Thursday, October 28, 2021

Handling Orthodontics Issues at Home

Even though you are careful, you may occasionally damage your braces or orthodontic appliance. While there are steps you can take to temporarily fix or alleviate discomfort and prevent additional damage, you should always notify our office if you have any issues or concerns. 

At Kelly Orthodontics, we want our patients to be informed of problems that may occur, and understand how to solve them, at least temporarily, until it is possible to return to our office. With the tools and supplies listed below, you will be prepared to handle the most common orthodontic issues at home.

  • Orthodontic Wax
  • Dental Floss 
  • Tweezers
  • Q-tips 
  • Salt 
  • Interproximal Brush 
  • Toothpicks 
  • Non-prescription Pain Reliever  
  • Topical Anesthetic (such as Orabase or Ora-Gel)

Below are some typical orthodontic issues and how you can solve them:

Discomfort - It’s normal to have some initial discomfort during orthodontic treatment as your teeth move. Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water and over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, may alleviate this discomfort.  If the discomfort lasts longer than a couple days, be sure to call our office.

If food becomes stuck between your teeth, use dental floss or a proxy brush to dislodge the food. If you cut your gums, tongue or the inside of your cheek, apply finger pressure to the bleeding site for several minutes. If the bleeding doesn’t stop, call your family dentist or our office.

Minor irritations and canker sores will heal more quickly if you apply Zylactin or Orabase according to the manufacturer's directions. You can purchase it over the counter at most pharmacies and convenient stores.

Loose or Poking Archwires - If a wire causes irritation, push the wire away from the area using the eraser end of a pencil or a Q-tip. If the wire cannot be tucked away, cover the end of the wire with a small piece of wax or a cotton ball until you can see us for an adjustment.

If the main wire has come out of the tube on the back tooth, attempt to reinsert the wire with a pair of needle-nose pliers or tweezers. If the wire is sticking you, place a piece of wax over the area. As a last resort, if you cannot come into our office, the wire can be cut with a small wire cutter or fingernail clippers close to the back of the last brace.

Loose Brackets or Bands - If a bracket becomes loose, it usually remains connected to the main wire by a little colored rubber ring or a small steel ligature tie. Tweezers can be used to reposition the brace if it flips around the wire and becomes a source of irritation. Call our office and inform us of the problem. If a piece of your braces break, save the piece and call our office to schedule a repair visit.

There will be normal, day-to-day discomfort associated with wearing braces, if you have any questions about your orthodontic treatment, or if you think you may have a true orthodontic emergency, don’t hesitate to call our St. Charles orthodontic office…We are here help!

Friday, October 8, 2021

Is Invisalign Expensive?

Orthodontics may seem like a purely aesthetic treatment for a more attractive smile, but that’s not the case. Crooked teeth are harder to keep clean, which puts you at risk of decay and periodontal disease.

When it comes to orthodontic treatment options, many people have a hard time deciding between Invisalign and traditional braces. Ultimately, every patient is different, and the best option comes down to your lifestyle, your preferences, and your orthodontic needs. If you want a treatment option that doesn’t draw attention to the fact that you’re straightening your teeth, Invisalign is the clear choice for you. But just how expensive is Invisalign treatment?

There are several factors that contribute to the amount you might pay Invisalign. Factors include:

1. Insurance: When Invisalign was first introduced, it wasn’t covered by insurance companies, making it a very expensive option for anyone who wanted it. Today, Invisalign is covered by a wide variety of companies and plans. Double check your insurance plan to see if Invisalign treatment is covered.

2. The Severity of Your Orthodontic Problem: Invisalign can treat the entire spectrum of teeth and jaw misalignments. However, more acute conditions take more time and supplies to correct. Therefore, a severe orthodonticproblem might end up with higher overall costs.

3. Patient Compliance: Invisalign’s efficacy depends almost entirely on whether you actually wear your aligners. The treatment itself recommends that the aligners be worn all day, every day. If you can't leave your Invisalign trays in because of an activity like playing a sport or playing an instrument, your teeth are not going to move as quickly. This means that your treatment time will take longer than originally planned, which could make your entire treatment more expensive.

Effective for a wide range of smiles. The Invisalign system has been successful in giving hundreds of thousands of amazing smiles to both teens and adults. While the cost of Invisalign is covered by most insurance companies, if cost is a concern, we can provide you with estimates based on your exact treatment plan.  

