Posts for tag: orthodontic treatment
Not sure if your smile can be improved with braces? Our Midtown, GA, dentists - Dr. Laura Koch, Dr. Andrew Soulimiotis and Dr. Sunny Patel of Dentistry for Midtown - share a few signs that you may benefit from orthodontics.
You're unhappy with the appearance of your smile
It's hard to feel proud of your smile when you have an orthodontic issue, such as crowding, gaps, crooked or overlapping teeth, or teeth that have grown in at odd angles. Braces gradually realign your teeth, improving your appearance and boosting your self-confidence.
Your bite could use some help
You may have a bite problem if your upper and lower teeth don't fit together correctly when you close your mouth. Whether you have an overbite, underbite, crossbite or open bite, your smile can be helped with orthodontic treatment. Bite problems aren't just cosmetic, but can cause headaches, jaw pain, gum disease, enamel erosion and temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ). If your issues are severe, you may even accidentally cut your mouth with your teeth when you try to chew.
You have trouble speaking clearly or chewing
More complex bite issues can affect your ability to speak clearly or pronounce some words. After you receive orthodontic treatment, speech issues will no longer be a problem. When your teeth don't fit together properly, chewing may be difficult. Gastrointestinal problems can be an unexpected consequence of bite issues. If you swallow foods whole because chewing is too difficult, an upset stomach may become a daily occurrence.
Your teeth have shifted
It's not unusual to experience some shifting as you get older. The problem can even occur if you've worn braces or formerly had perfectly straight teeth. Luckily, visiting our Midtown office for orthodontic treatment can help you regain your perfect smile.
How braces can help
Braces apply gentle pressure to your teeth, gradually changing their alignment. Metal braces offer an excellent way to straighten your smile, but they're not the only option. Ceramic braces use clear brackets and clear or metal wires to make your orthodontic treatment less obvious. If you would prefer to keep your orthodontic treatment completely private, lingual braces or Invisalign may be good choices for you. The wires and brackets used for lingual braces are attached to the back sides of your teeth, while Invisalign uses clear, removable aligners instead of wires and brackets.
Make over your smile with orthodontics! Call our Midtown, GA, dentists - Dr. Koch, Dr. Soulimiotis and Dr. Patel of Dentistry for Midtown - at (404) 249-1716 to schedule your appointment.
In her decades-long career, renowned actress Kathy Bates has won Golden Globes, Emmys, and many other honors. Bates began acting in her twenties, but didn't achieve national recognition until she won the best actress Oscar for Misery — when she was 42 years old! “I was told early on that because of my physique and my look, I'd probably blossom more in my middle age,” she recently told Dear Doctor magazine. “[That] has certainly been true.” So if there's one lesson we can take from her success, it might be that persistence pays off.
When it comes to her smile, Kathy also recognizes the value of persistence. Now 67, the veteran actress had orthodontic treatment in her 50's to straighten her teeth. Yet she is still conscientious about wearing her retainer. “I wear a retainer every night,” she said. “I got lazy about it once, and then it was very difficult to put the retainer back in. So I was aware that the teeth really do move.”
Indeed they do. In fact, the ability to move teeth is what makes orthodontic treatment work. By applying consistent and gentle forces, the teeth can be shifted into better positions in the smile. That's called the active stage of orthodontic treatment. Once that stage is over, another begins: the retention stage. The purpose of retention is to keep that straightened smile looking as good as it did when the braces came off. And that's where the retainer comes in.
There are several different kinds of retainers, but all have the same purpose: To hold the teeth in their new positions and keep them from shifting back to where they were. We sometimes say teeth have a “memory” — not literally, but in the sense that if left alone, teeth tend to migrate back to their former locations. And if you've worn orthodontic appliances, like braces or aligners, that means right back where you started before treatment.
By holding the teeth in place, retainers help stabilize them in their new positions. They allow new bone and ligaments to re-form and mature around them, and give the gums time to remodel themselves. This process can take months to years to be complete. But you may not need to wear a retainer all the time: Often, removable retainers are worn 24 hours a day at first; later they are worn only at night. We will let you know what's best in your individual situation.
So take a tip from Kathy Bates, star of the hit TV series American Horror Story, and wear your retainer as instructed. That's the best way to keep your straight new smile from changing back to the way it was — and to keep a bad dream from coming true.
If you would like more information about orthodontic retainers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more about this topic in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Why Orthodontic Retainers?” and “The Importance of Orthodontic Retainers.” The interview with Kathy Bates appears in the latest issue of Dear Doctor.