Braces

Back to School with Braces and a Mask

September 13th, 2021

Summer is coming to a close, and most families have started a new school year. Beginning school with braces is another piece of the puzzle, and for parents -- and kids alike -- the need to take care of a new set of wires can seem daunting.

It's even more confusing to know how to take the best care of your child's braces when they might be wearing a mask in the classroom due to COVID-19 restrictions and requirements. We understand and want to provide you with a survival guide for parents sending their kiddos back to school with braces and masks. The good news is that the mask mandates may provide some welcome cover for many kids in middle school or high school as they get used to wearing their new braces. But, that said, there are still some important rules to follow with your child's newly braced mouth to ensure the best care and most comfort.

Keep a Mouthguard with You
Orthopedic mouthguards are specifically designed to be worn during physical activity to protect gums and teeth. Regardless of whether your child is wearing a mask, they will want to have a well-fitting mouthguard on hand for physical education or other rigorous activities at school.

When braces are present, we suggest choosing a generic or non-custom mouthguard. This choice can protect your child's teeth while still allowing the desired tooth movement we are seeking to achieve for your child. Some companies even make "braces specific" mouthguards for use while active orthodontic treatment is being provided.

Keep your Braces Kit Handy
Making sure to have a few useful items on hand in your child's locker or backpack can help significantly during their school day. When our patients begin treatment, we provide several essential items to help get them through the transitional period into braces. Consider keeping these items handy, and it may even be wise to pack your "Struble Kit" with your child for the first few weeks of school. We suggest including the following items, which the Struble kit incorporates:

  • Struble Orthodontics water bottle
  • Soft toothbrush
  • Christmas Tree flossers (To remove unwanted or irritating food.)
  • Lip balm (To soothe cut lips.)
  • Orthodontic flossers (For hard-to-reach places.)

Our team is conscientious about checking in to see if you need to restock on any of these helpful supplies throughout treatment. But if you find that you need any particular supplies, please let one of our wonderful team members know at your next appointment!

Obtain a Handheld Water Bottle
Drinking beverages such as juice or soda can cause unwanted stains behind the brackets on braced teeth. Our Struble Orthodontics water bottle is easy to carry and perfect for this purpose. Besides, who doesn't want to stay hydrated on these back-to-school scorcher days? Encourage your child to keep a water bottle close by at all times for healthy hydration and to avoid being tempted to drink something sugary.

Provide a Mirror
Even with the protection of possibly wearing a face mask in the classroom, your child may have moments -- especially outdoors -- where their face is exposed. Including a handheld mirror in their backpack, braces kit, or locker can give your child a little added comfort in the knowledge that they can check their teeth and braces for the undesired without having to run to the bathroom.

Use a Cone-Shaped or Stiff Mask
Nothing is more uncomfortable with new or recently tightened braces than having your wires and brackets rub against your gums and lips. A close-fitting mask can make this much worse. There are several quality masks out now for youth and kids. Be sure the one you choose provides ample breathing room for your child's mouth. This way, you can save yourself the worry about the fabric rubbing their lips while talking and moving around. Finally, be sure that your mask of choice provides good filtration and protection for your child as they head back into the classroom.

Ultimately, going back to school with braces doesn't need to be scary or uncomfortable. And taking these steps can make it that much easier for you and your child. We hope you have an enjoyable school year.

Please reach out to our office any time if you have additional questions about starting the school year with braces.

How to Have Fun with Braces During Summer BBQ Season

June 28th, 2021

Image courtesy of Juniper Swim and Fitness

Heading into summer with braces can feel a bit daunting. All of your favorite things, campouts, BBQs, and weekend adventures, can lead to poor dental care, and a nightmare for your mouth!

But there are lots of ways to prepare for summer with braces, and still have a great time enjoying all of your favorite activities and food.

Let’s start with the foods you can absolutely enjoy this summer with braces.

  • Cheeses - Get excited! The cheese on your favorite charcuterie board is fair game. So you can enjoy your favorite soft or hard cheese all summer long!
  • Soft Meats - Not all meat off the BBQ is good for your braces, but as long as it is bite-sized, or can fall off the bone, you’re good to go.
  • Soft Cooked Foods - Anything from potato salad, to baked beans are A-okay to eat with braces on. So don’t skimp on the pasta salad this year!
  • Popsicles and Snow Cones - You can make your own popsicles super easily, for you and your family. You can also enjoy snow cones to your heart’s content! Just don’t forget to brush your teeth after.
  • Soft Bread and Lightweight Crackers - As long as the crackers are crumbly, and the bread is soft, it should be safe for your braces. Just tread lightly here.
  • Tender Fruits - Whether you put them in a fruit salad, or eat on their own, soft fruits like kiwis, melons, bananas, blueberries, and avocados (yes, they are fruit) are the perfect summer snack that won’t wreak havoc on your braces.
  • Cookies and Ice Cream - While not great for your teeth, most ice cream (without a cone), and soft cookies are safe for your braces. But proper tooth care is essential when consuming lots of sweets.

