Dental Tips Blog

Sep
13

Do You Need Oral Surgery Before Getting Braces?

Posted in Braces

For some people, getting traditional braces isn’t as simple as they’d like it to be. You too may be one of the unlucky few who needs oral surgery before straightening your teeth.

Why might surgery be necessary?

To Expose “Canine” Teeth

Your canines (eye teeth) are very important. They are cornerstones for shaping your smile and the alignment of your other teeth. If you have a canine or two that isn’t in proper position, then it may be impossible to place braces. Oral surgery exposes unerupted teeth that are still trapped under the gums so that the orthodontist can attach braces to them.

Remove Extra Teeth

Did you know that it’s possible to be born with a mouth that’s too small for your teeth? Or to have extra teeth you don’t need? If that’s the case for you, then you might need to have one set (usually premolars/bicuspids) extracted. Oral surgery can also help you get rid of stubborn baby teeth. Surgical tooth extractions helps free up more space in your mouth.

Prevent Complications During Treatment

Do you have disease-prone wisdom teeth or a severely fractured tooth? They may need to come out before you can get braces. It can be very difficult, if not impossible, to treat such teeth after you have appliances put in place.

Oral surgery may be necessary to restore your mouth to health before embarking on orthodontic treatment.

Rejuvenate Bone or Gum Levels

Your orthodontist may refer you to an oral surgeon or gum specialist to shore up weak areas in your mouth before the rigors of wearing braces.

Ask you orthodontist for more tips on how you can prepare for a successful course of orthodontic treatment.

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

Jun
22

How to Know Whether or Not You Need Braces

Posted in Orthodontics

Find out for yourself whether or not you need orthodontics by looking for the following signs in your smile:

Crowding

Crowding happens when there isn’t enough space in your mouth for all of your teeth, causing them to come in twisted and overlapped. Crowding is a problem because these teeth are hard to keep free of the plaque and tartar, which lead to gum disease and tooth decay.

Overbite

In an overbite, the upper front teeth jet out past the bottom front ones. This makes those upper teeth vulnerable to injury. Any restorations in those areas are also prone to damage or wear.

Crossbite

When an upper tooth closes behind a lower tooth, that’s called a crossbite. It’s abnormal because the outer edge of any upper tooth is supposed to close over the front of any lower tooth. When it’s the other way around, teeth are susceptible to premature wear and gum recession.

Underbite

An underbite is when the upper front teeth specifically close down behind the lower front teeth. This leads to difficulties biting into food and can adversely affect appearance.

Open Bite

If the upper and lower teeth don’t fully close together when you bite down, then it’s considered to be an open bite. It can make it hard to chew food and can cause speech problems.

Here are some other signs you might need orthodontics:

  • The lower teeth contact the roof of your mouth
  • Any baby teeth fell out too early or too late in life
  • You’re constantly biting your cheek
  • Constantly breathe through your mouth
  • Suffering from chronic jaw pain.

Plan a consultation with a dentist or orthodontist to find out whether or not orthodontics are right for you.

Posted on behalf of:
West Hill Family Dental
132 New Britain Avenue
Rocky Hill, CT 06067
(860) 563-3303

Jun
19

6 Tips for Adjusting to Life with Braces

Posted in Braces

Getting used to your new braces can take a little time. These six tips can make the adjustment a bit easier.

  1. Use Orthodontic Wax

Molding orthodontic wax around your brackets and wires might feel a little odd at first, but it’s worth the effort to protect your mouth.

  1. Stock Up on Topical Numbing and Soothing Medications

A little numbing gel like Orajel or other soothing medication will get you some relief when your braces do tend to rub at your cheeks.

  1. Invest in a Powered Toothbrush and Water Flosser

Keeping your teeth clean becomes especially important when you have braces. To make your oral hygiene routine as easy as possible (while doing a thorough job,) buy an electric toothbrush and water flosser. These tools make it easy to quickly clean around the fixed wires.

  1. Stay Away from Crunchy Foods

You may want to empty your pantry of hard and sticky foods before you even get braces put on. Prepare plenty of soft food items beforehand. These can include: eggs, mashed potatoes, yogurt, smoothies, and soups.

  1. Use Fluoride

Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel and prevents decay. It will help you avoid needing any fillings during the months of your orthodontic treatment and can also prevent white spots after the braces come off.

  1. Sip Sweets with a Straw

If you’re going to have a sweet drink like soda or juice, it’s best to enjoy it with a straw. This reduces the contact your teeth have with harmful sugars and acids. Pick up a reusable steel or glass straw to take with you on-the-go.

Ask your orthodontist about more tips for an easy life with braces.

Posted on behalf of:
Precision Digital Dentistry
674 US-202/206
Suite 7
Bridgewater, NJ 08807
(908) 955-6999

Jun
18

6 Common Oral Health Problems in Children

Posted in Braces

As a parent, you want to stay alert to all possible risks to your child’s health. Dental health problems are no exception.

Here are the top six health issues that commonly ruin kids’ smiles.

Cavities

Tooth decay is a huge problem for kids of all ages. Cavities are an ever-present danger as soon as those first baby teeth show up. You can prevent childhood tooth decay by using fluoride toothpaste to clean your child’s teeth.

Gingivitis

Gingivitis is a common gum inflammation problem and it tends to strike hard around the preteen years. If your child isn’t good about brushing and flushing, plaque bacteria can trigger an infection that causes bad breath and gum tenderness.

Malocclusion

Poorly-aligned teeth are another common childhood issue. Your dentist will closely monitor your child’s smile for several years to determine the need for braces.

Nail-Biting

Nail-biting isn’t just an unhygienic habit; it can result in chipped or worn tooth enamel, as well. It’s best if you can discourage this habit as soon as possible.

Thumb-Sucking

It’s cute and natural for babies to suck their thumbs, but if this habit continues for too long, it can force teeth to move into unnatural positions. Aggressive thumb-sucking can also lead to jaw trouble.

Mouth Breathing

If your child has sinus problems or jaw issues that cause them to breathe through their mouth, then this can lead to some serious problems. Mouth breathing causes bad breath, dries out oral tissues, and increases the risk for decay.

Is your child suffering from any of these common dental issues? Schedule a checkup with a local pediatric dentist to learn more about your child’s oral health.

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

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

Jan
6

How Are Braces Put On?

Posted in Braces

Before you get braces, you’ll have an appointment or two with your orthodontist to figure out just what you need.  Once you get the treatment planning out of the way, your next visit will be when everything is officially ‘wired’ into place!

Here’s what you can expect.

The orthodontist will make sure your teeth are completely clean. After drying your enamel, your orthodontist cements the brackets with a firm, but perfectly safe orthodontic glue.

With the brackets bonded in place, the arch wire can be set over them. This wire is a single metal line that directs the teeth into alignment with one another.

The next step is to keep the wire in place. Your orthodontist will slip very small and durable rubber bands around the brackets. These bands are so strong that special tools are needed to stretch them out and secure them in place. They’re available in a variety of colors for you to choose from.

How long is an appointment to get your braces put on? It’s a good idea to plan for around two hours, although it usually takes less time. Bring along some music or a movie on a portable device that you can listen to and settle in for a full afternoon!

Getting Used to Braces

Getting your braces put on shouldn’t hurt, but for the first couple of days, your teeth will probably feel tight as you get used to the sensation of having pressure placed on them. Within a month, you should get used to the presence of your braces, and in less than six months you could forget that you’re even wearing them.

Talk with your dentist or orthodontist for tips on how to make your braces as comfortable as possible.

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

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