8 Simple Ways that Parents Can Help their Children deal with their Braces

Every parent whose child has braces needs to know this right now!
Getting braces is usually a part of growing up for a lot of children. Unfortunately getting braces is usually not something that most children look forward to as it has a huge effect on a child’s habits, appearance and can also cause social anxiety. Your child may struggle with his social life and as well as with his day-to-day tasks, especially with his/her new and increased oral cleaning and oral hygiene schedule. It may be hard to see your child struggle with this orthodontic change but it will be well worth the pain as your child will have better oral health and straighter teeth when he/she gets older.

Here are 8 ways to help your children deal with their braces:

  1. Ensure That Your Children Brush After Every Meal and Floss Daily
    Ensure that your children brush their teeth three times a day after each of their meals. You can limit the flossing for the night as it requires precision as well as you being available to actively supervise the process. For those of you that have stubborn children, you can simply tell your children that the longer they don’t clean their teeth the longer their braces will remain which ought to prompt them to keep their teeth clean.
  2. Always Ensure that Your Children Carry Backup Rubber Bands
    If your child’s braces treatment requires them to wear rubber bands, then make sure that your children always carry spare rubber bands with them in case their bands break or have to be replaced at short notice. Don’t worry too much if the bands are causing your child a bit of pain as this is completely normal and will disappear over time.
  3. See Your Orthodontist if Any Brackets or Wires Become Loose
    If your child’s wires or brackets ever become loose or break, take your child to your nearest orthodontist as soon as possible.
  4. Soothe Your Child’s Pain If anything happens to be protruding and rubbing up against the inside of your child’s mouth then you can reduce your child’s agony with wet cotton or wax.
  5. Ensure That Your Child Wears his Invisalign Braces at All Times
    If your child wears Invisalign Braces which are easy to remove when performing difficult tasks such as eating or playing sports. Make sure that your children pop their Invisalign aligners back into their mouths after eating though.
  6. Keep the Needed Items in Stock
    Throughout the course of your child’s orthodontic treatment, your child will require special supplies to look after his/her teeth properly. This could range from special toothbrushes, special flossers to oral analgesic to ease up a sore mouth after tightening the braces. Maintaining a stock of these dental care products will let your child know that you care about their wellbeing as well as making the pain more bearable.
  7. Emphasize that the End Result will be Worth It
    Emphasize that the end results of the treatment will be well worth the time and pain with a positive attitude.
  8. Eliminate Bad Food for Braces from Your Home
    Stop storing, buying or cooking sticky, hard-to-eat foods for your home. By eliminating all these foods altogether, you are effectively removing all the temptations of eating these harmful foods from your children. Common foods that cause problems are candy, whole fruits, and vegetable, as well as popcorn. Maintain a decent stock of softer foods though, particularly when your children have just gotten their braces tightened.
Make sure that you and your child visit Dr. Koch, your closest family orthodontist in Lawrenceville to monitor your child’s oral progress as well as getting any new prescriptions or extra medication or treatment that may be required.

What should your child expect before and after braces

The exact experience of getting braces varies for every child depending on the type of braces that you’ve chosen. For instance, if you have chosen traditional braces, it will include metal brackets, wires, elastic rubber bands and bonding glue but if the braces are invisalign then your child will only be wearing customized aligners for roughly 20-22 hours every day. But regardless of what you choose, your child may be anxious and apprehensive initially. When you explain what they can expect before, during and after the braces, they will be at ease throughout the treatment.

To help parents prepare their children for this extended orthodontic procedure, here is a list of the most frequently asked questions along with comprehensive answers.

Before Getting Dental Braces

Will dental braces hurt?

This is the biggest concern that most children have even though the procedure is relatively painless. Parents can reassure their anxious children that getting braces will only take an hour or two. However, it is also important that parents tell their children that when the braces start aligning the teeth, it may cause some pain and discomfort but it can be easily alleviated by having your child:

  • Eat soft foods for the first few days after the braces are put on.
  • Take over-the-counter pain relievers.
  • Rinse the mouth with warm water containing salt.
  • Eat cold foods like ice cream and milkshake as they reduce swelling.
What foods can be eaten after getting braces?

Once your child gets used to the dental braces, they can consume soft fruits, grains, vegetables, dairy, and meats. However, to ensure oral hygiene hard, chewy and sticky foods should be avoided as they can get stuck in the metal wires and brackets.

