Wednesday, October 5, 2016

October is National Orthodontic Health month--Here are some tips about dealing with braces during Trick or Treating

How to survive Halloween with Braces….

With Halloween quickly approaching & the smell of pumpkin spice in the air, we at Barnett Orthodontics, want to give you a few tips to help you survive Halloween with braces. Many of our patients are anxiously anticipating a night full of spooky fun.  Unfortunately, some of the candy you collect trick-or-treating can cause serious damage to your teeth, especially if you have braces. This does not mean that you have to skip trick-or-treating, or even give all of your candy to mom & dad at the end of the night. It does mean that you will need to be careful in selecting what you can & can’t eat from your stash.

Candies to Avoid with Braces….

       First, let’s go over the candy you should avoid if you have braces or other orthodontic appliances. Sticky, chewy, candy like gummy bears, taffy, bubble gum, caramels, can cause painfully sticky situations or even an extra trip to the office to fix a loose bracket or broken wire. These treats can get stuck in your braces and make it very difficult to remove with brushing & flossing. The stickiness also tugs on the wires, brackets and appliances.
Hard candies, such as, suckers, candy coated apples, peanut brittle, and any candy containing nuts can also pop off a bracket & break wires when you bite into them.

Candies that are Safe Treats….

Ideally, you should always try to stick with softer treats that will melt in your mouth. Some examples of these safe treats would be peanut butter cups, soft chocolate bars, apple slices that are cut into smaller pieces, soft mints, doughnuts, cakes, pudding, and pies. You could even choose to have milkshakes or ice cream before or after you go trick-or-treating.

Most Importantly….

Finally & most importantly, if you decide to have any kind of candy this Halloween, even the safe treats, make sure to remember to brush & floss quickly afterwards. The sugars in the candy interact with the bacteria in your mouth to form an acid which will eat away at your tooth enamel. The quicker you remove the sugars from your mouth, by brushing & flossing, the less likely you are to have any lasting damage to your teeth.

Contact Us…

Have more questions about surviving Halloween with braces or need to come in for a visit? We’re here for you! You can reach out to us at our contact page or call the office at (330)745-4497.  We can’t wait to hear from you & hope you will continue to visit our blog for more tips & tricks on life with braces! 

Friday, August 26, 2016

Mouthguards, Free of Charge Because it's Important


Free of Charge, Because It’s Important. 

At Barnett Orthodontics, in Barberton OH, we provide free mouthguards to all of our patients.

The best type of mouthguard available is a custom-fit pressure laminated mouthguard. These are made in our in-house lab by using an impression of your teeth. This creates a mouthguard that fits your teeth perfectly. These are the most comfortable and most protective mouthguards you can wear! Another type is a stock mouthguard. They are pre-formed and ready to wear but known for being a little bit bulky. The last type is the boil and bite mouthguard. These you can purchase at most sporting goods stores or drugstores. You place the mouthguard in boiling water and bite into it. The softened rubber forms to your teeth when you bite into it while it cools.  This is a good option but not as ideal as a custom fit mouthguard. 

During your treatment, while we are moving your teeth and changing your bite, we will provide a stock-mouthguard.  We have a variety of colors and sizes.  After braces, we make every patient a free custom pressure laminated mouthguard to protect your super smile. 

We are confident that we are the BEST source for a custom mouthguard in the Akron Ohio area.  Our “Mission Mouthguard” is aimed at providing all of Akron’s youth (not just our patients) with a custom pressure laminated mouthguard. We have gone into school’s athletic programs to offer our services and have been recognized in the Akron Beacon Journal for our efforts.  While a custom-fit mouthguard can cost hundreds of dollars, we only charge $20.00 to the general public.  This correlates to the cost of a boil and bite mouthguard which a family would buy at a sporting goods store. 

Why do we need to wear mouthguards?

Mouthguards help to protect against injuries to the teeth and surrounding soft tissue, such as the tongue, cheeks, or lips. Some different injuries that could occur if you are not wearing your mouthguard could include fractured teeth (image A), displaced teeth (image B), or your teeth could be knocked out (image C) completely! They also to protect the soft tissues in your mouth. Without a mouthguard, your teeth could bite through your tongue, cheeks, or lip! Believe it or not, mouthguards also help to prevent concussions! By wearing your mouthguard it creates a padding or cushion between your teeth. By doing that, when a blow occurs to the mandible (lower jaw), the padding lessens the force of the impact pushing up toward the brain. A fractured jaw is a common dental injury related to not wearing a mouthguard!
A                                                                                                          B
Did you know?
·         Sports-related injuries account for 600,000 emergency room visits per year!
·         An athlete is 60 times more likely to suffer harm to the teeth when not wearing their mouthguard!
Tips for your mouthguard!
·         Rinse or brush with toothbrush and toothpaste before and after each use.
·         Occasionally clean mouthguard in cool, soapy water and rinse thoroughly.
·         Transport your mouthguard in a sturdy container that has holes for ventilation.
·         Never leave your mouthguard directly in sunlight or hot water.
Most importantly, if you get a mouthguard, make sure you wear it!
Call us today if you want to join our Mission Mouthguard Program! 330-745-4497

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

"DIY" Teeth Straightening: the Magic Alternative to Braces? Rubber Bands and 3-D printed trays: Seriously...Seriously dangerous!


