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Posts for tag: braces


Mayim Bialik has spent a good part of her life in front of TV cameras: first as the child star of the hit comedy series Blossom, and more recently as Sheldon Cooper’s love interest — a nerdy neuroscientist — on The Big Bang Theory. (In between, she actually earned a PhD in neuroscience from UCLA…but that’s another story.) As a child, Bialik had a serious overbite — but with all her time on camera, braces were just not an option.

“I never had braces,” she recently told Dear Doctor – Dentistry & Oral Health magazine. “I was on TV at the time, and there weren’t a lot of creative solutions for kids who were on TV.” Instead, her orthodontist managed to straighten her teeth using retainers and headgear worn only at night.

Today, there are several virtually invisible options available to fix orthodontic issues — and you don’t have to be a child star to take advantage of them. In fact, both children and adults can benefit from these unobtrusive appliances.

Tooth colored braces are just like traditional metal braces, with one big difference: The brackets attached to teeth are made from a ceramic material that blends in with the natural color of teeth. All that’s visible is the thin archwire that runs horizontally across the teeth — and from a distance it’s hard to notice. Celebs like Tom Cruise and Faith Hill opted for this type of appliance.

Clear aligners are custom-made plastic trays that fit over the teeth. Each one, worn for about two weeks, moves the teeth just a bit; after several months, you’ll see a big change for the better in your smile. Best of all, clear aligners are virtually impossible to notice while you’re wearing them — which you’ll need to do for 22 hours each day. But you can remove them to eat, or for special occasions. Zac Efron and Katherine Heigl, among others, chose to wear clear aligners.

Lingual braces really are invisible. That’s because they go behind your teeth (on the tongue side), where they can’t be seen; otherwise they are similar to traditional metal braces. Lingual braces are placed on teeth differently, and wearing them often takes some getting used to at first. But those trade-offs are worth it for plenty of people. Which celebs wore lingual braces? Rumor has it that the list includes some top models, a well-known pop singer, and at least one British royal.

So what’s the best way to straighten your teeth and keep the orthodontic appliances unnoticeable? Just ask us! We’d be happy to help you choose the option that’s just right for you. You’ll get an individualized evaluation, a solution that fits your lifestyle — and a great-looking smile!

For more information about hard-to-see (or truly invisible) orthodontics, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Orthodontics for the Older Adult” and “Clear Aligners for Teenagers.”

By Eagle Creek Dentistry
May 09, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: orthodontics   braces  

Find out if orthodontic treatment is the way to go to get your dream smile.braces

Are you an adult who struggles with their smile because it isn’t as straight as you would like it to be? Do you have a child whose teeth are coming in crooked and misaligned? Unfortunately, most people aren’t born with perfectly straight smiles. Luckily, this is where orthodontic treatment comes in. From the office of our Naples, FL, dentist, Dr. JW Valentine, find out whether you should consider getting braces.

What kinds of dental problems are you dealing with?

In order to figure out whether braces are the right approach, you have to figure out what problems are keeping you from having the smile you want. Are you dealing with any of these common issues?

  • Crooked or twisted teeth
  • Overlapping teeth
  • Crowding
  • Gaps or spacing between teeth
  • Overbite
  • Underbite
  • Crossbite
  • Open bite

If you said “yes” then braces might just be the best option you have for getting the smile you want. Of course, there are certainly other cosmetic options out there for meeting your goals, which is why you will need to go through a comprehensive consultation with our Naples general dentist. After all, sometimes minor crookedness, gaps between teeth and crowding can be improved without needing orthodontic treatment. In fact, getting dental veneers may be all you need to make your smile appear straight without needing braces.

Of course, this isn’t an option for children and teens, or adults who are dealing with moderate-to-severe dental misalignments. In this case, you will need to get braces in order to fix misalignments and achieve a straighter smile; fortunately, there are a variety of orthodontic options on the market that are sleeker, lighter and more discreet. Remember, not all braces are like those bulky metal braces you remember from decades ago. Orthodontic technology has advanced a lot over the years and now we can provide a variety of more attractive options for patients of all ages.

Teens who require traditional braces in order to fix more severe dental issues may hate the idea of having metal braces during their high school years. We completely understand, which is why our patients can also choose to get tooth-colored brackets and wires, which blend in with your teen’s smile. While it won’t be completely unnoticeable, having porcelain or ceramic braces can certainly make the orthodontic treatment subtler.

