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Braces-Friendly Snack Ideas

March 16th, 2015

Braces-Friendly-Snack-Ideas

We know that the transition to eating braces-friendly foods can be difficult; you can only eat so many mashed potatoes and bowls of apple sauce, right? Last May we wrote a post on breakfast ideas. We wanted to follow up with some healthy snack ideas for those of you who might be looking for more inspiration!

Remember, it's always a good idea to chew carefully, use bite-sized pieces, and brush after you eat. Braces work by applying a constant controlled force on your teeth in order to properly move them. If at any time this force is disrupted, it can delay your orthodontic treatment time—mainly by broken brackets and wires. This most frequently happens when you eat hard, sticky, or crunchy foods. So in order to keep your orthodontic treatment on track, it’s important to stick to braces-friendly foods.

1. Thinly sliced apples, dipped in peanut butter, yogurt, or creamy chocolate sauce
2. Cheese and crackers
3. Cereal mix: Pack a Ziploc bag full for a great school-time or on-the-go snack. Mix your favorite low-sugar cereal with Goldfish crackers or Cheez-its and other braces-safe bites like mini marshmallows, raisins or dried cranberries
4. Peanut Butter Tacos: Peanut butter & low-sugar jelly or honey on a soft tortilla shell, rolled up for easy eating on the go
5. String cheese
6. Hummus & soft pita bread sections, or soft raw veggies, like zucchini or red pepper strips that are easy to bite and chew
7. Soft fruit: strawberries, kiwi, bananas, orange or tangerine sections
8. Sugar-free yogurt smoothies
9. Soft granola bars
10. Pizza wheels: Pizza sauce on an English muffin, topped with shredded mozzarella
11. Roasted edamame with sea salt
12. Kale chips

There's even a cookbook devoted to brace-friendly recipes: The Braces Cookbook by Pamela Waterman, available on Amazon. It's a great resource for snack recipes, as well as healthy meals for brace-wearing individuals who want to avoid orthodontic issues.

With a little creativity, planning, and the willingness to make some adjustments in your diet, it's easy (and tasty) to eat well while being a safety-conscious orthodontic patient.

Got more questions about foods that are safe to eat? Give us call at 541-848-6642. And if you come up with any good recipes of your own, please comment and let us know!

How do braces move my teeth?

February 16th, 2015

How-do-braces-move-my-teeth

So your dentist told you that you have to get braces to straighten out your teeth or bite. But how do they actually work? We’ll give you the run-through.

Tooth movement is your body’s natural response to light pressure applied by braces over a certain period of time (typically about two years). Brackets are glued onto your teeth, and have small slots that hold the orthodontic wires. These are kept in place with small elastic ties that fit around the brackets. Each of your teeth has a different size and shape, so the brackets are custom-made for the particular tooth that they will go onto. As time passes, these wires apply pressure on your teeth, which sets in motion the movement of your teeth into their desired positions.

When you first get your braces on, we start out with wires that are flexible, but still strong enough to apply a constant force on your teeth. As your teeth straighten out over time, however, we use progressively thicker and firmer wires to help move your teeth in place for an ideal bite.

Every time you visit our office for an adjustment, we swap out the wires in order to keep putting pressure on your teeth, which is why it’s so important for you to keep your adjustment visits during your treatment. Most adjustment appointments are scheduled four to eight weeks apart to give your teeth time to move.

Most of our patients will need to wear elastics or rubber bands at some point during their treatments. These elastics typically go from one or more of the upper braces to one or more of the lower braces, and pull on your teeth to move them in the direction they need to move in order to achieve an optimal bite. You’ll go through a few of these tightening, and before you know it--voila! You’ll have a straight, healthy, beautiful smile.

Not long ago, orthodontists had stainless steel wires and that was about it. Today, however, we have a number of different high-tech wires at our disposal to move your teeth faster and more comfortably. While the basic principle of how braces works remains the same, we have a number of different options to fit your specific needs.

Give us a call at 541-848-6642 to schedule a complimentary consultation and see how our staff can work their magic on your smile.

