Latest News & Blog

Frequently Asked Questions About Westminster Invisalign


October 18, 2017

Do you want a perfect smile? If so, an orthodontist may suggest that you try Invisalign as opposed to traditional braces. Invisalign plastic aligners are used to shift your teeth into the proper position, but unlike metal braces, they are practically invisible. Before deciding if Invisalign is right for you, it’s a good idea to learn as much as possible about this orthodontic treatment. Start by taking a look at the answers to these frequently asked questions about Westminster Invisalign aligners:

Do the aligners contain any harmful chemicals?

No, there is no reason to think that wearing Invisalign aligners will expose you to harmful chemicals. All Invisalign aligners are made out of medical grade polyurethane resins. They do not contain Bisphenol-A (BPA) or phthalate plasticizers, and they have been cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

How much does Invisalign cost?

The cost of any orthodontic treatment will vary on a case-by-case basis. It’s estimated that the average cost of Invisalign falls between $3,500 and $8,000. However, the price that you will have to pay will depend on how long you need to wear Invisalign and how many different aligners need to be made. Check your insurance policy to see if it covers this type of orthodontic treatment. If your dental insurance covers traditional braces, it should also cover Invisalign. What do Invisalign braces cost? Are they worth it?

Are Invisalign braces uncomfortable?

It takes a little bit of time to get used to the feeling of wearing Invisalign, but in general, these aligners are much more comfortable than other types of braces. The only time that patients should feel any pain is if they are wearing aligners with rough or sharp edges. In this case, the problem can be solved by having an orthodontist file the aligners down to smooth out the edges.

Will I have to wear a retainer?

Patients will need to wear a retainer after their Invisalign treatment is over. The retainer is used to hold the teeth in place to prevent them from going back to the position they were in prior to treatment. Your orthodontist will tell you how long and how often you need to wear the retainer.  

Can I switch from metal braces to Invisalign?

Some patients that are unhappy with their metal braces ask their orthodontist if it’s possible to switch to Invisalign aligners in the middle of their treatment. In some cases, switching from metal braces to Invisalign aligners is possible, but in other cases, it’s not. Some patients even turn to Invisalign because they are not happy with the results they achieved with metal braces. However, any change in your treatment will need to be discussed with your orthodontist.  

Am I too old for Invisalign?

Many people assume that kids are the only ones that wear braces, but that’s simply not the case. People of all ages can get a straighter smile with braces, and Invisalign is often the preferred choice for adults. Metal braces can be distracting and make adults feel uncomfortable and out of place in a professional setting, but patients don’t have to worry about this when wearing Invisalign aligners.

Will I wear the same plastic aligners throughout my treatment?

No, patients will not wear the same plastic aligner throughout the treatment. Most patients will receive a new set of aligners every few weeks during treatment. Each set will be slightly different from the last in order to slowly adjust the positioning of your teeth. The differences may not be noticeable by just looking at the aligners, but a new set may feel a little off when using it for the first time.

Do I have to wear Invisalign aligners at all times?

Unlike metal braces, Invisalign aligners are removable. But, this does not mean you should remove them for large chunks of the day. It’s recommended that you keep the aligners in place between 20-22 hours per day. The aligners should be removed whenever you eat, brush your teeth, or drink any liquid besides water. Then, put them back inside your mouth as soon as possible. If you do not wear them for 20-22 hours per day, it’s very likely that you will not be able to achieve the desired results.

Do I have to give up my bad habits when wearing Invisalign?

Patients often ask if they will have to make any changes to their lifestyle when wearing Invisalign braces. Smokers should avoid smoking cigarettes when wearing Invisalign since this can cause the aligners to turn slightly yellow. It will be fairly easy to spot yellow-tinted plastic aligners in your mouth, which defeats the whole purpose of choosing these near-invisible braces. Some alcoholic beverages such as wine and beer can also stain aligners, so it’s best to either cut back on your intake or remove the aligners before consuming these beverages.

