Ottawa Blog for Braces, Invisalign and Orthodontic Treatments

Proper Braces Hygiene

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Can you believe it? 2014 is almost over already! We hope all of you in Ottawa had wonderful holiday celebrations with your friends and families, and wish nothing but the best for 2015. With the new year right around the corner, people all over the capital city are learning from their experiences this year and looking forward to more success in the upcoming year by creating New Year’s resolutions. You’ve may have heard a friend resolving to be more frugal or take up a new hobby. Maybe your sister has vowed to go to the gym everyday, or perhaps you’ve even thought of a resolution for yourself, to further your career or live a more healthy lifestyle. Although it takes a lot of determination to change your routine for the whole year, a resolution to live healthier is actually a great way to start the year off on the right foot.

girl with braces cleaning teeth

For those Ottawans with braces, if your New Year’s resolution involves healthier living, why not try an easy change to your routine, like an upgrade to your teeth-cleaning regimen? Don’t worry, we’re not here to give you a lecture, but if you’re planning to get your braces off next year, it is important to understand that if proper brushing techniques are not executed, you can be left with undesired discoloring, cavities on your teeth, or even swollen and infected gum tissue. You don’t have to panic, though, because we are here to help!

Following these steps while brushing your teeth will help you achieve proper braces hygiene and that perfect smile at the end of your orthodontic treatment:

  1. Rinse your mouth with water to remove any loose food particles.

  2. Using a regular bristle toothbrush and your favourite toothpaste, brush back and forth at about a 45 degree angle from your teeth on top of and below the wires.

  3. Make sure to brush not only the brackets, wires and front of your teeth, but also the chewing surface, sides and back of the teeth, as well as the roof of your mouth, the insides of your cheeks, your tongue and  your gums!

  4. Some tooth brushes are labeled “orthodontic” but really any tooth brush work just fine.  The orthodontic ones makes it a little easier to brush since they are smaller, double-ended brush with a cone shape on one end, and a tuft on the other designed to clean hard-to-reach areas. Each of these ends can also be found as individual brushes.  They can de used to clean between brackets and behind the wires with the cone brush, upwards from the bottom of the tooth, and from the gum line downward. Use the smaller end for tight, over-crowded areas.

  5. Rinse your mouth once again, this time swish mouthwash around and try to be as thorough as possible, swishing around each tooth.

For a demonstration of brushing and cleaning techniques with braces, check out this video, or ask us at your next appointment – we would be happy to show you. All it takes to achieve your goal of well-being is just a little more commitment to your own oral hygiene, not only for a New Year’s resolution, but for your overall health.

Teen girl with braces and doctor with patient in background.

We wish you luck with your new routine and your 2015 New Year’s resolution! Happy New Year, Ottawa!


Braces-Friendly Stocking Stuffers

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Christmas stockings on fireplace mantel

The holidays are approaching quickly and people all around Ottawa are preparing for various family celebrations. Every family has their own traditions, and one of the most well-known Christmas conventions is the filling of stockings with treats and goodies. In fact, it can be just as fun to fill a stocking as it is to open one! There are, however, some family and friends who require a little extra thought and care when purchasing Christmas gifts.

While you’re picking out items to fill the stockings of your loved ones, it’s important to remember those family members with orthodontic appliances. As we all know, there are many sugary holiday treats that can be detrimental for braces, not to mention unhealthy. Last year, we gave a few tips for maintaining oral health during the holidays – always great to remind ourselves! – but this year, we are focusing on all the goodies and gifts found in a Christmas stocking.

Kid's toothbrush

Toothbrush and Toothpaste

The best gift an Ottawa orthodontist can recommend is, not surprisingly, a toothbrush! Add a fun toothbrush or new kind of toothpaste to get children excited about brushing their teeth. The novelty of a special toothbrush may not last forever, but it will help to encourage them to keep brushing their teeth throughout the busy, treat-filled days until the New Year. There are several options for kids’ toothbrushes with cartoon characters, glow-in-the-dark abilities, and some even play music. Plus, children’s toothpaste comes in different flavours like watermelon and strawberry, which can also help make brushing a more exciting activity. For adults, it’s always nice to get a new toothbrush – how many of us think about routinely replacing our old one? – in fact, it’s recommended to change your toothbrush every 3 months for proper oral hygiene and care. Some adult toothbrushes even come with special capabilities like pulsing vibrations and special bristles. Check out our Toothbrush Buying Guide for the pros and cons of manual and powered toothbrushes, and tips for brushing with braces.