Of course, there are some BBQ foods you should avoid during the summer when you have braces. Here’s the shortlist:

  • Corn Chips, Pretzels, or Hard Crackers - One of the biggest enemies of braces, corn chips, pretzels, and some crackers can lead to broken wires and uncomfortable gums. Maybe opt for another chip this summer, so you can enjoy yourself and not end up in our office for an unscheduled visit.
  • Corn on the Cob - We know, it’s hard to say no to corn on the cob -- especially during the summer months, but it’s one of the worst foods for your braces. But don’t fret! Just cut the corn kernels off the cob, and add to salad, or eat on their own!
  • Vegetable Platters - A BBQ favorite is the platter of raw vegetables with some yummy dipping sauce, but you can quickly damage your archwires and brackets. To get those veggies into your diet this summer, either try cutting them into small pieces first or cooking your veggies on the BBQ.
  • Meat that’s Firm - Most ribs, ribeyes, and other tough meats are off-limits. If it seems stringy, or tough, just say no thank you.

In addition to food, there are those summer activities that are oh-so-fun but can lead to poor care of your teeth and braces during the summer months. Here are a few final tips for keeping your mouth and orthodontist happy while you are out adventuring!

Keep your floss and toothbrush with you - Whether you put a spare in your car, in your purse, or in your backpack, keep some floss handy, as well as an extra toothbrush and travel toothpaste. This way you can keep up with your care even in the event of the unexpected.

All of these considerations will help as you launch into your summer plans. Enjoy and we’ll see you at the grill!

If you have any questions, or concerns about your summer diet or activities, please feel free to reach out to us at 541-848-6642.

5 Reasons to Smile About Having Straight Teeth

August 31st, 2020

child_orthodontic

If you’re tripping over your paddleboard as you head out the door to catch the last bit of summer like we are, you probably know that fall is just around the corner. And we are getting our stoke in while there’s still sun to enjoy! Here around the office, we are basking in the smell of fresh paint and mountain views at our brand new location. Pssst...it’s in the Old Mill District if you haven’t heard! Keep tabs on our blog next month for a special photo tour of the space.

But for now, there’s something really high on our list at all times of the year, and that’s your healthy teeth and gums. We want to be real with you, having the perfect smile means much more than just a straight row of white, evenly spaced teeth. It is easy to forget how common problems like teeth overcrowding, bite or alignment issues, and jaw pain can compromise our overall health.

Orthodontists like Dr. Struble and Dr. Crosta care about your holistic health which is why they love teeth. Having properly aligned teeth is about more than just photogenic angles and cosmetic benefits (although those are great!). A healthy bite and gums prevent injury and discomfort to our mouths. Bite issues cause long-term damage and wear to your teeth and even to your heart due to plaque buildup happening in those hard-to-reach areas of your mouth.

Getting a consultation by scheduling an appointment with us is a low-risk way to do the absolute best thing for your oral health. If you are concerned about something, why not check things out now? No need to wait until the Fall to come in and see us. But while we’re waiting, here are a few reasons why getting a healthy smile is about more than just looks:

A healthy and aligned bite affects a lot of things going on in your mouth.

Crossbite, underbite, and overbite are all examples of bite alignment issues that cause stress on your teeth. This includes uneven wearing, chipping or breakage of teeth, and even oral injuries to your gums and side of your mouth! For the long-term, it is a great idea to address bite issues early to give your teeth the best chance of longevity and maintenance.

Straight teeth help you to chew food, aid in digestion and even help you to communicate clearly.

Compounded issues with bite or jaw alignment can make eating food or chewing difficult. Malocclusion, what happens when your jaw is closed and teeth are misaligned, can cause difficulty when chewing certain foods and has even been linked to mild speech impediments. Inability to chew correctly also makes it hard for your stomach to digest foods you eat, particularly with anything dense it has to work harder over time to break down. Chewing is so important and is something we all do every day, but don’t often think about.

Your heart is counting on you!

