Dental Tips Blog

May
19

Can You Straighten Teeth Without Braces?

Posted in Braces

Braces can be uncomfortable, expensive, and even embarrassing for some people. Personally, you’ll do anything to avoid them!  If you’re tired of having crooked teeth, then you may want a way to fix them without getting braces.

Braces May be a Necessary

If you have a severe case of crooked teeth, then you most likely will need some form of orthodontic treatment.

Crooked teeth can put stress on your gums and lead to rapid tissue recession. They also tend to trap bacteria that cause cavities and periodontal disease. Straightening teeth will harmonize your bite and improve the health of your mouth.

Sometimes, there’s no other option save for physically encouraging your teeth to move.

Don’t DIY!

You’ve likely encountered several suggestions for straightening your teeth on your own. These include encouragement to press on your teeth with your tongue or to wrap rubber bands around your teeth before going to bed.

Such techniques can be ineffective at best, and downright dangerous at the worst. If you need to physically move your teeth, then do so with the guidance of an expert such as an orthodontist.

Trying to fix your teeth at home can cause permanent damage you’ll sorely regret.

Safe Alternatives to Braces

Depending on your needs, you may still be able to improve your smile without getting braces. Clear plastic aligners are a good alternative treatment.

If you just want to make minor changes for cosmetic purposes, then you can avoid moving your teeth, altogether. Dental bonding, veneers, or crowns can change the shape of a tooth to make it look like it’s in proper alignment.

There are many different types of braces.  Which teeth-straightening method is right for you? Find out by visiting your local dentist or orthodontist.

Posted on behalf of:
Georgia Orthodontics & Children’s Dentistry
13075 Hwy 9, Suite 110
Milton, GA 30004
(770) 521-2100

May
16

4 Health-Related Reasons to Get Braces

Posted in Braces

Getting braces will certainly give you a better-looking smile. But it’s not all about looks, alone. You might be surprised to learn that orthodontic treatment can also have a positive impact on your oral health in four main aspects…

Your Enamel Will Last Longer

When top and bottom teeth don’t line up correctly, they can wear against each other in unnatural patterns that cause premature enamel loss.

Braces put your teeth back in line so that you can chew normally with no risk of losing enamel.

You’ll Get Fewer Cavities

Twisted and overlapping teeth are hard to get clean. As a result, these crooked teeth are very prone to decay. Straighten them out with braces, however, and you’ll find it much easier to brush and floss.

Your Gums Will Be Healthier

Braces keep teeth in their natural and healthiest positions. This makes the gums around them healthy, too.

Your gums can get inflamed and infected from plaque left on your teeth. It’s easier to remove this plaque from teeth that are aligned properly, so braces play an important role in improving gum health.

Crooked teeth can also put stress on the gums and cause recession. Braces can prevent this problem as well by pulling teeth upright.

You Can Avoid TMJ Trouble

Did you know that a bad bite can put stress on your jaw? The TMJ is a complex joint and sensitive to the slightest imbalance. Orthodontic treatment can correct your bite and take a load off your TMJ disorder.

What can braces or some other orthodontic procedure do for your smile? Find out more about the benefits by contacting a dentist or orthodontist in your area to schedule a consultation.

Posted on behalf of:
East Cobb Orthodontics
2810 Lassiter Rd
Marietta, GA 30062
(770) 993-7118

May
15

Why Do Misaligned Teeth Wear Down?

Posted in Braces

If teeth are the most durable substance in the entire body — even stronger than bone — then how is it that some of them can wear down in what seems like only a few years?

“Occlusion” and Why it Matters

The way teeth occlude is how they bite against one another. When you bite down, each tooth fits like a puzzle piece against the ones on the opposite arch. Fortunately, when they occlude properly, the teeth can function for years.

But when the teeth bite together improperly (that is, have a “mal-occlusion”) it makes pressure points hit heavier on certain areas.

Over time, that abnormal pressure makes tooth enamel wear itself down. Yes, it’s the hardest structure in your body, but with excess pressure from other enamel forces come bearing down, it can cause damage instead of being a good thing. 