Healthy, Braces and Orthodontics-Friendly Treats

Everyone loves to get sweets in their stocking. Chocolate, candy canes, and other sugary treats abound over the holiday season, so it’s always a good idea to know what to avoid when shopping for family and friends with orthodontic appliances. For a list of braces-friendly treats and a list of treats to avoid, check out our tips from National Orthodontic Month, Halloween and Valentine’s Day.

The highlights: stick to chocolates (without nuts or caramel) or soft candies, and chips are great as long as they’re eaten carefully so as to not break or damage the braces. You can also try unconventional goodies like bags of herbal tea or hot chocolate mix as a tasty stocking stuffer.

Braces at Christmas

Creative Alternatives

Who says stockings have to be filled exclusively with candy? This is an opportunity to be creative with your holiday gifting! Find fun, unique ways to wrap small gifts to place in their stockings; hide a gift card in a toilet paper tube, or stick a t-shirt into a small jar or tin. Not only will your sneaky gift-wrapping allow for a fun surprise, it also gives you more options for gifts to avoid putting too many sweets in the stockings.

Shopping for those who are undergoing an orthodontic treatment shouldn’t have to add stress to your holiday preparations. It’s actually a perfect opportunity for you to get creative and find fun alternatives to the usual stocking stuffers. It will also allow you to find more personal gifts that will have more of an impact, and carry a stronger sentiment for the one receiving them. After all, love and family are really what the holidays are all about. Have fun stuffing stockings, and have a safe, happy, and healthy holiday season, Ottawa!


Braces-Friendly Halloween Treats

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We recently posted about National Orthodontic Health Month in October, and we mentioned some quick tips for maintaining orthodontic health during Thanksgiving and Halloween. With the latter being right around the corner, parents everywhere are searching for alternative treats for those with braces. Halloween is truly a time for fun, and a time for kids to simply be kids; dress up in fun costumes, then collect and eat as much candy as possible. It can also be a great opportunity to teach your children important lessons about nutrition and dental care. They can learn good oral health habits for life, without being deprived of precious Halloween treats… It’s all about moderation.

WebMD explains, “The message isn’t “candy is bad,” but that candy and other sweets, in excess, can lead to cavities. Children learn two important lessons:

  • How to control their diets

  • That what they eat relates to oral health, not just physical health”

This is also beneficial for children with orthodontics. Take the time to teach them what snacks are harmful to their braces and help them understand why. Try mixing in healthy snacks with the Halloween candy to balance out your child’s diet. You can be the oral-health-friendly house on the block who passes out healthier alternatives for not only those with braces, but for all children to enjoy (and their parents will thank you!). As for the candy your children bring home, don’t be afraid to be a label snob; read candy labels carefully to identify any problem ingredients, and limit their daily candy intake as much as possible.

It is advisable to set out some kind of schedule for snacking. Create a specific “treat time” after mealtime, as saliva production increases during meals, helps cancel out acids produced by bacteria in your mouth and helps rinse away food particles. Each time your kids indulge in Halloween candy, make sure they finish off with a glass of water, which will help clean sugary residue off their teeth and their braces.

TREATS TO AVOID

  • Hard candy and other sweets that stay in your mouth for a long time

  • Sticky candies that cling to your teeth, like taffy or caramel

  • Beef Jerky and other leathery food treats

  • Licorice

  • Bubble Gum

  • Jelly Beans

  • Popcorn and nuts 

TREATS TO CHOOSE

  • Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups

  • Plain M&M’s

  • Oreo’s & Soft Cookies

  • Hershey Kisses

  • Fruits and applesauce

  • Chocolate Bars without nuts or caramel

  • Marshmallow

  • Twinkies, Snow balls, Ding Dongs

  • Ice Cream or Popsicles (no ice)

  • Jell-O or Pudding

  • Low sugar, non-carbonated drinks

  • Cookies and Crackers

  • Chips

  • Cheetos

USE CAUTION WHEN EATING

  • Chips – eat them carefully and one at a time

  • Apples – cut into small pieces

  • Soda and sugary drinks – drinking too much can cause tooth decay

SWEET SUBSTITUTES

  • Choose solid chocolate over one filled with a sticky center, as the candy filling may stick to braces and teeth.

