Johnson Orthodontics

6 Facts About Two-Phase Orthodontic Treatment Parents Should Know

July 21st, 2022

Pediatric Dentistry : Orthodontics : Orthodontics Patient Education : Diseases and Conditions | Pediatric Oncall

Problems that will eventually need orthodontic attention can become obvious long before a child has all of their permanent teeth. Depending on the type of problem a child has, an AAO orthodontist may recommend two-phase treatment. It means that treatment is done at two different times, often to take advantage of predictable stages of dental development and physical growth. Here are six things parents should know about two-phase orthodontic treatment.

1. Two-phase orthodontic treatment is for kids, but it’s not for all kids.

Most orthodontic problems can be treated in one phase of comprehensive treatment, however there are a few exceptions.

2. Two-phase orthodontic treatment can be used to:

Help the jaws develop to ensure adequate space for all of the permanent teeth, especially the permanent canines.

  • May reduce the need to pull permanent teeth in the future.
  • Some problems that can be treated quite well in a growing child but may require corrective surgery if treatment occurs after growth ends.
  • Normalize the relationship of the upper jaw to the lower jaw, especially in the case of an underbite.
  • Intervene in a child’s prolonged sucking or abnormal swallowing.
  • Damaging pressure can move teeth in the wrong directions and/or change the shape of the bone that supports teeth.
  • Tuck in upper front teeth that stick out to reduce the risk of those teeth being broken or knocked out.

3. Moving baby teeth is not done for the sake of their appearance.

While baby teeth can move during Phase One orthodontic treatment, their movement is part of the process to ensure sufficient space for permanent teeth.

4. Phase One of a two-phase orthodontic treatment begins when a child still has some baby teeth.

If an appliance is used in Phase One care, it could be a form of braces or another fixed appliance, or could be a removable appliance. The type of appliance used depends on the needs of the individual patient.

  • Some children may need to have baby teeth removed to clear a path for the permanent teeth to come.

5. A resting period follows Phase One orthodontic treatment.

6. Phase Two of orthodontic treatment usually begins when most or all of permanent teeth are in.

The goal of Phase Two treatment is to make sure teeth are in their proper places for good function, a healthy bite and a pleasing appearance.

Give your child the best chance at a healthy, beautiful smile. Dr. Pamela Johnson of Johnson Orthodontics Willowbrook, IL can help. Dr. Johnson recommends that all children have their first check-up with an AAO orthodontist no later than age 7. If an orthodontic problem is developing, Dr. Johnson will be able to monitor growth and development so that your child can have the most appropriate treatment at the most appropriate time.

 

When you choose Dr. Johnson for orthodontic treatment, you can be assured that you have selected a true orthodontist. Like their medical counterparts who study their specialty areas after their general medical education, orthodontists study their specialty area, orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics, after completing their general dental education. Only bona fide orthodontists get to be members of the American Association of Orthodontists. source/aaoinfo.org

7 Facts About Orthodontists

July 20th, 2022

 123Dentist Presents: The History of Braces - 123Dentist

Whether you call the process “braces,” “orthodontics,” or simply straightening your teeth, these 7 facts about orthodontics – the very first recognized specialty within the dental profession – may surprise you.

1. The word “orthodontics” is of Greek origin.

“Ortho” means straight or correct. “Dont” (not to be confused with “don’t”) means tooth. Put it all together and “orthodontics” means straight teeth.

2. People have had crooked teeth for eons.

Crooked teeth have been around since the time of Neanderthal man. Archeologists have found Egyptian mummies with crude metal bands wrapped around teeth. Hippocrates wrote about “irregularities” of the teeth around 400 BCE* – he meant misaligned teeth and jaws.

About 2,100 years later, a French dentist named Pierre Fauchard wrote about an orthodontic appliance in his 1728 landmark book on dentistry, The Surgeon Dentist: A Treatise on the Teeth. He described the bandeau, a piece of horseshoe-shaped precious metal which was literally tied to teeth to align them.*

3. Orthodontics became the first dental specialty in 1900.

Edward H. Angle founded the specialty. He was the first orthodontist: the first member of the dental profession to limit his practice to orthodontics only – moving teeth and aligning jaws. Angle established what is now the American Association of Orthodontists, which admits only orthodontists as members.

4. Gold was the metal of choice for braces circa 1900.

Gold is malleable, so it was easy to shape it into an orthodontic appliance. Because gold is malleable, it stretches easily. Consequently, patients had to see their orthodontist frequently for adjustments that kept treatment on track.

5. Teeth move in response to pressure over time.

Some pressure is beneficial, however, some is harmful. Actions like thumb-sucking or swallowing in an abnormal way generate damaging pressure. Teeth can be pushed out of place; bone can be distorted.

Orthodontists use appliances like braces or aligners to apply a constant, gentle pressure on teeth to guide them into their ideal positions.

