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August 2018

teen braces Sacramento CA

Teen Braces: Supporting a Successful Transition

By Blog

If your child or teen is soon to get braces or Invisalign, there are a few things you both should be thinking about ahead of time. Transitioning to teen braces, Sacramento CA, can be a bumpy or smooth ride; everyone deals with change differently. However, in just about every case, there will be significant changes to your child’s diet and routine. That’s a given. Any way you can support your teen and help him/her be ready to adjust to those changes is a good thing.

Are you interested in learning more about teen braces, Sacramento CA, or Invisalign? Visit our office to speak with  orthodontics specialist Dr. David Markham. Call us at 916-924-8970 to make an appointment.

Help Your Child Comply with Diet Changes

A good way to help your teen adjust quickly to new eating habits is to make a big deal about them. Talk about them. Make a list of foods your child will need to avoid and put it on the refrigerator. Even if your teen is already very independent in terms of feeding himself or herself, take a few minutes to cut her bagel into small pieces or slice an apple for him.  Model the changes they’ll need to start making for themselves.

If your child is preparing to start Invisalign, the focus will need to be on time rather than diet, and scheduling snacks and oral hygiene. Luckily, no foods are banned with Invisalign. However, in a sense, all food is banned with Invisalign. You’ll need to help him set-up a meal and snacking schedule that works with his established routine (without leaving him feeling hungry or deprived). If your child is used to eating a portable breakfast on the way to school, strategize a way he can do this and still be able to brush and floss before putting the aligners back in. Start waking him up earlier in the morning if you have to, or making a protein-rich smoothie he can down quickly. If your child is usually a gum chewer, help strategize ways to avoid the temptation to chew when wearing Invisalign.

Monitoring Oral Hygiene

Teens are usually very good at monitoring their own oral hygiene, but during a transition to teen braces you may have to proactively intervene.  If your child is trying alternate flossing methods, find out what works best and make sure there are plenty in the medicine cabinet. The transition to braces gives you an excellent opportunity to be nosy, for a change! Ask him or her to show you how he/she flosses now, so you can work out any bugs together.

Supply the Tools They Need, and Talk About Them

In the beginning, throwing extra stuff at your teen can be overwhelming. Help them manage the extra “stuff” initially. For example, if your child needs wax to use on the metal brackets, keep it in a central location. Don’t hand it over and expect it to stay at his or her fingertips. Same with flossing tools.

An Invisalign patient will need a mobile oral hygiene kit to take to school. Before you go out and buy something, ask where he or she will keep it. If there’s one unused zipper pocket in her school bag, make sure the kit will fit there.

If your daughter is getting ready to use Invisalign and she likes to wear lip color, you’ll need to have a talk about lipstick alternatives. Colored lip gloss and lipstick are drawn to the aligners like magnets, and no one want to have rose-colored teeth. Some cosmetic lip colors dry quickly and do not transfer to the aligners, however. Do some research on lip stains and take her on a special trip to the drug store to pick out some new products.

Talk About Pain

There’s no way around it; appointments to have wires tightened can and will cause sensitivity to the teeth. Talking about it can help in two ways. It will help your child know what to expect, and it will help you support him or her when it happens. If your teen is already driving and is responsible for his own transportation to and from appointments, it may be easy to forget what follows those appointments. Encourage your child to let you know if he’s experiencing soreness, so you can give him a little extra TLC and leeway when it happens.

Coordinate with Your Teen to Schedule Visits

Whether your child is getting metal braces or Invisalign, he or she will need to visit our office regularly for progress checks. Talk to your teen and work with our staff before you start scheduling these, to make sure they have a minimal impact on his or her schedule. Your child may prefer to stagger the appointment days and times to make sure one class is not always affected by the absence. We have office hours until 6:00 pm one day of the week, and until 5:00 pm on two others. If missing school is not an option, you may want to make use of one of these days or our monthly Saturday hours.

The important thing is to make sure your teen is an active part of this conversation. You don’t want scheduled office visits to limit your child’s ability to participate in an important extra-curricular activity or miss the same academic class once a month.