At Kelly Orthodontics, we believe that every patient deserves a beautiful smile, and we will make every effort to make your Invisalign treatment affordable. We offer several payment programs including interest-free financing, prepayment discounts, and extended third party financing. We also have a multiple family member discount policy. We accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express and can easily arrange for automatic payment from your credit or debit card.

Not everyone is a candidate for the Invisalign aligner system. Please contact our office to schedule a consultation with Dr. Kelly to see if the Invisalign system is right for you. 



Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Straight Teeth Matter

Kelly Orthodontics

The benefit of straight teeth is not only for aesthetics. Straight teeth provide more than a great smile.

For starters, straight teeth are easier to clean. When teeth are rotated and overlapped, more nooks and crannies exist where plaque bacteria can build up. Even with proper brushing and flossing, some areas may be difficult to clean and will have a higher risk of forming a cavity. Straighter teeth allow for easier cleaning and lower cavity risk.

Just like how misaligned teeth can cause cavities, they can also result in gum disease. Because misaligned teeth are more difficult to keep clean, the build-up of plaque bacteria can cause gum inflammation that may potentially lead to gingivitis and periodontitis. Also, gum recession can occur in areas with crowding due to difficulty with brushing.   

Even if your front teeth appear straight, there can be a problem with your bite. Added wear of teeth, chipping of teeth, and teeth grinding are very common problems when an improper bite is present. Jawbone and joint problems can also develop, leading to breakdown of the bones that support your teeth as well as TMJ pain, headaches, and migraines. All of this can make it difficult to talk and chew food efficiently and comfortably.

The most notable benefit of straight teeth is the improvement to facial aesthetics. Teeth in proper alignment look nice when talking and smiling. When teeth are crooked or the bite is off, it can change the shape of the face. Teeth with extreme overbite can make the lower jaw and chin look unpronounced, and underbite can make the chin look overly pronounced.

The benefits of straight teeth and jaw alignment are truly important to your overall well-being. If you are interested in straightening your teeth or have any questions about options, we encourage you to contact us today to schedule an appointment. At Kelly Orthodontics, our team can develop a plan to help you get straight teeth and ensure a healthy bite is achieved.


Tuesday, September 7, 2021

What You Should Know About Clear Aligners

Advancements in orthodontics have given our patients more options for achieving the smile they have always wanted! At Kelly Orthodontics, we offer the latest in orthodontic treatment, including clear aligners, like Invisalign! Clear aligners allow Dr. Kelly to achieve the same results as traditional braces but without any brackets or wires. If you are thinking about improving your smile but can’t picture yourself in braces…clear aligners might be the perfect option for you.

What are Clear Aligners? Clear aligners use cutting-edge software and technology to shift misaligned teeth with a series of customized trays. Clear aligners are a removable orthodontic appliance. Clear aligners are made of a thermoplastic material and custom-designed to fit over your teeth. Although they look very different from braces, clear aligners use the same gentle pressure to gradually move your teeth into the perfect position.

Clear aligners offer more flexibility than traditional braces. Unlike braces, no part of the aligner is attached to the actual surface of the tooth. Because the aligners can be removed, they make it easier to keep your teeth and gums clean throughout the treatment process. Clear aligners are taken out before you begin your normal dental hygiene routine, allowing you to brush and floss the same way you always have. Did we mention that since the aligners are removable…there are no restrictions on what you can eat!

Are Clear Aligners Expensive? As clear aligners have become more popular over the years, they have also become more affordable. Clear aligners tend to cost about as much as traditional braces; however, the cost of your orthodontic treatment will vary depending on your individual needs and treatment plan.

At Kelly Orthodontics, our goal is to provide affordable, high-quality treatment that fits your budget. Our staff will discuss the cost of your treatment and your payment plan options so you can make the best choice for you, and your smile. We offer several payment programs including interest-free financing, prepayment discounts, and extended third party financing. We also have a multiple family member discount policy. We accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express and can easily arrange for automatic payment from your credit or debit card.

How Long does Clear Aligner Treatment Take? Each patient’s orthodontic problem is unique, and each patient responds to treatment differently, so there is no universal answer for how long your clear aligner treatment will take. In general, the total treatment time for clear aligners can be anywhere from 12-18 months.

There’s a lot to love about clear aligners, but they aren’t always a good fit for every patient. If you’d like to learn more about how clear aligners can transform your smile, give Kelly Orthodontics a call today and schedule a complimentary consultation. Dr. Kelly will assess your smile to determine if clear aligners are a good fit for you.


Handling Orthodontics Issues at Home

Kelly Orthodontics Even though you are careful, you may occasionally damage your braces or orthodontic appliance. While there are steps you ...