Retainers! Retainers! Retainers!

Finally!! Free From Braces!!

What Now?

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essixSo now you are free of your braces, and you want to keep your teeth straight.  It is a must that you wear your retainers.  Here, at iSmile Orthodontics we offer clear retainers after your treatment with us and you may have a few questions like:

 

Q: Why do I have to wear a retainer, I wore braces for two years?

A: Naturally, your teeth will want to return back to its original formation (relapse).  Wearing the retainer will help stop the teeth from shifting after treatment.  It is also imperative to wear it as a young person finishing treatment.  This is because as you grow your teeth are also shifting and retention will help hold your teeth in place and maintain your perfect smile.  

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before & after

Q: Do I have to wear retainers all the time?

A: It takes about a year for the bone tissues and the bone to stabilize and reform to the teeth movement.  Generally our doctors, here at iSmile Orthodontics, say that for the first three months wearing the retainer, then soon after result to wearing the retainer only at night.  

Q: Is the retainer metal?

A: The retainer that iSmile Orthodontics uses is a clear essix retainer.  retainter

 18.-Essix-retainers

Q: How do I take care of it?

A: The best way to take care of your essix is to put it in the case that is provided for you. Putting it in a napkin is a bad idea, because it is likely that it will end up in the garbage.  The only time when the essix should be in the case and not in the mouth is while eating and brushing.  Generally the only thing that you are able to drink while wearing the essix retainer is water. To clean the retainer, only cold water is used.  Hot or warm water will only ruin the formation of the plastic and therefore no longer be the true shape of the teeth.  Gentle brushing with toothpaste and a tooth brush or even hand washing with dish soap works great!

However if your retainer breaks, or is lost, call your local iSmile Orthodontics and speak with our doctors about getting a new one.  

Ask about our lingual retainers! A great contribution to you retention after treatment! 

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Flossing

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Daily, plaque builds up between your teeth and sometimes our tooth brushes just cannot reach the very small places in our mouths.  Therefore, everyday plaque and debris continues to build.  Although you do not feel it, food gets caught between the teeth often.

caught bertween teeth If you were to keep a routine of flossing after brushing everyday, one will notice that their gums and teeth are much healthier.  When you begin flossing (especially for the first time) it could be quite alarming how much plaque and debris that is removed.

plaque If there is a bit of blood present during your flossing, DO NOT STOP! This is just a sign that your gums need some more attention. CONTINUE FLOSSING.  Your gums will adjust and strengthen and eventually result minimal bleeding. This is normal.  As discussed in a previous post, if the gums are swollen and puffy, flossing is imperative.

germs flossing'

Not flossing might WILL cause cavities or tooth decay.  

hearth disease

Your full body health is also risk when flossing is neglected. Not only will not flossing cause periodontal issues but also damage to the rest of the mouth, ear, throat and heart disease.  

Ok! So you want to know HOW to floss.  In the post just below, there is a video explaining the basic techniques.  Or simply look at the diagram below.  how-to-floss-your-teeth

Back to School with iSmile Orthodontics!

While many kids are sad to see the summer end, we know many of the parents at our office are excited for the new school year to start! At iSmile Orthodontics, your local White Plains and Yonkers orthodontic practice, we understand the importance of a child’s smile. This is why the doctors and staff at our practice have decided to dedicate a blog post just for back to school oral hygiene tips and tricks!

Getting Your Kids to Brush and Floss Regularly

Parents understand the enduring struggle that can occur each time you try to get your Imagechild to brush and floss his or her teeth. At iSmile Orthodontics, we have found that one of the best ways to promote good oral hygiene is to have your child come with you to the grocery store and pick out his or her very own toothbrush! When a child is proud of his or her own toothbrush that they handpicked themselves, they are more likely to brush when they are asked to.

Try to get your child to brush before he or she goes to school, when they return home from school in the late afternoon, as well as once more before bedtime. It can be difficult to have your child brush after every meal, but by brushing their teeth 2-3 times daily, you are helping them eliminate plaque and food particles that can be built up between meals.

Flossing can be a whole challenge on its own… especially for kids. Having your child floss at least once a day is a great way to promote gum health and remove any plaque and germs that are resting in the tight spaces between their teeth and underneath their braces. Also, try having your child rinse with water or anti-bacterial mouthwash as soon as they are done. By doing so, you are helping your child prevent gum disease and common problems later on as adults.

Make a Fun, Healthy Snack!

At iSmile Orthodontics, we want your child to enjoy healthy snacks that are both fun and orthodontist approved after school! This is why we decided to provide a recipe for a cute after school snack that the kids can help with making!

Try making these fun and easy grape caterpillars after school one day with your child. All you need to assemble them are green or purple grapes, mini chocolate chips, cream cheese or white icing, and long wooden skewers for kabobs.

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The ingredients

To assemble, take anywhere from 6-12 grapes (if you want to make baby caterpillars use 6 or 7) and skewer them horizontally on your kabob. Once all of the grapes are skewered (with the help of an adult) add two dots of vanilla icing or cream cheese and two mini chocolate chips for the center of the eyes. After this, your caterpillar family should be complete! Have fun with this recipe and add your own twist with funny faces or even mustaches on the caterpillars! Your kids are sure to love this snack as well as spending time with you making them!

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The final product!

We appreciate you taking the time to read our blog. For more helpful tips and tricks to maintaining great oral hygiene during the school year please contact us at our Yonkers and White Plains orthodontist offices and we would be happy to assist you!