You should also never chew gum while wearing Invisalign since the gum can get stuck on the aligners. It’s possible to remove the aligners and chew gum, but if you do this, don’t keep the aligners out of your mouth for too long.

How will I know that I will be happy with the results?

Before treatment starts, an orthodontist will scan your teeth using a digital scanning tool. This image will be used to map out your treatment, but it is also used to show you what your teeth will look like after wearing Invisalign. Patients will get to see a 3-D rendering of their new smile so they know exactly what they should expect before committing to wearing these aligners.

Do you have another question about Invisalign that you would like addressed? If so, contact our office today. At Prentice Orthodontics, our goal is to serve your needs, improve your health, and make you smile! We have a highly trained and friendly staff that is eager to welcome you into our offices and assist you with your dental needs. Call 303-468-7722 for a free consultation or contact us using the form on our website today!
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How to Ease Your Child’s Fears About Visiting An Orthodontist Near Superior


October 11, 2017

Many children fear going to the orthodontist, which makes taking care of your child’s teeth much more challenging. But, it’s important that kids overcome this fear so they don’t put off important dental work that needs to be done to prevent future problems. How can you make your child feel more comfortable about visiting an orthodontist near Superior? Follow these tips:

Avoid Traumatizing Stories

Did you have a traumatic experience at an orthodontist when you were younger? If your child is scared of going to the orthodontist, he’s not the best person to share this story with. Instead, share positive experiences that you’ve had with an orthodontist. Talk to your child about how an orthodontist perfected your smile or fixed a problem that was causing you pain. Sharing these stories will show your child that there’s nothing to fear about a visit to the orthodontist.

Understand Their Anxieties

Many children fear going to the orthodontist because they think treatment will be painful or uncomfortable, but that’s not the only reason why kids are scared of dental work. Some children are worried that they will be picked on at school if they have to wear a bulky retainer or metal braces.

Before talking to your child, try to identify why he is feeling scared. It’s difficult to help if you don’t know what is causing your child to feel a certain way. For example, if you find out that your child is worried about being picked on, you can reassure him that many dental apparatuses are barely noticeable. But, this won’t matter to a child that is worried solely about the pain or discomfort of treatment. That’s why it’s so important to understand your child’s emotions so you can help him overcome his fears.

Role Play At Home

Another way to make your child feel more comfortable about going to the orthodontist is through role play. Pretend to be an orthodontist and let your child pretend to be the patient. Have your child sit in a chair and lean back so he feels as if he is actually at an orthodontist’s office. Then, walk him through what the orthodontist might do during the first appointment. Doing this will help your child become more familiar with what it’s like to be seen by an orthodontist so he’s not as scared when he arrives for his appointment. Read 8 tips to help kids overcome fear of dentists.
 

Bring A Toy or Blanket

Is there a toy or blanket that your child clings to when he is scared? If so, this item should come along with him during his first trip to the orthodontist. The orthodontist will not mind if your child holds onto a toy during the examination, so if it makes your child more comfortable, bring it along. You may find that after the first few visits, your child will be so comfortable at the orthodontist that he will be able to go to an appointment without a security blanket or toy.

Don’t Bring Your Child to Your Appointment

Parents often bring their kids to their own dentist appointments so their kids can watch them be examined and see that there’s nothing to be worried about. But, this is not a good idea. The dentist may accidentally poke you too hard and cause your gums to bleed or he may use instruments that look sharp and dangerous even though they’re not. Watching this can be very frightening for a child that is already nervous about visiting the orthodontist, so leave your kids at home if you have a dentist’s appointment.

Find A Kid-Friendly Orthodontist

Some orthodontists primarily work with adults, while others often perform dental work on children. Be sure to find an orthodontist that caters mainly to children. These orthodontists are more likely to have kid-friendly offices that will immediately put your child at ease. But, orthodontists that primarily work with adults may have neutral colored walls with no toys or kid-friendly magazines in the waiting room. Orthodontists that have experience working with kids will also know exactly how to talk to them to make them feel more comfortable. To find a kid-friendly orthodontist, either ask your dentist for recommendations or do your own research by looking at online reviews for orthodontists in your area.