6. Teeth can move because bone breaks down and rebuilds.

Cells called “osteoclasts” break down bone. “Osteoblast” cells rebuild bone. The process is called “bone remodeling.” A balanced diet helps support bone remodeling. Feed your bones!

7. Orthodontic treatment is a professional service.

It’s not a commodity or a product. The type of “appliance” used to move teeth is nothing more than a tool in the hands of the expert. Each tool has its uses, but not every tool is right for every job. A saw and a paring knife both cut, but you wouldn’t use a saw to slice an apple. (We hope not, anyway!)

A Partnership for Success

Orthodontic treatment is a partnership between the patient and the orthodontist. While the orthodontist provides the expertise, treatment plan and appliances to straighten teeth and align jaws, it’s the patient who’s the key to success.

The patient commits to following the orthodontist’s instructions on brushing and flossing, watching what they eat and drink, and wearing rubber bands (if prescribed). Most importantly, the patient commits to keeping scheduled appointments with the orthodontist. Teeth and jaws can move in the right directions and on schedule when the patient takes an active part in their treatment.

Dr. Pamela Johnson Willowbrook, IL is ready to partner with you to align your teeth and jaws for a healthy and beautiful smile.

When you choose Dr. Johnson, you can be assured that you have selected a highly skilled specialist. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligning teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile. aaoinfo.org.

Why An Orthodontist Is The Right Person For Orthodontic Treatment

July 13th, 2022

Braces Smile" Images – Browse 475 Stock Photos, Vectors, and Video | Adobe Stock

When your pup is overdue for a groom, you wouldn’t bring them to your appointment at the salon. For maintenance of your poodle’s locks, you visit a groomer – the definitely-right person to maintain your pup’s coat, not the almost-right person.

The same is true for orthodontic treatment. Orthodontists are specialized in properly aligning teeth and jaws and possess the dental training to give you your best smile, making them the definitely-right person for orthodontic treatment. To put it simply, it’s best to see an orthodontist for orthodontics. Here’s why:

1. Orthodontists are specialists.

Orthodontists are specialists who focus on your bite and alignment of your teeth. Their job is to not only make sure that your smile looks great, but your bite feels good and functions properly, too.

2. Orthodontists have 3,700 hours of orthodontic training.  YES! 3,700.

In addition to dental school, orthodontists are the only dental specialists who have additional education and training focused exclusively on the movement of teeth, jawbones, facial bones, and soft tissue–3,700 hours of specialized training to be exact. They understand growth and development and are also called dentofacial orthopedists.

3. Because of their extensive training, they can provide you with a truly customized treatment plan.

Straightening teeth and aligning the bite are both complex biological processes, not quick fixes. With expertise in those complexities (like changes in jaw bones, facial bone and soft tissue as teeth are moved), your orthodontist is equipped to provide a truly custom treatment plan that is best for you. When it comes to your health you don’t want to miss any critical factors.

When it’s time to make an appointment for yourself or your family, visit Dr. Pamela Johnson Willowbrook. IL. Dr. Johnson will provide a thorough evaluation regarding the best treatment plan for you. Dr. Johnson is a member of the American Association of Orthodontists, you will be seeing the right person. Not the almost-right person. source/aaoinfo.org

Your Bite Is A Very Important Part Of Your Oral Health

July 11th, 2022

Your bark may be worse than your bite, but your bite is a very important part of your oral health. In orthodontics, “bite” refers to the way upper and lower teeth come together. A bad bite, called a “malocclusion,” happens when teeth meet improperly, or they don’t meet at all. While each individual bite problem is unique, there are seven broad types of bite problems that are common in children and adults.

1. Crossbite

When upper teeth fit inside of lower teeth. Can be caused by misalignment of teeth (including baby teeth) or a misalignment of the bone; can affect a single tooth or groups of teeth.

Possible consequences if not corrected: The jaw shifts to one side; lopsided jaw growth; wearing down of outer layer of the tooth called “enamel”.

Posterior crossbite: If the back teeth are affected, upper teeth are to the inside of bottom teeth.

common bite problems: posterior crossbite

Anterior crossbite: If the front teeth are in crossbite, the top teeth are behind the bottom teeth.

common bite problems: anterior crossbite

 

2. Underbite

The lower jaw sits in front of the upper jaw.

Possible consequences if not corrected: Face has “bull dog” appearance; tooth wear; stress on jaw joints.

common bite problems: underbite

 

 

 

 

3. Open bite

Anterior open bite: Occurs when the back teeth are together, and the upper and lower front teeth do not overlap. This can result from excessive sucking, tongue thrusting or mouth breathing.

Posterior open bite: Occurs when the front teeth meet, but the back teeth do not.