  • Choose candy bars without nuts or caramel filling, like Kit Kats or 3 Muskateers.

ORTHO-FRIENDLY HALLOWEEN RECIPES

For more information on eating Halloween treats with orthodontics, check out the American Association of Orthodontics’ Quick-Reference Halloween Treat Guide.

A little moderation goes a long way when it comes to eating treats with orthodontics, but it doesn’t have to be such a chore! Holidays are all about fun, and Halloween is a time where you can be creative and help those with orthodontics by offering smarter and healthier alternatives. Happy Halloween Ottawa!


October is National Orthodontic Month

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Summer flew by this year, as usual, and now we’re quickly diving into Fall! The trees are starting to turn those beautiful autumn colours and storefronts are starting to get into the Thanksgiving and Halloween spirit. Meanwhile, the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) and, of course, we here at Wellington Village Orthodontics are excitedly preparing for National Orthodontic Month in Ottawa!

October is here and it is our favourite month, because it is recognized in Canada and the U.S. as National Orthodontic Month, sponsored by the AAO, where we get to celebrate your beautiful, healthy smile – the biggest benefit of your orthodontic treatment! Plus, with Halloween at the end of the month, October also provides us the opportunity to raise awareness regarding orthodontic care, which plays an important role in dental health and overall physical health. Not only that, but it actually contributes to the movement of your teeth during your orthodontic treatment. Clean teeth respond much better (and as intended) to the gentle force from orthodontic wires, whereas braces that are covered in sticky candy or plaque make it much more difficult for teeth to move, as they cause increased inflammation in gums.

The most obvious concern of Halloween are the treats. We made a list of Back to School Snacks, which also has information on what to avoid, including an excessive amount of sugars or even raisins! To help minimize sugary residue on teeth and to reduce risk of a broken bracket, it’s a good idea to stay away from the following snacks, due to an increased chance of pulling a wire or bracket:

  • Super chewy candy, like taffy and caramel

  • Beef Jerky and other leathery food treats

  • Liquorice

  • Bubble Gum

  • Jelly Beans

  • Hard candies like candy canes and lollipops

  • Popcorn and nuts

Don’t worry, we aren’t here just to tell you what not to eat! We understand that Halloween is an exciting time to dress up and celebrate with friends and family – and of course, delicious treats. Throughout the month, orthodontists across the continent will be sharing several tips, tricks, and treats for you to enjoy! We will be writing an extensive list of braces-friendly Halloween treats and recipes, but for now, you can prepare early by checking out all the great information from AAO. The American Association of Orthodontics website provides a cornucopia of information regarding your teeth, including a list of creative Halloween-themed, orthodontic-friendly treat recipes like Goblin Goodies and Black Cherry Fruit Bats and Citrus Orange Pumpkin Fruity Cutouts! Plus they have a quick-reference Halloween treat guide which gives you a lot of information in an easy-to-read (and printable!) format. They recommend sweets like:

  • Soft, melt-in-your-mouth chocolates

  • Peanut butter cups

  • Milk shakes

  • Gelatin

  • Peeled, thinly sliced apples

  • Ice cream

With Thanksgiving coming up soon as well, it’s important to keep these tips in mind when you plan your family feast. If you normally make a dessert with walnuts, consider leaving them out of the recipe this year, for the sake of those with braces. Maybe try to add a new recipe into the mix, using orthodontic-friendly treats. Stay tuned for our next blog post for more information and great recipe ideas to keep your Thanksgiving and Halloween celebrations fun and tasty for everyone, including those with orthodontics. Thanks for reading, and have happy National Orthodontic Month!