Visit the Orthodontist’s Office

Talk to the orthodontist to see if it would be ok to bring your child by for a visit prior to his appointment. Kids might start to feel more comfortable if they talk to friendly members of the staff, find fun puzzles or magazines in the waiting room, or see other kids that are being treated in the office. Be sure to coordinate with the orthodontist’s office instead of dropping in unexpectedly. If you drop by without letting the orthodontist know that you are coming, the staff may be too busy with patients to give your child the attention that he deserves. This will leave a bad impression on your child and may make him fear returning, which is why it’s so important to schedule a time in advance.

Don’t Cave In

It’s never a good idea to cave in and let your child skip a visit to the orthodontist just because he is scared about going. Not only will this teach kids that they shouldn’t try to overcome their fears, but it could also cause severe dental problems that will get worse as the child gets older. If a dentist has advised you to bring your child to an orthodontist, don’t ignore this advice.

Are your kids ready to see an orthodontist for the first time? If so, get in touch with our team today. At Prentice Orthodontics, our goal is to serve your needs, improve your health, and make you smile! We have a highly trained and friendly staff that is eager to welcome you into our offices and assist you with your dental needs. Call 303-468-7722 for a free consultation or contact us using the form on our website today!
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Tips and Tricks for Thornton Invisalign Patients


September 20, 2017

Many patients choose Invisalign over traditional braces so they don’t have to live with a mouth full of metal in order to straighten their teeth. Invisalign braces don’t just look better, they are also more comfortable and convenient to wear. Are you thinking of straightening your teeth with Invisalign? To get the most out of your treatment, Thornton Invisalign patients should follow these tips and tricks:   

Practice Talking

Invisalign plastic aligners are very thin, however in the beginning of your treatment, the aligners may slightly affect your speech. This is no reason to panic—you just have to get used to having the aligners in your mouth. If you don’t want anyone to notice that you’re wearing Invisalign, practice talking before going out in public. Walk around your home wearing the aligners and talking out loud to yourself. At first, you may notice a slight lisp when you speak, but the more you talk, the less obvious it will become and eventually, it will completely vanish.

Carry A Case

You will need to remove your aligners before eating, so carry a case with you so you have a safe place to put them when you take them out. Patients who don’t carry a case end up putting their aligners on a napkin or table while they eat. But, this can lead to problems. It’s easy to forget your aligner or throw it in the trash if it’s sitting on a napkin. Putting it on the table is unsanitary, so you may end up transferring bacteria from the table into your mouth. To avoid these problems, always carry a case when there is a possibility that you will need to remove your aligners.

File the Edges

These plastic aligners are much more comfortable than metal braces, but they still may rub against the inside of your cheeks during the early stages of treatment. You should be as comfortable as possible during treatment, so don’t put up with this pain. Take your aligners out and look for any rough spots or sharp edges that could be rubbing against your cheeks. If you see any, use a nail file to smooth these areas out and prevent pain.  

Prevent Stains

Certain drinks such as coffee, wine, and soda can stain your aligners. But, this doesn’t mean you have to give up your favorite beverages until you’re done wearing aligners. To prevent stains,  simply remove the aligners as you would before you eat. Brush your teeth before putting the aligners back in if possible. If you do happen to stain your aligners, don’t panic. Most stains can easily be removed with a special solution designed for this purpose. Learn the three easy ways to remove stains from Invisalign trays.

Buy A Removal Tool

You will need to remove your aligners several times a day in order to eat and drink certain liquids. Removing Invisalign trays isn’t difficult, but it takes practice. To make it easier, ask your orthodontist about removal tools. If he doesn’t sell any in his office, visit Amazon to find cheap removal tools that can be used to quickly take your aligners out. Not only does this make it easier to remove the aligners, but it also prevents you from having to shove your hand in your mouth in public.  