Possible consequences if not corrected: Swallowing problems; tongue pushes through teeth when swallowing. Possible speech problems.

common bite problems - open bite

 

 

 

 

 

4. Deep bite

When the bite is closed, the upper front teeth cover the bottom teeth too much.

Possible consequences if not corrected: Upper teeth can bite into lower gums; lower teeth can bite into the roof of the mouth. Possible gum disease, early enamel wear.

common bite problems: deep bite

 

 

 

 

5. Crowding

Insufficient space for the teeth. This can be a result of big teeth or inadequate space in the jaw or both. This may result in teeth that overlap, are rotated, or take on a crooked/staggered appearance.

Possible consequences if not corrected: Hard to clean; possible cavities, especially in between the teeth; gum disease.

common bite problems: crowding

 

6. Spacing

Too much space between teeth. It can result from missing teeth, undersized teeth, oversized jaws, or a combination of these conditions.

Possible consequences if not corrected: Food gets stuck in open areas. Possible cavities, gum disease.

common bite problems: spacing

 

 

 

 

 

7. Protrusion

Front teeth that stick out (“buck” teeth). Teeth may appear protrusive because the upper jaw is too far forward, the lower jaw is too far back, the teeth grew in at an angle, or a combination of these conditions. Sometimes people who have protrusive front teeth also have a deep bite.

Possible consequences if not corrected: Upper teeth are prone to accidental breaking; hard to comfortably close the mouth and lips, leading to dried out oral tissues followed by tooth decay. Speech problems. Long, narrow face.

common bite problems: protrusion

 

 

 

 

The fact is that if any of these common bite problems exist in a child’s mouth, they likely will not self-correct. Untreated problems tend to get worse with time. Many times, the bite problems are best treated while the child is still growing, so make an appointment with an orthodontist today.  You don’t need to wait until your dentist refers you.

The goal of orthodontic treatment is to create a healthy bite. When teeth and jaws line up in the right way, the force created to bite, or chew food is evenly distributed. A healthy bite is important for clear speech.

If you suspect that you or a loved one has one of the seven common bite problems, Dr. Pamela Johnson of Johnson Orthodontics Willowbrook, IL can help. Parents – there’s no need to wait until your child has lost all her baby teeth before you consult an orthodontist. It’s fine to talk to an orthodontist as soon as you think you see a problem in your child. Dr. Johnson offers exceptional state of the art treatment. And adults – there’s no time like the present to talk to an orthodontist about getting the smile you’ve always wanted. source/ aaoinfo.org.

Are White Marks On Teeth Preventable?

July 7th, 2022

 Brushing with Braces

 

The most important thing to know about white marks on teeth is that they are preventable. All you have to do to be white mark-free is to keep teeth clean and stay away from some foods and beverages. It’s that simple.

When we say simple, we mean four easy steps simple:

  1. Brush as often as recommended by your orthodontist, including after each meal or snack whether at school, work or home
  2. Floss at least once a day            
  3. Avoid or limit acidic foods and drinks (soda, flavored waters with carbonation, sweet tea, sports drinks etc.) for the duration of your treatment
  4. See your family dentist at least every four to six months for a check-up or more often if it’s recommended

Handy tools like interproximal brushes, floss threaders, floss holders, water irrigators and power toothbrushes can make cleaning teeth convenient, quick and, most of all, thorough. Fluoride toothpaste and/or rinses are advisable, too.

A White Mark Is Permanent

A white mark on a tooth – known as decalcification – is the very beginning of a cavity. Prompted by a build-up of plaque, calcium and other minerals leach out tooth enamel and leave a permanent white mark behind. It can progress to a full-blown cavity if plaque keeps collecting.

Plaque is made of bacteria, food particles and saliva. It feeds on sugars to form an acid that damages teeth. Poor brushing, frequent snacking and intake of sugary and/or acidic beverages contribute to white marks and decay.

Decalcification Can Happen to Patients Using Aligners

It happens to those who drink flavored waters, sparkling water, sports drinks or soda pop with their aligners in. What’s more, it can happen in a matter of weeks. Always take aligners out to eat or drink (except for tap water), and clean teeth thoroughly to remove all traces of food or beverages.

One more thing – decalcification can also happen if patients do not brush their aligners.  Food and bacteria left in the aligners can sit on the teeth and cause decalcification.

Decalcification Can Happen Independent of Orthodontic Treatment

Some people get white marks on their teeth without ever having orthodontic treatment. The marks are caused by too much soda pop or other acidic drinks, along with poor brushing habits.

For A Happy Ending

Patients who are conscientious about caring for their teeth and who limit sugary, acidic foods and drinks should not develop white marks.

Cleaning teeth is not hard. It just takes a commitment to putting in a little extra time, a little extra elbow grease, and using the right tools for the job. Questions? Your orthodontist and his/her staff would be delighted for you to ask! Like you, they want your treatment result to be a healthy, beautiful smile you will both be proud of.