Yep, that’s right. Your heart is counting on the removal of plaque from your mouth to keep it nice and strong. We know, (that’s what your dental appointments are for), but orthodontists play an important role in keeping your teeth and gums healthy to minimize plaque buildup. Plaque is that sticky stuff that adheres to the surface of your tooth and also to the walls of arteries inside the heart, eventually causing blockages. When teeth are crooked, it makes it easier for plaque to hang out in your mouth.

An aligned bite means reduced tension headaches related to an offset jaw.

You may not think about it much, but your jaw is as equally an important part of a healthy smile as your teeth. Alignment issues with the jaw can cause tension or stress on your Temporal Mandibular Joint (TMJ). Keeping your jaw healthy requires the teeth to sit in symmetrical alignment. That way, facial muscles can relax and aren’t pulling or causing strain. Those of us who’ve experienced tension headaches know exactly how important this is!

Healthy teeth help our real smile to come through!

You know what they say, if you got it, flaunt it, and we love it when our patients flaunt their beautiful new smiles. See here for Before and After Photos of the happy grins we bring to Central Oregon daily. We work hard to guarantee you feel comfortable and confident in your own skin. And we love serving you with that extra bit of confidence you need to face the world!

Broken bracket? Pokey Wire? Running out of Clear Aligners? Here’s what to do when you can’t come to the office.

March 25th, 2020

The team at Struble has created a handy series of patient troubleshooting videos for snags you might encounter with your braces or clear aligners during our office closure. Our anticipated date of return to regular business hours is June 15th as mandated by our State Governor Kate Brown. Until that time, our phones are staffed until noon on weekdays and we are happy for you to call us (541-848-6642) with any questions. We want you to know that you are not alone should you be experiencing a true orthodontic emergency!

If you haven’t yet read it yet, you catch up on our response to all COVID-19 related things here.

Out of respect for our nationwide shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), we ask that you carefully consider any visit you might make to our office for treatment before June 15th, as every glove, mask, and gown used to treat a patient counts in the fight our hospitals are facing against COVID-19. Struble is donating all PPE to our state efforts to battle coronavirus except for a small contingency to treat orthodontic emergencies. This means we all play a part in helping preserve gloves and masks for those who need it most.

Here are some helpful orthodontic tips to get you through our time of reduced services:

Question #1: “I have mouth pain and or facial trauma. Is this an orthodontic emergency?”

Any kind of facial trauma involving an open wound and/or appliance that has damaged soft tissue. A broken appliance from trauma that results in a hanging or disconnected end. If your pain is mild or your soft tissue is unaffected, it may be best to revisit the issue when we return to the office if you are able to hold the appliance in place with orthodontic wax. Please call our office in advance to your arrival so we can be prepared to serve you.

Question #2: “I’m a clear aligner patient and I’m running out of aligners. What do I do?”

If you are worried about running out of clear aligners there are few ways to handle that. The first is to drop down your wear-time of the aligners to night time only. This will keep teeth from shifting in a bad direction while maintaining the progress you’ve made. If you have active aligners, adjust your wear time to two-week intervals for the meantime. If you are wearing elastics, please continue to do so. If you are running out of elastics we can mail them to you or can pick them up yourself (we have them packaged and available for easy pick up at our Bend office).

Question #3: “What do I do with a broken bracket, Herbst appliance, or a pokey wire that annoys me?”

Additional videos with demos to fix specific bracket, wire, and Herbst issues.

With the office closure, it is more important to watch what you eat and how you eat to avoid breaking your orthodontic appliances. This means avoidance of hard or sticky foods like caramels or popcorn that might cause damage to your braces. However, if you do damage a bracket or a wire in your mouth, not to worry! There are a few easy fixes in the following videos to get you by, pain-free. Trimming pokey wires with a clean nail trimmer is easier than you think. Failing that, securing a loose or broken bracket in place with wax is a great solution until we are able to see you in person.

Question #4: “I had a growth and development check-up appointment scheduled during Struble’s office closure. What now?”

Good news! A virtual consultation platform is in the works. Stay tuned for more information about that on our blog soon. For those who had scheduled a simple appliance check, a retainer check, or a clear aligner check, we may be able to handle these types of requests through our virtual platform. We will be notifying patients about this telemedicine option soon. Please check back with us in the coming weeks.

Question #5: “What if I lose or break my retainer while the office is closed?

Unfortunately, we can’t see you in the office to take impressions to create a new appliance. But please do call us immediately if you lose an appliance (541-848-6642). If you contact us before your teeth begin to shift, we may be able to 3-D print your retainer model from when braces were removed and have it shipped to you. If a more significant amount of time has passed, you can always go to an online retailer like Amazon or Walmart to buy a customizable night guard. This will hold you over for temporary use until we can see you in person. We recognize that minor shifting of your teeth may occur. When we reopen our doors, we will be here for you to create a new treatment plan.

