Protect Athletes Pearly Whites From Long-term Damage


Protect Athletes Pearly Whites From Long-term Damage

By Cynthia Wright

While growing up, almost 50 percent of kids will have some type of injury to a tooth, often after a fall, sports injury, or a fight. In most cases, teeth injuries are not life threatening, but occasionally, a child may develop serious complications. Injuries can also have long-lasting effects on appearance and self confidence.

When opening her second dental office in Sandfly, Dr. Angela Canfield decided to develop and implement the Canfield Mouth Shield Program, as a way to help the youth in Savannah maintain a healthy smile. Last year was the first year running the program, and Benedictine Military School Cadets received a donation of over $9,000 worth of custom fit mouth gear for their entire team.

Trained to provide dental implants, one-day crowns, bridges, dental surgery, and porcelain veneers, Dr. Canfield began her career with an undergraduate degree in Biology with an emphasis in nutrition and gerontology from West Virginia University. From there, she graduated from West Virginia University School of Dentistry in 2005 with a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree.

“After attending West Virginia School of Dentistry, I completed advanced courses in restorative and cosmetic dentistry as well as orthodontics and periodontics,” said Dr. Canfield.
 Now, she is a licensed member of the Georgia Board of Dentistry and the National Board of Dentistry.

“My husband and I wanted to live near the beach,” she says. “In an area with warmer weather. We loved the history and vibe in Savannah, and here we are.” And here she has grown her Dentistry business.

Dr. Canfield owns and practices at two dental offices: Premier Dental Designs located in Rincon, GA at 5871 HWY 21 South, and Sandfly Family Dental located in the Norwood Market in Savannah, GA. Working with all members of the family, including young children, 
Dr. Canfield said, “We integrate the latest dental technology, including E4D technology, low-radiation digital X-rays, intra-oral cameras and high-powered telescopic loupes with a friendly and personal approach.”

Dr. Canfield said, “I decided to start the Canfield Mouth Shield program last year after opening my second dental location as a way to give by to the community. My husband and I love sports, and mouth guards are a very important protective piece for a young athlete to wear.”

Custom-made intact mouth guards provide stability to the players’ jaws and cushion blows that can cause severe dental injuries, like broken teeth, fractured jaws, gum lacerations and injuries to their lips or tongue by their teeth. According to the American Dental Association, the most effective mouthguard should be comfortable, resistant to tearing, and resilient. A mouthguard should fit properly, be durable, easily cleaned, and not restrict speech or breathing.

“Damaging jaw and tooth impact can be caused by anything from direct contact to a misplaced step while running,” said Dr. Canfield. “Research shows that wearing custom-fit mouth guards reduces the risk of severe injuries.”

Types of Dental injuries to the teeth can be grouped in three different categories with care specific to each type: Fracture, Avulsion and Luxation. A fracture can be classified as a root fracture, broken tooth or chipped tooth. If a player fractures a tooth, Dr. Canfield recommends stabilizes the portion of tooth still in mouth by gently biting on towel to control bleeding. The player should then be immediately taken to a dentist, with tooth fragments transported in a cup of milk, saline soaked gauze, or under the athlete’s tongue.

Avulsion is when the entire tooth, including root, is knocked out of the player’s mouth. When this happens, only do not handle tooth by the root and do not brush, scrub, or sterilize tooth. If tooth is dirty, gently rinse with water. Place the tooth back in socket and have the athlete gently bite down on towel. If you can’t reimplant tooth, transport it in the same solutions as you would for a fracture.

Luxation occurs when the tooth is in socket, but in a wrong position. An extruded tooth appears longer than surrounding teeth because it is pulled up; a lateral displacement is when a tooth is pushed back or pulled forward.

It is important to remember that damaged teeth do not grow back. Athletes undergoing orthodontic treatment present a particular problem as they are potentially at greater risk of injury because of increased tooth mobility and the presence of orthodontic appliances.

Dental injuries can be easily prevented, and it has been suggested that a properly fitted custom mouthguard may reduce the rate of concussion as well as dental injuries. The American Dental Association (ADA) estimates that the use of mouth guards prevents approximately 200,000 injuries per year in high school and college football teams alone. But mouth guards are important for all types of sports.

