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5 Reasons to Smile About Having Straight Teeth

August 31st, 2020

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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!

New Year, New Me: 6 Resolutions for 2018

February 5th, 2018

We’re one month into 2018! Maybe you’re still going strong with New Year’s resolutions, maybe you gave up on a few, or maybe you're just starting in on them now. It’s never too late to begin working on your goals for the year, but if you need a little encouragement or inspiration to get moving, we’re here for you! We have six orthodontist-approved resolutions for you in the new year that’ll make you happier and healthier!

Drink more H2O

This may be the easiest and best thing you can do for your body. Our bodies crave it, and more importantly they NEED it. Drinking enough water can help with weight loss, digestion, energy levels, hydration, etc. But did you know it also helps defend against tooth decay? Drinking water keeps your saliva levels high, which contain minerals and proteins that fight against enamel eating acids.  The common recommendation is to drink eight- 8 ounce glasses of water, or if you have a water bottle that you prefer to drink from throughout the day, just do the math for however many ounces it holds and drink that amount.

Rest up

Getting enough sleep every night is equally as important as diet and exercise. Your body needs rest to reset and re-fuel for the day to come, and it does that by sleeping. When you deprive your body of necessary rest, you make yourself more susceptible to things like weight gain, mood swings, and a decrease in your immune system. Sleep is essential for your overall well-being, so make it a priority to get the adequate amount of rest every night.  

Exercise outside

Go for a walk on your lunch break. Ride your bike to work. Invest in a new outdoor hobby like skiing, paddle boarding or rock climbing. It doesn’t have to be a super intense activity to be beneficial for your health, as long as it gets you moving outdoors. Research suggests that when you exercise outside, you work harder, burn more calories and boost your immune system. Not to mention it’s way more beautiful and scenic than the walls of any Gym.

Eat your greens!

You don’t have to like salads to get your daily dose of greens in your diet. In fact, there are so many ways to incorporate more greens in your diet without even tasting them (for all you picky eaters out there!). Leafy greens such as kale, spinach, swiss chard, arugula, to name a few, are high in calcium and help build your teeth’s enamel. Try adding a handful of greens in your smoothie and blending with fruit-  chances are you won’t be able to taste the greens at all!

Go see your doctors

We’re not just saying this because we want to see you more often, which we always do, but more so for the benefit of your health. Making appointments to see your primary care physicians, dentists, therapists, orthodontists and so on, is important to maintain your overall health and well-being. Even though you may feel as healthy as a horse most days, it’s always good to have your doctor reinforce that claim at least once a year.

Get outside and soak in that Vitamin D

If you live in a place that has this option year round, get outside and take advantage of it. Sunlight can naturally affect your mood and your sleep, not to mention that it is also the only natural way to get the essential Vitamin D. That being said, you should always wear sun protection and when your outside to protect yourself from the sun’s UV rays.

4 Ways to Stay Stress Free this Holiday Season

November 28th, 2017

The holidays are one of the most joyous times of the year, filled with love and laughter. But with all the joy and excitement that this time of year brings can also come a great deal of stress. All the chaos of planning and attending multiple holiday parties, buying and preparing gifts to give and trying to keep up holiday traditions may have you feeling overwhelmed and exhausted. It’s easy to forget the true value and meaning of the holidays when you're too busy feeling stressed out; here are a few things you can do to maintain sanity and reduce your stress levels this holiday season.

Get Outside

Take a walk, go on a run, simply sit on a park bench taking in some fresh air, whatever you can do to take a break from it all outside, do it. Being in the outdoors, breathing in that cool, crisp air can sometimes be all you need to reset and recharge to make it through another day of gift shopping and meal prepping.

Stick with a Routine

If your normal routine is to wake up and go to the gym, get coffee and then start your day, don’t stray away from that. It’s important to keep a sense of normalcy in your routine throughout the holidays so you don’t completely exhaust yourself. If you usually go to bed by 10pm, don’t stay up until 1am online shopping. Do the things you need to do to be your best self and everyone will thank you.

Don’t overschedule yourself

Do you find yourself getting invited to more holiday parties than you are willing and/or able to attend? If so, try not to agree to attend all of them. Pick and choose one or two to go to a week and politely decline the others. After all, there is always next year to go to your second cousins ugly Christmas sweater party.

Exercise

You should never put your exercise routine on the backburner, especially not during the holidays. One of the best things you can do to reduce stress is to do some sort of physical activity. The endorphins your body receives after a good workout will have you feeling like you can conquer anything the holidays throw at you.

Back to School with Braces

August 29th, 2017

As summer winds down and the weather begins to cool, it can only mean one thing--it’s time for kids to go back to school. If braces are a new addition to your child or teenager’s back-to-school attire, and you’re struggling to figure out what to pack in their lunch--especially now that many lunchtime go-to items are off limits--we are here to help! Here are 10 quick, easy, kid-approved lunch ideas that will have your kiddo satisfied and happy to share with his or her friends at the lunch table.

