Posts for tag: orthodontics
Sometimes it seems that appearances count for everything—especially in Hollywood. But just recently, Lonnie Chaviz, the 10-year-old actor who plays young Randall on the hit TV show This Is Us, delivered a powerful message about accepting differences in body image. And the whole issue was triggered by negative social media comments about his smile.
Lonnie has a noticeable diastema—that is, a gap between his two front teeth; this condition is commonly seen in children, but is less common in adults. There are plenty of celebrities who aren’t bothered by the excess space between their front teeth, such as Michael Strahan, Lauren Hutton and Vanessa Paradis. However, there are also many people who choose to close the gap for cosmetic or functional reasons.
Unfortunately, Lonnie had been on the receiving end of unkind comments about the appearance of his smile. But instead of getting angry, the young actor posted a thoughtful reply via Instagram video, in which he said: “I could get my gap fixed. Braces can fix this, but like, can you fix your heart, though?”
Lonnie is raising an important point: Making fun of how someone looks shows a terrible lack of compassion. Besides, each person’s smile is uniquely their own, and getting it “fixed” is a matter of personal choice. It’s true that in most circumstances, if the gap between the front teeth doesn’t shrink as you age and you decide you want to close it, orthodontic appliances like braces can do the job. Sometimes, a too-big gap can make it more difficult to eat and to pronounce some words. In other situations, it’s simply a question of aesthetics—some like it; others would prefer to live without it.
There’s a flip side to this issue as well. When teeth need to be replaced, many people opt to have their smile restored just the way it was, rather than in some “ideal” manner. That could mean that their dentures are specially fabricated with a space between the front teeth, or the crowns of their dental implants are spaced farther apart than they normally would be. For these folks, the “imperfection” is so much a part of their unique identity that changing it just seems wrong.
So if you’re satisfied with the way your smile looks, all you need to do is keep up with daily brushing and flossing, and come in for regular checkups and cleanings to keep it healthy and bright. If you’re unsatisfied, ask us how we could help make it better. And if you need tooth replacement, be sure to talk to us about all of your options—teeth that are regular and “Hollywood white;” teeth that are natural-looking, with minor variations in color and spacing; and teeth that look just like the smile you’ve always had.
Because when it comes to your smile, we couldn’t agree more with what Lonnie Chaviz said at the end of his video: “Be who you want to be. Do what you want to do. Do you. Be you. Believe in yourself.”
If you have questions about cosmetic dentistry, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Beautiful Smiles by Design” and “The Magic of Orthodontics.”
Wondering which kind of braces would be right for you and your smile needs?
Chances are good that you’ve heard about clear orthodontic systems that are able to straighten your teeth differently from traditional braces. Instead of bonding brackets and wires to the front of your teeth to shift them around, this clear system uses a series of custom-molded, transparent aligners that fit over your upper and lower teeth. So, is it time to talk to our Bolingbrook, IL, dentists Dr. Kathryn Bachinski and Dr. Christine Petrilla about getting clear braces?
If you are ready to take the next step towards a straighter smile, you should definitely schedule a consultation with us. This is the only way for us to determine whether you are right for clear braces. Here are some of the factors that we look at to help us determine your candidacy.
Clear braces are perfect for adults and older teens who want to discreetly fix a misaligned smile. As you might be able to tell, clear braces provide teens and adults with the ability to get the straighter smile they have always wanted without coworkers and classmates noticing. Unfortunately, children and young teens are not candidates for clear braces.
Your dental issues
The oral problems you are facing will also help us determine whether clear braces are the right approach. While this system can certainly handle a variety of problems it won’t be able to handle more complex or complicated tooth movements or jaw repositioning. This is where traditional braces are still the best choice. You may be right for clear braces if you want to correct,
- Gaps between teeth
- Crooked teeth
- Open bite
We will examine your smile during the consultation to determine whether the issues you want to correct can be addressed successfully with clear braces. If not, we have many other options from which you can choose.
Your dedication (and discipline)
Unlike traditional braces, which are bonded to your teeth, clear braces can be removed. This offers the wearer a lot of freedom during their orthodontic treatment; however, it also means that you will need to be disciplined and still keep those aligners in for about 20-22 hours every day. If you think you will be tempted to keep your aligners off for long periods of time then clear braces may not be right for you.
Call our Bolingbrook office today!
If you want to get a straighter smile the more discreet way, call Hidden Lakes Dental Care in Bolingbrook, IL, today at (630) 759-0077 to learn more about this system and schedule an evaluation. We want to give you something to smile about!
If you're currently undergoing orthodontic treatment, you're no doubt looking forward to the day your braces come off. But that won't end your treatment just yet — you'll need to wear a retainer.
Teeth are held secure in the bone of the jaw by an elastic tissue known as the periodontal ligament. As the braces “pull” the teeth to their new position, the ligament stretches and the bone remodels around the teeth. But the ligament also has a tendency to rebound as the tension eases when the braces are removed. The teeth could then return to their original position, especially during the first few months.
