Protecting Your Teeth Against Tooth Decay During COVID-19

Protecting Your Teeth Against Tooth Decay During COVID-19

There’s been a lot of changes in the past couple of weeks, but one thing isn’t changing the way it works: our old nemesis, tooth decay. With adjustments to routines and finding new ways to organize our days, we must continue to maintain good oral hygiene. Dental offices might be postponing non-emergency appointments, but that doesn’t mean your oral care has to stop altogether! Here are our main tips for taking care of those pearly whites and help fight tooth decay during this time:

  1. Wash your hands – wash for 20 seconds before and after any personal dental care
  2. Brush twice a day for at least 2 minutes – be sure to get those hard-to-reach areas!
  3. Floss once a day – this helps remove bacteria and build up in places that a brush can’t reach
  4. Limit sugary drinks and snacks – too many sugars can harm the surface of teeth and lead to cavities
  5. Keep your dental tools clean – place your toothbrush, floss, and any other items that go into your mouth in places that don’t touch other items

With a well-kept oral routine, you can help protect your teeth against decay during this time!

Although we are closed for routine cleanings and appointments, please note that we are open for dental emergencies. If you are experiencing extreme pain or swelling in the mouth, please contact our office and we will help provide the care that you need.

Our office wishes the best for our patients now and always. We look forward to seeing you all in our office again!

Dr. Drew and Crew

Orthodontics at Dr. Drew and Crew

Orthodontics at Dr. Drew and Crew

Crooked teeth?  Slight underbite?  Ugly spaces? An improved smile is within your reach!  Dr. Drew and Crew is proud to offer orthodontic services to our patients. To provide the best possible care, we have a three-step process before braces installation.

Step 1:  The Orthodontic Opinion

Think of this appointment as the ‘kick-off’ to your orthodontic journey.  Dr. Ellenwood will personally provide you with a general overview of your orthodontic options.  This appointment is of no charge.

Step 2:  The Orthodontic Work-Up

The Orthodontic Work-Up is the data-gathering appointment.  We’ll get together information needed to correctly diagnose and create a treatment plan.  The Work-Up includes an orthodontic examination, orthodontic photos, diagnostic impressions of both upper and lower teeth, and two orthodontic X-rays:  A Panorex, around the head and a Cephalometric, from the side of the head. These X-rays show the relation of the teeth within the jaws, the relation of both jaws to each other, and the relation of all these to the face. 

Step 3:  The Orthodontic Consultation

About three weeks after the Work-Up is the Consultation.  At this appointment, Dr. Ellenwood will discuss the overall objectives of your treatment and a course of action.  Here is when we encourage our patients to ask questions! We want to make sure you feel comfortable and knowledgeable about your personal orthodontic treatment plan.  Also, this is when you can appoint for starting orthodontics and you can set up payment arrangements. The Orthodontic Consult is included in the Work-Up cost.

Dr. Ellenwood uses a method of straightening teeth called Tip-Edge, a special bracketing system that tips the teeth to tip to the desired positions then proceeds to move the roots to their final positions.  This movement helps to keep heavy stresses off the anchor molars and correct difficult bites.

We would be happy to discuss your desires and determine if we could help you or if you would need the attention of a specialist.  Just think, a winning smile is within your reach!
520 S. 14th St.
Fort Smith, Arkansas 72901

May Your Smiles be Merry and White!

May Your Smiles be Merry and White!

‘Tis the season for Christmas music, decorations, the hopes of snow days, and holiday cheer. With the cool start to December, the holiday celebrations are in full swing! With plenty of upcoming opportunities for smiles and laughter, Dr. Drew and Crew is wishing you a very happy holiday season. We know there’s a lot of pressure to fill the stockings and place gifts under the tree, so we’re here to help with some gift ideas that help maintain those pearly whites!


Give the gift of healthy smiles

From enjoying the holidays with family, friends, co-workers, and neighbors, there’s a lot to be grateful for during this time of year. Are you grateful for your healthy smile? Having strong teeth allow you to enjoy your favorite holiday meals, continually talk to loved ones, and smile in all the upcoming family pictures! Whether your teeth are in tip-top shape, or need a little bit of love and care, giving the gift of a healthy smile (for someone else OR yourself!) can help improve overall oral care.

The holidays come with countless baked goods and sugary candy, and as much as we love them, they’re not always the best for our teeth. Below is our list of stocking stuffers that can help keep your teeth merry and white this holiday season!


Stocking Stuffers

  1. A new toothbrush
  2. Whitening toothpaste
  3. Flavored floss
  4. Mouthwash
  5. Travel toothbrush cover
  6. Sugar-free gum
  7. A little toy (instead of candy!)

From our team to you, we hope your holidays are full of happiness, love, and bright smiles all around!
520 S. 14th St.
Fort Smith, Arkansas 72901

How to Get Your Kids Brushing

How to Get Your Kids Brushing

Trying to find creative ways to get your children excited about brushing their teeth can sometimes feel like… well, like pulling eye teeth. But we have some great tips to make the twice-a-day routine enjoyable for everyone.