Packing a Healthy Lunch for Healthy Teeth

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Whether you’re brimming with excitement, or filled with dread, it’s that time of year again: Back to School. You’re probably right in the thick of back-to-school shopping and preparations, but we can’t forget school lunches! Whether you pack your children’s lunches or they do it themselves, it’s important to have healthy snacks on hand, not only for their overall health and energy, but also for maintaining good oral health. We all know that soda pops and fizzy drinks are linked to tooth decay, but even some fruits, cereals, and breads contain sugars and starches that can be harmful to our oral health.

No need to add any more stress to the back-to-school preparations, here is a quick reference guide for packing a healthy lunch for healthy teeth:

 

Keep the Sugary Snacks to a Minimum

We all know kids love candy, and it might be unrealistic to eliminate sweets altogether from your child’s daily routine. Try to pack only “healthy” treats per lunch; like a granola bar, dried fruits or yoghurt. Each time kids eat a sugary snack, bacteria from the mouth produce damaging acids which affect their teeth for almost a half an hour before they are neutralized and can’t do any more harm. So, the more sweets they consume during the day, the more often bacteria is fed the fuel they need to cause plaque and tooth decay.

Watch Out For Hidden Sugars

Candy isn’t the only culprit when it comes to sugar. Foods such as pizza, breads, and cereals may also contain sugars. To avoid these, simply check the Nutrition Facts panel on the package for information on the quantity of sugars and fats in the product.

 

Don’t Overdo Acidic Foods

Not only do sugary foods threaten tooth decay, but we often overlook the harm that acidic foods can cause to out oral health. Although oranges and grapefruit are considered a healthy treat, they are high in acid which erodes teeth over time. Limit these acidic foods just as you would limit sugary foods.

Snacks to Limit or Avoid

Citrus Juice (Grapefruit, Orange)

Contains high levels of acid, creating a high erosion potential. These juices are fine on occasion, but not for every day, due to the continual acid attack on teeth. “If you want to drink fruit juices or any other acidic foods, try to eat something alkaline such as cheese or milk afterwards which can neutralise the acid effects of sugar in your mouth.” Read more hereNot only that, but boxed juices generally also contain a lot of sugar (sucrose, glucose, fructose, etc.).

 

Raisins & Dried Fruit

Not only are these treats sticky and chewy (not good for braces!), and more difficult to wash away with saliva, they are often consumed in high quantities. In it’s purest form, dried fruit is simply fruit with the water content removed, but the sugar and fat contents stay relatively the same. Unfortunately, we (and our kids) tend to eat with our eyes, consuming far more of these than we should. If you want to pack dried fruit, just watch the serving size: 1 cup of fresh fruit is close to about ¼ cup of dried fruit. It is also important to read the labels on dried fruits, as many contain added sugars or colours.

Snacks to Pack

 

Meat, fish, Tofu

Loaded with phosphorus, another important mineral that can protect tooth enamel.

 

Carrots, celery, raw pear

Sometimes teeth require a little work to stay strong. Crisp, crunchy, foods that contain a large quantity of water (and require more chewing) are great for maintaining oral health because they can help to gently “brush” teeth, and stimulate the flow of saliva. Saliva contains good enzymes that combat those acids present in food and help to clean bits of food between teeth.

 

For more snack do’s and don’ts check out:

http://dentistry.about.com/od/childrensdentistry/a/kidsnutrition.htm

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-113900/The-snacks-harm-teeth.html

http://greatist.com/health/healthy-teeth-foods

http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/d/diet-and-dental-health


Tooth Trauma: What To Do In An Emergency

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We would all love if everything went as planned, and if we never got hurt. Unfortunately, sometimes accidents happen. Trauma to the face or teeth can be caused by any number of activities, from a baseball game to a car accident. Significant head trauma should be evaluated and treated in hospital emergency rooms, and when trauma occurs to your teeth, it’s important to know what to do to save your smile. Any dental injury will require an immediate examination by a dentist to diagnose the extent of trauma and provide treatment. It is possible for neighbouring teeth to suffer injuries that may go unnoticed, which will be detected by a thorough dental exam.

