupting until they meet something.
So when you lose a tooth and don’t replace it, the process starts again. The corresponding tooth in your opposite jaw will once again start erupting. Unfortunately, when the shifting occurs, the tooth moves, but the bone that holds in the tooth does not move with it. This results in a loss of bone support for the opposing tooth.

Teeth also literally lean on each other. When you lose a tooth, the tooth immediately behind shifts forward. This throws off your bite and makes you more prone to tooth grinding (“bruxism”) and disorders related to the joint between the upper and lower jaws, the TMJ.

All of this shifting has a domino effect. Since it’s more difficult to clean these areas, cavities develop in the hard to reach areas. Periodontal disease, or so called “gum and bone” disease also develops more easily since you can’t clean these areas.

There are solutions for replacing teeth that I’ll cover in a future article. But if you have a choice on whether to save a tooth, you’ll have less cost and a better result if you save your tooth.

If you know your teeth need attention, give us a call today! You’ll be glad you did.

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Local Phone: (606) 845-CARE (2273)

Toll Free (From the 606, 859, and 937 area codes): 1-888-917-CARE (2273)

Physical Location: 303 South Main Cross, Flemingsburg, KY

Mailing address: P.O. Box 474, Flemingsburg, KY 41041

Cavities Can Be Contagious

The Lexington Herald-Leader published an article on Sunday titled “Kentucky’s dental disaster begins before kindergarten,” about the severe problems dentists see in too many children in Kentucky.  The author, Sarah Vos, did a good job showing the problems our state faces regarding children’s dental health.  Toward the end of the article, she discussed a fact that has only been known for a few years – cavities can be contagious.  If a parent has a high decay rate (“lots of cavities”), it’s very likely that their child will also have the same problem.  While part of the problem is related to the family’s habits and dental visits, a large part is that the family is fighting a bacterial infection – the bacteria that cause tooth decay.  Researchers within just the last ten years discovered that if either of a child’s parents have a high decay rate when the child’s teeth are first erupting, at around age 5-7 months, the child will often catch the parent’s infection.  Decay in baby teeth usually transfer to adult teeth when they come in. In severe cases, decay can lead to serious infections – and even death.

The good news is there are solutions.  The first step is a professional dental exam for your child.  If a high decay rate is found, the problem can be resolved, but it requires a very thorough approach.  Treatment includes getting rid of all of the cavities, modifying the family’s diet, and the use of fluorides and prescription anti-bacterial mouthwashes.  It’s also best to treat the entire family, not just the child.

Beginning in 2010, children entering school in Kentucky will be required to have a dental screening.  If you or your child have unmet dental needs, you can SAVE on future dental expenses by getting those needs taken care of now.  Untreated dental problems often have no symptoms, but they always get worse over time.  Click here for a special offer for a complete exam and x-rays at no charge for new patients. We want to help you and your family avoid serious problems.  Your teeth and your mouth will thank you for it…and you’ll be healthier overall!

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Have a great day!

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Local Phone: (606) 845-CARE (2273)

Toll Free (From the 606, 859, and 937 area codes): 1-888-917-CARE (2273)

Physical Location: 303 South Main Cross, Flemingsburg, KY

Mailing address: P.O. Box 474, Flemingsburg, KY 41041

Make it a White Christmas

How many times have you struggled so long to come up with the perfect Christmas gift for your loved one, but never been able to come up with a gift that is truly special?  For the first time, we’re making Gift Certificates available for Tooth Whitening.

But this isn’t just any offer.  The ordinary fee for Whitening is around $300.  What if you could buy the gift for just $97?

Our “White Christmas Gift Certificates” are available now through December 23rd, and they never expire.  They can be used for our entire Home Whitening system, including impressions, custom trays, personalized instructions and follow-up visits.  Or the coupon can also be used for $300 off our in-office Deep Bleaching procedure, regularly priced at $695.

For more specific information on tooth whitening systems and what we use in our office, read the article, “The Truth About Tooth Whitening.”  If you have further questions about whitening, or about this special offer, just give us a call, or send us an email.  We’ll be happy to answer your questions.

Gift certificates can be purchased in our office at 303 South Main Cross in Flemingsburg, or charged to a credit card and mailed to you.  Be sure to mention this post to your friends and family so that they can enjoy this special offer and, who knows, give you a white Christmas!

Thanks for visiting,
Have a great day!

Local Phone: (606) 845-CARE (2273)

Toll Free (From the 606, 859, and 937 area codes): 1-888-917-CARE (2273)

Physical Location: 303 South Main Cross, Flemingsburg, KY

Mailing address: P.O. Box 474, Flemingsburg, KY 41041