Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Silver Spring Dentists Explain the Benefits of Orthodontic Treatment, PART 1

This article explains the many benefits of seeking orthodontic treatment at an appropriate age. These benefits aren't only corrective in nature; they're also preventative.

Orthodontists are dental specialists who are skilled in the full suite of procedures and treatments designed to correct badly aligned jaws and bites, as well as the resultant problems. So, wherever there is a problem, ailment or defect concerning the oral cavity and maxillofacial skeleton, an orthodontist is the Silver Spring dentist to see!

Here are some of the benefits of undergoing orthodontic treatment:

Orthodontic Treatment for Silver Spring Residents Can Improve Bite Function

Orthodontic TreatmentBy aligning the top and bottom jaws and by straightening crooked, overlapping and/or overcrowded teeth, orthodontic treatment improves the ease and comfort with which patients can eat. This not only has functional benefits, but it improves the distribution of pressure on the teeth, and therefore the amount of wear they have to sustain. Bad bites often result in the accelerated wear of teeth in a certain portion of the mouth, which can actually lead to their early decay and loss.

Orthodontic Treatment for Silver Spring Residents Can Improve Oral Comfort

A better and more comfortable bite also relieves pressure on the muscles, tendons and joints controlling the movement of the lower jaw. "It's not uncommon for patients with malocclusions to experience temporomandibular joint disorders, chronic neck and headaches and general fatigue as a result of the selective strain on certain muscles in the face, jaw and neck," explain dentists in Silver Spring MD. "Treatment eases, if not eliminates these problems entirely."

Orthodontic Treatment Can Give Silver Spring Residents a Healthier Mouth

By straightening crooked and overlapping teeth and by aligning the upper and lower jaws correctly, orthodontic treatment can eliminate potentially serious resulting problems, such as the uneven distribution of wear on the biting surfaces of the teeth. This is, according to Silver Spring dentists, something that can, without intervention, lead to fracturing, decay and the early loss of teeth that are forced to endure greater strain and wear than others. A well-occluding bite is a healthy bite and a healthy bite makes for a healthier mouth!

Orthodontic Treatment Can Make it Easier for Silver Spring Residents to Maintain Good Oral Hygiene

Maintain Good Oral HygieneTeeth that are crooked and overlap each other provide excellent refuge for bacteria and are more likely to trap food. They're also far more difficult to brush and floss, since the natural creases and gaps between them are so complex. According to dentists in Silver Spring MD, this is why orthodontic braces, which straighten the teeth, can actually help to lower one's risk of tooth decay resulting from poor oral hygiene. Crooked teeth are simply more difficult to keep clean, which highlights just one of the many benefits of orthodontic treatment.

Orthodontic Treatment for Silver Spring Patients Can Greatly Improve Smile Aesthetics

Nothing can ruin a smile quite like a bad bite - overbite, underbite, cross-bite and open-bite - or crooked, overlapping teeth. A beautiful smile is one that has good symmetry and evenness. Orthodontic treatment can address all of the problems above, not only restoring a healthy bite, but also greatly improving the appearance of your smile.

Orthodontic Treatment for Silver Spring Patients Can Improve Self-esteem and Confidence

As a result of the previous benefit discussed, patients can experience a tremendous increase in self-esteem and social confidence. This is especially true and important for younger patients who, should they receive earlier treatment, can enter into their teens with beautiful, symmetric teeth and well-aligned jaws. Having a comfortable well-occluded bite also helps confidence as it removes the distraction of sore, fatigued and strained facial, neck and jaw muscles.

Elimination of Speech Problems and Difficulty Swallowing

Malocclusions can also be linked with speech impediments - such as lisps - and, in certain extreme cases, difficulty in swallowing. Orthodontic treatment can eliminate these problems, thus greatly improving a patient's overall quality of life.

Orthodontic Treatment Can "Cure" Snoring and Sleep Disorders

Malocclusions or defects in the sinuses, nasal passages and maxillofacial skeleton can cause patients to sore or have sleep disorders like sleep apnea. It may sound surprising that the solutions to these problems lie in the hands of an orthodontist, but they frequently do!

A Final Note on Orthodontic Treatment

The prospect of orthodontic treatment can seem quite daunting for many patients. This is because the nature of treatment is either a waiting game, as is the case with braces, which require an average treatment time of one to two years and sometimes even longer. OR because treatment comes in the form of surgery, which is scary no matter how big or small the procedure is. What's important in either case is that you focus on the immense benefits of treatment as have been discussed here.

Friday, 21 February 2014

An Orthodontist in Silver Spring MD Answers Your FAQ About Orthodontics, PART 3

This three-part article series provides a comprehensive FAQ guide to orthodontics: the field of dentistry concerned with the correction of teeth orientation and jaw alignment.