Question #6: I’m running out of orthodontic wax, elastics, and/or cleaning supplies for my braces. What should I do?”

Though this is a minor concern, we want to serve you in the best way possible which means we will be keeping our front door stocked with extra elastics and wax for our Struble patients. We can mail these to you directly or you can come in and pick them up before noon at our Bend location. We recommend you continue to wear your elastics only at night if you are running low and not able to restock your supply.

Lastly, we want to thank our awesome community for hanging with us through this time of unexpected closure. Our wish is to keep you healthy and safe by reserving our treatment hours for essential orthodontic emergencies. Thank you for understanding and again, do not hesitate to call our offices at 541-848-6642 should you need advice over the phone or email us at info@strubleortho.com. We are here to help you!

Impressionless Digital Scanners, Oh my!

February 8th, 2019

Guess what, Struble patients! We’ve got some fancy new technology in the office that we know you will just love. You know that uncomfortable feeling of having to sink your teeth into a cold, gooey dental impression tray and hold still? Those days of awkward fitting, strong- smelling dental impressions are over. Why? Because we have 3 brand-new iTero ® Element Scanners in our offices. Check out this video to see exactly how they work.

A no-goop solution for more accurate impressions with 3D scanning of your teeth

Your comfort is one of our top priorities at Struble. Have a top-notch fitting experience for retainers and Invisalign® aligners with this new technology. No one will miss the old way of doing impressions with putty-based materials that were awkward fitting and messy to clean up. There are clear benefits for switching from manual impression trays to digital scans.

Comfortable

Goo, be gone! We know how awkward those old-school impressions trays were and we are proud to eliminate that hassle to provide the best possible experience for our patients. We know you’re going to love it as much as we do.

Fast

Get in and out of the office in a flash because now you can see 3D scans of your mouth on screen immediately and review with your orthodontist. In some cases we can even provide an immediately treatment simulation to view your future smile transformation digitally! Get going on your Invisalign® plan without having to wait for clunky impression to set. It’s not too good to be true!

Accurate

Our 3D scanners (we have three!) means no need to retake messy impressions or hassle with the aftermath of putty ever again. Hooray! This 3D model of your mouth can be used over and over again for fitting purposes.

How long does the scan take?

Our Struble patients can take advantage of this highly accurate and efficient 3D method of scanning right now. Our highly trained team can complete your scan in only 3 to 4 minutes! No hassle or messy cleanup of putty residue. Everyone wins! We are proud to continually provide Central Oregon with this exceptional digital scanning technology. Come check it out at your next appointment with us.

The Hub: New Patient Information

September 12th, 2018

Struble Orthodontics Bend, Oregon and Redmond, Oregon

Welcome to Struble Orthodontics!

We want to thank you for selecting our practice for your orthodontic treatment. This will be your orthodontic “home” for the next several months/years and we want you to make yourself comfortable and enjoy your time here. It is our hope that you look forward to your time spent with us. We can’t wait to get started and know there will be a beautiful smile awaiting you at the end of this journey! Below you will find all the information and videos that will guide you through making appointments, eating guides, emergencies and more.
Just click on each link below for more information:

What Sets Us Apart-Our Mission Statement
Get Acquainted with Orthodontic “Lingo”
Managing your Appointments
What to Expect During your Appointments
Eating Guide - “Do’s and Dont's”
Brushing and Flossing - Your Commitment to Oral Care at Home
Orthodontic Emergencies - Handling Emergencies Appropriately
Retainers - Maintaining Your New Smile
Watch all of the instructional videos


Mission Statement/Vision:

At Struble Orthodontics, we are committed to providing individual attention and exceptional orthodontic care in a comforting, compassionate environment for people of all ages.  We will treat you like family by respecting your time, concerns and apprehensions while we exceed all your expectations. You will leave with a new smile and a lifetime of improved dental health and function.


Orthodontic "Lingo": the words you’ll want to know

Orthodontic Records: These are the materials we will be collecting in order to properly diagnose your orthodontic problems to ensure we have an appropriate treatment plan that will address your individual orthodontic needs. These initial records usually consist of orthodontic models, or digital models, digital photographs, digital radiographs and a thorough clinical examination.

3D Scan and Digital Models: Remember those messy alginate impressions that were routine and common in orthodontic offices? You may remember your parents complaining about them when they reminisce about their orthodontic experience! Our office has made a technology upgrade and we now have three iTero digital scanners! This allows us to generate digital treatment study models for our patients so that we can accurately track progress in a more comfortable, convenient way. Now that’s a win for everyone!

