Dental Tips Blog

Apr
24

Do Braces Have Any Unwanted Side-Effects?

Posted in Orthodontics

Getting braces will give you a nicer smile, but are there any side-effects you should be wary of?

Unfortunately, there are a couple of negative risks you should be prepared to face.

Sore Teeth and Jaws

Braces put pressure on your teeth. This is a pressure controlled by a very experienced professional so there’s no need to worry, but it is an undeniably uncomfortable process.

Your tooth roots and the bone around your teeth may be especially sore after having your braces tightened. You may even feel some discomfort in your jaw.

Cuts on Your Cheeks and Lips

The brackets and wire ends can be painfully sharp. If you don’t do something to protect your mouth, these metal extensions can irritate the soft tissue inside your cheeks and lips.

How to Eliminate the Side-Effects of Braces

You may not be able to completely avoid the discomfort that comes with the orthodontic territory. Still, you don’t have to resign yourself to suffering.

Head off the side-effects before they strike by taking a small dose of over-the-counter pain reliever right before an orthodontic adjustment.

You can also put ice on sore gums to bring down swelling. Cushion sharp brackets and wires with orthodontic wax. An anesthetic gel can soothe any irritating sores you already have.

Braces Are Worth the Time!

Braces can be uncomfortable in the short term. But your orthodontist will help you find relief. Your treatment will end one day, and you’ll be glad you endured when you see the great results (not to mention the newfound self confidence.)

Talk with your dentist or orthodontist to learn more about minimizing the side-effects of braces.

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

Apr
9

Why Are My Teeth Suddenly Getting Crooked?

Posted in Orthodontics

Crooked teeth don’t just look bad – they pose a major risk to your oral health and can even be a sign that something has already happened.

What Causes Crooked Teeth?

Teeth tend to shift easily during childhood. At this time, the jawbone is still rapidly developing. A tooth can move when it’s pressed on by actions such as thumb sucking.

Crooked teeth can also be genetic. If a child’s parent needed braces, chances are good the child will eventually need dental braces as well. It’s also possible that inheriting one parent’s small jaw and the other parent’s larger teeth can lead to tooth alignment issues.

But what if your teeth were fine throughout childhood? What does it mean if they’re just now getting crooked?

Unfortunately, that’s probably a sign of trouble.

Impacted Wisdom Teeth

If you have wisdom teeth coming in below the gum line, they can push on the teeth in front of them. This causes crowding, especially among the front teeth.

Still have your wisdom teeth or aren’t sure if you do?

See a dentist to get some x-rays to find out.

Missing Teeth

Your teeth keep moving forward. When there’s a gap in the alignment, the teeth behind the space tend to shift and tip over to fill it in. That’s one of the reasons why dentists recommend replacing missing teeth as soon as possible.

Gum Disease

Gum disease attacks the ligaments and bone that hold teeth in place. It can cause teeth to loosen. As they do, they may shift and splay out of alignment.

See your dentist for a checkup and to find out what could be causing your teeth to move out of their natural alignment.

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

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

Feb
17

4 Health Benefits of Straight Teeth

Posted in Orthodontics

A well-aligned smile certainly looks nice. But there are other important benefits to orthodontic treatment.

  1. Fresh Breath

Bad breath is most often caused by food debris and bacteria. Germs and food can get stuck between twisted or overlapping teeth and stay there for days. If you don’t clean your teeth thoroughly, that buildup will cause your breath to stink. Straighten out your teeth, however, and you’ll have fresher healthier breath. Read the rest of this entry »

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

Oct
21

How Braces Can Improve Your Kid’s Oral Health

Posted in Braces

Straight teeth don’t just make your child’s smile look nicer, but they are also important to having a healthy mouth.

Here are just a few ways braces can improve your child’s oral health.

Fresher Breath

Crooked teeth trap bacteria and leftover food resulting in some pretty smelly breath. When teeth are straightened out, they’re easier to keep clean and free from debris that causes malodor.

Reduced Risk of Tooth Decay

Cavity-causing germs are hard to remove from teeth that are tightly overlapping. Sandwiched between teeth, these decay-triggers start cavities that may grow unnoticed for months.

Healthier Gums

Braces open up healthy spaces between teeth. When there’s a normal alignment of the teeth, it’s easier for brushing and flossing to do their job of preventing gingivitis and gum disease.

Brighter Smile

Properly spaced out teeth are less prone to developing stain. Your child will thank you for braces years down the road when they have a sparkling white smile!

Comfortable Bite

Your child may still need braces even though it doesn’t look like there are any crooked teeth. If his or her bite is off, this can eventually cause chewing and speech issues and even TMJ pain. Sometimes, braces are necessary to correct jaw positioning for a functionally aligned bite.

Wearing braces can make oral hygiene difficult for kids in the meantime. But with patience and diligent care, orthodontic treatment will result in a healthier smile for your son or daughter.

Your child may not appreciate the need for wearing braces, at this time. But orthodontic treatment now while they’re young could be the best thing you do for their adult oral health.