What happens during appointments?

Your child would have to visit the orthodontist several times because the teeth straightening process takes time depending on the type of dental braces. While invisible braces show a visible difference in a month or two, traditional braces take longer to fix crooked teeth. After the braces are put on, most children need to go for follow-up appointments every four to six weeks. During these visits, the orthodontist will check the progress of your child’s teeth and if needed readjust the archwires to continue the realignment.

How long will the treatment last?

The length of treatment will depend on several factors, including the severity of the maladjustment, age, type of braces, and the oral health of your child. Nevertheless, dental braces usually take up to 2 years to show visible results.

What are the don’ts of living with braces?

To ensure that your braces work efficiently, your child needs to:

  • Be extra careful and gentle when brushing teeth.
  • Use a mouth rinse and fluoride toothpaste to remove the plaque left around the braces.
  • Avoid biting into hard and chewy foods like corn on the cob, ice cubes, sticky sweets, pizza crust, bagels and pork crackling.
  • Stay away from soda, juices and beverages that are very high in acid and sugar.

After Getting the Braces Off

What happens after the braces are removed?

Most children are excited to see the results after almost two years of wearing braces. While they will definitely see straighter teeth, they should also expect to see a few white spots on their teeth. This happens because certain parts of the teeth were covered by brackets and wires for two years. The enamel tends to undergo natural staining but these spots usually fade out after a short while.

Is it necessary to wear retainers after the braces come off?

After removing the braces, your child will have to wear custom retainers to keep the teeth straightening in place. It is very important that your child wears these retainers for at least 12 months after the removal of dental braces for sustainable results.

How to care for teeth after the braces are removed?

It is very important that parents have an oral hygiene routine in place to make sure their child’s teeth stay clean after every meal even after the braces have been removed. Apart from regular brushing and flossing, using a mouth rinse once a day is also essential. The retainer should be disinfected using a retainer cleanser daily or as recommended by your orthodontist. Finally, as a parent you need to make sure that your child does not skip follow-up dental checkups. Dental checkups ensure that no oral hygiene issues have developed while the dental braces were on so your child’s new smile remains straight and strong!

If you don’t want to take any chances with your child’s orthodontic treatment, you can count on Koch Orthodontics. Instead of traditional dental braces, we use self-ligating braces that are convenient, comfortable and have no ties or bands. To know more about them, call us at (770) 962-9560.

Understanding How Braces Work

    According to the American Association of Orthodontics, approximately 4 million Americans undergo some form of orthodontic treatment at any given time. Therefore, it is not surprising that we have a lot of questions for our orthodontist about braces and orthodontic treatments, before committing to one. However, what many of us forget is to ask how braces work.
    Every day, we rely on a substance that is harder than steel, our teeth. Braces tether your teeth, pulling them together or pushing them apart. With braces, many of us think it’s just straightening your teeth, which is beneficial for self-confidence and self-esteem. But a lot happens when you wear braces. They position your teeth perfectly so that you can have an ideal bite and your teeth function better. The longevity of the teeth is also better, and you have lesser chances of a temporomandibular joint disorder.
    There are different kinds of braces today. There are the traditional braces that many teenagers and adults still choose since it is the most popular option. The more aesthetic options that people are more aware of are the white ceramic braces and clear aligners, which are popular even amongst teenagers. Clear aligners let you live your life normally with no food restrictions that people with braces have, letting you brush and floss like normal. You and your orthodontist can together decide which option would suit you best.
    There are several basic components that in one form or another common to most orthodontic systems. Acting together, they deliver the forces that will efficiently straighten your teeth. Let’s look at the different parts of braces so that you understand better how braces work.

Parts of Braces

  1. Brackets
  2. Brackets are the individual attachments that are bonded to each tooth. They can be metal or a tooth color material.
  1. Orthodontic Bands
  2. Orthodontic bands are metal rings with special attachments that are usually placed around the back of your teeth.
  1. Archwire
  2. The archwire is engaged in each bracket and band and delivers the force that moves the teeth.
  1. Dental Bonding
  2. Dental bonding reshapes a chipped or cracked tooth using tooth-colored composite that helps to achieve a balanced smile.
  1. Elastic Ligatures
  2. The elastic ligatures also referred to as ties or color ties are tiny colorful rubber bands that are attached to brackets and hold the archwire in place.
  1. Orthodontic Separators
  2. Orthodontic spacers are commonly referred to as spacers that are placed between the molars at your second orthodontic appointment before molar bands are applied. They help space your teeth out before you have your molar bands on.