See an AAO Orthodontist

When you choose an AAO orthodontist for orthodontic treatment, you can be assured that you have selected a highly skilled specialist. Visit Dr. Pamela Johnson Willowbrook, IL  for exceptional quality treatment. Dr. Johnson is an expert in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possesses the skill and experience to give you your best smile. - source/aaoinfo.org

As You Age So Does Your Smile

July 6th, 2022

7 Things You Need to Know When Getting Braces As an Adult

 

It’s no secret, as you age, so does your smile. Teeth wear down as we chew our way through a lifetime of meals. Did you also know, teeth can move and shift well into adulthood? Here’s a roundup of 4 common changes orthodontists see in patients as they age:

1. Bottom teeth crowding

As you age, your jaw bone loses density and shrinks. The mismatched size of the jaw bone with teeth can lead to crowding of the bottom front teeth. Crowding can also occur because other issues such as breathing through your mouth, reverse swallowing, tongue thrusting or facial trauma.

2. Front teeth gap

Space between two front teeth is referred to as a diastema, and it can develop for a variety of reasons. Crowding of teeth or unproportioned jaws and teeth can cause spacing to gradually occur. Swallowing, with the pressure of your tongue pushing against your front teeth, rather than positioning itself at the roof of your mouth, can also cause teeth to separate over time. Gum disease is another trigger for spacing, because of the inflammation.

3. Post-orthodontic teeth shifting

Our bodies change our whole life, and our teeth change, too. After orthodontic treatment a retainer is needed to maintain teeth in position. As we age, if teeth are restored or lost, new proper fitting retainers will be needed to prevent unwanted change.

4. Wrong bite

Do you get headaches, clicking and popping jaw joints, grind your teeth or even back pain? You may have a bite disorder, which occurs when the lower and upper jaw don’t align, called malocclusion.

These changes may be completely normal, but that doesn’t mean you just have to live with them. The number of adults undergoing orthodontic treatment is at an all-time high. An estimated 1.61 million adults underwent orthodontic treatment in the U.S. in 2018. That’s one in four adults!

Whether you’re eight or 80, the biological process of orthodontic treatment is the same. Adults have denser bone tissue than children, so treatment may take a little longer, but age does not keep teeth from moving.

You can work with  Dr. Pamela Johnson of Johnson Orthodontics Willowbrook, IL. Dr. Johnson is a member of the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) She can help you to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. - source/aaoinfo.org

Orthodontists Use X-Rays To Check Below The Surface

July 5th, 2022

 5 Types of Dental X-rays | Delta Dental Of Washington

 

Just like what’s under the bread in a sandwich. Orthodontists use x-rays to check below the surface to look for extra teeth, missing teeth, impacted teeth or teeth coming into the wrong positions.

Speaking of extra teeth, did you know snails have over 14,000? A full set of adult human teeth has only 32.

Why is looking below the surface so important?

Well, some things may be hiding that can only be seen through x-rays. Impacted teeth may prevent adult teeth from erupting properly. Sometimes, an impacted tooth can even harm the roots of neighboring teeth, cause crowding and may cause already erupted teeth to move into unhealthy positions.

If you do have an “invisible” orthodontic problem, an early check-up and x-ray may help you avoid more costly, invasive treatments down the road.

It may be easier for an orthodontist to identify and correct a problem when it is forming rather than waiting for it to fully develop.

You wouldn’t skip a well-check at the pediatrician, and you shouldn’t skip an early trip to the orthodontist either. A visit to your orthodontist by age 7 will help keep your child’s oral health in check.  Just because your general dentist has not referred you does not mean you cannot visit the orthodontist for an exam. Dr. Pamela Johnson at Johnson Orthodontics Willowbrook, IL can help. Dr. Johnson offers a thorough exam with x-rays to make sure your teeth are coming in properly or let you know of any missing teeth.

Trust an AAO orthodontist

You can work with  Dr. Johnson, an American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) Orthodontist to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile.source/aaoinfo.org

Why Filing Teeth Yourself Is Not A Good Idea

June 29th, 2022

vDentists warn against TikTok trend where people 'straighten' their teeth  with nail files - Mirror Online

You’ve seen the TikTok trend of people using a nail file to grind their teeth down for a more even appearance, and thought, “Seems harmless, right?”

WRONG!

Unlike fingernails, teeth are permanent. What you remove won’t grow back.

The protective layer of enamel you’re chipping away at is limited. Once you break through it, the damage is done. It’s such an important part of your tooth’s health, and without it, you’re basically just shortening the lifespan of your teeth. Soon, you could experience tooth sensitivity and even loss.

So what should you do about your uneven teeth?