Set a Good Example

First and foremost, helping your children develop good oral hygiene starts with you, the parent. By making a point to brush and floss – that’s right, floss – around your kids, then they’ll do what you do. This lays a strong foundation for teaching them how long to brush (two minutes!), how to brush, and how to floss.

Make Brushing a Household Event

Did you ever think that morning and evening routines can be more than just an individual task? Getting everyone together, especially with raising young tots, to brush teeth helps continue to set a good example as well as pull everyone together at the beginning and end of the day. A win-win!

Select the Toothbrush

Making brushing fun can start before you even brush. Allowing your child to choose his or her toothbrush gives them the opportunity to get excited about the routine. Music-playing brushes, Disney characters, superheroes, bright colors, lights, animals, sounds, and more: The possibilities are endless! If kids are excited about their toothbrush, they’ll be even more excited to put it to good use.

Keep a Routine

Practice makes perfect, right? Practicing the same routine morning and night can help your young ones get used to when they have to start brushing on their own. By going to bed after the same series of events, kids learn how to not only have good oral hygiene habits but also an calming nightly routine.

Need a little extra help in perfecting that brushing and flossing routine? Dr. Drew and Crew is here to help! 
520 S. 14th St.
Fort Smith, Arkansas 72901


Do you want whiter teeth?

Do you want whiter teeth?

Would you like whiter, brighter teeth? Are you afraid it’s going to cost a fortune? Have you tried products from the store that flatly did not work? Never fear, Dr. Drew and Crew are here!

The success of any whitening solution is a function of concentration, duration on enamel, and proximity to the teeth. Got that? With this in mind, check out these options for whitening. We’ll start with the most expensive and work down from there. You may be surprised the most expensive option is not what we recommend.

1.  In-Office Whitening
This is a fast, but costly option. The appointment is easy – you sit with your mouth stretched out and wait for the bleach to do its work on your teeth. The results of in-office whitening are less than impressive. I do not recommend this option as the cost outweighs the lack-luster results.

*2. Custom Whitening
Custom whitening is relatively fast and quite effective. The magic is in the higher concentration of bleach available (as compared to over-the-counter products) and the close contact of the bleach to the teeth that is achieved through delivery trays custom made for your teeth. This drives the whiteners in and the stains out.

The procedure is simple. We take impressions of your upper and lower teeth in order to make clear plastic trays that fit your mouth only. We send you home with the whitening solution that you will apply into the trays. The trays with solution go into your mouth for about an hour. Do this a couple of times a day for two weeks and your upper teeth will be brilliant. The lower takes a bit longer, so continue for a total of six weeks. Keep your trays so you can touch up yearly for a day or two if needed.

3.  Over-the-Counter Whitening Strips
You can buy these at the drugstore.  They are less expensive than custom whitening but will take quite a bit longer to get the same results since the solution’s concentration is weaker and the strips are not custom to your mouth.

4. Whitening Toothpastes
Don’t use these if you’re in a hurry. The problem here is time. The whitening treatment is just not on your teeth long enough.

No whitening method can bleach crowns, fillings, or decay. Give us a call for an appointment to discuss your particular case. A whiter, brighter smile is within your reach!

Braces Stages

Braces Stages

Do braces straighten teeth in one fell swoop? No.  Braces move teeth in stages.  Here are the braces stages for the Tip-Edge technique used by Dr. Ellenwood.

Braces StagesStage I

The first stage of braces is concerned with straightening the front teeth and opening the bite for more effective movement of teeth. Stage I lasts from four to eight months.  Adjustment appointments arrive every six weeks and are 30 minutes in length.  All adjustments of all stages are included in the Orthodontic Fee.

Pre 2

Just before Stage II, the premolars, or side teeth, are brought into alignment. This takes about one to three months depending on the severity of crowding in this area.  Adjustment appointments in Pre-2 are about every six weeks, 30 minutes in length.  If there is no Stage II, this stage is Pre 3 by default.

Stage II

The second stage concentrates on closing any spaces behind the front teeth left after Stage I. In cases without extractions, this stage is usually not necessary.  Stage II is about three to six months with adjustments every six weeks.

Stage III

Stage III focuses on moving the roots of the teeth to their final positions for better stability and finished appearance. Until the third stage, the tops of the teeth have been tipping through the air; during Stage III, the roots must be moved through bone. This obviously requires more time, usually making Stage III as long to get out of as it was to get to, approximately six to twelve months. Adjustment appointments are around every eight weeks and about ten minutes long.


When braces are removed, retainers are worn nightly for at least one year actively and one night a week thereafter to prevent relapse. The initial set of retainers is included in the Orthodontic Fee.  Don’t lose them or let the dog eat them.  Replacement retainers can be expensive.

Your beautiful smile is a few stages away!