5 tips to keep your new years resolution going strong

January 12th, 2015

new_year_resolution
We’re about halfway through January. How is your New Years resolution coming along? Whether it’s to start a new diet, save money, or stop taking so many selfies, here are a few tips to help you keep on track. You’ve got this!

  1. Set short term goals for long term results. People who break their resolution into small, manageable chunks are more likely to achieve success.
  2. Use the buddy system. Everything is better with a friend! Find a walking buddy, or challenge a friend to see who can save more on groceries for a specific recipe and see who wins.
  3. Celebrate the little victories. But don’t choose something that goes against your goal, like eating a cake if you’re trying to lose weight. Treat yourself by picking something like a long relaxing bubble bath every week you reach your short term goal.
  4. Make your resolution about the journey, not the outcome. Research has shown that no matter what your resolution is, you’re already much more likely to make improvements than someone who hasn’t made a formal resolution. You’ll also have better success if you stick to goals you actually have control over. For example, it’s easier to make a conscious decision to work out and fill your plate with more veggies than to change a number on a scale.
  5. Don’t give up so easily. Many people throw in the towel after one little slip up. Instead, forgive yourself and move on. After all, January 1 is just one day out of 365. You have the power to start over whenever you want to!

Is a new smile on your bucket list for 2015? Come in to Struble Orthodontics for a free consultation! That’s one more thing you can easily check off your to-do list for a happier, healthier you.

Tips for preparing for braces

December 17th, 2014

Tips-for-preparing-for-braces

Getting braces isn’t easy. It will require some adjustments, not only to your teeth but to many aspects of your lifestyle. Mentally preparing for braces will help reduce anxiety before and during the initial stages of wearing braces. We’ve compiled a list of things to keep in mind in order to ease the process.

Remember: braces are a commitment
Whether you are going with traditional braces or new technology like Invisalign, braces are a commitment both for parents and for children. They will require time, energy, and money. Help your child understand the commitment that is being made before you move forward. Talk him or her the hygiene commitments, the need to keep appointments, and how certain foods should be cut out of diets. Finally, be sure to sit down and discuss with your child that braces don't just magically take care of themselves.

Educate yourself about all your options
For many parents who had braces when they were kids, there was just one option: metal braces. Now there are all kinds of different options, including ceramic and Invisalign. There are also different treatments as well as payment plans to consider. Be sure to schedule a free consultation with us at (541) 848-6642 to see what will work best for you.

Explain the initial visits
The procedure can seem intimidating, especially if the child has heard stories about discomfort or pain from braces in the past. Parents should take time to explain why the orthodontist is taking so many pictures, x-rays and impressions of the teeth. That way, parents are removing the mystery of the procedure and allowing children to feel relaxed as the initial steps are taken to prepare for the braces.

Encourage children to talk to the orthodontist
An orthodontist is trained to deal with the concerns of their patients. By allowing the orthodontist to answer questions and give explanations, a child will feel more comfortable during the process. The orthodontist can explain the elements of the process that parents might not fully understand or know how to explain in child-appropriate terminology.

Discuss hygiene
Hygiene is a challenge at the beginning, so parents should prepare children for the differences between normal tooth care and working around the braces to properly clean and floss the teeth. By dealing with the concerns, questions and complications before getting the braced put on, children will know the basics and can get started without problems later. Read up on our last blog for more on how to keep your teeth clean with braces.

Talk about social concerns
Getting braces might be seen as a rite of passage, but some children become worried about the reaction of friends, classmates and other individuals related to social activities. Parents should discuss the social concerns with children and explain the purpose of braces to help with potential self-esteem issues. Braces are not always viewed as a positive when a child feels self-conscious about changing appearances.

Be ready to help
Your children will need help with their braces. They will need help flossing, tightening things, even brushing and dealing with pokey wires and brackets that rub on sensitive gums. Prepare yourself to be okay with the "hands on." And let your kids know that you will always be there to help.

Preparing a child for braces is not always easy, but it can reduce feelings of anxiety or worry associated with the procedure. The more parents work on preparation, the better a child will feel during and after the process is completed. Above all, remember that it will all be worth it once we reveal your beautiful new smile at the end!

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