Work with an AAO orthodontic professional. Dr. Pamela Johnson an Orthodontist located in Willowbrook, IL is trained in understanding the structure of your teeth. As an expert, she can determine why your teeth are uneven in the first place. she will work with you to decide if you’re a good candidate for professional filing, called enameloplasty, or if another type of orthodontic treatment would be more beneficial.

Remember, teeth shift throughout your lifetime. In a few years, your teeth may shift again and now you’d just be working with shorter teeth. Not a good place to be.

Trust an AAO Orthodontist

You can work with Dr. Pamela Johnson, an American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) Orthodontist to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile.  - source/aaoinfo.org

Should I Wear My Retainer If It Feels Tight?

June 28th, 2022

Clear Dental Retainers Atlanta, GA | Beltway Orthodontics | 404-689-4140

 

As long as your retainer doesn’t hurt and still fits over your teeth, you can wear it – even if it feels tight. Your teeth may have slightly shifted, and you may need to wear your retainer longer each day to prevent your teeth from moving.

Try wearing your retainer full-time for a few days to encourage your teeth to move back into their correct positions. If the retainer continues to feel uncomfortable, contact your orthodontist.

What if the retainer doesn’t fit at all or feels painful?

Don’t force it. Contact your AAO orthodontist, who will evaluate your situation and determine what actions, if any, are needed. It could be as simple as making a new retainer or, if necessary, making some clear aligners to tweak a tooth or teeth back into proper position.

Trust an AAO Orthodontist

You can work with  Dr. Pamela Johnson of Johnson Orthodontics Willowbrook, IL. Dr. Johnson is an American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) Orthodontist who can help you to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile. source/aaoinfo.org

Happy 4th Of July From All Of Us At Johnson Orthodontics!

June 28th, 2022

Waving Flag 4th July

Early Orthodontic Care Can Help Avoid Costly Treatments In The Future

June 27th, 2022

Orthodontic Appliances N. Raleigh NC | Galligan Family Dentistry

 

Much like with laundry, orthodontic health can be more manageable if you get ahead of it.

You wouldn’t skip a well-check at the pediatrician, and you shouldn’t skip an early trip to the orthodontist either. A visit to your orthodontist by age 7 will help keep your child’s oral health in check. And it may help you avoid more costly or more invasive treatments down the road. Visit Dr. Pamela Johnson at Johnson Orthodontics Willowbrook, IL. Dr. Johnson will provide an in depth consultation and is a member of the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO)

How so?

Palatal expander – Your child may be a good candidate for palatal expansion, which can make the upper jaw wider and help to reduce crowding in abnormally narrow arches. Ideally, a palatal expander is used when a patient is still growing. Expansion occurs when the growth plate or suture in the middle of the palate is stretched and the two halves are pushed apart. As the two halves are spread, new bone is added.

In younger patients, palatal expansion may reduce the need for extractions or prevent impacted teeth. Cases not corrected in growing patients may require surgery for correction in adulthood and may lead to abnormal wear or bite problems if not corrected at all.

Early interceptive treatment–Sometimes a short time in braces can correct problems early on to 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 emerge better and encourage them to come in closer to their ideal position even without an orthodontic appliance. Your orthodontist will suggest the best time for extractions  to take advantage of your child’s growth and development. Getting them into the orthodontist early allows you to receive the optimum  treatment for them.

Not all early visits result in orthodontic treatment

One of three things could result from your child’s first appointment with the orthodontist. 1) There may be no need for treatment recognized at that time. 2) Treatment may be necessary in the future, so the child will be followed periodically while the face and jaws continue to develop. Or, 3) A problem already exists that would benefit by early treatment, and you are in the right spot to get started!

Most orthodontists offer free consultations, so there’s no reason to wait.

Trust an AAO orthodontist

You can work with Dr. Pamela Johnson to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile. source/ aaoinfo.org

Should I Floss Before I Brush?

June 22nd, 2022

8 Oral Hygiene Tips for Kids and Teens With Braces | Kids Mile High

Is there an ideal sequence for your oral hygiene routine? Well, according to recent studies, yes. Researchers have found that flossing before brushing may be the most efficient for a thorough removal of dental plaque. This sequence was also found to increase fluoride concentration delivered from the toothpaste, which makes your tooth enamel stronger, making it easier to resist decay.

That’s right, a simple two-step routine can not only effectively remove dental plaque and strengthen your teeth but can also help to minimize your time in orthodontic treatment. You can reap all these oral health benefits by playing your role. Your oral health care doesn’t end after you leave your dentist or orthodontist office, you are also a partner in the process.

Play your role

Keep your teeth clean. Orthodontic treatment is a team effort between your orthodontist and your dentist. Contact Dr. Pamela Johnson Willowbrook, IL for exceptional orthodontic treatment, working together with your dentist and you for optimal results.

your role includes:

  1. Brushing for two minutes after every meal or snack. If you can’t brush, make sure to at least rinse your mouth with water.
  2. Flossing at least once a day, ideally before you brush.
  3. Making sure your teeth are thoroughly clean before bed.
  4. Seeing your general dentist every 4-6 months for cleanings and check-ups.
  5. Avoiding sugary foods and drinks that can contribute to decalcification and tooth decay.