If you are interested in finding out whether braces are the right treatment option for you or your child then call Eagle Creek Dentistry in Naples, FL, today. Remember: you are never too old to get a straight smile.

By Eagle Creek Dentistry
September 23, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

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.”

By Eagle Creek Dentistry
May 15, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: orthodontics   braces  

Wondering if braces could actually be what you need to get the smile you want?braces

Naples, FL, dentist, Dr. JW Valentine, provides everyone with the orthodontic treatment they’ve been looking for. Could braces be right for you? Let’s find out!

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you want to fill those gaps between teeth?
  • Do you hate that some teeth are crooked or out of alignment?
  • Do you have teeth that are crowded or overlapping one another?
  • Do you have an underbite, overbite, open bite or crossbite?
  • Do you feel self-conscious about your smile because it isn’t straight?

If you said “yes” to any of these questions then you could be an ideal candidate for braces. Anyone, from children to adults, can be a good candidate for orthodontic treatment.  Naples, FL, general dentist makes it possible to get everything from traditional braces to clear braces to nearly invisible options like Invisalign. If you are an adult or older teen who might feel embarrassed by wearing braces then you’ll want to talk to us about whether Invisalign is the best approach for you.

Why should you straighten your smile?

Besides the obvious benefit of having a straight beautiful smile that makes you feel more confident, a straight smile is also a healthier smile. Think about it—If you have teeth that are crowded and overlapping it can be much harder to clean all surfaces of your teeth. When this happens, you could leave plaque and food behind, even if you brush really well. By getting a straighter smile you could reduce your chances of developing stains, decay and even gum disease.

As if this wasn’t enough reason to straighten your smile already, if you have misaligned teeth then certain teeth may be taking on more pressure from the jaws then other teeth. Over time, this can wear away enamel and weaken the tooth. By aligning teeth through braces we can also prevent excessive wear and tear, as well as potential fractures or chips in your smile.

If you want to learn more about getting braces in Naples, FL, then it’s time you scheduled a consultation with the dental expert at Eagle Creek Dentistry. Put your trust in Dr. Valentine and get a smile you’ll be proud of.

By Eagle Creek Dentistry
August 27, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures

Fans of the primetime TV show The Middle were delighted to see that high school senior Sue, played by Eden Sher, finally got her braces off at the start of Season 6. But since this popular sitcom wouldn’t be complete without some slapstick comedy, this happy event is not without its trials and tribulations: The episode ends with Sue’s whole family diving into a dumpster in search of the teen’s lost retainer. Sue finds it in the garbage and immediately pops it in her mouth. But wait — it doesn’t fit, it’s not even hers!

If you think this scenario is far-fetched, guess again. OK, maybe the part about Sue not washing the retainer upon reclaiming it was just a gag (literally and figuratively), but lost retainers are all too common. Unfortunately, they’re also expensive to replace — so they need to be handled with care. What’s the best way to do that? Retainers should be brushed daily with a soft toothbrush and liquid soap (dish soap works well), and then placed immediately back in your mouth or into the case that came with the retainer. When you are eating a meal at a restaurant, do not wrap your retainer in a napkin and leave it on the table — this is a great way to lose it! Instead, take the case with you, and keep the retainer in it while you’re eating. When you get home, brush your teeth and then put the retainer back in your mouth.

If you do lose your retainer though, let us know right away. Retention is the last step of your orthodontic treatment, and it’s extremely important. You’ve worked hard to get a beautiful smile, and no one wants to see that effort wasted. Yet if you neglect to wear your retainer as instructed, your teeth are likely to shift out of position. Why does this happen?

As you’ve seen firsthand, teeth aren’t rigidly fixed in the jaw — they can be moved in response to light and continuous force. That’s what orthodontic appliances do: apply the right amount of force in a carefully controlled manner. But there are other forces at work on your teeth that can move them in less predictable ways. For example, normal biting and chewing can, over time, cause your teeth to shift position. To get teeth to stay where they’ve been moved orthodontically, new bone needs to form around them and anchor them where they are. That will happen over time, but only if they are held in place with a retainer. That’s why it is so important to wear yours as directed — and notify us immediately if it gets lost.

And if ever you do have to dig your retainer out of a dumpster… be sure to wash it before putting in in your mouth!

If you would like more information on retainers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “The Importance of Orthodontic Retainers” and “Why Orthodontic Retainers?

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