Impressions: We will occasionally use a soft rubbery material called alginate to take impressions or molds of your teeth. These impressions allow us to create and construct orthodontic retainers and appliances. Fortunately, digital scanning technology in our high-tech practice now typically allows us to avoid these routine impressions.

Panoramic Radiograph: This is a type of x-ray that we use to evaluate dental development, tooth eruption and jaw anatomy. This x-ray is different than the x-rays your dentist usually takes to check for cavities.

Separators: Sometimes we may need to use small separators or “spacers” to make room between your teeth for the placement of bands. These separators may make your teeth a bit sore. We usually keep these separators in your mouth for approximately a week and ask that you not floss in these areas to avoid dislodging these separators.

Bands: These are thin metal rings that we may place around your back molar teeth. We use these from time to time with your braces or to attach permanent retainers and other appliances.

Brackets: AKA Braces, these are the small metal or ceramic attachments we place on your teeth through a process known as “bonding”. These are the “handles” we use to move and straighten your teeth. We use a special type of “self-ligating” bracket because we find greater comfort, faster tooth movement and excellent esthetics with these technologically advanced brackets.

Arch Wire: The arch wire is actually what allows us to move your teeth. Arch wires come in many different sizes, shapes, and materials. We will be changing your arch wires frequently during the first portion of your treatment.

Elastic Chain: These are available in many colors and are used to gently close spaces between your teeth by attaching around your brackets.

Steel ties: These are sometimes used to securely fasten your arch wire to the bracket. Sometimes during brushing or eating these ties can come loose or move. Please see the Orthodontic Emergencies for ideas on how to handle this situation.

Elastic ties: These also come in many colors and are sometimes used with our conventional brackets to secure the arch wire to the bracket.

Retainer: Retainers are used for several different reasons during and after orthodontic treatment. They come in many different colors and types. They can sometimes be used to make small movements to your teeth but are usually used to maintain your beautiful result after orthodontic treatment. We will sometimes use “fixed” retainers that remain attached to your teeth. Alternatively, “removable” retainers can be taken out so it is your responsibility to make sure these are worn as instructed for best results.

Elastics: You may be asked to wear these “rubber bands” to aid us in perfecting your bite or the way your teeth fit together. When worn as asked, these help to complete your treatment and accelerate treatment progress.


Managing your Appointments

Please help us stay on track with your treatment by maintaining your appointments. This will help us complete your treatment in a timely manner. We also ask that you be on time for your appointments. Respecting your time is a big priority for us! We will make every effort to be ready for you at your appointment time and want to make your treatment as timely as possible.

While we always strive to accommodate scheduling needs and desires of our patient families, we want our patients to be aware that it is not always possible to schedule routine appointments outside of school, work or extra-curricular activity times.


What to Expect During your Appointments

Your “Start” Appointment: You will be getting your orthodontic braces or appliances! This is a very exciting appointment as it marks the beginning of your active treatment. . . . those pearly whites are starting to move today!

This will be one of your longer appointments with us. Depending on your specific treatment plan and orthodontic needs, this appointment may last approximately 1-1.5 hours.

Your braces and any other appliances will be placed on your teeth at this appointment and thorough care and cleaning instructions will be provided. We will make sure you have all the necessary tools to keep those teeth as clean as possible for us during your treatment. We will rely on you to help us by making sure you are doing your best to follow our recommendations. Excellent treatment results simply cannot be achieved without your cooperation!

You may experience some soreness and tenderness over the next several days after you get your orthodontic appliances placed. Usually, this period of soreness lasts approximately 3-5 days and then subsides. We recommend using an over-the-counter medication like Tylenol during this period to help relieve any significant discomfort. Be sure to follow package instructions for proper dosing.

Routine Visits: Now that you have your braces on and movement has begun, we will have you come in for new arch wires, check your oral hygiene, replace chains and secure brackets. These appointments are the stepping stones required to ensure your treatment is on track. They are usually scheduled every 6-10 weeks depending on your treatment plan and orthodontic needs.

Progress Records: Now that we’ve got those teeth moving in the right direction, it may be necessary for us to periodically obtain progress records to document and evaluate your progress. These records will include digital photographs and occasionally digital radiographs to evaluate tooth position and eruption. Patient health and safety is a primary concern for us here at Struble Orthodontics. We thoroughly evaluate the need for these progress records and make every effort to keep radiation exposure to a minimum for our patients by using digital radiographs. We will only take these x-rays when absolutely necessary for the health of our patients and to achieve the best possible orthodontic result.