Ready to Learn More?

The choice to start your child on teen braces or Invisalign is always a good one. The better prepared you both are, the more successful you can be with the treatment. Call us at 916-924-8970 to make an appointment with Dr. Markham for teen braces, Sacramento CA.

Types of Orthodontic Appliances – Sacramento, CA

By Braces, Invisalign, Orthodontics, Retainer

orhtodontic treatmentThe success of any orthodontic treatment depends on the orthodontist’s skill and patient compliance. Patients must wear their appliances as instructed to ensure the teeth and jaws move into proper alignment. Appliance is the word used to describe braces and other devices used to move the teeth into their desired positions. Anything new that is attached or placed in your mouth can take getting used to, but the benefits far outweigh any initial discomfort. Orthodontic appliances apply a gentle force which can cause some initial discomfort but remember, this means the teeth are moving into place. Plus, the benefits of the appliances far outweigh any tenderness.

Dr. David Markham is a board-certified orthodontist, skilled at creating beautiful smiles and happy patients, in the Sacramento, CA area. The Markham Orthodontics team provides superior orthodontic treatment and top-notch customer service to patients of all ages. Call us today for an orthodontic consultation by calling 916-924-8970 or visit us online.

Types of Orthodontic Appliances

The type of appliance prescribed to you will depend on your specific orthodontic needs and treatment goals. Several types of appliances are used for the duration of your treatment and are either fixed or removable.

Appliances used in orthodontics may include:

  1. TADs – Temporary anchorage devices are tiny screws used to provide a temporary yet fixed point from which to apply the force needed to move the teeth. It allows for predictable tooth control.
  2. Rubber Bands – The orthodontist may refer to these as elastics. Rubber bands attach to the brackets to apply enough gentle force to move the teeth and jaws. A wide range of colors are available, allowing patients to pick their favorite color, school color, or celebrate the holidays with different colors.
  3. Chain Elastics – These are used to close spaces between the teeth.
  4. Headgear – If a patient is prescribed headgear, it will attach to the braces from the back of the head. It is easy to remove, most often worn at bedtime, and used to apply the extra force to move the teeth and jaws.
  5. RetainersWhen braces are removed, a retainer is used to keep the teeth in place. This appliance will ensure your teeth remain in their proper position until they’ve had time to settle into place. Some retainers are removable while others are bonded behind the teeth in a fixed position. Retainers can be customized with different colors, photos, and designs based on the patient’s preference.
  6. Herbst Appliance – This fixed appliance reduces overbite in patients by slowly moving the jaw forward and the upper molars backward. It is most often used by younger patients who are still growing.
  7. Palatal Expander – The appliance “expands” or widens the upper jaw by putting pressure on the upper molars every time the orthodontist makes an adjustment. Once the desired expansion is achieved, the appliance will remain in place for a few months.
  8. Positioners – This appliance is used to complete the last few tooth movements needed to complete the orthodontic treatment.
  9. Separators or Spacers – These are tiny rubber doughnuts that are inserted between your teeth to gently and slowly push them apart.
  10. Clear AlignersAligners can be an alternative to traditional clear or metal braces. They are custom made to fit over your teeth and are used to move the teeth to the correct position. Clear aligners are made of comfortable and smooth plastic and are nearly invisible.
  11. Mouth Guard – A mouth guard protects your teeth from injury during sports or other vigorous athletic activities.
  12. Night Guard – A night guard is needed to prevent and stop patients from grinding or clenching their teeth.
  13. Bite Plate – This is a small appliance made from an acrylic material with metal clasps. These clip onto the inside of the top teeth. It is used before orthodontic treatment begins to correct a deep bite and prevents the back teeth from touching.
  14. Habit Breaker Thumb Appliance – It is used to deter thumb sucking habits and poor tongue posture.

Contact Us

If you are considering orthodontic treatment, check out our patient video gallery to see what other patients have to say about their Markham Orthodontic experience. Then call our office at 916-924-8970 for a complimentary evaluation or reach out to us online.

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