Hold Onto Old Sets

During treatment, patients will wear one set of aligners for a few weeks before switching to a new, slightly adjusted set. Every time you switch to a new set, ask your orthodontist if you can hold onto the old set. If you accidentally lose or damage the new set of aligners, simply put in the old set until your orthodontist is able to make you a replacement. Even though the old set will be slightly different, it’s better to wear this set than wear nothing at all.

But, having two practically identical sets at home could lead to confusion if you forget which is which. Make sure that you clearly mark the outside of the two cases with “NEW” and “OLD” so you don’t accidentally wear the wrong set.

Take Pictures

Take photos of your smile on a weekly basis so you can track your progress. Even if your orthodontist takes photos whenever you come to his office, it’s best if you take your own that you can access at any time. If you ever get frustrated with having to wear Invisalign, take a look at these photos to remind yourself how far you’ve come. Seeing the progress that you’ve made will motivate you to continue to wear Invisalign so you can reach your goal of having a perfect smile.

Clean the Trays

Don’t forget to clean your aligners on a regular basis. Aligners can be cleaned with a standard soft-bristled toothbrush and toothpaste, so there’s no need to buy special brushes or cleaning solutions. If you don’t keep your aligners clean, the bacteria trapped inside your Invisalign tray could stick to your teeth and cause tooth decay. You’re putting so much effort into getting a perfect smile, so don’t ruin it with a mouth full of cavities!

Retainer Rules

After the Invisalign treatment is over, most patients will need to wear a retainer for several months. Some patients don’t understand the importance of wearing a retainer, so they don’t follow their orthodontist’s instructions. Don’t make this mistake. Not wearing the retainer could cause you to lose some of the progress that you made by wearing Invisalign.

Ask Questions

The final rule: don’t be afraid to ask questions! Your orthodontist will be happy to answer any questions or address any concerns that you may have about your aligners. If something doesn’t look or feel right, don’t hesitate to give your orthodontist a call.

Are you interested in perfecting your smile with Invisalign? If so, talk to the experts. At Prentice Orthodontics, our goal is to serve your needs, improve your health, and make you smile! We have a highly trained and friendly staff that is eager to welcome you into our offices and assist you with your dental needs. Call 303-468-7722 for a free consultation or contact us using the form on our website today!
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How to Care For Braces For Teens in Broomfield


September 13, 2017

Many teens will have to wear braces in order to straighten their teeth, treat overbites or underbites, and fix spacing issues. To get the best results, it’s important to make sure your teen takes good care of his teeth and braces. Doing so will also ensure that your teen is as comfortable as possible until the braces are removed. Here are some ways to care for braces for teens in Broomfield:

Eating

The orthodontist should give you a list of foods that your teen will need to avoid while he is wearing braces. If this isn’t offered to you, make sure that you ask for it so you know what your teen should and should not be eating. In general, it’s best to avoid sticky foods such as gum, gummy bears, and caramel candies that can stick to the braces. Extremely crunchy foods should also be avoided since biting into these foods could cause the braces to snap. Additionally, small particles of these foods can break off and get stuck in between the braces. If your teen wants to eat healthy, hard foods such as carrots or apples, cut them into smaller pieces so he can enjoy these healthy treats without hurting his braces. Learn what you can and can’t eat with braces.

Mouth Guards

Fortunately, your teen does not need to give up playing his favorite sport just because he has braces. But, you should invest in a mouth guard that he can wear while playing sports to protect his braces. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends that teens with braces wear both a top and bottom mouth guard when playing sports to protect the braces. Inexpensive mouth guards can be purchased at sporting goods stores, but you should talk to your orthodontist to see if a mouth guard can be custom made for your teen. An orthodontist can create a mold of your teen’s teeth to produce a mouthguard that fits perfectly in your teen’s mouth.