Removing Your Braces: This is an incredibly exciting day in your orthodontic journey and today we get to share in your success! This appointment will take approximately 1-1.5 hours but removing the brackets actually only takes approximately a minute! Now that you have your beautiful new smile, it’s time to make sure we maintain this result by wearing retainers exactly as instructed. We use a variety of retainers catered to meet your specific retention needs and will make sure you receive proper wear and care instructions when you receive your retainers. We will deliver your retainers as soon as possible so we ask that you return to our office within a couple days (usually the same day) to make sure your new retainers fit properly. It’s time to enjoy that new smile and be able to eat all the things you’ve had to avoid during your treatment. . . . enjoy, and congratulations from all of us at Struble Orthodontics!

Retainer Visits: Even though you’ve reached a milestone in your treatment, we still ask that you continue to see us for several visits. We call this your retention phase. These visits allow us to monitor your stability and ensure that your retainers or appliances are fitting properly. Everyone’s treatment and stability are different so this period is vital to make sure that your orthodontic investment is a lasting one. We want that brand new smile and healthy bite to last a lifetime!


Eating Guide: The Do's and the Dont's

Orthodontic appliances do require you to be careful with the types of foods you are able to consume without causing problems or prolonging your treatment.  If you’re careful, you can continue to enjoy most of the same foods you’re used to but below we’ve listed several groups we ask that you try to avoid:

Hard/Crunchy Foods: These can damage wires and even loosen brackets.  This can delay or prolong your treatment if this becomes a recurrent problem.  Exercise caution and use common sense with these foods, you can usually eat hard foods if cut into small enough pieces and are careful when eating.  If you do happen to break a bracket or damage some piece of your braces, please call our office (541) 848-6642 ahead of time so that we may prepare for this and fix this problem promptly for you.

Sticky Foods: Sticky foods can also cause damage to your appliances.  If these sticky foods are high in sugar content, they can cause cavities or gum inflammation because they are hard to clean from around your appliances.

Sugary Foods and Drinks: Foods and drinks that are high in sugar content should be avoided during orthodontic treatment whenever possible.  If you do occasionally enjoy a sugary snack, we ask that you brush and clean your teeth around your braces as soon as possible.  If you do not have access to a toothbrush, it is best to rinse well with water.
Below is a list of food examples we ask that you avoid:

  • Taffy
  • Caramel
  • Candy Bars
  • Bubble Gum
  • Lollipops
  • Hard Candy (i.e. Jolly Ranchers)
  • Popcorn
  • Ice

And here are a few that can be enjoyed with caution:

  • Carrots (if cut into small pieces)
  • Apples (if cut into small pieces)
  • Corn on the Cob (if removed from the cob)
  • Hard Bread (if cut into small pieces)
  • Steak (carefully!)

Brushing and Flossing

It is very important that you develop a routine for caring for your teeth during your orthodontic treatment. Having braces absolutely makes it harder to clean your teeth and gums. One of the most commonly missed areas is the space between your brace and the gums. It is very important to spend some time on this area when brushing your teeth.

We will give you specific instructions for caring for your teeth and braces but it is your responsibility to take the time and use the tools we give you appropriately. Failure to care for your appliances and your teeth can result in cavities, scarring of your tooth enamel and swelling of your gums. This swelling can be quite uncomfortable, and can actually slow down tooth movement! Check out these instructional videos with instructions for brushing and flossing with braces.

How to Brush with Braces
How to Brush with Braces
How to Floss with Braces
How to floss with braces

Our doctors strongly recommend the use of an electric toothbrush during active orthodontic treatment. If you do not already use an electric toothbrush, we will provide you with a high-quality GOBY toothbrush as our GIFT TO YOU! And we’ll even pay for your first brush head replacement! You can then subscribe to have your GOBY replacement brush heads mailed right to you. Replacement brush heads are very affordable, shipping is free and you can cancel your subscription anytime!

Flossing is also a very important part of caring for your mouth. We realize flossing with braces can be a difficult and time-consuming task but it is very important for a healthy mouth. We will provide you with flossing tools to make this process easier. Please let us know if you are having problems or need help with flossing!

If oral care becomes a significant concern, our doctors may recommend removal of braces. We want you to receive a beautiful smile, but our primary concern is the health and well-being of your mouth and teeth.