Working of Braces and Improving Your Smile 

    Although today we have different types of braces available, the procedure for getting braces is the same for all.
    Your orthodontist will begin by putting on a cheek retractor that holds the lips and cheeks away from the teeth. There is also tooth surfaces are then sterilized using a cotton applicator that prepares them for the glue. The teeth are then rinsed and dried off after which the brackets are put on one at a time.
    Each bracket has some glue on them and they are put onto each tooth. Each of the teeth has a very specific bracket for it. There are six different types of brackets that are put on the upper arch, while there are five different types of brackets for the lower arch. Then a special light is used that acts as a catalyst to make the glue harden. The bracket is then set and it becomes a permanent fixture on the teeth.
    The next step is putting the archwires onto the braces. The wire is very flexible, but when it hits the body temperature, the wire returns to its original shape. The elastic ligatures are then put on to hold the wire to the braces. As the wire straightens out over time, the crooked teeth become straight. The wire is what puts the pressure on the teeth and causes the teeth to move.

Conclusion

Now since you know the entire process of how braces work, you will be able to sit through a treatment without worrying about how long it is going to take. Visit our Orthodontist in Lawrenceville, GA who can answer more of your questions about dental braces.

4 Tips that Prevent Tooth Decay with Braces

You’ve got to be ready to own your oral health, which means knowing the right way to brush, floss, rinse and much more. So that by the time those braces come off, you’ve got a smile you would want to show off.

Here are 4 tips that will keep your teeth healthy while wearing dental braces.

    1. Brushing and Flossing with Braces
Brackets and bands can trap bits of food. If you don’t remove it properly, then bacteria and plaque, which is a sticky gunk can build up on your teeth and gums. It can cause your gums to get red and puffy. Your teeth can get weak, leaving you with white spots that stay on your teeth even after your braces are removed, and that contributes to bad breath. Your brush bristles should be angled at approximately 45 degrees upward and downward, making small circular motions while moving the brush forward. You can also use a proxy brush, which is a nylon bristle brush intended to clean in between the teeth. Place it under the archwire in between, and then move it up and down, cleaning the edge of the bracket towards the back. Run a floss threader up between two teeth. Slide the floss back and forth several times to clean the surfaces of your upper and lower teeth. Remember to also clean below the gumline.
    1. Brushing After Every Meal
Practicing good oral hygiene may require you to step out of your regular dental care habits to be more conscious of your brushing habits. Plaque buildup can hide in your brackets and wires which are not easy to remove. The lack of proper dental care with braces can worsen the plaque buildup.
    1. Eating Responsibly with Braces
Eating the wrong kinds of food can damage your teeth braces. Things like hard nuts, pretzels, jellies, chewing ice are what you should avoid eating. Another good tip is to be sure you cut up your fruits and vegetables into bite size pieces and just put them into your mouth instead of biting into them. Also avoid sticky and chewy foods like caramel chocolates, gummy bears, and gums. These types of foods can and will damage or break your braces which can add time to your treatment, which means you could have your braces on longer than estimated. There are also a lot of great things that are okay to eat while wearing dental braces. Softer foods like yogurt, oatmeal, grapes, bananas, fruit bars are okay to eat and are good for you too. But if you have to eat something sweet, you can eat plain chocolate bars, cakes, pies, and cookies. Just remember that a lot of these treats are high in sugar, so you need to brush really well after you eat them.
    1. Visiting Your Orthodontist Regularly
Visiting your orthodontist for regular check-ups is important to make adjustments like tightening your braces. Children are especially prone to stains and cavities during an orthodontic treatment since they are more likely to forget to brush or floss their teeth properly. In such cases, your orthodontist will be able to check the inside of your mouth to prevent any damage from occurring. Eat right; take care of yourself and your braces. Your Orthodontist in Lawrenceville looks forward to seeing you at your next appointment. Call us today!

How to Select the Right Braces

How to Select the Right Braces

The reasons for getting braces vary from patient to patient. Approximately 3 million American teens have braces with the number of adults getting an orthodontic treatment rising at a steady rate. Some patients may have an ideal bite, while others may suffer from varying degrees of crowding or spacing, associated with a misaligned bite.