 

If you’re in an emergency situation, and your tooth comes out completely, don’t panic – we’ll help you through it!

 

1. Find your tooth and pick it up only by the crown (the white part), and be sure to avoid touching the root.

2. Clean the Area

No matter the degree of trauma to the tooth (a crack, chip, or loss of tooth), it’s important to clean both your face and the oral cavity with water or saline. This cleaning will make you feel more comfortable, help protect you from infection, and will facilitate the examination when you get to your dentist. If the tooth itself is dirty, wash it (for approximately 10 seconds) under cold running water.

 

3. Reposition the Tooth

One of the most important variables affecting the success of your tooth re-implantation, is the amount of time that the tooth is out of its socket. If you can, try to replant the tooth, then hold it in position by biting down on a cloth. If you are unable to replant the tooth, place it in a storage medium, such as a glass of milk or a special storage formula for avulsed teeth – Avoid storage in water! You can also transport your tooth in your mouth, just be careful to keep it between your molars and the inside of your cheek. Warning: For children, this method produces a risk of swallowing the tooth, so it is advisable to have them spit in a container and place the tooth inside.

 

4. Seek emergency dental treatment immediately.

 

Click here  for more detailed information on tooth trauma.

 

Braces can actually “strengthen” your teeth while in treatment!

We have had a few patients with braces that had accidents, but their teeth stayed in even if there was a big trauma! Thankfully, the braces kept them all attached together! The impact was distributed on several teeth instead of only one, and the roots all remained in place!

If your tooth has been knocked out, fractured, or displaced, it is best to contact your Ottawa family dentist first, as we may not have the materials or anesthesia required to treat these injuries. If your appliances get displaced or dislodged due to trauma, we will need to either adjust or replace the appliances as soon as possible, after you have seen your general dentist, depending on your comfort level. We always tell our patients, don’t worry about your appliances, we will fix them after, save your teeth first!


Health Benefits of Smiling

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When you’re feeling down, people will sometimes say “just smile”, and “laugh it off”, but does that have any merit? Can smiling really make you feel better? Smiling does a lot more than simply tell the world that you’re happy, it really can boost your health! Here are the main benefits to flashing those pearly whites:

1. Smiling Through the Pain

Smiling and laughter have both been shown to lessen pain by releasing endorphins – which actually lift our moods! Not only that, these endorphins counteract and diminish stress hormones and many of them act as natural painkillers too. The more genuine the smile, the better for releasing these endorphins.

Smiling may also help to reduce symptoms associated with anxiety. When that smile signals to your brain that you’re feeling happy (even though you’re not really feeling happy…yet), your body will usually slow down your breathing and heart rate. Reducing stress is so important for health, too, as it can lower blood pressure, improve digestion and regulate blood sugar.

2. For the Love of Your Heart

In addition to providing evidence that genuine smiles are more effective for reducing stress than fake smiles, a study from the University of Kansas also suggests that “smiling during a taxing task—not just after—can help the body and mind recover more quickly.” After the heart rates of subjects spiked during the stressful tasks, the hearts of the smilers quickly dropped back down to more relaxed rates than those of the non-smilers. The genuine smilers showed the lowest heart rates of all.

What’s more, another study of nearly 2,000 people published in the European Heart Journal revealed that those with a more positive outlook were less likely to develop heart disease than their more pessimistic peers.

3. The Power of Positivity

According to a Cambridge University study, having a positive attitude can go a long way. Researchers asked subjects to estimate the weight of boxes before they lifted them. Subjects who felt “powerless” were more likely to estimate the boxes as being much heavier than they really were. Those who had a more positive attitude estimated that the boxes weighed less. Not only does this help in your workout, but it can also help you take on everyday tasks – just smile and feel empowered!

Research also shows that smiling is contagious. Ever been around someone who just  emanates positivity? Studies show that something as simple as seeing a friend smile can activate the muscles in your face to make that same expression, without you even being aware that you are doing it.

4. Landing the Job, or the Date

In a study published in the December 2009 issue of Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, people looked at full-body photographs of people they had never met. The people in the photos had one of two expressions: neutral or a smile. When observers saw the photos of smiling people, they were more likely to think that the person in the photo was likeable, confident, conscientious and stable – all qualities that employers want to see in their future employees!

