It's been just over a month since Dr. Jones' Assistant, Jennifer, got her upper braces placed. We wanted to check in with Jennifer to see how everything was going.
Q: Jennifer, it's been a month. How are you feeling? Are your teeth/mouth hurting?
A: "It's been going better the past week or so because I'm getting used to them more. I just got the wire changed yesterday so there is some discomfort to chewing right now, but hopefully it won't last long."
Q: Have you noticed any results?
A: "Yes, already! I've noticed that my teeth are straighter but that could be due to the fact that I'm not currently biting on all my teeth :)"
Q: What is the biggest annoyance about having braces?
A: "Flossing! It takes forever, but I still do it!"
Side Story: As mentioned in Answer 1, Jennifer had an orthodontic appointment yesterday to get a new wire placed. She said that when they took the other one off, she asked if she could floss before the new wire was put in and was so excited! Who knew flossing could feel so wonderful?!
Q: What is the next step?
A: "Other than going back for 4-5 week checks, they will put the lower brackets on in a few months. I asked the orthodontist to give me a heads up before putting the lower brackets on so I can mentally prepare myself. He laughed and said, 'Of course I will!'"
Q: Have you had to change the way you eat?
A: I have noticed I need to take smaller bites...just because I feel like I have a mouthful before the bite ever goes in!"
We want to thank Jennifer for putting up with all of our questions! If you missed the initial blog post about Jennifer, please check it out: Braces aren't just for teens. Do you have questions that we didn't ask? Please feel free to contact us by leaving a comment, or emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whether you are an adult looking into orthodontic treatment for yourself, or your child, please contact us to answer questions or for a referral. We have several orthodontists that we refer to that are all over the Overland Park, Leawood, Prairie Village, and even, Olathe area. Like we mentioned in the first post, it is important to find an orthodontist that you like, and that is convenient in location.
Stay tuned for our next interview with Jennifer in the next few months. We will also have an update photo!
Your teeth and smile can be a huge culprit in aging your appearance if not protected and cared for properly. However, there are things that you can do to not only make you and your teeth look younger, but add years to your life!
What can you do to make your teeth and face appear younger?
1. Brush, Floss, and Visit Routinely
We can not state enough times that importance of home oral hygiene. Brush two times a day for two minutes each and floss everyday. Add a fluoride rinse or mouthwash to your routine to help fight cavities. Less cavities = less dental work = more natural, healthy enamel = young smile!
Brushing at home removes some of the surface staining caused by certain foods and drinks. It also helps remove plaque. Flossing helps remove plaque that hides in-between teeth and near the gumline. This is helpful to help prevent periodontal disease. The bacteria that builds up in our mouths when you don't have good oral health habits can enter the bloodstream. This bacteria is known to affect overall cardiac health and systemic health (this means your whole body).
2. Complete Recommended Dental Treatment
Dr. Jones is very conservative and realistic when it comes to recommending treatment. You can bet that if she is telling you that it's time to do that filling or crown, you can believe it and trust her. Her main goal is educating you about why we are recommending the treatment so that you can have a full understanding of why it's beneficial to you. Following through on Dr. Jones's recommended treatment will help ensure that you don't get to a point where you are facing a lot of overwhelming dental work or you suddenly notice your smile looks "old" or your teeth look "worn out and broken". Just like your car and home, maintaining your teeth and smile on a regular basis is very important for long term success! If you want your smile and face to look young - prevention and early intervention is the key!!
3. Whiten Teeth
If you look at young children and young adults, you will notice that their teeth appear to be whiter, shinier and brighter. As we age, teeth darken, yellow and dull due to diet, lifestyle, and the daily punishment we put on our teeth. Good home care and professional cleanings will keep your enamel looking brighter and whiter with less extrinsic stain. We will also take the time to educate you on the products that will work best for you.
When that isn't enough, then you can whiten your teeth using whitening products, or having a professional whitening at our office to break up intrinsic stain. Take advantage of our whitening special happening now until June 18th!
4. Use a Night Guard/Sports Mouth Guard
When people are under stress, they can be harder on their teeth without even knowing it. Especially at night when sleeping, we tend to take our stress out on our teeth! If you wake up with jaws that ache or teeth that hurt, you may be clenching or grinding during certain points in your sleep cycle. This habit can cause teeth to wear more quickly and shorten the length of teeth, or worse, break them! As your teeth shorten over time due to wear, the length and structure of your face changes, which causes you to look older and have more wrinkles. Your teeth and skeletal structure help maintain the contours of your face, so protect them!
By wearing a guard at night, you are protecting your smile. Talk with Dr. Jones at your next visit to discuss the different kinds of night guards that are available.
It is also important to invest in a quality sports mouthguard if you play any sport. The American Dental Association has a long list of sports in which they would recommend the use of a mouth guard. NOT ALL GUARDS ARE EQUAL!!! Be sure you talk with Dr. Jones about getting yourself or your child a custom-made mouthguard.
5. Other Tips from Dr. Jones
A. Teeth are for eating, speaking and smiling - not opening cans and bottles, breaking threads or fishing line, biting nails and opening packages. Using teeth improperly will wear and damage them faster, causing them to hurt and look older.
B. Smoking and chewing tobacco - don't do it.
C. Drink plenty of water
D. Chew sugarless gum, especially gum containing xylitol
E. Use electric or soft bristled toothbrush only. Anything else is for cleaning grout
F. Use sunscreen and good moisturizer every day, including a good lip balm with SPF in it (like Alison Jones Lip Balm!). The skin on our face and around our mouths, including our lips, is very susceptible to the elements and sun damage - which ages us if not properly protected and cared for.
6. Restorative Work to Reverse the Aged Appearance of Teeth
Below are before and after pictures of one of Dr. Jones' patients that had her anterior (or front) teeth restored with both crowns and veneers to reverse aging signs. Her teeth had lots of large, stained, old, worn fillings. The teeth not only look beautiful and whiter, but they look healthy. When people look healthy, they naturally look younger! Just like a fresh coat of paint or a new roof will make your home look new and fresh, as well as protect and prolong the life of your home...so will completing beautiful restorative work on your teeth!
Another restorative option that many of our patients are requesting is bonding. This is using tooth colored composite (filling material) to lengthen the front teeth that have worn over the years. It looks natural and all the patients that get it love the results!
Are you ready to get back to a youthful smile? Whether it's for a cleaning, professional whitening, or restorative work, Dr. Jones and her team can get you back to a bright, white smile. Call us to get started! 913-491-0077
Dr. Jones had a very exciting weekend! On Friday she celebrated her oldest's birthday, watched him play in his baseball game on Saturday, and celebrated a great Mother's Day with all four of her favorite people yesterday. Dr. Jones is is a wonderful mom, sister, daughter and dentist.
We hope that everyone had a great Mother's Day!
Ali Jones, D.D.S. - Dentist