1. PB&J

A classic kid-approved lunch that’s also a great menu item for when you have braces. To change things up, try using almond butter and honey!

2. Turkey & Hummus Roll Ups

Grab some deli sliced turkey, or whatever your lunch meat of choice, and your kid’s favorite hummus to create a delicious, healthy lunch! P.S. depending on what your kiddo is up for, you can add all kinds of other filler, like sprouts, tomatoes, cucumbers and other veggies to this fun lunch addition.

3. Pudding/Jello/Yogurt

One of the easiest go-to snacks for your kid’s lunch, these come in plenty of flavors and varieties! Just try to find a low-sugar brand to help protect their teeth from cavities.

4. Fruit

Not only is adding fruit to the lunch box a healthy option for every lunch, there are plenty of tasty fruits out there that are braces friendly. Any fruit that is soft in texture, once ripe, and sliced into bites can be easily enjoyed (safely) with braces.

5.  Soup

Grab a thermos and a can of your kids favorite soup to heat up and you have one simple, yet delicious lunch ready to go!

6.  Tortilla Wrap

Fill a tortilla with your kids favorite meat and cheese and you’re sure to have a lunchtime favorite! Try spreading cream cheese or hummus for a little added flavor. You may even be able to sneak some spinach in there too!

7.  Cottage Cheese

Soft and easy to eat, cottage cheese is packed with nutrients for your kiddo! It’s also great with mandarin oranges or peaches to add a little extra flavor.

8.  Pasta Salad

Simple to make in large quantities with all of your favorite toppings; pasta salad is something your whole family will love to take with them for lunch, not just your kids with braces.

9.  Baked Potato

Bake them the night before and you have a lunch-ready addition for the next day! Whatever toppings your child prefers, try putting them in individual tupperware containers ahead of time so they have all the ingredients to put on their potato the next day.

10. Quinoa with steamed veggies

Not only is quinoa a superfood, it’s also an easy food to eat with braces. Quinoa is small, soft and fun to add just about anything! Try adding cooked corn, carrots, broccoli, and/or chopped chicken breast for some added flair and protein.

Let us know what’s in your child’s lunchbox, we’d love to know what other braces-friendly foods you’re packing this Fall!

4 Awesome Summer Drinks Instead of Soda

June 14th, 2017

As the temperatures slowly begin to rise, so does the need for cool, refreshing summertime beverages. Whether relaxing while floating the Deschutes or hanging out at a BBQ, soda is commonly what we reach for as a way to beat the summer heat. Like spending too much time in the sun, drinking too much soda is not optimal for our health.

Consuming too much soda can lead to cavities and lifelong tooth sensitivity, consequently causing you more trips to the dentist as well. Ideally, it’s best not to drink soda at all, which is easier said than done, depending on how much you already drink. We’ve rounded up a list of sugar-free substitutes to help keep you hydrated and healthy all summer long!

Lemon-Lime “Soda”

If citrus flavored soda usually your go to for quenching your thirst, try this alternative recipe from Everyday Health. It is sure to satisfy that same lemon-lime taste, without all the excess sugar.

Items needed:

Seltzer Water

1 Lemon

1 Lime

Stevia-based sweetener

Instructions:

  1. Slice lemon and lime

  2. Pour 8 oz of seltzer water into a glass

  3. Add lemon and lime slices, small amount of sweetener to taste

  4. Stir and sip!

Makes 1 serving

Dreamsicle Water

You don’t have to be a kid to enjoy that delicious dreamsicle taste! This recipe from Yahoo will take you back to your childhood days and will be a drink you want to make all summer long for your friends and family.

Items needed:

Orange

Vanilla Extract

Mason Jar

Muddler

Instructions:

1. Slice your orange into thin slices

2. Add two slices to a mason jar.

3. Add a splash of vanilla extract

4. Muddle

5. Add water and shake. Enjoy!

Makes 1 serving

Grape Soda

We’ll let your tastebuds do the talking on this one, but we think this grape soda recipe from Build Your Bite is even tastier than your store-bought, sugar-packed version.

Items needed:

1/2 cup unsweetened grape juice

1 cup sparkling water (carbonated water)

1/2 teaspoon fresh lime juice

1 tablespoon maple syrup

Instructions:

1. Combine all ingredients in a glass and stir well, serve over ice!

Makes 1 serving

Infused Water

It is crucial to consume plenty of water throughout the year for a variety of health benefits, and with water the possibilities for infusion are endless. “Healthy, hydrating, and homemade,” these 14 recipes from Buzzfeed will help inspire your next concoction. Don’t hold back, give them all a try this summer!

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