"DIY" Teeth Straightening: the Magic Alternative to Braces? Rubber Bands and 3-D printed trays: Seriously?...Seriously dangerous!

By: Taylor
         Most orthodontic patients want braces to improve their smiles.  Sure, getting a healthy bite is important but more than anything, they want to feel more confident about the way they look.  Braces can be expensive though and can take 1-2 years depending on the case.  Have you heard about a scary trend of using a tiny hair elastic that anyone could purchase by the hundreds at a drug store to close spaces without braces though?
          Let's admit it: social media is more effective in today's socitey than that local newspaper that gets dropped off to your house on Sunday's. There are hundreds of different sites and apps at the tips of our fingers that help connect information or people in different ways such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and last but not least, Pintrest. Pintrest is great for creative ideas for hair, makup and delicious recipes but is it really the answer to all of our orthodontic questions? Recently, posts on Pinterest have been highlighting how someone can use a hair elastic to close those little spaces between our front teeth!   But at what cost and risk?
          What most people don't realize is the damage these at-home remedies have on their teeth.
The American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics issued a consumer alert about the use of elastic bands by non-orthodontists to close gaps in teeth which stated that while there are some people that have done this on their own with little or no harm done to the teeth, the rubber band can "slide into the soft tissues, where it is difficult, if not impossible, to retrieve it, then continue along the length the roots, destroying the periodontal attachment and produce inflammation". They then stated that "the teeth then extrude, the crowns of the teeth fan out as the roots are pulled together, the teeth become increasingly mobile" which can lead to tooth loss. I think we can all agree that the tiny space is NOT worth losing your teeth over. Let's leave the teeth-straightening to the professionals.

          Here are some examples of what people attempt vs what really happens: Warning...some of the photos are graphic:

We recently had a patient come into our Barberton office requesting to have her space closed.  She attempted to close the space on her own with a hair tie and showed us a picture she took on her cell phone of her own mouth.  Notice in the picture how the gums are red and swollen.  The rubber band was trapped under her gums.  Luckily she sought the services of a specialist and corrected the problem before a serious issue occurred.  Believe it or not, this stuff is happening in Akron Ohio. 
What about 3-D printed retainers to move your teeth? Yup, someone has tried it.  See the link below for the article:
Our suggestion, if you want your teeth straightened, see an orthodontist.  As orthodontist has 6-7 years of advanced education after 4 years of college.  We are the professionals and the easiest and cheapest way out is rarely the best.  If you live in the Akron Ohio area, don't try to do it yourself at home.  Give us a call to discuss your needs and schedule a complimentary consultation.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

What's the point of these rubber bands? Do I really have to wear them all the time? What if I double up at night?

Many people who go through orthodontic treatment are required to wear elastics or rubber bands toward the end of their braces.  Elastics are used to help correct a patient's bite into an ideal position.  Whether you are in braces or Invisalign, the importance of elastics is essential. 

At our Akron orthodontic office, Dr. Barnett and Team work tirelessly on patient education to make this point about cooperation clear.  Without a patient doing the work, the end will never be in sight. 
There are different circumstances that could require the use of elastics; such as, an overbite, an underbite, or a crossbite.  Elastics are connected directly onto the brackets on a specialized hook designed to secure the rubber band in place.  They connect from top to bottom.  The pull of the rubber bands helps to move the teeth into the correct positions by stimulating the cells in the bone surrounding the teeth; therefore, the teeth then shift into the new correct position.  This is only successful when the elastics are worn full time, about 21-22 hours a day.  Part time cooperation will never make progress. As the bone begins the process of changing but when not worn consistently, it always has to “begin again.”  Thus no progress is made.
In today’s busy times, we find more and more people struggling with cooperation.  Whether it is forgetting after a meal to replace them, sports or activities that interfere, or just the "annoyance" of wearing rubber bands in general, some people just can't seem to commit.  Patients think that "doubling-up" on elastics will suffice; some will wear two elastics on each side at bed time and wear nothing during the day.  As brilliant as this seems, it does not work.  The teeth need constant light pressure in order to move.     
          Commonly we hear kids say they forget to put them in after lunch.  If you struggle with this, try setting an alarm/reminder on your cell phone to go off after lunch. Another idea is to keep a bag of elastics as a bookmark in your textbook for the first class after lunch. You can also try placing the rubber bands on a finger while snacking.
          If you really cannot commit to the cooperation, talk with your orthodontist about a non-compliant approach to bite correction.  We use a lot of “fixed” appliances to correct bites.  Ultimately though, each individual patient is in charge of his or her future.  Take some ownership to the process and achieve that awesome result!