Orthodontic Emergencies

We will always have one of our clinicians available over the phone to answer your questions and tend to your orthodontic related problems or emergencies. Simply call the office at 541-848-6642 (Bend office), 541-527-4325 (Redmond office) and follow the prompts to leave an emergency message for our team so that we may return your call shortly (typically within 1 hour). We also have informational videos that will be reviewed in office at the start of your treatment. These videos can also be accessed at our YouTube channel. In many cases, this information will help you manage your own orthodontic problems and answer your questions quickly and efficiently. Here are a few recommended solutions to common orthodontic emergencies:

Broken/Loose Bracket: Use clear wax to make yourself comfortable (most often broken brackets do not cause any discomfort) and call our office on the next business day to schedule an appointment for a repair. If you are not in pain, broken brackets do not always need to be replaced immediately but we do appreciate you letting us know so we can properly appoint you for a repair appointment or be prepared to repair the broken bracket at your next regularly scheduled appointment.

Wire Poke: These can sometimes be incredibly irritating and uncomfortable. Once again, try to use clear wax to make yourself comfortable. If successful, call our office on the next business day to make an appointment for repair. If you are unable to make yourself comfortable with wax, before we are open, call our office to leave an emergency message on the emergency line. Sometimes it is possible to use a pencil eraser to push a pokey tie-wire back into a comfortable place.

Loose Band or Appliance: Often times these don’t create true emergencies but should be addressed by someone in our office within the next several days. Call our office on the next business day to arrange a time for a replacement. If you are uncomfortable, call our office immediately and leave an emergency message for our team.

Discomfort/Soreness after Appointments: Most people do experience some level of discomfort or soreness after their orthodontic appointments. Fortunately, this feeling usually lasts approximately 3-5 days. When you initially get your braces, your cheeks and gums must also get used to your new braces. Sometimes you may develop small sores as you get used to the new appliances. Feel free to use the clear wax we provide to cover any sore spots. After time, your soft tissues will get used to having the braces and the soreness will subside.

Traumatic Accidents Involving your Teeth: If you have a serious accident involving your mouth or teeth, please call our office to leave an emergency message. If we are out of the office and you must be seen immediately, you may also call your dentist or the Emergency Room for an emergency evaluation.

We will make every effort to handle your orthodontic emergencies and concerns promptly. Your emergency message will be forwarded directly to one of our dedicated team members or doctors and we will return your call as soon as possible when the office is not open. Our Office Phone number is 541-848-6642 (Bend office), 541-527-4325 (Redmond office). Follow the prompts to leave an emergency message.


Retainers – Maintaining Your New Smile

Retainers are a very important part of the orthodontic process. Once the hard work of tooth movement is complete, retainers must become a part of your daily routine in order to maintain your beautiful new smile.

Some retainers are “fixed” or permanently attached to your teeth. Some retainers are “removable” and must be taken out daily for cleaning and then replaced. Whether “fixed” or “removable”, all retainers require some work on your part for proper care.

We will provide you with thorough instructions related to wear and caring for your retainers. If ever in doubt, please call our office with questions regarding your retainers 541-848-6642 (Bend office), 541-527-4325 (Redmond office).

In our office, we believe in lifetime retention. This means that you will be keeping your retainer for the remainder of your life. It is never a good idea to get rid of your retainer unless advised by your orthodontist. Keeping your retainer is the best check to make sure your orthodontic result is remaining stable. We may ask you to wear your retainer full time when your braces are removed but ultimately will guide you when it is appropriate to decrease to part-time or night time wear. We find that the best way to avoid losing your retainer during this period is to always have it either in your mouth or stored safely in your retainer case.

Why Invisalign® Might Be Right For You

August 28th, 2018

The decision to improve your smile is hard for many of us. How will braces feel on my teeth? How long will I have them? Is it worth it? All might be questions you ask yourself--especially if you are an adult who’s lived with smile-insecurity or uncomfortable dental challenges for some time. However, the good news is that braces are no longer the only option! Invisalign® is the most advanced, clear aligner on the market, and with Invisalign® you will be able to cut down on the time of your treatment, the inconvenience of braces, and get the beautiful smile you’ve always wanted.

Here are a few ways to tell if Invisalign® will be right for you:

Time constraints
Is one of the significant barrier keeping you from talking with your orthodontist the time needed for treatment? Well, we have good news for you. The time required for treatment with Invisalign® versus braces may be much shorter. Of course, talk with your orthodontist to get a full assessment, but the quicker treatment associated with Invisalign® is a primary reason many of our patients (especially adults) choose Invisalign® over braces.