Some experts recommend that mouthguards be worn by athletes in competitive and recreational sports in which impact, contact and collision are likely to occur. The American Dental Association recommends wearing custom mouthguards for the following sports: acrobats, basketball, boxing, field hockey, football, gymnastics, handball, ice hockey, lacrosse, martial arts, racquetball, roller hockey, rugby, shot putting, skateboarding, skiing, skydiving, soccer, squash, surfing, volleyball, water polo, weightlifting, and wrestling. Other experts include baseball and softball infielders on that list. They further recommend the mouthguard to be worn during all practices and competition.

Last year, Dr. Canfield donated maroon and white mouth guards to the Benedictine Military School football team, a donation totaling over $9,000 worth of protection equipment. This year, the advisory board chose Robert W. Groves High School and Hancock Day School to be the recipients for the 2015 Canfield Mouth Shield Program. These schools were selected out of the applications received from all over Savannah.

The mouth guards for Groves have a one year warranty. The warranty covers the dental expenses incurred by players if they are injured while wearing the mouth guards. The warranty also pays $1,093.75 per injured or replaced tooth and up to a maximum total liability of $35,000 per incident.

Every year, Dr. Canfield will be selecting an impact sports team to donate mouth guards as part of The Canfield Mouth-Shield Program. Applications for the 2016 Canfield Mouth-Shield Team should be submitted before June 1, 2016 to be considered by the advisory board. For more information or to apply, visit or call 912.826.4037.


Moon-River Lullaby


As I went down to the River to pray, singing about the good-ole way, and who shall wear that thorny crown; good Lord show us the way.

Small dirt path under bare naked toes. Softly singing under the bright moonlight that guides my way.

My lullaby dances through the leaves and a symphony comes to life. Notes caress and distort the woods around me as I walk down to the River to pray.

Eyes open wide though darkness can’t touch me; I’m under the moon. The goddess that brings light to the night. My namesake. Moon protects me, bathes me in brilliance and shows me the way.

And I’m down at the River to pray. Suddenly, I can’t find words to say. And the moon smiles down as if reading my mind, and I know in that instance it will be okay. I’m alive and I’m free and my light shines on. From the depth of my soul, from the pupils of my eyes, comes a golden ray. Invisible to most, but the others awakened: a buoy, a beacon, a lighthouse guiding their way down to the River to pray.

Midnight Syndicate – Secret Chamber:

Midnight Syndicate – Secret Chamber:

L.E.A.P. Certification


Hello readers! I just wanted to clue you into a new certification I am working on attaining before I graduate in May.

L.E.A.P. is a new certification program sponsored by the Georgia Southern University Public Relations Advisory Board available for Public Relations Majors at Georgia Southern.  Focusing on four key components, the acronym L.E.A.P. stands for LeadershipExperience in Communication, Academics, and Professionalism. Students can achieve certification through earning points in each of these four areas.

Using my professional WordPress site, I will create an online portfolio to track my L.E.A.P. progress. In the following posts, I will explain what requirements I have completed and how many points I have earned for it.


Georgia Southern University

Georgia Southern University

Featuring Feedback


It is always important to pass along other ideas and opinions from my peers. Check out these interesting blog posts written by fellow Georgia Southern PR professionals:


My Comment: This is an awesome tradition. I really want to make my own poem with all my thankful thoughts to read at my thanksgiving dinner now. Your words were so personal to your life, but so sincere anyone can relate. How cleaver. I am very impressed, and thankful that I read this post! 😉


My Comment: Girl, I hear you on the “thankful for almost being done with school”.  It has been a long journey, but we are almost to graduation now.  Have a happy Thanksgiving as well.  I hope you and your family have many blessings this year.