Why is all this brushing and flossing necessary?

Not maintaining a proper oral hygiene routine puts you at risk for poor oral health.

Orthodontic appliances themselves don’t cause oral health issues, but they may create spaces that can be difficult to clean, creating areas for potential decay. When plaque and food accumulate around your braces this can lead to permanent white marks (decalcification), cavities, swollen gums, bad breath and periodontal disease.

Tools + tips

  • Interproximal brushes – these are great at dislodging plaque and food particles trapped between teeth, and to clear out debris that catches on brackets and wires.
  • Water irrigators – these can flush out food particles quickly!
  • Fluoride mouth rinse – whether over the counter or prescription strength, a daily fluoride rinse can strengthen tooth enamel and help prevent white marks (decalcification).
  • Your orthodontist may suggest dipping an interproximal brush in a capful of fluoride rinse to deliver fluoride protection between the teeth or using a fluoride rinse instead of water in an irrigator.

Trust an AAO orthodontist

You can work with Dr. Pamela Johnson to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics.- source/aaoinfo.org

 

Are Braces Considered Old School?

June 20th, 2022

 100 Braces colors ideas | braces colors, braces, cute braces

 

Successful orthodontic treatment depends on three things – pressure, time and cooperation. Braces – a fixed orthodontic appliance typically comprised of brackets, bands and wires – put pressure on teeth to gradually move them into the correct position over time. Patient cooperation is needed by keeping teeth clean, avoiding food items that break the brackets, limiting sugary drinks, visiting the general dentist every 3-6 months and wearing elastics as prescribed by the orthodontist.

Patients with braces typically visit the orthodontist every six-to-ten-weeks, until teeth are aligned properly. These maintenance visits ensure teeth are moving correctly and allow your orthodontist to adjust treatment and tooth movement as needed.

Depending on the complexity of the case, a short-term touch up can take just a few months, while comprehensive treatment including bite correction, could last several years.

Other appliances and tools – such as a palatal expandertemporary anchorage devices (TADs), rubber bands – may also be incorporated in your treatment to help speed up the process or improve the result.

After teeth are in the correct position, the braces and other appliances will be removed. Patients are often fitted for a removable/and or permanent retainer to help teeth stay put for years to come.

But aren’t braces old school?

While braces are often considered the traditional approach, there’s a reason the appliance has been a trusted treatment option for decades – they work. Especially for complex cases. Why? Well, because braces are a fixed appliance, they allow for greater control and more detailed tooth movement.

Considering treatment?

Your orthodontist will evaluate your bite and determine the best appliance for you.

If braces are the recommendation, you can rest assured  Dr. Pamela Johnson of Johnson Orthodontics Willowbrook, IL who is a  AAO orthodontist member, have used this traditional form of treatment for decades with much success.

Trust an AAO orthodontist

You can work with Dr. Pamela Johnson to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Dr. Johnson is an expert in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possesses the skill and experience to give you your best smile. source/aaoinfo.org

Can Pacifiers And Thumb Sucking Affect Your Child's Teeth?

June 15th, 2022

 How does thumb-sucking affect your teeth? - Quora

In short, yes. While thumb sucking or pacifier use is one of an infant’s natural reflexes, prolonged sucking can exert force on the teeth and jaws.  If your child sucks a thumb, finger, pacifier, or lips, their teeth or jaw growth may be affected (some bone changes can actually occur as early as 18 months).

Common orthodontic problems caused by prolonged thumb sucking or pacifier use can include:

  • Protruding front teeth: front teeth that stick out (“buck” teeth). Protrusive front teeth may make it hard to comfortably close the mouth and lips, cause speech problems, and make them more susceptible to trauma.
  • Open bite: when the upper and lower front teeth do not overlap, which can create 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.

What to do if you notice prolonged thumb sucking or pacifier use

Consult Dr. Pamela Johnson Willowbrook, IL. Dr. Johnson will be able to identify any orthodontic related issues caused by the oral habit and can offer early treatment options to help your child break the habit and correct any problems that may have occurred. Orthodontists have been specifically trained in dentofacial orthopedics. In other words, they can help jaws grow and develop in better positions.

Seeing an AAO orthodontist at a young age will allow them to 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

Trust an AAO orthodontist

You can work with an American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) Orthodontist to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Dr. Pamela Johnson, who is a member of the AAO, is an Orthodontist who is an expert in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile.  source/aaoinfo.org

Adults Seeing An Orthodontist Is At An All Time High

June 6th, 2022

 Happy black girl with braces Happy black girl with braces adult braces stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images

 

Parents no longer take the back seat while their kids reap the benefits of orthodontic treatment. With one-in-three orthodontic patients over the age of 18, the number of adults seeing an orthodontist is at an all-time high.

