Posts for tag: braces

By Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
April 09, 2021
Category: Oral Health
Tags: braces  

Wondering if everything you thought you knew about braces is true?

Maybe you know someone who’s had braces before, and they told you some pretty wacky stories. Perhaps your teen is a little nervous about getting braces because they’ve been reading up on them and they have some reservations. There is a lot of misinformation out there, whether on the Internet or through word of mouth. Our Marion, AR, family dentist Dr. Wayne Cook wants you to know the truth about getting braces.

Myth: Braces are only for kids!

Braces aren’t just for kids. While we often associate kids and teens with braces, this doesn’t mean that you age out of getting orthodontic treatment. In fact, your dentist has been treating more adults with braces than ever before.

We also offer easy, discreet orthodontic systems such as Invisalign that fit into your lifestyle and make it easier to get a straighter smile without worrying that others will notice your braces.

Myth: It will take years to see results.

While it can take time to achieve full results if you are dealing with more complicated orthodontic needs, for the most part, people won’t have to wait years to get their braces off. Thanks to high-tech orthodontic planning and amazing orthodontic options these days, there are many ways to help our patients achieve faster results. Since treatment times can vary, it’s important to discuss this with your Marion, AR, family dentist during your consultation.

Myth: Braces are bulky and cumbersome.

Yes, a long time ago braces were considered to be a bit awkward and bulky, but these days orthodontic treatment is designed with patient comfort in mind. The braces we offer our patients today are so much more advanced and sleeker than the braces you remember from decades past. Traditional braces have gotten a makeover with thinner wires and lightweight, smaller brackets. Braces don’t have to be awkward and uncomfortable.

If you have any questions or concerns about getting braces, don’t hesitate to reach out to our Marion, AR, dentist Dr. Cook who would be happy to answer your questions and discuss orthodontic options with you. Call us today at (870) 739-8799.

By Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
November 19, 2020
Category: Oral Health
Tags: braces   Floss  

Flossing to clean the spaces between your teeth effectively gets rid of difficult-to-reach spaces that toothbrushing might miss, particularly if wires and brackets are blocking the way. Ideally, you should be flossing between every single tooth once daily, or more depending on what you ate, and then utilize a tiny interproximal toothbrush for cleaning around and under the wires and brackets.

If you’re having a particularly difficult time flossing with braces, you can ask your dentist in Marion, AR, Dr. Wayne Cook of Wayne Cook D.D.S. for personalized recommendations. With this in mind, here are some tips to help you get started.

Simple Tips to Floss Your Teeth

  • Take 18 to 24 inches of waxed floss and then thread it between your teeth and the main wire. It’s important to use waxed floss as unwaxed versions easily tear and can become stuck in your brackets.
  • Always wrap the floss end portions around the index fingers so that you can handle the floss easier.
  • Press the floss gently between the teeth and then slide it up and down along both of the teeth’s sides. If you are flossing your top teeth, do an inverted U shape—go up a tooth’s side portion to your gum line and go down the other tooth’s side.
  • Remove the floss by gently unthreading it from the wire. Don’t just pop it out to avoid accidentally knocking out the wire from the bracket.
  • Do these steps for all the brackets and teeth.

Other Tips for Easier and Proper Flossing with Braces

To speed up flossing the traditional way, you can opt to use a simple floss threader. This tool will help you pull the floss behind the wires of your braces easily. If you have sensitive gums, which usually happen to most people who just started wearing braces, you can likewise consider using dental tape for flossing. This is basically super-slim floss that’s spongy and smooth and is wider than standard dental floss. Also, you can consider flossing with an oral irrigator or Waterpik.

Regardless of the method you choose, you must keep up with your daily oral care regimen and visits to your dentist in Marion, AR, to prevent oral health issues while your braces work to make your teeth and smile straighter.

Talk to Us For More Oral Hygiene Tips and Tricks When Wearing Braces

Schedule an appointment here at Wayne Cook, D.D.S. in Marion, AR, with Dr. Wayne Cook by calling 870-739-8799.

By Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
May 12, 2020
Category: Oral Health
Tags: braces  

Good oral hygiene is particularly important when you wear braces. If you don't remove plaque under your wires, you're more likely to develop cavities or gum disease. Fortunately, it's easy to protect your teeth by both visiting your Marion, AR, dentist, Dr. Wayne Cook, for follow-up visits and making a few changes to your usual oral care routine.

How to Practice Good Oral Hygiene When You Wear Braces

Following the cleaning recommendations provided by your dentist will help you safeguard your smile. Although brushing and flossing definitely take a little longer when you wear braces, brushing and flossing thoroughly will help you avoid cavities and other dental issues. These daily tasks will help you maintain your oral health:

  • Rinse Your Mouth Often: Rinsing removes food debris that can become stuck in and under your wires/brackets.
  • Add Extra Brushing Sessions to Your Day: In addition to brushing your teeth in the morning and evening, you should brush after every meal. Use a soft-bristled brush and brush from the top down. Place the brush at a 45-degree angle against your teeth when you brush. Replace your toothbrush every three months or when the bristles begin to flatten out or appear worn.
  • Don't Forget to Floss: Flossing removes plaque and debris between teeth and also helps you access those hard-to-reach areas under brace wires. Flossing threaders and interdental brushes can make the job a little easier. If you find flossing difficult, consider using a water-powered flosser to wash away plaque and food particles.