A more pragmatic benefit is that restaurant workers who serve customers with a smile are observed to receive larger tips and repeat business. Even if you work in an office, smiling can affect the way one person is received by another over the phone!

2011 findings by researchers at the Face Research Laboratory at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland showed that smiling actually makes you more attractive to others. Subjects were asked to rate smiling and attractiveness. They found that both men and women were more attracted to images of people who made eye contact and smiled than those who did not.

5. Smiling Leads to Laughing

A myriad of studies have been done on the health benefits of laughing, including how it acts like a mini workout that burns calories and works the abs. Laughter also helps blood flow, lowers blood sugar levels, reduces stress and improves sleep. It may also raise the level of infection-fighting antibodies in the body, which helps boost your immune system.

With so many benefits, it’s hard to think of reasons not to smile! So go ahead and grin Ottawa, it’s good for your health!


Common Dental Myths

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It’s no myth that going to the dentist can bring on some anxiety, and with so much stress and stigma surrounding dentists and orthodontists, it’s not surprising that myths about teeth abound. Perhaps you’ve considered whitening your teeth, but you’ve been warned of harmful effects of using bleaching agents; or you’ve avoided chewing gum because you heard it will rot your teeth. Maybe you never had a chance to ask your dentist or orthodontist—that can be a difficult thing to do when your mouth is full of instruments!

Fear not! Here are three of the most common dental myths, and the realities of dental health:

1. “Bleaching will weaken your teeth.”

We’d all like to have that bright, pearly white smile, and sometimes regular brushing and flossing just doesn’t cut it. Luckily there’s a myriad of whitening products available over the counter or from your dental professional to help make your teeth look whiter. Yet some people worry that using bleaching products on their teeth is harmful or destructive, weakening the teeth. The main thing to remember is that you’re not rinsing your mouth out with Javex — teeth-bleaching products are harmless if used according to the directions.

Clinical studies support the safety and effectiveness of home-use bleaching gels when used correctly and appropriately. Tooth sensitivity and irritation to soft tissues can occur during bleaching treatment, but these effects are transient, and there’s no need to fear that using bleaching products will weaken your teeth. Bleaching only affects the color of the teeth, not their strength or health. Bleaching works by removing some of the pigmentation in the tooth, and if you bleach too often, your teeth might begin to appear translucent if you’ve removed too much of the natural pigmentation. Don’t mistake this translucency for weakening of the enamel or damage to the teeth — it’s just a change of color.

2. “If you eat that, your teeth will fall out.”

Sound familiar? Many of us can recall being told that if we drink too much soda, snack on too much taffy, or eat too many cookies, they will destroy our teeth. While all these foods are bad for your teeth (and ultimately your general health), dried fruit, fruit juice and honey all contain natural sugars that can cause tooth decay. But did you know that the amount of sugar you eat is not the deciding factor in tooth decay?

The bacteria in your mouth feed on carbohydrates, like sugar, and produce an acid that eats away at the enamel of your teeth. The longer the sugar is in your mouth, the longer the bacteria can feed and produce acid, and the longer the acid can work on the enamel. In other words, it’s not about the amount of sugar you eat, it’s about how long the sugar is in contact with your teeth.

This means that eating a whole cake then immediately brushing your teeth is less harmful to your dental health than eating one slice without brushing. Sipping on sugary drinks all day, or snacking on slow-dissolving candies like lollipops, allows sugar to hang around your teeth for a long time — not a good idea.

So enjoy the sweets, but make sure you brush right after!

3. “Chewing gum is bad for your teeth.”

This one isn’t exactly a myth — more like a misconception. Chewing gum of any kind increases saliva production, which is a good thing for your oral health. Besides having enzymes that digest carbohydrates, it has antibodies that fight decay-causing bacteria, it contains buffers that neutralize the acids that eat at your teeth, and it contains minerals that help rebuild parts of your teeth that have been attacked by decay acid.

