‘Tis the season for gingerbread houses, candy canes and mince pies. Unfortunately, not all these holiday treats are safe for teens wearing braces. As a busy parent, the last thing you want to deal with during the holidays is an emergency orthodontic appointment to repair damage caused by a holiday treat. These tips can help… Read More»
Post braces exam
We strongly recommend that all patients have a check-up and cleaning at their dental office, approximately 1-2 months following removal of the braces. A 1-2 month waiting period is recommended before seeing your family dentist, so that any swollen gum tissue settles down (especially if a patient did not due a very good job brushing during treatment), as the dentist will be able to do a better job examining and cleaning the teeth.
Having your teeth professionally bleached following orthodontic treatment can make for an absolutely amazing smile, especially if your teeth are stained, discoloured, or generally yellow. We strongly recommend that all teeth bleaching be preformed and closely supervised by your family dentist. Over-the-counter products are designed to ‘fit all’ and this can be detrimental to your teeth and overall dental health. Unlike over-the-counter products, your dentist will make you customized clear bleaching trays from molds of your teeth that accurately fit the shape and contours of your specific teeth; thereby, preventing bleaching gel from irritating or damaging your gums. In addition, it is important to have your dentist select the proper concentration and quantity of bleaching gel, to prevent permanent tooth sensitivity or even the need for root canals which you may be at risk for should you use unsupervised over-the-counter products.
If you are missing a permanent tooth and a space has been left for future replacement, your dentist may replace the missing tooth with a dental implant. Dental implants are normally the best alternative for replacement of missing teeth; however, other solutions may be pursued such as a fixed bridge or removable denture and the best solution for your individual case will be determined via consultation with your family dentist. We strongly recommend that missing teeth are replaced as soon as possible following orthodontic treatment, as the teeth adjacent to the space are very prone to shifting, even with good retainer wear.
Implants consist of two separate components. The implant itself is a tiny titanium screw which is strategically placed in the bone and quickly becomes integrated with the surrounding bone, mimicking the root of the single tooth that is absent. Placement of the implant itself is typically done by an oral surgeon or periodontist. Following a period of healing, your dentist will take a mold over top of your teeth and implant. This mold will be used to make a crown that will fit perfectly into the space of the missing tooth. It is important that you take your retainers with you to all of your appointments during the implant process, make sure the dentist tries your retainer in place and makes necessary adjustments. If there are any problems with the fit of your retainer during the process of making your implant, please contact our office to schedule a retainer check as soon as possible. You should ensure our office is open before scheduling implant appointments, in case you need us to adjust your retainer after each step of the implant process is completed. Once your implant(s) is finished, please contact our office to see about replacing your old Hawley (acrylic and wires) retainer with a new clear retainer.
If you are missing a tooth/teeth and space has been left following orthodontic treatment, the space may be replaced with a bridge (if a dental implant is not suitable) and this will be determined via consultation with your family dentist. We strongly recommend that missing teeth are replaced as soon as possible following orthodontic treatment as the teeth adjacent to the space are very prone to shifting even with good retainer wear.
It is important that you take your retainers with you to all your appointments during the bridge making process, make sure the dentist tries your retainer in place and makes necessary adjustments. If there are any problems with the fit of your retainer during the process of making your bridge, please contact our office to schedule a retainer check as soon as possible. You should ensure our office is open before scheduling appointments to make your bridge, in case you need us to adjust your retainer after each step of the bridge process is completed. Once your bridge is finished, please contact our office to see about replacing your old Hawley (acrylic and wires) retainer with a new clear retainer.
Some patients have smaller than normal teeth and veneers may be required in order to make the tooth wider and cosmetically pleasing. Equal spaces are purposely created on either side of abnormally small teeth during orthodontic treatment. These spaces are designed so that your dentist can make the tooth wider by bonding a veneer to the surface, so the tooth will then take on the appearance of a proper size.
Veneers can also be bonded to teeth to cover staining/discoloration or deformities in the surface or general shape of the tooth. Veneers typically consist of a porcelain laminate that is custom fabricated in a dental lab for superior strength and esthetics. However, your dentist may also chose to do a veneer by adding white filling material directly to your tooth. The result, dramatically improved smile esthetics! If there are any problems with the fit of your retainer after your dentist places the veneer, please contact our office to schedule a retainer check as soon as possible.
Now that you have straight teeth and a proper bite, it may be time to replace your large/old fillings with a much stronger dental crown. Replacement of large fillings with dental crowns, serves two important purposes: for one, it improves the overall strength of the tooth and prevents tooth fracture, which could ultimately lead to the loss of a tooth if the fracture is large; secondly, crowns are fabricate in a lab to precisely fit your opposing teeth, giving you the best possible bite after your teeth have been aligned with orthodontic treatment.
Your dentist will advise you if old fillings should be replaced by stronger/better fitting crowns once your orthodontic treatment is completed. If there are any problems with the fit of your retainer after your dentist places the crown, please contact our office to schedule a retainer check as soon as possible.
Custom Mouth Guard
Now that you have invested a lot of time and money into your new smile, it must be protected while playing sports! Please ask your family dentist to make you a customized mouth guard. Your dentist will take detailed impressions of your teeth, so that your mouth guard will fit over your teeth precisely; thereby, preventing or minimizing possible trauma to your teeth while playing contact sports.