Winter Sensitivity

As the temperatures start to dip and the snow starts to fall, you may notice your teeth are more sensitive when you are outside. Sometimes, people tend to clench their teeth and tense up when they are out in the cold. Clenching can cause jaw and teeth erosion issues which cause sensitivity.

Sipping hot chocolate or coffee may feel comforting while being out on a cold day, but the temperature difference can cause sensitivity.

The winter months also come with holiday treats. Caramels, candy canes, and peanut brittle to name a few. Sugary treats put you at a higher risk for cavities. In addition, hard, crunchy candies put you at risk for damaged or chipped teeth. Both cavities and damaged teeth are sensitive to cold air. To help protect your teeth, drink a glass of water to rinse away the sugar and acids that are left on your teeth after enjoying a holiday treat.

To be more comfortable during the winter months, try breathing through your nose or wearing a scarf over your mouth. You can also try using a toothpaste for sensitive teeth. If the problem persists, please mention it to Dr. Thor at your next dental exam.

Wisdom Teeth

Third molars, otherwise known as wisdom teeth generally come through or erupt at a more mature age between 17 and 21.

Anthropologists believe we have wisdom teeth because our ancestor’s early diet required more chewing power. With today’s expanded food choices and cooking techniques, the third molars are not necessary for function.

If wisdom teeth come in with proper alignment, they generally work with the other molars in chewing.  With the help of dental x-rays, we are able to determine if your wisdom teeth will be properly aligned. Poor alignment of wisdom teeth can crowd or damage adjacent teeth, the jawbone, or nerves

Fred Quarnstrom, DDS from the American Dental Board of Anesthesiology, reports there is some evidence modern jaws are smaller than those of prehistoric humans. The x-rays will also show if there will be enough room in your mouth for the additional teeth.

Crowding can cause the tooth to become “impacted” meaning it is unable to break through the gums. Because it’s in an area that’s hard to clean, it can attract bacteria that leads to gum disease and infection.

Dr. Thor recommends if your wisdom teeth cause problems or x-rays show they might down the line, they should be removed and he will refer you to an oral surgeon.

Dental issues can be a sign of other health issues

You may think your dentist is only concerned about your oral health.  However, that is not the case.  Dr. Thor and his team know that your oral health is not just about how you care for your teeth and mouth. Sometimes there are signs or symptoms in your mouth that could be a sign of other health issues.  Dr. Thor and his team will ask about changes in your oral and general health.  If symptoms arise, or we notice changes in your mouth that we cannot diagnose, we will refer you to your primary care physician for further follow-up. We work very closely with primary care physicians to make sure your entire body is in the best health that it can be. 

Oral symptoms may indicate:

  • Diabetes – Gum disease, bleeding gums, loose teeth, slower healing, bad taste in mouth
  • Heart disease – Inflamed gums, jaw pain
  • Eating disorders – Erosion on the insides of the front teeth
  • Risk of premature birth –  Inflamed gums
  • Autoimmune disease – Sores, white/red patches, dry mouth
  • Hypothyroidism – Dry mouth
  • Vitamin deficiency – Bleeding or inflamed gums

Dr. Thor Anderson is dedicated to Family and Cosmetic Dentistry including exams, tooth colored fillings, crowns, cleanings, Smile Makeovers, Teeth Whitening, Veneers & more. Yahara Dental proudly serves Stoughton, Edgerton, Oregon, Evansville, Fitchburg and other outlying areas. Dr. Thor is a Delta Dental Premier Provider.

Why do I need x-rays?

Dental X-rays detect problems or damage to your teeth and gums that are not visible to the naked eye, including:

  • The condition of your teeth and rootsDental x-ray
  • Jaw placement and structure of facial bones
  • Small cavities hiding between teeth or below fillings and crowns
  • Periodontal (gum) disease
  • Infections in the bone
  • Abscesses or cysts
  • Developmental abnormalities
  • Some types of tumors
  • The exact location of impacted teeth and teeth not yet fully developed

The advantage to you is that x-rays allow dental problems to be found and treated at an early stage, saving you time, money and unnecessary pain. Call Yahara Dental to schedule your preventative exam.

Do missing teeth make it difficult or even impossible for you to enjoy your favorite foods?