Orthodontic Myths

“My family dentist said they would do my braces”
Orthodontists have an extra 2-3 years of specialized education and training in tooth and jaw function. Would you get brain surgery from a physician who operates on a brain once or twice a year? I would hope not.

“I am too old for braces.”
There is no age limit for to receive orthodontic treatment! The reality is that age doesn’t matter; health does. Tooth movement can be achieved quite successfully, no matter how old the patient may be, so long as teeth, gums, and bone are in good shape.

“Orthodontics hurts.”
Orthodontics does not require needles or drilling into teeth, so there is no need for that fear. There is, however, an initial period of adjustment to the appliance in your mouth. Also, each visit requires a specific approach to movement, so there may some pressure felt after each monthly visit. An over-the-counter anti-inflammatory will help with any discomfort.

“I can’t play sports with braces.”
Of course you can! For your own safety, be sure to wear a mouth guard when playing contact sports.  Not only will a mouth guard save your teeth, but may also protect against jaw fractures. You may buy one at a local pharmacy, or ask the staff at iSmile Orthodontics for one during your next visit.

“Braces will set off a metal detector.”
Braces are made from lightweight materials, so it will not affect metal detectors.

“Braces will rust in your mouth.”
Orthodontic materials are made from surgical stainless steel, nickel, copper, cobalt and Chromium,so they cannot rust. Please notify your Orthodontist if you have an allergy to any of these metals.

“Braces cost too much money.”
Orthodontic treatment is the most conservative cosmetic procedure to align teeth for a healthy and beautiful smile for patients of all ages! It can be accomplished with minimal discomfort, in a reasonable time period with lasting results. At iSmile Orthodontics, we are in network with most Insurance companies, and work with our patients to offer interest-free financing. Our staff is knowledgeable of the dental insurance companies offering benefits for orthodontic coverage, so do not hesitate to call and ask.

“Braces increase my chance of being struck by lightning.”
Whether you have braces or not your chances of getting struck by lightning remain the same, which is 1 in 700,000 according to National Geographic.

Do not ever hesitate to contact the knowledgeable staff at iSmile Orthodontics with any question or concern you may have regarding Orthodontic treatment. Keep in mind that a consultation is always free or charge! We participate with most Dental Insurance Companies, as well as offer interest-free financing- if there is a will, there is a way.

SPEED Braces…Better? Faster? Stronger?

Many have heard of a system used in Orthodontics called “self-ligating braces” and have been told it is the latest technology, promised a much more rapid treatment time, and better oral hygiene. While it may mean less visits to the Orthodontist, finishing treatment with this system may take longer than expected. This is due to the lack of control with this type of bracket, especially when it comes to rotations. This system of self-ligating brackets is also known as SPEED System, The Damon System, and In-Ovation, works by applying light and constant pressure to the teeth allowing the wire to slide into a “door” on the bracket, holding it in place. Seems innovative, but despite popular belief, self-ligating brackets were first created in the 1930’s, re-surfaced in the 1970’s, and have recently become more popular with, what appears to be, a promise of convenience. What many people do not take into consideration once they hear about “the latest technology”, is that innovation comes with a high price tag. Also, keep in mind that many insurance companies do not cover the cost of braces with self-ligating brackets. These brackets are also more fragile than normal to the fidgety patient as well- “doors” on the bracket may break or pop open open if you are touching your brackets; whereas, with traditional braces, a broken bracket is only evident in patients who do not comply with food restrictions, or those with bad oral habits. At iSmile Orthodontics, we believe in using the best products and technology for our patients, and that means standing by what has and will always work more effectively for our patients. We are able to promise the best result possible from a tailored treatment plan made to suit each and every one of our unique patients. Call today for a free consultation to see what our White Plains or Yonkers Orthodontists may do for you! 🙂

Early Orthodontics

Although most orthodontic treatment begins between the ages of 9 and 14, the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) recommends that a child has his/her first visit with an Orthodontist no later than the age of 7. By that time, their first molars have already erupted, and teeth are developed enough to notice abnormal eruption or jaw growth.  Our White Plains Orthodontists and Yonkers Orthodontists will be able to educate parents on issues of malocclusion (bad bite), unhealthy oral habits, removal of supernumerary (extra) teeth, and will advise when the time is right to begin treatment. For younger children, our Orthodontists may recommend beginning preventive or interceptive treatment, which may include use of a habit breaker, palate expander, or an arch holder. Not only does this early treatment guide tooth and jaw growth, but aids in building self-esteem, and allows for a healthy smile from a young age.

If you notice any of the following in your child, it would be best to schedule your complimentary consultation today:

  • Thumb-sucking
  • Difficulty with biting/chewing
  • Mouth breathing
  • Unbalanced jaw growth
  • Grinding of teeth or clenching of jaw

Living With Braces on Summer Vacation

As we greet summertime on Memorial Day, many are planning and preparing for their vacations. We understand that holidays and vacation planning can get a bit chaotic, but please keep your White Plains Orthodontist and Yonkers Orthodontist at iSmile in mind! Be sure to schedule an appointment before your trip to ensure your treatment plan is going as planned. If you happen to be out of the state or country with a broken bracket or poking wire, please feel free to visit the closest Orthodontist who can make you comfortable. Although we suggest seeing another Orthodontist for your comfort, DO NOT receive treatment outside of our office. Our Orthodontists dedicate a great deal of time to personalize each patient’s treatment plan, and work together to ensure that your visits are handled as they are supposed to. We expect our patients to remain compliant with treatment, even in beautiful weather and between trips! So come to iSmile Orthodontics to adjust or repair your braces before you leave for your summer getaway. See you soon! 🙂