How to Stop Tooth Wear

It’s possible to prevent flat, worn, chipped teeth before they start (or get worse.) Talking to an orthodontist about correcting the alignment of your teeth is one of the best and most holistic ways to extend the lifetime of your smile.

With orthodontic appliances such as braces or removable aligners, the teeth can gradually be nudged in the right position to help them bite together and function properly. 

It’s Not Just Your Teeth

Even your existing dental work like crowns or fillings can wear down and break if the opposing teeth are grinding against them with too much pressure. Correcting your bite extends the lifetime of the restorations that you’ve already invested time and money in.

Are you starting to notice flattened or jagged biting surfaces on your teeth? It’s time to schedule an orthodontic evaluation!

Posted on behalf of:
Broad Street Braces
2010 South Juniper Street
Philadelphia, PA 19148
213-234-3030

Apr
18

Is it Really Necessary to Have Straight Teeth?

Posted in Braces

Society seems to push the idea of having straight white teeth as the highest standard of beauty.

But in all honesty, few people are born with teeth that look that great.

Is there anything wrong with just being content with and proud of the smile you were born with?

Imperfect Teeth, Perfect Smile!

The most important thing is for your teeth to be healthy. Next most important is to have a smile you feel confident about. If you can check those two things off your list, then how your smile looks is not important.

Keep in mind, however, that there’s a reason straight teeth appeal: they are a sign of health. Tooth alignment issues can lead to some serious problems.

Health Dangers of Crooked Teeth

Gapped, twisted, and overlapping teeth can cause a whole host of dental health issues:

  • Gum recession
  • Increased risk for gum disease and tooth decay
  • Uneven and/or accelerated enamel wear
  • TMJ stress
  • Chewing or speaking difficulties

When a dentist suggests straightening your teeth, it’s more about your smile’s health than how it looks.

A Range of Smile Solutions

Treatment for crooked teeth depends on how complicated the case is.

If you hate the look of a small gap or slightly twisted tooth, then a fast cosmetic procedure may be sufficient. Invisalign trays or dental veneers are good for aesthetic teeth-straightening.

You can just cover up a complex case of crooked teeth, however. They need to be physically straightened to improve your oral health. A dentist or orthodontist will let you know which braces options are right for you.

Schedule a consultation to get more tips on getting a smile you’ll love.

Posted on behalf of:
Georgia Orthodontics & Children’s Dentistry
13075 Hwy 9, Suite 110
Milton, GA 30004
(770) 521-2100

Apr
14

Do You Wear Braces? Here’s Why You Haven’t Gotten Results Yet

Posted in Braces

It’s no secret; wearing braces can be extremely tedious.

Braces are often uncomfortable, inconvenient, and it can feel like you’ll be wearing them for the rest of your life.

Why haven’t your braces fixed your teeth yet? As it turns out, there are several factors that affect the speed of your orthodontic treatment.

Teeth Can Only Move So Fast!

How fast that is depends on your unique bone makeup.

Braces put pressure on teeth to move them through the bone. But the bone tissue has to break down and heal up around the teeth to accommodate their movement. There are unique processes that make this happen and there isn’t much you can do to make them go any faster.

Your Teeth Have Changed Already – You Just Didn’t Notice

Until the braces come off, it can be hard to spot any dramatic changes. But the changes appear as if they aren’t happening at all.

Try taking a close-up photo of your smile at the beginning of each month. Comparing the pictures will help you to notice that you are getting results and encourage you to hang in there for the rest of your treatment.

You Might Be Getting in the Way

Your orthodontist has given you a list of “rules” as far as what you can and cannot eat with braces, and what you should do to keep them clean.

If you aren’t mindful of your oral hygiene or eating habits, you can compromise both your teeth and braces. This only adds time to the overall length of your treatment.

Ask your dentist or orthodontist about what you can do to make sure your treatment doesn’t last any longer than it has to.

Posted on behalf of:
East Cobb Orthodontics
2810 Lassiter Rd
Marietta, GA 30062
(770) 993-7118

Mar
13

Is There an Age Limit for Getting Braces?