Visibility
If you work in a public-facing job or don’t feel super comfortable with the idea of how braces will look, Invisalign® could be the perfect solution for you! The clear aligners are virtually invisible, making this treatment option for straighter teeth a no-brainer if visibility is one of your concerns.

Comfort
With aligners made from SmartTrack material, you’re bound to be pleased with the flexibility and fit. Plus, you’ll have the ability to remove your aligners as needed to brush and floss your teeth, as well as eat your favorite foods.

Convenience
One of the biggest reasons patients feel hesitant to take steps to improve their smile is the inconvenience that comes along with braces. Invisalign® is a convenient and simple option that allows you to visit your orthodontist less during treatment but still get beautiful results. Plus, since you can remove the aligners when needed, and continue to live your life while your treatment is taking place, the Invisalign® option is perfect for working adults, parents with busy schedules, and young adults with lots of time constraints.

Bottom line, if any of the barriers above is keeping you from getting the smile you’ve always wanted, now's the time to break through that barrier and try Invisalign®!

In need of an orthodontic consultation? Come in and visit us at Struble Orthodontics. We’d love to see you and answer any questions you might have about your teeth!

10 Myths About Braces

April 10th, 2018

If you’re about to get braces and you’re a little nervous about some of the myths and rumors you’ve heard surrounding the process of how braces work and what can and can’t happen while you’re wearing them, we’re here to help! There are so many myths out there about life with braces, but here are 10 truths that we think are most helpful.

Braces must hurt to work

When you first get your braces on, you may experience some minor discomfort as your teeth adjust to the new gear they’ve just received, but the soreness will not last for the entire time you have your braces on. The discomfort you may feel will only be temporary and should not be a level of soreness that you can’t tolerate. Don’t let anyone scare you by telling you that you will be uncomfortable for the long-term.

The metal will set off metal detectors

If you’re worried that the next time you go to the airport your braces will set off the metal detector when you go through security, don’t be. The metal used for braces is not the same metal they are looking to detect, and it is highly unlikely that you will set off the airport detector. So rest assured that the next time your traveling on an airplane, or going to an event where metal detectors are present and mandatory, no one will notice you have braces unless you flash them your beautiful smile!

Braces are only for kids and teens

Yes, they are most commonly worn by children and teenagers, but anyone can have braces. Adults can wear braces later in life, especially if they are in need of orthodontic correction.

You can’t play your instrument with braces

If you’re an avid player of a wind instrument, you can still play beautiful music with your braces on. There may be a small adjustment period at first, but you will be perfectly capable of keeping up with your practicing and performing. Don’t worry about losing your touch or missing out on one of your favorite hobbies, you’ll be just as capable of playing with your braces working on your lovely smile!

Braces permanently straighten your teeth

Braces do work to straighten your teeth and correct your bite, but that does not mean it will last permanently once you have them removed. You must follow your orthodontist’s recommendation and wear the retainer to maintain your straight teeth after they are free from braces. The retainer will work to maintain what your braces worked so hard to achieve.

The wires on your braces will need constant changing

The wires on your braces will not need constant changing, however, they may need to be replaced a few times over the course of your time wearing braces. Your frequent visits to the orthodontist, while you have braces, will be merely to assess the progress of your teeth and to make sure everything is working correctly. The wiring should not need to be changed at every appointment unless there is an issue your orthodontist uncovers.  

Only braces can straighten my teeth

Braces are an effective way to correct and straighten your teeth, but they are not the only way. There are a few alternatives that can also work to correct your bite, such as retainers and invisible aligners. Talk to your orthodontist about the best option for you.

You can’t eat normally with braces

Having braces won’t affect your normal diet by any means. Yes, you’ll need to avoid certain things like sticky candies and hard, crunchy snacks, but for the most part you’ll be able to carry on your normal diet as usual--maybe with just a few more thinly chopped vegetables and smaller bites.

Braces take years of treatment

Some people may need up to two years to fully correct their bite, but that is definitely not the case for everyone. It is common to wear braces for anywhere from 6-18 months depending on what your needs might be. There is no need to stress about having braces on for years, your orthodontist will be able to give you a more direct estimate during your consultation.

Braces can only help people with crooked teeth

While they do help correct crooked teeth, braces can also help for other dental health problems. Jaw overbite or underbite, missing teeth, or other problems associated with your teeth or jaw,  can all be reasons for braces.

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In need of an orthodontic consultation? Come in and visit us at Struble Orthodontics. We’d love to see you and answer any questions you might have about your teeth!

400 SW Bond St #300, Bend, OR 97702
3818 SW 21st St Suite 102, Redmond, OR 97756
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