Welcome back to this three-part article series on your frequently asked questions about orthodontics. Let’s jump straight back into answering those pressing questions, shall we?

FAQ: Can adults benefit from orthodontic treatment? Or is it reserved for younger people whose jawbones are still developing?

Orthodontic DentistryAn Orthodontist in Silver Spring MD Answers: Orthodontic treatment can be done to benefit patients of just about any age. Approximately a quarter of all the patients treated for various orthodontic problems are adults, so a beautiful and healthy smile is within easy reach!

FAQ: How does orthodontic treatment work?

Answer: It really depends on what condition you’re having treated and just how severe that condition is. Many Silver Spring residents’ dental problems can be successfully treated with braces, in which case, it really is a waiting game. Braces consist of brackets, which are cemented to the outer surface of each tooth. An archwire is then threaded through the brackets, connecting each tooth to the next one. These wires are tightened, which applies a pressure, via the bracket, to each tooth and this gently and slowly guides the teeth into better and more favorable positions.

Orthognathic surgery can be done to address the more extreme cases of malocclusion - such as overbites, underbite, crossbites and open bites - or to correct damage done to the oral and maxillofacial area as a result of a bad accident.

FAQ: If I need braces, how long will I have to wear them for?

A Silver Spring Orthodontist Answers: Treatment time varies from patient to patient and depends on the severity of malocclusion and tooth orientation. On average, orthodontic patients wear braces for between one and two years, sometimes longer. The amount of time it takes for treatment to be considered successful also depends on how well a patient complies. It’s crucial that you keep regular scheduled appointments with your orthodontist and maintain a high standard of oral hygiene to avoid decay and infection.

FAQ: Does it hurt to have braces?

Tooth Pain from BracesAnswer: The actual procedure involved in placing braces does not hurt the patient, according to Silver Spring dental professionals. You will probably feel a pressure applied to the teeth at the time, which, over the next few days, can leave the teeth and gums feeling quite sore and tender. This typically disappears within one to four days. You will also need to grow accustomed to the feeling of the braces against your lips and cheeks. Orthodontists will send Silver Spring residents home with soft wax, which can be pressed into the brackets to improve comfort and help prevent ulceration from occurring.

Every few weeks or so, you will need to return to your orthodontist to have your braces tightened so that a continual pressure can be applied to your teeth. Every time this is done, you will experience the same degree of transient tenderness. This can quite easily be managed with over-the-counter pain medications; however, most patients don’t even need that.

FAQ: Can having orthodontic braces interfere with me playing sports?

A Dentist in Silver Spring Answers: Your braces should not get in the way of you playing sports - and winning. It is, however, recommend that patients wear a mouth guard to prevent damage to the teeth should they get whacked in the mouth with a ball, flailing fist, etc. You can have a mouth guard custom made for you at your local Silver Spring dental healthcare professional. Alternatively, you can just buy a standard one over-the-counter at your local sports store. They aren’t expensive and come in a wide range of colors, so you can choose one to match your favorite sports team!

Monday, 17 February 2014

An Orthodontist in Silver Spring MD Answers Your FAQ About Orthodontics, PART 2

This three-part article series provides a comprehensive FAQ guide to orthodontics: the field of dentistry concerned with the correction of teeth orientation and jaw alignment.

Welcome back to this three-part article series on your frequently asked questions about orthodontics. In Part 1, a Silver Spring dentist helped us better understand what this field of dentistry focused on - the correction of badly orientated/aligned teeth and jaws - and what the benefits of this kind of treatment might offer patients: better bite function, comfort, smile aesthetics, long term oral health, etc. So, without further ado, let’s continue looking at those FAQ!

FAQ: What signs might indicate that I, or my child may need orthodontic braces?

Signs Indicating the Need for Orthodontic BracesThe Orthodontist in Silver Spring MD Answers: Braces are used to guide poorly aligned and/or overcrowded teeth into better and more favorable positions. Therefore, some of the signs that indicate braces may be necessary include:

  • You have a deep bite: Your upper front teeth cover your lower teeth when biting down.
  • You have an overbite or “bucked teeth”: Your upper front teeth protrude notably over your lower teeth.
  • You have an underbite: Your lower front teeth sit in front or on the outside of your upper front teeth when biting down.
  • The central point of your lower set of teeth does not align with the central point of your upper set of teeth.
  • You experience difficult chewing and frequently suffer jaw and headaches and stiffness.
  • You have an open bite: Your lower front teeth and upper front teeth don’t come together when you bite down.
  • Your teeth are overlapped and/or over-crowded.
  • Your child continues to thumb-suck past six or seven years of age.
  • You or your dentist has noticed an uneven and excessive pattern of wear across the biting surfaces of your teeth – this may indicate a maloccluded bite.
  • You have large spaces between your teeth.
  • Your lower jaw shifts to the left or right when you bite down.