Posted in Braces

Teens are popular orthodontic patients. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t benefit from braces if your teen years are well behind you.

Why Teens Get Braces

The jaw bone in teens’ mouths is dynamic and heals quickly. This is important to the orthodontic process. Traditional braces put pressure on teeth to move them through bone tissue into new positions. The bone breaks down and reforms fast enough in young people’s mouths to allow teeth to successfully relocate within months.

Complicated orthodontic cases are also easier to correct in the developmental stages. Braces in the early years can prevent the need for surgery and lengthy treatment in adulthood.

Braces Work for Adults, Too!

While braces tend to have faster success in young mouths, that doesn’t mean they can’t benefit older patients just as much.

Braces work the same way in adults as they do for kids and teens. If you’ve got several decades of life behind you, then you might expect your treatment to take a bit longer than it does for your own kid.

The good news is that it’s almost never too late to get braces and experience the benefits!

Orthodontic Options for Adults

Older orthodontic patients usually want problem-focused treatment to cosmetically enhance their smiles.

Like other adult orthodontic patients, you may want a method that’s low-visibility, low-maintenance, and as fast as possible. Some suitable options include clear aligner trays, tooth-colored braces, and accelerated ortho.

If you have only slightly crooked teeth, then you might be able to make them look straighter without getting braces, at all. Dental veneers, for example, are a good orthodontic hack for adults.

Talk with a cosmetic dentist or orthodontist in your area to find out more.

Posted on behalf of:
Springfield Lorton Dental Group
5419-C Backlick Rd
Springfield, VA 22151
(703) 256-8554

Mar
9

Here’s Why You Should Get an Electric Toothbrush if You Have Braces

Posted in Braces

Do you or someone else in your family have braces? Orthodontists recommend that you add an electric toothbrush to your oral care routine. Here’s why.

It Does the Work for You

The best part about a powered toothbrush is that it basically does all the work for you. All you have to do is move it around your mouth and aim it at your teeth, no scrubbing involved. This is a major perk since you have to brush a lot as it is, when you have braces.

Powered toothbrushes can make tooth brushing time a lot more fun for unwilling teens with orthodontic appliances. They’ll probably enjoy the chore just a little bit more if they have a cool new toy to brush their teeth with.

Gentle on Your Gums

Because powered toothbrushes take care of the brushing action for you, you avoid the risk of scrubbing too hard. When you brush with a regular manual toothbrush, you might press too firmly. This can damage braces and irritate your already sensitive gums. Switch to a therapeutic electric brush, and your gums will thank you.

Gets You a Thorough Clean

The bristles on electric brushes vibrate at a supersonic rate. This helps them to completely blast away dental plaque even from hard to reach places. You may already know that brushing around brackets and wires is tough as it is. Using a powered brush will help you get your mouth as clean as possible with minimal work.

What kind of electric brush should you get? How do you maintain a powered toothbrush? Find out by visiting a dentist or orthodontist near you and asking about the benefits of a good electronic toothbrush.

Posted on behalf of:
Mundo Dentistry
3463 US-21 #101
Fort Mill, SC 29715
(704) 825-2018

Mar
3

Is Invisalign a Good Alternative to Braces?

Posted in Braces

You may be thinking about getting Invisalign instead of braces, because you don’t like the look of metal brackets and wires.

Is Invisalign a safe and effective alternative to classic braces, however?

The Differences Between Braces and Invisalign

Invisalign is an orthodontic system that uses clear removable plastic trays to straighten teeth instead of fixed metal wires.

Braces stay on your teeth for the duration of treatment. If you get Invisalign, however, you can remove the appliance anytime you need to for photos, meals, and oral hygiene.

Traditional braces typically need to be adjusted every few weeks. Invisalign also requires orthodontic checkups, but they tend to be faster and more comfortable.

Is Invisalign Better Than Braces?