The problem arises when the sugar found in some gum feeds the bacteria in your mouth. So whether gum is good for you or not depends on whether it’s sugar-free or not. Of course, avoid chewing any type of gum if you have braces; gum chewing actually bends the wire (in extreme cases, it can actually break a bracket off completely) and the teeth will then move to the bent wire, instead of following the originally straight wire in your braces.

The key to debunking dental myths is to rely on the experts. There’s no need for stress when you head to your Ottawa orthodontist; we’re here to answer any questions or concerns you may have, and help demystify the topic of dental health. If you’re ever wondering about the realities of dental health, just give us a call at 613-722-8500 or e-mail us at info@bracesinottawa.com!


Could Your Smile Hold the Key To Your Dream Job?

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Could Your Smile Hold the Key To Your Dream Job?

In a professional setting there are many things that influence the way you are perceived by your coworkers or your boss. Your confidence and comfort while working or during an job interview will play a large huge part in your success both at work in acquiring a job. Human resources professionals are emphasizing the importance of body language to communicate your personality and what better way to show genuine enthusiasm than with a winning smile during an interview? People who smile are perceived as more confident, likeable, competent and courteous.

Of all our facial expressions, the smile is the most prominent, so it’s important to ensure your smile is genuine. Having a genuine smile can become more difficult if you’re battling with insecurities about the appearance of your teeth. Issue such as yellow teeth, a chipped tooth or misaligned teeth can affect confidence and your smile. A real smile can be a challenge when your teeth are a source of insecurity. Thankfully, there are many options available to improve your teeth, and by extension, that winning smile

Do A Smile Self-Assessment

One of the first things you can do is a smile self assessment. Look at your smile objectively and subjectively. Subjectively, your emotional satisfaction revolves around your confidence and emotional perception how you look. If you notice that you compulsively hide your smile from being displayed or photographed, you might be uncomfortable with your appearance. How do you feel about your smile; can you identify any problem areas that you would like changed? Objectively you can look at what is considered to be optimal facial aesthetics according to dental professionals. Identifying dental malocclusion can be complicated but if you’d like more information feel free to give us a call, or do a bit of research and even start here.

Professional Benefits of Treatment

The vast majority of contemporary employers have moved away from simple experience based hiring and are looking for a “cultural fit” when looking for new employees. According to Forbes the top three traits employers are looking for are professionalism, high-energy and confidence. Large employers are currently finding a general lack of confidence in their workforces, and confident workers are in high demand. The way you present yourself in a professional setting helps give a first impression on how your personality might benefit the company. When you appear well-kept, confident and professional, it provides reassurance to future and current employers that those traits will extend into your work ethic as well.

The primary forms of benefit for orthodontic treatment are improvement of oral health and psychosocial well-being. Facial aesthetics have been shown to significantly determine self-perception. The most beneficial aspects of treatment are: improved self-esteem, physical attractiveness, self-confidence, social attractiveness, self-image and more ease while cleaning teeth, not to mention the medical and physical benefits.

Orthodontic treatment aims to improve the alignment and appearance of teeth for the betterment of your lifestyle and health. With more self-esteem, attractiveness and confidence you will be able to bring your skills forward to advance your career and employment opportunities. To begin to improve how others perceive you in the workplace you must have confidence in your ability, appearance and your smile!

Consider Teeth Whitening

If you are suffering from yellow teeth despite your best efforts to brush properly or cut down on habits that stain your teeth, whitening might be the solution you’re looking for. Before starting you should consult a dental professional to pick the best program for your needs. Having white teeth makes you seem friendlier and more approachable. Keep in mind that there can be some pitfalls to at home teeth whitening products, the advantage of getting it done by a professional is that the process will be faster and less complicated.

It’s Never Too Late To Get Your Perfect Smile!

Experts agree that it is never too late to consider orthodontic treatment. Nearly half of all orthodontic patients are adults hoping of getting the smile they’ve always dreamed of. For professionals, there exists a variety of more lightweight and less visible braces. Orthodontics are no longer strictly a world of inconvenient metal and there is now a world of possibilities for adults who do not want to impact their professional and polished appearance. Contact us at 613.722.8500 or here about treatment to enhance your professional appearance and start your journey to that perfect, professional smile.