Experts believe this upward trend is likely here to stay – why?  

It works.

Orthodontic treatment is just as effective for adults as children. Healthy teeth can be moved at any age because it’s the same physiological process.

Depending on the complexity of the case, as well as what the patient wants to achieve, a short-term touch up can take as little as several months while comprehensive treatment can take much longer. Orthodontic specialists will customize your smile according to your preferences, and they don’t require a referral from a dentist.

Treatment doesn’t have to be noticeable to others.

Advances in orthodontics have made treatment more comfortable and less noticeable than ever. Many of today’s treatment options are designed to minimize the appearance of the appliance to better fit any lifestyle.

Options include clear aligners, tooth-colored braces, tiny but more traditional metal braces, and braces that go behind the teeth.

Because not every appliance is suitable for every kind of orthodontic problem, an orthodontic specialist will be able to determine which type is right for the best result.

It’s more than a beautiful smile.

Yes, straight teeth are attractive and create confidence, but there’s more to it.

Leaving misaligned teeth untreated may lead to other dental problems such as tooth decay, gum disease, abnormal wearing of tooth enamel and difficulty chewing. We are living longer than ever before, and healthy teeth are therefore more important than ever.

Adults are taking note and prioritizing their dental health.

Trust an AAO orthodontist.

You can work with an American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) Orthodontist to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile. Visit Dr. Pamela Johnson at Johnson Orthodontics Willowbrook, IL for your initial consultation. We offer state of the art technology, professional staff and a positive doctor patient relationship. aaoinfo.org

Are Tongue Scrapers And Cleaners Effective?

June 2nd, 2022

Tongue scraper Stock Photos, Royalty Free Tongue scraper Images | Depositphotos

A tongue scraper is a tool used to help clean your tongue. Tongue scrapers come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and work by starting at the back of the tongue and pulling the scraper forward. Some people choose to clean their tongue by using their toothbrush as well.

Some say that cleaning your tongue helps keep your breath fresh, but there is no evidence that brushing or scraping your tongue will prevent bad breath or improve halitosis (chronic bad breath). In fact, bad breath bacteria can grow back just as fast as you remove it.

If you like the way your mouth feels after you clean your tongue, keep it up as part of your daily dental routine. It can be a great way to go the extra mile for your mouth, but comes down to personal preference and is not a necessary step. However, there are four things you can do to make sure your mouth is healthy:

1. Brush your teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste.

2. Clean between your teeth daily.

3. Eat a healthy diet that limits sugary beverages and snacks.

4. See your dentist regularly for prevention and treatment of dental disease.

source/mouthhealthy.org

Should My Child Wait Until They Have All Of Their Permanent Teeth To See An Orthodontist?

June 2nd, 2022

 When Do Kids Get Their Permanent Teeth? | Learn More
   If someone tells you that your child should have all of his/her permanent teeth before visiting the orthodontist for the first time, that “someone” is incorrect . In fact, putting off a first visit to the orthodontist until all of a child’s permanent teeth are in could do more harm than good. Here’s why:

There’s a lot more going on than meets the eye.

A child’s mouth is a busy place. Think about a 6-year-old. Everything is growing, including the bones in the jaw and face. At around age 6, the first permanent molars appear. An exchange of teeth begins as baby teeth fall out and are replaced by larger-sized permanent teeth. And it all happens in a predictable, particular order. Unless it doesn’t.

The gums hide about two-thirds of each tooth, as well as all the bone that hold teeth in place. The gums can mask conditions that interfere with the emergence of teeth.

Parents can watch for clues. Early or late loss of baby teeth can signal a problem. So can trouble with chewing or biting, speech difficulties and mouth-breathing. If these indicators are not addressed until a child has all of his/her permanent teeth and growth is essentially complete, correcting the problem may be more difficult than it might have been had treatment occurred earlier.

Orthodontic treatment is about creating a healthy bite – the beautiful smile is a bonus.

The goal of orthodontic treatment is to make sure the bite is right – that upper and lower teeth fit together like interlocking gears. The timing of your child’s treatment is critical and is based on his/her individual needs. Dr. Pamela Johnson can help determine if intervention is needed.

Some children can wait until they have all or most of their permanent teeth. Other children’s orthodontic problems may be better treated while some baby teeth are present. These children require growth guidance of bones in the upper and lower jaws, so there’s enough room for permanent teeth. Their treatment can be timed to predictable stages of dental development and physical growth. Once teeth and jaws are in alignment, a beautiful smile is the bonus result of treatment.

Dentists and orthodontists look at the mouth differently.

Both doctors work in the mouth. But perspectives differ based on the care they provide.