Invisalign has some great benefits over traditional orthodontics. These include:

  • No-braces look while straightening your teeth
  • Eating all the foods you love
  • Easy brushing and flossing
  • No irritation or sores caused by metal appliances

Invisalign tends to cost about the same as or slightly more than traditional braces. Some people decide the extra expense is worth it to enjoy the benefits listed above.

When Braces Are Better Than Invisalign

For the most part, Invisalign can do the same thing braces do. It is a perfectly safe and effective option. But the Invisalign trays may not be as effective in complicated orthodontic cases. Also, wearing the trays requires a high level of responsibility.

If you can’t remember to wear your Invisalign as directed or have a complex case of crooked teeth, then traditional braces may be the better option overall.

To find out whether Invisalign, braces, or another orthodontic method is best for your smile, talk to an orthodontist in your area.

Posted on behalf of:
East Cobb Orthodontics
2810 Lassiter Rd
Marietta, GA 30062
(770) 993-7118

Feb
3

How Do Braces Straighten Teeth?

Posted in Braces

You might be wondering: what is the science behind a bunch of wires attached to teeth?

How Braces Work

The problem of crooked teeth runs deeper than what you see when you smile. Each crooked tooth has a long root attached to it that rests in bone tissue. You can’t fix a twisted tooth without addressing the root and how it attaches to the rest of your mouth.

Interestingly, tooth roots are stronger than bone. If you put enough pressure on a tooth, it can move through the bone.

Braces put just the right amount of tension on a tooth. The goal is to carefully move the root through the bone at a rate that the bone can heal behind the tooth as it passes. That’s why getting braces is often a lengthy and precise process.

Why Do Braces Hurt?

All that pressure on your teeth is quite intense. Your teeth are designed to move in response to the pressure, but it isn’t an everyday thing. An orthodontic adjustment may cause you some discomfort for a few days until your teeth adjust.

What About Aligners and Retainers?

There’s a wide variety of teeth-straightening methods including lingual bars to removable aligner trays such as the Invisalign system. Depending on the individual case, these methods may be used after treatment with or in place of traditional braces.

Whichever stage of orthodontic treatment you find yourself in, the idea is the same: increase or maintain pressure on the teeth to move or keep them in place.

All orthodontic methods depend on the same fundamental way that teeth move. Which technique is right for you depends on your unique needs. Visit a dentist or orthodontist in your area for a braces consultation.

Posted on behalf of:
Springfield Lorton Dental Group
5419-C Backlick Rd
Springfield, VA 22151
(703) 256-8554

Jan
28

4 Ways Invisalign Is Better Than Regular Braces

Posted in Braces

You may have heard of Invisalign as a barely-there method for straightening teeth. But how does it really compare with classic metal brackets and wires? Here are the four main advantages that make Invisalign a superior choice.

Invisalign Looks Better

Invisalign’s biggest appeal is the fact that it doesn’t look like you’re wearing braces. This spares you a year or two of trying to hide your teeth whenever you smile or laugh. It’s also a great way to gradually improve your oral health without anyone even noticing that you’re having orthodontic treatment.

Invisalign Makes Home Care a Breeze

The Invisalign system is a series of clear plastic trays that you can easily remove for cleaning. You can wash the trays in under a minute and then brush and floss your teeth as usual. This saves a lot of time compared with flossing around wires!

Invisalign Lets You Eat Anything You Want

Because the trays are removable, you don’t have to avoid the same foods you would if you were wearing regular braces. Metal wires can be damaged by chewy, hard, or crunchy foods, but those things are all safe to eat when you can just pop out the orthodontic trays.

Invisalign Can Fix Small Problems Fast

Would you like to just straighten a few front teeth? If you get metal braces, you might have to wear them on all of your teeth. But if you qualify for short-term Invisalign, you’ll see results quicker since it focuses on the problem areas first.

The Invisalign method does have its perks, but it doesn’t work for everyone. To find out which orthodontic option is right for you, schedule a consultation with a local orthodontist.

Posted on behalf of:
Broad Street Braces
2010 South Juniper Street
Philadelphia, PA 19148
213-234-3030

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