March 22nd, 2021
What is an HSA or FSA account?
Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA), often offered by your employer, allow you to set aside money for qualifying health care expenses for yourself, your spouse and eligible dependents.
Can I use my HSA or FSA for orthodontic treatment?
In most cases, yes, you can use your HSA or FSA for eligible orthodontic treatment. Only the portion of your orthodontic payments(s) not paid by your dental insurance or any other plan may be considered an eligible expense.
How can my HSA or FSA help save me money?
HSA and FSAs are types of savings account that let you set aside money on a pre-tax basis to pay for qualified medical expenses. By using untaxed dollars in an HSA or FSA to pay for your orthodontic treatment, you save money.
Contact your HSA or FSA provider for specific details.
March 18th, 2021
Water flossing is a way to clean between and around your teeth. A water flosser is a handheld device that sprays streams of water in steady pulses. The water, like traditional floss, removes food from between teeth.
Water flossers that have earned the ADA Seal of Acceptance have been tested to be safe and effective at removing plaque, which puts you at a higher risk for cavities and gum disease. Water flossers with the ADA Seal can also help reduce gingivitis, the early form of gum disease, throughout your mouth and between your teeth.
Water flossers can be an option for people who have trouble flossing by hand. People who have had dental work that makes flossing difficult—like braces, or permanent or fixed bridges—also might try water flossers.
Cleaning between your teeth once a day is an important part of your dental hygiene routine. You should also brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes and see your dentist regularly.
March 11th, 2021
Imagine what it would be like if you suddenly lost one or two of your front teeth. Smiling, talking, eating—everything would suddenly be affected. Knowing how to prevent injuries to your mouth and face is especially important if you participate in organized sports or other recreational activities.
Mouth guards, also called mouth protectors, help cushion a blow to the face, minimizing the risk of broken teeth and injuries to your lips, tongue, face or jaw. They typically cover the upper teeth and are a great way to protect the soft tissues of your tongue, lips and cheek lining.
When Should You Wear a Mouth guard?
When it comes to protecting your mouth, a mouth guard is an essential piece of athletic gear that should be part of your standard equipment from an early age.
While collision and contact sports, such as boxing, are higher-risk sports for the mouth, any athlete may experience a dental injury in non-contact activities too, such as gymnastics and skating.
January 21st, 2021
You may have seen our previous posts about how it is highly recommended that children see an orthodontist by the time they are 7 years old. There are a couple reasons for this. An orthodontist, like Dr. Johnson, can periodically observe the growth and eruption of permanent teeth to make sure everything is coming in properly. And if teeth are erupting in positions that would cause issues in the future, early treatments can be done.
Here are a few options that orthodontists can do during the early years:
Palatal expander - In younger patients, palatal expansion may reduce the need for extractions or prevent impacted teeth. It helps make the upper jaw wider to help reduce crowding in abnormally narrow arches. Cases not corrected in growing patients could lead to surgery, bite problems, or more costly treatments down the road.
Early interceptive treatment - Sometimes a short time in braces can correct problems early and prevent larger problems later. An example of interceptive treatment is correcting an anterior crossbite.
Tooth removal - Sometimes removing baby or impacted teeth can help permanent teeth grow in better and encourage them to come in closer to their ideal position without orthodontic appliances. Dr. Johnson will suggest the best time for extractions, if they are necessary, to take advantage of your child's growth and development.
Remember, early visits are highly recommended but not all early visits result in orthodontic treatment. One of three things could result from your child's first visit:
- There may be no need for treatment at the time.
- Treatment may be needed in the future, so periodic appointments for observation would be recommended.
- A problem already exists that would benefit early treatment and will be discussed during the consultation.
November 2nd, 2020
The short answer is yes. While thumb sucking and using a pacifier are natural reflexes, if these habits are prolonged it can exert force on the teeth and jaws.
Some common orthodontic problems due to prolonged thumb sucking and pacifier use include:
- Protruding front teeth, also known as "buck" teeth
- Open bite, which is when the upper and lower front teeth do not overlap and could cause swallowing or speech problems
- Crossbite, upper teeth that fit inside the lower teeth. If not corrected, the jaw can shift to one side causing lopsided jaw growth
If you notice prolonged thumb sucking or pacifier use, please contact Dr. Johnson. As an orthodontist, she can identify any orthodontic related issues caused by these habits and can offer early treatments to help your child break the habit and correct any current problems. Seeing an orthodontist at a young age will help your child:
- correct harmful oral habits
- guide jaw growth
- lower the risk of trauma to protruded front teeth
- guide permanent teeth into better positions
October 20th, 2020
As a parent, you want the best for your child and that includes healthy teeth and a pleasing smile. The American Dental Association recommends that a child visits a general dentist by their first birthday. Your dentist can alert you to any concerns about how the teeth and jaws are developing.
But when should you have your child see an Orthodontist?
Most orthodontic treatment begins between the ages of 9 and 14, but a check-up no later than age 7 gives your orthodontist the opportunity to recommend the appropriate treatment at the appropriate time. By age 7, your child has enough permanent teeth for an orthodontist to determine whether an orthodontic problem is occurring. If early treatment is in order, the orthodontist may be able to achieve results that may not be possible once the face and jaws have finished growing.
Not everyone needs orthodontic treatment, but seeing an orthodontist at age 7 would be beneficial and help your child receive treatment faster if they do. Well-aligned teeth look and feel good, and they contribute to good dental health and the ability to speak, chew, and bite.
October 13th, 2020
We know these are uncertain times, but we wanted to let you know our office is open and safe for you to come in. Our mission is to keep our patients and staff safe while providing excellent orthodontic care. We want to reassure you that we are taking all precautions to protect everyone. Here are a few things we want you to know:
1. We are taking many more precautions to protect our patients and staff.
- Wearing the proper PPE
- Practicing social distancing etiquette
- Cleaning and disinfecting more than ever before
- Asking screening questions and checking temperatures at the front door
2. We continue to stay on top of all safety protocols.
Here at Johnson Orthodontics we continue to educate ourselves on the safety protocols as well as update our infection control protocols to ensure we align with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and all other applicable guidelines.
3. Dentists and orthodontic specialists have always been leaders in infection control and preventing the spread of diseases.
As oral health professionals, we are leaders in safely practicing with blood borne pathogens and respiratory pathogens. We are taking all the CDC recommendations and implementing them in our offices.
4. Your oral health is representative of your overall health.
We use appliances such as springs, coils and memory wires that apply continuous pressure to your teeth and jaw in order to straighten your teeth. Because of this, it is important that adjustments are made to the appliances in a timely manner and that we monitor the movement of your teeth. Also, it's important to know that leaving misaligned teeth untreated could lead to other dental problems.
October 8th, 2020
If you, your friends, or family use TikTok you may have seen a new trend where people use a nail file to grind their teeth down to make them more even.
Don't do this!
Unlike fingernails which grow back, teeth are permanent. When you attempt to file your teeth at home, you're chipping away at the protective layer of enamel and damaging your teeth. Losing the enamel could lead to tooth sensitivity or even loss.
If you have uneven teeth, come to Johnson Orthodontics. An orthodontist is trained to know the best teeth practices. As an expert, they can determine why your teeth are uneven and can inform you if you are a good candidate for a professional filing, called enameloplasty, or if another type of orthodontic treatment would be more beneficial.