Do you miss biting into a juicy apple? Are you afraid to eat steak because you can’t chew it well enough to swallow without choking? If you have suffered tooth loss, or if you have severely damaged or decayed teeth, it can make eating very difficult. In some cases, entire food groups, such as raw fruits and vegetables, may be off limits. Relief and enjoyment are possible. Yahara Dental offers a variety of options that can improve your oral health and enable you to eat a wide range of foods. Dr. Thor Anderson can even replace your existing dentures with an implant-supported denture for greater stability, fit and durability.

Contact Dr. Thor Today and Start Enjoying the Foods You Love!

Serving the dental needs of Stoughton, Edgerton, Oregon, Fitchburg, McFarland, Evansville and surrounding areas.

Recommended age for your child’s first dental appointment

Dr. Thor suggests, around the age of two, bringing your child along to your visit or an older sibling’s appointment to watch. This allows them to hear the noises, smell the smells and see how the chair moves and the items being put in the mouth. We will give the child a “ride” in the chair and count teeth at this visit if they are willing.  At Yahara Dental we believe by starting dental visits at an early age, you will help your child have a positive outlook towards dental care throughout their life. After the first visit, be sure to schedule regular checkups every six months.

Yahara Dental providing dental care in the Stoughton, Wisconsin area for 20 years.

Why are my jaws sore when I wake up?

Jaw painWhen you wake up is your jaw sore or do you have a headache?  You may be bruxing, which is clenching or grinding your teeth while sleeping.  Aside from the discomfort, this condition can cause your enamel to wear down causing sensitivity and greater risk for decay, cracked teeth, or even damage to existing dental fillings, crowns, or bridges.

At Yahara Dental, Dr. Thor Anderson will assess the problem and may recommend a custom mouthguard which is molded to your smile.  As you sleep, your teeth will be protected from the impact of grinding, and you will wake up feeling refreshed.

Taking Care of Your Oral Health During Pregnancy

6de02f99-7d02-4682-8fb8-7f4eb1a7c24bBeing pregnant comes with many responsibilities—and oral hygiene is no exception.

For most women, routine dental visits are safe during pregnancy, but let your dental office know what month you are in when making your appointment.

If you have a high-risk pregnancy or other medical condition, your dentist and physician may recommend postponing treatment.

Tell your dentist about any changes in medications, any special advice from your physician and changes in your mouth, such as swelling, redness and bleeding. The benefits of receiving dental care during pregnancy far outweigh potential risks.

When pregnant:

  • Brush thoroughly twice a day with fluoride toothpaste that has the American Dental Association’s Seal of Acceptance.
  • Floss between teeth daily.
  • Eat a balanced diet.
  • Visit your dentist regularly for a professional exam and cleaning.
  • To help control plaque, your dentist may recommend rinsing at night with an antimicrobial mouth rinse.
  • If you suffer from morning sickness or frequent vomiting, try rinsing out your mouth with a teaspoon of baking soda mixed with tap water. Avoid brushing teeth immediately after vomiting when stomach acids have come into contact with teeth and can erode tooth enamel.

Visit to learn more about oral health during pregnancy.

Source: WDA Patient Newsletter

What foods are good for my teeth?

Living in the dairy state, we are proud to recommend these teeth friendly foods:


A study published in the journal of the American Academy of General Dentistry reported that eating cheese raised the pH in the subjects’ mouths and lowered their risk of tooth decay. It’s thought that the chewing required to eat cheese increases saliva in the mouth. Cheese also contains calcium and protein, nutrients that strengthen tooth enamel.


Like cheese, yogurt is high in calcium and protein, which makes it a good pick for the strength and health of your teeth. The probiotics, or beneficial bacteria, found in yogurt also benefit your gums because the good bacteria crowd out bacteria that cause cavities. If you decide to add more yogurt to your diet, choose a plain variety with no added sugar.

Enjoy, and remember to brush your teeth. Call Yahara Dental in Stoughton with questions or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Thor Anderson.

Source: May/June 2013, Journal of the American Academy of General Dentistry

Yahara Dental Team visits Lambeau Field

Stoughton Dentists visit Lambeau

Our staff had the unique experience of attending the Creating Exceptional Patient Experience Seminar presented by The Ritz- Carlton Leadership Center held at Lambeau Field in Green Bay. While Dr. Thor and Paula attended a half-day leadership session on day one the rest of the team was able to go on a Lambeau Field tour.

A great time was had by all and we are excited to start practicing what we learned.