Photo provided by:

Photo provided by:

Thank You, and You, and You, and You…

Photo provided by:

Photo provided by:

Thanksgiving is next Thursday, but before the turkey can go on the table, it is tradition to take a moment and thank The Lord for the special people and opportunities in our lives.  Many people make elegant blessings to speak over their meal; however, I wanted to take my thankfulness to the next level.  Beginning Nov. 1, I used my Facebook profile as a billboard to express what I was thankful for each day.  I was not extremely dedicated to post something each and every day, but the practice did get me thinking.  I was constantly telling myself, “well, I am thankful for ____ today” or “wow, what a great opportunity, I wish I could do _____ more often” or even, “____ is so inspiring, I am lucky to know them and be a part of their lives”.  Everyday, I became aware of the people, the opportunities, the blessings that surround my life.  The more I became aware, the more I realized I had to be thankful for.

Here are some of the posts I wrote on my Facebook:

Nov. 1st: I’m thankful for friends who celebrate holidays for the entire weekend. — with Holly Muhlhan and 2 others.

Nov. 2nd: I’m thankful for my Dad, who taught me to love the game of football, win or lose.

Nov. 3rd: I’m thankful for my fluffy bed and all of my pillows; sometimes it’s just nice to take a “mental health day”.

Nov. 4th: I’m thankful for my roommate Kara who enjoys decadent cupcakes just as much as I do.

Nov. 6th: I’m thankful for my persistent pup who wakes me up just in time to get ready for class!

Nov. 7th: I’m thankful for having the opportunity to go to Georgia Southern University where everyone comes together for homecoming. #GATA

Nov. 11: I’m thankful for the brave men and women who have defended my freedom. 🇺🇸Happy Veteran’s Day. 🗽

Nov. 21: I’m thankful that my Thanksgiving break starts TODAY. After a completed 115 pg campaign and several 20 pg papers, this week has been… challenging. Savannah has been calling my name for months and I finally get to go home.

Photo provided by:

Photo provided by:

I was surprised by the response I received on these posts.  The majority of them got several “likes” and comments.  Something that started out as personal practice, turned into something that my friends and family became involved with.  Although I still have a couple of days left, the most important thing I’ve learned from this experience is to be thankful every single day for the amazing people who surround my life with laughter and love.  It is these people whom I owe every blessing to, because without them, my daily journey would be but a shell of an existence.  The Lord has truly given me an extraordinary life.

Photo provided by:

Photo provided by:

PRSSA’s First Spotlight Member


I am so honored to be recognized by Georgia Southern’s Public Relations Student Society of America. Since I have become a member of this group, I have been able to get hands on experience in writing, and have connected with so many talented professionals in the communications field. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the year will bring. Thank you for this opportunity.


PRSSA’s First Spotlight Member

Hello all,

I would like to inform you that our classmate, Cynthia Wright has been chosen as PRSSA’s first Spotlight Member of the semester. Below I have attached the blog in which you may read a brief background on Cynthia; as well as the original text I composed on the blog. If you pass by her on campus, please feel free to congratulate her on her accomplishment! 


Georgia Southern University’s chapter of PRSSA is pleased to announce the first Spotlight Member, Cynthia Wright! Cynthia is a senior Public Relations major with a focus in Reputation Management and plans to graduate in May of 2014. She can be described as outgoing, welcoming to others and very informative over an array of topics. In terms of inspiration, Cynthia describes the character from Hart of Dixie, Zoe Hart, as fearless in her profession and gives any situation her…

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Featuring Feedback Week 9


It is always important to pass along other ideas and opinions from my peers.  Check out these interesting blog posts written by fellow Georgia Southern PR professionals:

My Comment: “I am also a big fan of the chair ride (maybe it’s called the swing ride? I’m not sure either!). My personal favorite is the Ferris Wheel. I love being able to see out across the horizon. At sunset is the perfect time to catch just the right light. It really is breathtaking.”

My Comment: “Funnel cakes are delicious. I totally understand what you mean about now, as an adult, they are one of the major attractions of the fair. I’m not a fan of twirling and speeding rides, especially with crazy ‘carnies’ controlling my fate. So when I go to the fair, I stick with the Ferris Wheel and Swing rides too. I might feel a little adventurous and try the Pharaoh ride. The hall of mirrors and fun houses are more my style though.”

Play Time


Anyone finishing up senior classes can relate to this. Hopefully I will be able to PLAY after my busy work is done. I’m just waiting to get to the fun stuff. Thanks for sharing girls! Great advice.