Ask your child’s dentist about scheduling an orthodontic evaluation.

Posted on behalf of:
Montevallo Family Dentistry
711 Wadsworth St
Montevallo, AL 35115
(205) 665-2224

Jul
15

Will Braces Change the Shape of Your Face?

Posted in Braces

One common belief is that braces may negatively change the shape of your face.

Is there any truth to that idea?

How Braces Improve Facial Structure

Getting braces isn’t the same as facial surgery.

Some people find that something they don’t like about their face is linked to the shape of their smile. Braces can correct some facial profiles by:

  • Bringing in an under-jetting jaw to elongate the face
  • Relax an upper lip and fill in sunken cheeks caused by an overbite
  • Helping lips close smoothly over front teeth

Keep in mind that these changes are only noticeable in cases of extremely crooked teeth.

What About Unwanted Changes?

People have complained about a changed face in the past due to having bicuspid teeth removed.

You’ll be happy to hear that this is not a common aspect of getting braces. Teeth only need to be pulled if the jaw is literally too small to comfortably contain all teeth that come in.

Ultimately, if there are any changes to your face after braces, they are likely to be subtle improvements. A very gentle rebalancing, if you will, that naturally follows when teeth are tucked into healthy alignment.

So why bother straightening teeth, at all?

Straight teeth are about far more than cosmetics. Crooked teeth can lead to other oral health issues including:

  • Increased risk for decay
  • Increased likelihood of gum disease
  • TMJ stress
  • Gum recession

Many people opt for orthodontic treatment if it means a healthier smile.

If you aren’t sure whether orthodontic treatment is right for you, consult a couple orthodontists in your area to get different opinions. Initial consultations are usually complimentary. Ask your local dentist for recommendations.

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

May
6

Why Straightening Your Teeth Is Good for Your Oral Health

Posted in Orthodontics

Has your dentist been hinting that you or your child should get braces?

It’s not a dentist thing! Providers don’t recommend braces because they are obsessive about perfect teeth. There is some solid logic behind that suggestion.

Braces Free Up Space

Straightening teeth can reduce the risk for developing gum disease and tooth decay. That’s because crowded teeth trap dental plaque that contains harmful bacteria. Open up those overlapping teeth and you’ll have an easier time flossing and brushing. Food debris will also be less likely to get stuck in certain areas.

Braces Can Get You a More Even Bite

Crooked teeth can cause your jaw to bite down sooner on one side than the other. This, in turn, leads to problems like:

  • TMJ pain
  • Premature enamel wear
  • Gum recession

Orthodontic treatment is especially effective in growing kids. Catching tooth alignment issues early on will help them avoid serious bite problems down the road.

You’ll Experience a Confidence Boost

What’s not to love about a straight, white smile? It truly is the essence of the American ideal for health and beauty. Straightening your teeth will help you keep your mouth healthier, breath fresher, and smile brighter.

Once the braces come off, you’ll find a hundred more reasons to smile!

Alternatives to Braces

Speaking of braces, you might not be thrilled to consider the prospect of wearing a mouthful of metal.

How do you get maximum orthodontic benefit with minimum metal-mouth?

You’ll be glad to hear that there are a variety of orthodontic options available to adults. Talk with your dentist or a local orthodontist to find out which methods are right for you.

Posted on behalf of:
East Cobb Orthodontics
2810 Lassiter Rd
Marietta, GA 30062
(770) 993-711

Feb
16

Should You Get a Filling Before or After Getting Braces?

Posted in Orthodontics

Has it been years since you had a dental checkup? That first trip to the dental office can leave you with a to-do list of procedures. If you end up want both braces and needing a filling or two, which should come first?

It’s preferable (and usually more urgent) to treat decay before straightening teeth for a few reasons:

  • It’s easier to treat teeth without appliances in the way
  • Decay then won’t have the chance to spread to other teeth
  • Orthodontics can often be delayed, but treating tooth decay can’t

Braces are worn for around a year and a half. For some patients, even longer. There’s a good chance that you could develop a cavity or two during that time. 

What Then?

If necessary, most basic dental fillings can be done during orthodontic treatment. Although it’s not ideal, your orthodontist may be able to remove the wire and a bracket or two to let your dentist access teeth needing treatment.

Before Getting Braces

Get a complete professional tooth cleaning complete with x-rays and a gum exam. This will alert you to any underlying issues that could suddenly pop up while wearing braces. Ask your dentist about dental sealants, too. These can prevent cavities from forming on chewing surfaces.

While Wearing Braces

Your teeth will be more vulnerable to decay while in braces, since all of those extra surfaces can harbor bacteria. Reduce your risk of cavities by brushing several times a day. Use a flossing method that’s so easy for you that you’re willing to do it every day. Lastly, boost your fluoride use to strengthen all enamel surfaces.

To get an idea of your individual dental needs, schedule a checkup with your local dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Milton Dental Specialists
13075 Hwy 9, Suite 110
Milton, GA 30004
(770) 521-2100

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