The following conditions for misaligned teeth and an incorrect bite can potentially be corrected by orthodontics:

  • Speech Disorders

  • TMJ Pain

  • Difficulty while chewing or eating

  • Sleep apnea caused by mouth breathing and snoring

  • Grinding or clenching of teeth

  • Gum disease and tooth decay

Dental braces aren’t just about a more engaging smile but also put your misaligned bite at rest that may have added to your erratic sleep patterns and plaque buildup. With the constant advancements in dental technology, orthodontists are providing more options to their patients and adult braces are a growing trend for people who didn’t get to correct their bite when they were younger. Besides, there are a wide variety of braces that you can choose from to help you decide better.

Different Types of Braces:

  • Traditional or Metal Braces

    Traditional or metal braces are the most common types of dental braces since they are sturdier and long-lasting. This is because metal braces are made of high-grade stainless steel that has metal brackets attached to each tooth with the help of cement. An archwire connects a series of brackets bonded to each tooth that exerts pressure on the brackets to hold them in position. In case you have allergies to certain metals, your orthodontist will apply titanium to your brackets.

  • Ceramic Braces

    Ceramic braces have been really popular lately because of its unique visible feature. Ceramic braces are made from composite materials and are often the same color as your teeth. They’re also shaped to fit onto your teeth perfectly and thus feel less uncomfortable than metal braces. A distinctive smooth feel in the ceramic surfaces ensures you do not feel uncomfortable or irritated. The wire that binds the braces together helps add invisibility in these braces.

  • Self-Ligating Braces

    Self-ligating braces are quite similar to metal braces and do not require the use of elastics and rubber bands. And instead, a special clip holds the archwire in place. The clips also indicate less pressure and friction placed on your teeth. You’re also likely to have fewer appointments since there aren’t any elastics to be changed.

  • Clear-aligners

    Clear-aligners, commonly known as invisible braces, are an alternative to metal braces. They consist of clear, removable trays that straighten your teeth. They’re custom made to fit well over your teeth. Just like dental braces, clear aligners also use gradual force to control tooth movement, without metal wires. They’re easy to remove that make activities like brushing and flossing after meals easy. They’re trouble-free that make them less likely to irritate your gums and cheeks.

Below is a table that will help you in selecting the right dental braces as per your requirements.

Factors Metal Ceramic Self Ligating Clear Aligners
Cost Affordable
Expensive
Costly Replacement
Visibility Noticeable
Invisible
Appearance Colored
Brackets
Maintenance Requires More Care
Cleaning
Difficulty
Age Group Kids
Teens
Adults
Food Restricted
No Restrictions
Type of fit Removable
Non-removable
Reduced Pain
Durability

Keeping your preference in mind, you and Dr. Koch can collectively decide while choosing the right braces. Our orthodontist in Lawrenceville and Loganville, GA will provide you with personalized service and an enjoyable orthodontic experience.

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Braces 101: Know the Basics of Dental Braces

Only a few people are born with perfect teeth. If you are not among the lucky few, orthodontic treatment can help you correct the symmetry of your face. It is common for people these days to invest in orthodontic care. Since it is a major investment, it is best to educate yourself about dental braces. So, here it is! All you want to know about braces – what to expect and how to live with braces.

Braces 101: What to Expect

Your First Consultation with an Orthodontist

Before the treatment is decided, your family orthodontist will ask you some questions to check whether you are a candidate for braces.

Tip: Get an idea about the cost of the treatment during the course of the conversation.

Your First Visit to Decide on the Dental Braces

This can happen right after your initial consultation or it can be a separate appointment. Here, the orthodontist will take x-rays of your mouth and create a 3D model that will decide the type of braces to use. It will also help the orthodontist to plan your treatment.

The Process of Putting on the Braces

The process of putting the braces on is painless and takes about less than two hours. Braces are glued to your teeth with the help of a special cement.

Regular Check Ups with the Orthodontist

Every month the orthodontist will schedule an appointment to check the progress of your mouth. During some of these visits, the orthodontist may tighten the braces for better results.

Tightening of the Braces

Braces are positioned to move your teeth slowly and steadily, one step at a time. If all the teeth are moved at once, it causes unbearable pain with the risk of getting your mouth damaged. Therefore, your treatment is divided into phases. At the beginning of every phase, the braces will be tightened. You might feel discomfort and pain every time your dental braces are tightened.

Duration of the treatment

It can take 1.5 to 3 years for the treatment to finish. Adults’ mouths are less pliable therefore they take more time than children.