Brushing and Flossing

Your teen’s oral hygiene should not suffer just because he is wearing braces. Your teen should brush each tooth by moving a soft-bristled brush in a circulation motion. Begin at the top of the tooth and move downward, then start again at the bottom of the tooth and move upward. Doing this ensures that the brush is able to reach the surface covered by the braces. Using a manual brush is fine, but it’s recommended that your teen use an electric toothbrush in order to remove as much plaque as possible. Dental experts advise spending about ten seconds on each tooth before moving to the next one. It may take more time for your teen to brush his teeth with braces since he has to go tooth-by-tooth, but this is crucial.

Flossing can be difficult with braces, but it’s not impossible. It may be best to look for floss that is specially designed for kids that are wearing braces. Be sure to remind your teen to be gentle when flossing so he doesn’t pull too hard and damage his braces.

Fluoride

Fluoride is a mineral that strengthens tooth enamel and increases the teeth’s resistance to acid and other damaging substances. If your teen has braces, it’s best that he uses toothpaste with fluoride every time that he brushes. This will strengthen teeth so they can fight off decay and help your teen prevent white spots from forming on his teeth. You should also look for a mouthwash that has fluoride in it so your teen can rinse his mouth after brushing and flossing his teeth. The fluoride wash will remove any leftover food particles and reach any areas that your teen may have missed.

Treating Soreness

It can take a little time for your teen to adjust to life with braces. In the beginning, he may feel a bit of soreness as the inside of his mouth gets used to brushing against the surface of his braces. He shouldn’t be in pain, but if he is uncomfortable, dental wax may alleviate the symptoms. When in doubt, don’t hesitate to call your orthodontist to ask for advice.

Some teens may develop canker sores in the very beginning. If your teen starts to complain of canker sores, look for an over-the-counter treatment or ask your orthodontist to recommend a product that is effective.

Retainers

Your teen will need to wear a retainer after his braces have been removed. Make sure that you and your teen both listen closely to instructions provided by the orthodontist so you know how to properly care for the retainer. Keeping it clean is imperative so your teen does not put a dirty appliance in his mouth. To keep it clean, make sure that your teen puts it in a case every time he has to take it out. Don’t let him place his retainer on a napkin or hold it in his hands when he’s eating. Your teen should also get in the habit of cleaning his retainer every night as he’s brushing his teeth. Most retainers can be cleaned with a toothbrush and toothpaste, so it’s just one minor additional step for your teen’s oral hygiene routine.   

Get Help

Accidents happen, so if your teen breaks or snaps part of his braces, it’s important to take action and bring him into an orthodontist as soon as possible. If you let these problems go, it may make your teen uncomfortable and may even lead to injuries if the problem has to do with broken wires. Most problems can be quickly fixed with a trip to the orthodontist, so make the call as soon as you are made aware of the issue.

At Prentice Orthodontics, our goal is to serve your needs, improve your health, and make you smile! We have a highly trained and friendly staff that is eager to welcome you into our offices and assist you with your dental needs. Call 303-468-7722 for a free consultation or contact us using the form on our website today!
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What An Orthodontist in Broomfield Wants You to Know About Malocclusion


August 23, 2017

In dentistry, the term malocclusion refers to teeth that are not properly aligned. This is a common problem that can affect your appearance, speech, and ability to eat without experiencing discomfort. Fortunately, an orthodontist in Broomfield will be able to help you correct the alignment of your teeth. Here’s everything that you should know about this problem:

Causes of Malocclusion

Malocclusion is often hereditary, but there are certain environmental factors that can cause this problem as well. Children may develop malocclusion if they suck their thumb, thrust their tongues, or use pacifiers excessively. All of these behaviors can impact the positioning of a child’s teeth and cause malocclusion. Other factors that are out of your control can also lead to malocclusion, including tumors, jaw trauma, and irregularly shaped teeth. If you’ve ever had a cavity filled, it’s possible that the filling does not fit the tooth correctly, which can also cause symptoms of malocclusion.