If you have questions about oral hygiene, let your dentist know during your visits to our Marion dental office. Your dentist and his staff can advise you on oral hygiene techniques and offer tips that may make brushing and flossing easier.

Keep your smile healthy with regular visits to Dr. Cook! Call our office at (870) 739-8799 to schedule an appointment.

By Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
April 08, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: braces  

Properly aligned teeth are the key to a healthy, attractive smile. Braces, offered by your Marion, AR, dentist, Dr. Wayne Cook, can help you take advantage of the important oral and general health benefits orthodontic treatment provides.

What Braces from our Marion Office Can Do for Your Smile

Misaligned teeth aren't just unattractive but can interfere with your biting and speaking ability and may even increase your risk of developing certain diseases and conditions. Improving the alignment of your teeth can prevent these issues:

  • Poor Speech: Gaps between teeth or bite problems can affect your ability to speak clearly or pronounce certain sounds. Orthodontic treatment in Wayne corrects these problems and helps you improve your speech.
  • Difficulty Biting and Chewing: Your upper and lower teeth are designed to meet perfectly when you bite and chew. If they don't fit together properly, you may find it difficult to chew foods thoroughly. Your stomach has to work harder to digest food that hasn't been broken down completely by chewing. As a result, you may experience upset stomachs and other gastrointestinal issues.
  • Cavities: When your teeth are crooked and overlap, it may not be easy to completely remove plaque. The longer the clear, sticky substance remains on your teeth, the greater the chance that a cavity will form. Braces straighten your teeth, reducing your cavity risk.
  • Gum Disease: Plaque eventually turns into tartar, a hard substance that irritates the gums and can be a factor in gum disease. If you have gum disease, bacteria from the infection can travel to other parts of your body via your bloodstream, increasing your risk of heart disease, stroke, and other serious health conditions. Straightening your teeth can help you avoid these health issues.
  • Breathing Issues in Children: A narrow palate (roof of the mouth) can make it more difficult for your child to breathe. Palate issues may cause sleep apnea, change your child's facial characteristics or make clear speech more difficult. Wearing a palatal expander, an orthodontic device that gradually expands the palate, can be very helpful.

Could braces help you improve your smile? Call your dentist in Marion, AR, Dr. Cook, at (870) 739-8799 to schedule an appointment.

By Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
June 08, 2019
Category: Dental Procedures

Sometimes, looking at old pictures can really bring memories back to life. Just ask Stefani Germanotta—the pop diva better known as Lady Gaga. In one scene from the recent documentary Five Foot Two, as family members sort through headshots from her teen years, her father proclaims: "Here, this proves she had braces!"

"If I had kept that gap, then I would have even more problems with Madonna," Lady Gaga replies, referencing an ongoing feud between the two musical celebrities.

The photos of Gaga's teenage smile reveal that the singer of hits like "Born This Way" once had a noticeable gap (which dentists call a diastema) between her front teeth. This condition is common in children, but often becomes less conspicuous with age. It isn't necessarily a problem: Lots of well-known people have extra space in their smiles, including ex-football player and TV host Michael Strahan, actress Anna Paquin…and fellow pop superstar Madonna. It hasn't hurt any of their careers.

Yet others would prefer a smile without the gap. Fortunately, diastema in children is generally not difficult to fix. One of the easiest ways to do so is with traditional braces or clear aligners. These orthodontic appliances, usually worn for a period of months, can actually move the teeth into positions that look more pleasing in the smile and function better in the bite. For many people, orthodontic treatment is a part of their emergence from adolescence into adulthood.

Braces and aligners, along with other specialized orthodontic appliances, can also remedy many bite problems besides diastema. They can correct misaligned teeth and spacing irregularities, fix overbites and underbites, and take care of numerous other types of malocclusions (bite problems).

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that kids get screened for orthodontic problems at age 7. Even if an issue is found, most won't get treatment at this age—but in some instances, it's possible that early intervention can save a great deal of time, money and effort later. For example, while the jaw is still developing, its growth can be guided with special appliances that can make future orthodontic treatment go quicker and easier.

Yet orthodontics isn't just for children—adults can wear braces too! As long as teeth and gums are healthy, there's no upper age limit on orthodontic treatment. Instead of traditional silver braces, many adults choose tooth-colored braces or clear aligners to complement their more professional appearance.

So if your child is at the age where screening is recommended—or if you're unhappy with your own smile—ask us whether orthodontics could help. But if you get into a rivalry with Madonna…you're on your own.

If you have questions about orthodontic treatment, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “The Magic of Orthodontics” and “Orthodontics For The Older Adult.”

Marion, AR Family Dentist
Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
303 Bancario Rd.Suite 7
Marion, AR 72364
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