 


Toothbrush Buying Guide

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When taking care of your oral hygiene, the most essential daily activity you can do is brush your teeth. When brushing your teeth it is important to purchase one that will effectively and properly get the job done. Look for the Canadian Dental Association’s seal of approval to ensure that an independent body of scientific experts has evaluated the product. Additional considerations come down to making sure the design of the brush is effective by making your experience comfortable, efficient and personalized.

Manual vs. Powered

An alternative to manual brushes is a rechargeable electric toothbrush that can help you maintain the health of your teeth and gums. The brushing action of these “power” brushes is very different from the manual variety. The electric brush provides the movement and you only need to guide it. It might take a while to get used to, but the trick is simply moving it properly over the surface area of your teeth.

Electric brushes aren’t necessarily better for your teeth but they can make it more convenient for your brushing routine. Additionally, young children might find brushing with an electric brush more fun than with a manual one. If you have difficulty brushing with a manual toothbrush it might be worthwhile to give it a try and see if you find it more comfortable or easier. Essentially this distinction is simply a matter of choice and preference so try both and see which one you prefer.

Size

An important decision when considering a purchase is the size of the toothbrush head. For best results and comfort, it is essential that this portion of the brush be properly sized for maneuverability and be capable of reaching every corner of your mouth. Make sure that you can properly reach to the sides and backs of your molars as well as having it fit comfortably in the palm of your hand. For ease of use, small-headed brushes are preferable over larger ones. When it comes to handle size, type and shape this is simply a matter of personal preference and you should pick the one that suits you best. Ask your dentist if you need a little more guidance on what size of toothbrush is best for you.

Bristle Variety

When visiting the drugstore you are presented with quite a few options when selecting bristles for your brush: soft, medium or hard nylon bristles. For most people the safest and preferred choice is soft bristles. When brushing too vigorously with medium or hard bristles you can compromise the strength of your teeth, damaging the gums as well as the root surface.

The shape of bristles can customize your tooth brushing routine even further. Available options include a cup shaped design to better accommodate the shape of your teeth, diagonal patterns to better clean the sides of your teeth or there might be slightly longer bristles intermixed that serve to get in between teeth while brushing. Look for brushes that features bristles with rounded tips for additional protection.

Toothbrush Care

Seeing as the primary use of a toothbrush is to eliminate bacteria from your mouth, you should take care that it is sanitary and bacteria-free. When going on a vacation or a trip you should cover it or keep it in a container to avoid the accumulation of dirt and harmful bacteria. When you are at home you should do the exact opposite and only store your toothbrush in vertically and in open air. This is to ensure that the moisture in the bristles can evaporate, which is important in the constantly humid environment of a bathroom.

You can explore using “toothbrush sanitizers” but there is no solid evidence that they work any better than rinsing with water and letting dry in open air. Do not attempt to sanitize your toothbrush with your oven or microwave; excessive heat will damage the brush. There is also no need to panic about a minimal amount of bacteria, which can be present on your toothbrush. The human body is constantly exposed to unfriendly microorganisms; the body is normally capable of defending itself through a variety of mechanisms inherent to how our body functions. With proper care by simply rinsing and air-drying, there is no adverse effect due to the bacteria on toothbrushes.

Each individual in your household shoÍuld have a personal toothbrush that shouldn’t be used with others. Sharing will cause an exchange of bodily fluids and microorganisms that might be harmful to everyone using the brush. With use, the bristles will become more worn and frayed which can lead to it being less effective in removing bacteria. To ensure good oral hygiene, replace toothbrushes every 3-4 months.

Brushing with Braces

Your routine when brushing remains the same while you have your braces. You continue to use the same brushes. You maintain a routine of brushing the fronts, sides, backs, chewing surfaces of your teeth. Continue to brush the tongue and roof of your mouth for a full two minutes. You can ask your dentist to prescribe you fluoride toothpaste to prevent tooth decay even further. When your braces are nice and shiny with the brackets clear and clean, you’ve done a great job! If you need help, feel free to ask your Ottawa orthodontist for any recommendations.