Different Types of Malocclusion

Orthodontists classify malocclusion cases as class 1, class 2, or class 3 depending on how the upper and lower teeth come together. If you have class 1 malocclusion, it means both rows of your molars are properly positioned, but there is either too much space or not enough space in your mouth. People with class 1 malocclusion may have severe crossbites or overlapping teeth.

Class 2 malocclusion occurs when the lower molars are positioned too far back in the mouth, which pulls the chin inwards. This results in an overbite, meaning the upper teeth stick out much further than the lower teeth. Finally, class 3 malocclusion is characterized by lower molars that are positioned too far forward in the mouth. People with class 3 malocclusion will likely have severe underbites, where the lower teeth stick out further than the upper teeth. Learn more about the types of malocclusion—topic overview.

How to Spot Malocclusion

It’s fairly easy to spot the signs of malocclusion, but even if you don’t notice any of the symptoms, the dentist that you see on a regular basis should. The physical signs of malocclusion include improperly aligned teeth or an abnormal facial appearance. For example, people with class 2 malocclusion may notice that their chin is drawn inwards. People with malocclusion may also have crooked, crowded, or protruding teeth. If you believe that your teeth are not lining up correctly when you bite down, see an orthodontist to determine if you have malocclusion.

You may also notice that it is difficult to eat or chew without experiencing discomfort. Some people that have this problem can start to develop a lisp, but this is rare. If malocclusion is left untreated, it’s possible that you will start to experience headaches and temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ).

Diagnosing Malocclusion

Most patients who are having dental issues schedule an appointment with a dentist before seeing an orthodontist. The dentist will typically discover malocclusion while performing a routine examination. During the examination, the dentist should pull your cheek out to get a closer look at the alignment of your teeth when you bite down. At this point, he should be able to tell that your teeth are not properly aligned. However, he may need to take X-rays to confirm his suspicions. The dentist will then refer you to an orthodontist who is qualified to treat this dental problem.  

How to Treat Malocclusion

It’s estimated that two out of three adults are born with malocclusion, although some cases are more severe than others. Therefore, there’s no need to panic if your dentist suggests that you see an orthodontist in order to treat malocclusion. In fact, malocclusion is the most common reason why dentists send their patients to orthodontists.

Some cases of malocclusion are so minor that they do not require treatment. An orthodontist will be able to tell you if you need treatment to correct this problem. Some of the most common types of treatment are:
 
  • Tooth Removal: The orthodontist may suggest removing one or more teeth if the malocclusion is caused by overcrowding.
  • Adjusting the Shape of Teeth: Teeth that are irregularly shaped may need to be reshaped by an orthodontist. This often involves capping the original tooth with a mold of a regularly shaped tooth.
  • Braces: The most common type of treatment for malocclusion is braces, which are used to adjust the alignment of the teeth. Braces are typically worn for 18 months to two years. You will be required to wear a retainer after the braces are removed in order to complete the treatment.
  • Surgery: Surgery is looked at as a last resort when no other treatment options will work for the patient. In these rare cases, surgery will be performed to reshape the jaw.

These treatment options are very different in nature, but they all share common goals. The goals of each of these treatment options is to correct the positioning of the teeth, alleviate pain and discomfort, and make it easier for the patient to clean his or her teeth.

When to Seek Treatment

It’s never too late to seek treatment for malocclusion, but it’s always best to visit an orthodontist and begin treatment as soon as you become aware of the problem. The earlier on in your life that you treat malocclusion, the easier it is to correct the issue. This is why orthodontists strongly recommend correcting teeth alignment issues during childhood when the jaw has not fully developed. But, there’s nothing to fear if you weren’t treated for malocclusion during your childhood. Orthodontists are skilled dental professionals who are trained to correct these issues regardless of whether the patient is a child or an adult.

If your teeth aren’t properly aligned, get in touch with an orthodontist as soon as possible. At Prentice Orthodontics, our goal is to serve your needs, improve your health, and make you smile! We have a highly trained and friendly staff that is eager to welcome you into our offices and assist you with your dental needs. Call 303-468-7722 for a free consultation or contact us using the form on our website today!
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