Women in Business

Forest Drive Dental Care and Columbia Children’s Dentistry

3731 Forest Drive

Columbia, SC 29204

Phone: 803.782.8786

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Joanna Silver Dover, DMD

Joanna Silver Dover, DMD is the owner of Forest Drive Dental Care and Columbia Children’s Dentistry, both located at 3731 Forest Drive. The practices have a strong two-pronged mission statement: to provide the least-invasive care in the most biologically-compatible way, and to be a testimony to God’s love for all people. Started in 2011 with just a single other employee, Joanna Dover is still the sole owner of the practices that now employ almost 30 women, along with one man. Dr. Dover states that the group practice dynamic allows her to spend the time researching products and methods that she feels keep with the mission statement, and having multiple providers and a larger facility provides the ability to implement these types of care, more than she could ever do alone. Many of the practices’ patients travel, including out-of-state, to receive care by Drs. Joanna Dover, Angela Schweiger, Ashley Price, Sarah Anne Knowlton, and James Nyland.

Columbia Children’s Dentistry sees patients as early as the first couple days of life through their teenage years, and Forest Drive Dental Care cares for adults of all ages. The practices encompass almost all facets of dentistry including fillings, extractions, onlays, crowns, veneers and Invisalign, with special emphasis on early childhood orthodontic expansion to aid in sleep and breathing, dental caries prevention, and biocompatibility of products.

Increasing research, especially over the past ten years, discusses how correct closed-mouth breathing and the tongue, by not only where it sits in the mouth but also how it functions, have strong implications starting from birth. The way we breathe and how we use the muscles of the face and oral cavity directly and/or indirectly affect breastfeeding, facial skeletal growth and development, chewing, swallowing, speech, occlusion, temporomandibular joint movement, oral hygiene, stability of orthodontic treatment, facial esthetics, sleep, and more. The scope of impact, and the incredible effectiveness of treatment make this truly an emerging and promising field for medicine and dentistry.

Oromyofunctional therapy uses breathing techniques and neuroplasticity to retrain the muscles of the mouth and oral cavity. It can be used on its own, or to enhance the care of multidisciplinary specialists such as lactation specialists, ENT’s, speech therapists, occupational and physical therapists, sleep medicine physicians and dentists, orthodontists, and chiropractors. Some examples that oromyofunctional therapy is used to help with are food chewing texture aversions, orthodontic stability, as part of the preventative plan for sleep disordered breathing, and as an enhancement to adjust increasing CPAP compliance and effectiveness.

Barriers to care have been long wait times, cost, and fragmented, inefficient processes. Dr. Dover has completed the coursework for her Certification in Oromyofunctional Therapy, and to train more people in her office, she has also partnered with Melissa Mugno who worked with UCLA’s Breathe Institute, and now helps create and implement sleep and breathing programs around the country. This upcoming year, Dr. Dover looks forward to providing treatment at her offices, and providing supportive care and organization to the providers in the community.

Not only is Joanna Dover dedicated to making sure that the dental and medical communities in Columbia have access to well-researched, emerging methods of treatment, she is also a dedicated member of the Columbia community where she lives with her husband, Michael, and three children, Ethan, Weston, and Layton Rose. Their goldendoodle, Etta James, is an active member of their dental offices as their emotional support animal and is available upon request. Dr. Dover is the current president of the South Carolina Academy of Dental Practice Administrators, Girl Scout Daisy Troop 29206 Co-Leader, and past president of the Greater Columbia Dental Association. Dr. Dover enjoys playing tennis as part of the BYG team, and attends Eastminster Presbyterian Church.