Posts for tag: orthodontics
Wearing braces takes time, but if all goes well the changes to your smile will be well worth it. In the meantime, though, you’ll have to contend with one particular difficulty—keeping your teeth clean of disease-causing, bacterial plaque.
Don’t worry, though—while keeping dental disease at bay with braces can be challenging, it is doable. Here are 4 tips for minimizing your chances of tooth decay or periodontal (gum) disease during orthodontic treatment.
Eat less sugar. Like any living organism, bacteria must eat—and they’re especially amenable to sugar. The more they have access to this favorite food source, the more they multiply—and the greater your risk of tooth decay or gum disease. Eating fewer sugary foods and snacks and more dental-friendly ones helps restrict bacteria populations in your mouth.
Brush thoroughly. Brushing with braces can be difficult, especially in areas blocked by orthodontic hardware. You need to be sure you brush all tooth and gum surfaces around your braces, including above and below the wire running through the brackets. A soft multi-tufted microline bristle brush is a good choice for getting into these hard to reach places. Brushing around braces takes more time, but it’s essential for effective plaque removal.
Use flossing tools. Flossing is important for removing plaque from between teeth—but, unfortunately, it might be even more difficult to perform with braces than brushing. If using string floss proves too daunting consider using a floss threader or a similar device that might be easier to maneuver. You can also use a water irrigator, a hand-held device that sprays water under pressure to loosen and flush away between-teeth plaque.
Keep up regular dental visits. While you’re seeing your orthodontist regularly for adjustments, you should also see your general dentist at least every six months or more. Besides dental cleaning, your dentist also monitors for signs of disease and can prescribe preventive measures like antibacterial mouth rinses. Of course, if you see abnormalities, like white spots on your teeth or red, puffy or bleeding gums, contact your dentist as soon as possible. The sooner a problem can be addressed the less impact it may have on your orthodontic treatment and overall oral health.
If you would like more information on caring for teeth and gums while wearing braces, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Caring for Teeth During Orthodontic Treatment.”
Correcting your smile with orthodontic treatment can renew your look and give you the smile you have always dreamed of. However, traditional orthodontic braces may hinder your look in the meantime. Luckily, Invisalign can give you the smile you desire without compromising your style. Find out more about Invisalign with Dr. Richard Hamaty in Yorba Linda, CA.
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a revolutionary way to straighten your smile without the hassle of metal brackets or wires which permanently attach to your teeth. In orthodontic treatment, slight pressure placed onto the teeth moves them into their new positions. Invisalign’s clear plastic aligner trays use the same principal as traditional braces to move the teeth, but do so in a new and improved way. Additionally, Invisalign is completely removable, giving you the freedom to eat the foods you love and care for your teeth exactly as you would pre-braces, without adding any extra steps to your dental hygiene routine.
How can Invisalign help me?
Traditional braces straighten misaligned teeth and treat various bite issues. Invisalign treats these same abnormalities, including:
- cross bite
- open bite
- overcrowded teeth
- under crowded teeth
Invisalign Treatment in Yorba Linda, CA
Your Invisalign journey begins with a consultation with your orthodontist. At this consultation, you will work together to gather your family and dental history, assess the severity of your orthodontic problems, and, ultimately, determine if Invisalign is the best treatment option for you. If it is your best treatment option, your dentist will take a 3D scan of your mouth. The scan imports into a computer program which turns it into a 3D model of the teeth, eliminating the need for a physical impression.
Invisalign’s dental laboratory uses the model to design and create a plan for your aligner trays. Before creating the actual trays, the laboratory will send you a video showing you exactly how your teeth will move throughout treatment. After you and your dentist approve the video, you will receive your aligner trays and wear one after another for about two weeks each until you complete the series.
For more information on Invisalign, please contact Dr. Richard Hamaty in Yorba Linda, CA. Call (714) 779-1313 to schedule your Invisalign consultation with Dr. Hamaty today!
Fans of the primetime TV show The Middle were delighted to see that high school senior Sue, played by Eden Sher, finally got her braces off at the start of Season 6. But since this popular sitcom wouldn’t be complete without some slapstick comedy, this happy event is not without its trials and tribulations: The episode ends with Sue’s whole family diving into a dumpster in search of the teen’s lost retainer. Sue finds it in the garbage and immediately pops it in her mouth. But wait — it doesn’t fit, it’s not even hers!
If you think this scenario is far-fetched, guess again. OK, maybe the part about Sue not washing the retainer upon reclaiming it was just a gag (literally and figuratively), but lost retainers are all too common. Unfortunately, they’re also expensive to replace — so they need to be handled with care. What’s the best way to do that? Retainers should be brushed daily with a soft toothbrush and liquid soap (dish soap works well), and then placed immediately back in your mouth or into the case that came with the retainer. When you are eating a meal at a restaurant, do not wrap your retainer in a napkin and leave it on the table — this is a great way to lose it! Instead, take the case with you, and keep the retainer in it while you’re eating. When you get home, brush your teeth and then put the retainer back in your mouth.
If you do lose your retainer though, let us know right away. Retention is the last step of your orthodontic treatment, and it’s extremely important. You’ve worked hard to get a beautiful smile, and no one wants to see that effort wasted. Yet if you neglect to wear your retainer as instructed, your teeth are likely to shift out of position. Why does this happen?
As you’ve seen firsthand, teeth aren’t rigidly fixed in the jaw — they can be moved in response to light and continuous force. That’s what orthodontic appliances do: apply the right amount of force in a carefully controlled manner. But there are other forces at work on your teeth that can move them in less predictable ways. For example, normal biting and chewing can, over time, cause your teeth to shift position. To get teeth to stay where they’ve been moved orthodontically, new bone needs to form around them and anchor them where they are. That will happen over time, but only if they are held in place with a retainer. That’s why it is so important to wear yours as directed — and notify us immediately if it gets lost.
And if ever you do have to dig your retainer out of a dumpster… be sure to wash it before putting in in your mouth!
If you would like more information on retainers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “The Importance of Orthodontic Retainers” and “Why Orthodontic Retainers?”