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Debunking the Myth: Adult Braces

June 29th, 2016

Smiling woman pointing to her bracesWhen you think about braces, the first thing that probably comes to mind is that they are only for children or teens. But the truth is that adult braces are becoming more popular. Today, adults make up a large portion of orthodontic patients. In fact, according to the American Association of Orthodontists, one in five orthodontic patients is over the age of 18.

There are many reasons why more and more adults are making the decision to get braces. A little known fact is that adult teeth still move and shift, just like a child’s, even if the adult had braces when they were younger. So whether you’re an adult thinking about braces for the first time or hoping a second go-around will improve some minor imperfections, here are a few reasons why getting braces as an adult should make you smile.

Boost of Self Esteem

Appearance is always important when it comes to self esteem. And everyone, no matter their age, wants a great smile. It’s one of the first things people notice when they look at you. Taking the opportunity to improve crooked teeth, a strong overbite or underbite, or fixing an improper jaw position provides a definite boost of confidence.

Better Options

There are multiple options for braces today, from regular braces and ceramic braces to lingual braces and clear aligners. That means unlike how it may have been years ago (when wearing braces meant lots of metal and big, attention-grabbing bands), today’s braces can actually go unnoticed by others, causing no reason to be self-conscious or insecure. Many of today’s options are lighter and more comfortable too.

 

Reduce the Risk of Health Issues

Misaligned teeth can affect an adult’s health just as easily as it can a child or teen. Living with misaligned teeth leads to a higher chance of buildup between teeth, which can cause serious periodontal disease or gum disease, as well as tooth decay, gum loss, and TMJ. Misaligned teeth can also bring about other health problems such as headaches, ear pain, and gastrointestinal problems.

It’s never too late to improve your smile. If you’re considering orthodontic treatment, make an appointment with Dr. Bennett today to talk about which orthodontic treatment option is right for you.

DIY Braces: Hurt More Than Help

May 22nd, 2016

Smiling girl with bracesAlthough “Do It Yourself” projects are popular, cost-effective, and rewarding, there is one trending project you do not want to tackle on your own — straightening your teeth. YouTube tutorials featuring teenagers demonstrating how to straighten their teeth with common items such as dental floss, paper clips, and rubber bands are surging in popularity. That’s right — DIY Braces are on the rise, and the results are dangerous and less than desirable. The American Association of Orthodontists has issued a consumer alert warning against DIY braces. Take a look at why this practice is extremely dangerous:

  • Change in Tooth Color - Moving teeth on your own can result in cutting off the blood supply, leading to teeth permanently fading to brown or gray in color.

 

  • Inflammation - Loss of blood supply will cause the gums to become painfully inflamed and infected. This can lead to permanent loss of bone and gum tissue.

 

  • Root Damage - Moving teeth incorrectly can cause roots of teeth to become damaged, leading to pain, infection, and loss.

 

  • Tooth Loss - In some cases, DIY braces have even resulted in tooth loss! Read more here about how one person paid $50,000 to replace two front teeth after failing with DIY braces.

 

  • More Expensive - In the long run, the cost of trying to repair damage caused by these DIY methods is often far more than the cost of seeing an orthodontist to straighten your teeth.

 

Orthodontists attend a total of 10-12 years of college, dental school, and residency to learn how to properly align teeth without damaging tooth structure, gums, and bone. This is one DIY you should leave to the pros. Kids, don’t try this at home! Parents, be on the lookout for the above symptoms, and if you’re concerned your child is attempting to straighten his or her teeth on their own, contact an orthodontist immediately!

Call (251)471-8008 today to schedule a complimentary consultation with Dr. Bennett!  We would be happy to discuss your orthodontic needs and work out a payment plan if necessary.

5 Home Remedies for Your Braces Pain

April 15th, 2016

Frowning woman at the dentist with a toothacheThe first few days after getting braces for the first time can be quite painful. But before you decide to give up and rip them off, check out these easy ways to relieve your pain without sacrificing your new smile.

1. Eat soup and soft foods
The heat from a warm bowl of soup will actually increase blood circulation and reduce the pain in your mouth. Follow it up with a cold bowl of ice cream for some icy/hot action.

2. Enjoy some ice cream
Finally there’s a reasonable excuse to eat ice cream for dinner. Eating cold, soft foods like ice cream will help to reduce swelling and inflammation of your gums. Orthodontists say to enjoy this well-deserved treat 1 to 2 times a day to bring down the pain and to give you some relief.

3. Use a soft bristle toothbrush
Just like a new, soft blanket feels better than that rough blankie you’ve been holding onto for years, replacing your old toothbrush with a soft bristle toothbrush gives you comfort and will allow you to brush your teeth without hurting your sore gums.

4. Rinse with warm salt water
Add a pinch of salt to a warm glass of water and gargle. Doing this every day will help with the pain, and it makes a really cool noise.

5. Apply orthodontic wax to irritated areas
Applying wax to the metallic part of your braces helps to reduce the friction. This is especially great at night because it will help you get better sleep. The soft wax prevents the metal from scraping against your skin causing blisters and sores.

 

If you have any questions about your new braces and need more advice on reducing the pain, feel free to contact us! If you do not already have braces and are considering orthodontic treatment, contact Dr. Bennett today to make an appointment. We look forward to helping you with your smile journey here at Bennett Orthodontics!

 

4 Misconceptions About Orthodontists

March 9th, 2016

Smiling girl at dentist's officeWe all make excuses about why we don’t want braces: they take too long, they’re too painful, I’m too old, etc. But truthfully, orthodontic technology has changed so much over the past 15 years that many of these myths are no longer true. We’re here to debunk these 4 misconceptions about Orthodontists.

Orthodontist vs. Dentist

The roles of Dentists and Orthodontists are actually very different. After becoming a General Dentist, an Orthodontist will go back to school for 2 to 3 years to specialize in Orthodontics only. Most dentists never acquire these special skills. You would never go see an Orthodontist to get a cavity filled, just like you shouldn’t go see a Dentist to have your braces adjusted.

Contrary to popular belief, adults are great candidates for braces. Adult teeth still move, just like your children’s. Crooked teeth can be caused by any number of reasons, making orthodontic treatment pertinent at any age. There is an orthodontic option for every lifestyle: some are clear and fixed to the teeth, some go behind the teeth, and some are clear and removable, like Invisalign.

People seeking re-treatment will often say that their teeth have shifted over time, often as a result of not wearing a retainer. Others say that when their wisdom teeth came in, it caused their teeth to shift. In actuality, most wisdom teeth never make it into the mouth and remain buried under the gums, having no real effect on the rest of your teeth.

Depending on your case, orthodontic treatment may not take as long as you thought it would. Treatments can range from 6 months to 2 years. Technology has developed over the past 15 years to allow for more efficient tooth movement with virtually no discomfort.

If you are considering orthodontic treatment, make an appointment with Dr. Bennett today to discuss your options.

We look forward to helping you with your smile journey here at Bennett Orthodontics!

 
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