Any of these problems could necessitate treatment from a Silver Spring orthodontist.

FAQ: At what age should I go for or bring my child for orthodontic treatment?

Age for Orthodontic TreatmentA Silver Spring Dentist Answers: Jaws and teeth that are still in the developmental state respond quicker and more easily to orthodontic treatment, which is why it is generally recommended that people take their child to an orthodontist for a check-up around the age of 7 years. This is especially the case if he or she is still sucking his or her thumb, which can cause serious orthodontic problems. Early treatment is also preferable because it avoids the many potentially more serious problems associated with a maloccluded bite, for example uneven and accelerated wear.

If, however, you have reached adulthood and suspect that you have orthodontic problems, you can still be treated! Many people in their 30’s and 40’s and even older have come to see the orthodontist for braces or other procedures to correct bad bites and poor jawbone alignment.

FAQ: What does it mean when an orthodontist talks about Phase 1 and Phase 2 treatment?

A Silver Spring Orthodontist Answers: Phase 1 treatment is essentially early treatment and is typically done on patients who are between the ages of six and 10 and so haven’t received all of their adult teeth yet. Phase 1 orthodontic treatment would therefore typically involve partial braces or expanders, which can be used to create more space in the dental arch for emerging teeth as well as to address underbite, crossbites and overbites.

Phase 2 treatment is typically recommended by Silver Spring dentists to patients who have developed all of their adult teeth. This applies to the age bracket between 11 and 13 and generally involves the placement of full orthodontic braces.

Stay Tuned for Part 3

To read the answers to more of your frequently asked questions, stay tuned for the final installment of this three-part article series on orthodontic dentistry in Silver Spring MD.

Friday, 7 February 2014

A Dentist in Silver Spring Answers Your FAQ about Orthodontics, PART 1

This three-part article series provides a comprehensive FAQ guide to orthodontics: the field of dentistry concerned with the correction of teeth orientation and jaw alignment.

Orthodontics is an extremely important branch of dentistry, not only because the treatment it provides can improve bite function and long term oral health, but also because it’s able to provide patients with much better, more comfortable and beautiful smiles! In this three-part article series, we spoke to a dentist in Silver Spring about orthodontics so that we can all benefit from a valuable insight into this field of corrective oral healthcare.

FAQ: What is Orthodontics?

Beautiful SmileThe Silver Spring Orthodontist Answers: “Orthodontics is a field of dentistry dedicated to the treatment (and diagnosis and prevention) of facial and dental irregularities, such as skew teeth and a poorly aligned jaw or bite. These can either be a result of congenital or birth defects or accidental trauma. In the case of teeth replacement, many orthodontists also offer experience in the treatment of the diseases that cause tooth loss and in the placement of dental implants.”

FAQ: What is an orthodontist?

The Dentist in Silver Spring Answers: “An orthodontist is a dentist who has the additional training and qualification necessary to guide facial development, manage tooth movement and correct defects/trauma and disease affecting the oral and maxillofacial skeleton. Orthodontics is a recognized dental specialty, according to the American Dental Association.”

FAQ: What are some of the benefits of orthodontic treatment?

Orthodontic DentistryThe Orthodontist in Silver Spring MD Answers: “In most cases, if not all, the goal of orthodontic treatment is to improve overall oral health by correcting a maloccluded bite, which can either be the result of poorly aligned teeth and/or jawbones. While the goal is correctional in nature, the results are almost always aesthetically beneficial for Silver Spring MD patients and those from elsewhere, as well.”

Here are some of the many benefits of orthodontic treatment:

  • Teeth that fit better and therefore function better.
  • A more comfortable bite, which eliminates problems such as muscle strain and inflammation around and of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). This in turn can solve the many problems caused by TMJ disorders, including chronic headaches, muscle fatigue, neck pain, jaw stiffness and even nausea caused by migraines.
  • A more aesthetically pleasing and attractive smile.
  • Increased self-confidence, which is especially important for young patients in their developmental years (teenagers).
  • Improved ability to maintain oral hygiene, since teeth that are straight and even are easier to brush and floss.
  • Orthodontic treatment guides the teeth into newer and more favorable positions in the mouth.
  • Better and healthier long-term wear pattern across the biting surfaces of the teeth, which translates into better long-term oral health for Silver Spring residents.
  • Orthodontic treatment reduces the risk of trauma to any teeth that may protrude from the mouth as a result of malocclusion.
  • Orthodontic treatment generally improves and optimizes the success of other dental treatment.
  • It can also treat problems that include snoring, sleep apnea and difficulty swallowing and articulating in speech.

Stay Tuned for Part 2

To read the answers to more of your frequently asked questions, stay tuned for the second installment of this four-part article series on orthodontic dentistry in Silver Spring MD.