Removing the Braces

When your treatment is over, the dental braces will be taken off. It is a painless process and with a little amount of force the braces will come off easily.

Braces 101: Living with Braces

Now that dental braces is a part of your life, you will need to pick up new habits and learn to do your regular things a little differently.

Your new braces needs care

You will need to take extra care while brushing your teeth to ensure that food is not stuck in between your braces and your teeth. This will help in avoiding teeth stains. Ask your orthodontist the right way to brush your teeth to prevent braces stains.

Foods to avoid

You will have to limit some types of foods during your treatment. Avoid the following foods:

  • Hard foods- hard candies, nuts
  • Chewy foods- beef jerky, bagels
  • Crunchy foods- ice, caramel
  • Sticky foods- caramel candies
  • Foods that you need to bite on- carrots, apples
Foods to include in your diet

You might want to include foods that can strengthen tooth enamel. Include these foods in your diet:

  • Breads – pancakes, muffins without nuts
  • Dairy – pudding, soft cheese
  • Vegetables – mashed potatoes, beans
  • Meat/Poultry – meatballs, soft cooked chicken
  • Seafood – salmon, crab cakes, tuna
  • Fruits – applesauce, fruit juice, bananas
  • Grains – soft cooked rice, pasta
  • Treats – ice cream, soft cake
Managing the occasional pain

There might be an occasional pain, which is actually a good sign. That means your dental braces are doing their job. To reduce the pain, you might want to indulge in frozen treats to numb the pain or you could administer OTC medications like ibuprofen.

Dental Braces is a solid investment you make to have a healthy smile. Request a consultation from an experienced orthodontist in Lawrenceville. Call Koch Orthodontics today!

How to Prevent ‘Braces Stain’ or Stained Teeth during Orthodontic Treatment?

The day you get your dental braces removed is an exciting one, and it’s something you’ve probably been looking forward to. You’ve invested a lot of time, money and patience into the process, and the last thing you want is stains or yellow and white spots on your teeth after braces are removed. Many people believe that braces stain teeth, but they’re not always to blame. More often, stains are caused by food that gets stuck in braces as well as dental plaque accumulating between them. A few precautions during orthodontic treatment can help you prevent stains and enjoy a straighter, more even and whiter smile!

5 Tips for Avoiding Teeth Stains with Dental Braces

Here are some tips for preventing teeth stains and discoloration while getting orthodontic treatment:
  1. Brush Thoroughly – Cleaning braces and teeth properly helps you prevent plaque buildup and keeps teeth from getting stained after braces. Brush for three minutes after every meal, using regular fluoridated toothpaste instead of a teeth whitening toothpaste that can cause white spots on teeth. Wait half an hour between eating and brushing to let saliva wash away acids from food and let your enamel settle.
  2. Floss Every Day – As part of your oral hygiene routine, make sure you’re flossing as well as brushing your teeth regularly. Flossing helps to remove food particles and plaque from teeth and braces, and you should ideally do it before you brush. You can use ordinary floss threaders or special braces-friendly products recommended by your orthodontist. Follow up with mouthwash for extra protection.
  3. Avoid Staining Foods – Certain foods and drinks, such as tomatoes, mustard, sodas, red wine, coffee and food coloring can stain your teeth or dental braces. Red and yellow colored foods are particularly prone to staining ceramic braces, but they can affect other types of braces too. Be aware of ingredients and foods to avoid, and as far as possible, don’t consume these during your treatment.
  4. Consume Less Sugar – Sugary, acidic and starchy foods are extremely harmful for your teeth, since they encourage plaque, stains and cavities. Hard or sticky candies can also get stuck in your braces or teeth and damage the wires or brackets. While you should avoid these items even when you aren’t wearing dental braces, it’s especially important to stay away from them while you are.
  5. Visit Your Orthodontist – To keep teeth and gums in good shape, dentists recommend getting an oral exam and professional dental cleanings twice a year. When you wear braces, however, you may need to go in more often. Not only will an orthodontist be able to clean your teeth and braces more thoroughly than you can on your own, they can also suggest specific tips for keeping them clean.
Have questions about orthodontic treatment for yourself or your kids? Worried about braces stains? Need your dental braces cleaned? An experienced family orthodontist can help. If you’re looking for an orthodontist in Lawrenceville, schedule an appointment at Koch Orthodontics today!