To prevent this patients wear an orthodontic appliance known as a retainer. It maintains some of the tension once supplied by the braces to help keep or “retain” the teeth in their new position. Depending on your age and other factors, you'll have to wear one for at least eighteen months; some patients, especially adults, may have to wear one indefinitely.
You may be familiar with a removable retainer, one you can take in and out of your mouth. But there's another type called a bonded retainer that's fixed to the teeth and can only be removed by a dentist. With this retainer a dentist bonds a thin piece of wire to the back of the teeth where it can't be seen. You can feel it, though, with the tongue: an unusual sensation at first, but one easily grown accustomed to.
Unlike their removable counterparts, bonded retainers aren't noticeable, either to others or the wearer. They're especially appropriate for patients who may not be as diligent in wearing a removable retainer.
It does, though, have some disadvantages. The position of the wire running horizontally across several teeth can make flossing difficult. And as with any retainer, removing it could increase the risk of the teeth moving out of alignment.
There are a number of factors to discuss with your orthodontist about which type of retainer is best for your situation. If you do choose a bonded retainer, be sure you work with the dental hygienist on how best to floss the affected teeth. And if you do have it removed, have a removable retainer prepared so you can preserve that smile you've invested so much into obtaining.
Would you like straighter teeth but don't want to wear metal braces? Luckily, there's another option. Drs. Charles Crowl and Kathryn Bachinski of Hidden Lakes Dental Care in Bolingbrook, IL, explain how clear braces can help you.
What are clear braces?
Clear braces change the position of your teeth using a series of removable aligner trays, instead of wires and brackets. Because the trays are clear, most people probably won't even notice them. Changing the trays every two weeks gradually and gently realigns your teeth. Thanks to special software, your dentist can view a 3-D image of your mouth and see how the aligners will move your teeth before you begin your treatment.
Can clear braces help me?
Clear braces are an excellent choice if you have mild to moderate orthodontic issues, including crossbite, open bite, underbite or overbite. They also close gaps in your smile and relieve crowding. Although most people can benefit from clear braces, traditional braces might be a better choice if your orthodontic issues are severe. Adults may only need to wear clear braces for about a year. Teenagers generally need to wear the braces for as long as they would wear metal or ceramic braces.
What benefits do clear braces offer?
When you wear clear braces, you won't have to worry about:
- Food Restrictions: People who wear traditional braces must avoid hard or sticky foods because these foods can get stuck in wires or damage them. Because you'll remove your clear braces when you eat, you can eat anything you want.
- Cleaning Difficulties: Cleaning around wires and brackets can be time-consuming. When you wear clear braces, you'll take your aligner trays out, brush and floss, as usual, rinse the trays and put the braces back in your mouth.
- Special Events: Even though clear braces are practically invisible, there still may be times when you would rather not wear braces. If you're attending a prom, wedding or another special event in Bolingbrook, you can take your trays out for a few hours. You can also remove the aligner trays while you play sports.
Ready to improve your smile with clear braces? Call Drs. Crowl and Bachinski of Hidden Lakes Dental Care in Bolingbrook, IL, at (630) 759-0077 to schedule your appointment.
Magician Michael Grandinetti mystifies and astonishes audiences with his sleight of hand and mastery of illusion. But when he initially steps onto the stage, it’s his smile that grabs the attention. “The first thing… that an audience notices is your smile; it’s what really connects you as a person to them,” Michael told an interviewer.
He attributes his audience-pleasing smile to several years of orthodontic treatment as a teenager to straighten misaligned teeth, plus a lifetime of good oral care. “I’m so thankful that I did it,” he said about wearing orthodontic braces. “It was so beneficial. And… looking at the path I’ve chosen, it was life-changing.”
Orthodontics — the dental subspecialty focused on treating malocclusions (literally “bad bites”) — can indeed make life-changing improvements. Properly positioned teeth are integral to the aesthetics of any smile, and a smile that’s pleasing to look at boosts confidence and self-esteem and makes a terrific first impression. Studies have even linked having an attractive smile with greater professional success.
There can also be functional benefits such as improved biting/chewing and speech, and reduced strain on jaw muscles and joints. Additionally, well-aligned teeth are easier to clean and less likely to trap food particles that can lead to decay.
The Science Behind the Magic
There are more options than ever for correcting bites, but all capitalize on the fact that teeth are suspended in individual jawbone sockets by elastic periodontal ligaments that enable them to move. Orthodontic appliances (commonly called braces or clear aligners) place light, controlled forces on teeth in a calculated fashion to move them into their new desired alignment.
The “gold standard” in orthodontic treatment remains the orthodontic band for posterior (back) teeth and the bonded bracket for front teeth. Thin, flexible wires threaded through the brackets create the light forces needed for repositioning. Traditionally the brackets have been made of metal, but for those concerned about the aesthetics, they can also be made out of a clear material. Lingual braces, which are bonded to the back of teeth instead of the front, are another less visible option. The most discrete appliance is the removable clear aligner, which consists of a progression of custom-made clear trays that reposition teeth incrementally.
How’s that for a disappearing act?!
If you would like more information about orthodontic treatment please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about the subject by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “The Magic of Orthodontics.”