Dentists assess and promote overall oral health. They look for cavities and gum disease. They advise patients on diet and home hygiene care. And they monitor patients for diseases that appear in or affect the mouth. Dentists take “bite wing” x-rays to isolate a particular section of teeth as part of their diagnosis and treatment planning process. Orthodontic evaluations may be a lower priority for dentists.

Orthodontists are laser-focused on each patient’s bite. Orthodontists use “panoramic” x-rays to visualize all of the teeth above and below the gums, and the jaws, all at once. The bite is orthodontists’ area of specialization. 

If your dentist has not referred your child to an orthodontist, you need not wait for a referral. Orthodontists do not require a referral for your child to be seen.

Here’s what the experts say: remember age 7.

The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that children have their first visit with an orthodontist no later than age 7. If a problem is detected and treatment is advised, you are giving the orthodontist the opportunity to provide your child with the most appropriate treatment at the most appropriate time.

To answer the question that headlines this blog, there’s no need to wait until your child has lost all his/her baby teeth before you consult an orthodontist. It’s fine to talk to an orthodontist as soon as you suspect a problem in your child, even if your child is younger than 7. Many orthodontists offer a free or low-cost initial consultation. And adults – there’s no time like the present to talk to an orthodontist about getting the smile you’ve always wanted. You can visit Dr. Pamela Johnson Willowbrook, IL at Johnson Orthodontics for your childs initial consultation today. source/aaoinfo.org

3 Tips For A Healthy Summer Smile

June 1st, 2022

smiling faces in sand

Summer sun brings summer fun. While warm months are perfect for spending time together, summer vacation can also throw off your usual dental routine. Here are three ways to prevent summertime tooth decay:

Stay on a routine

Whether your kids are staying up to catch fireflies or a fireworks show, resist the temptation to skip brushing before a late bedtime—or let it slide when they sleep in the next morning. Don’t forget about your smile over the summer, It’s important for families to consistently brush and floss, which keeps kids on track for healthy back-to-school dental visits.”

No matter how eventful the upcoming months become, supervise that they are brushing twice a day for 2 minutes with fluoride toothpaste. Simple things like brushing calendars can help everyone stay on track over the summer. Plus, it’s a chance to spend more time together. Brushing alongside your children for 2 minutes, twice a day for the three months of summer gives you 6 extra hours together, so make the most of them!

And don’t forget to clean between those teeth once a day. Your children should be flossing between any two teeth that touch, However many kids don’t have motor skills to floss until they are over 10 years old. If your child needs help, try different types of interdental cleaners or put your hands over theirs to guide them and get the job done at the same time.

Say no to sugary drinks and snacks

As the temperature rises, it’s common for families to sip and snack during sports tournaments, festivals or nearly any community event. Watch your family’s intake of lemonade, juice and soda, Consider sugary drinks treats to enjoy once in a while, and not often. Instead, offer water (even better if it has fluoride) to beat the heat, or milk to drink with meals. And, don’t let summertime grazing damage your child’s smile. Taking a break from snacking is healthy for your teeth, It allows time for saliva to bathe the teeth to wash away leftover food and get stronger.

If you find yourself spending more time at home, snack smarter, and let your children tell you when they’re hungry instead of offering snacks throughout the day.

Make your back-to-school dental visit early

Some schools require back-to-school dental visits for certain grades, and these checkups can be a good way to be sure your child’s teeth stayed healthy. It is a good idea to make your child’s back-to-school appointment early in the summer to avoid the August rush and help insure you get the appointment time that works best for you. Visiting the dentist regularly can help your child’s smile stay healthy all year long.  source/mouthhealthy.org

Why Does A Crossbite Need To Be Fixed?

June 1st, 2022

Crossbite - Vibrant Smiles Mableton GA Dentist Dr Chea Rainford

 

 

 

A crossbite is a type of malocclusion, or a misalignment of teeth, where upper teeth fit inside of lower teeth. This misalignment can affect a single tooth or groups of teeth, involving the front teeth, back teeth, or both:

  1. Posterior crossbite: If the back teeth are affected, upper teeth sit inside of bottom teeth.
  2. Anterior crossbite: If the front teeth are in crossbite, one or more top teeth sit behind the bottom teeth. Not to be confused with an underbite, when all the top teeth, or jaw, are behind the bottom teeth

When teeth are lined up correctly, the upper teeth are naturally wider because they lay on the outside of the bottom teeth.

What causes a crossbite?

A crossbite can occur from genetics, delayed loss of baby teeth or abnormal eruption of permanent teeth, even prolonged actions like thumb sucking or swallowing in an abnormal way can generate damaging pressure. Teeth can be pushed out of place; bone can be distorted.

Why does a crossbite need to be fixed?

A crossbite may reveal an underlying jaw problem that is best addressed at a young age, while the face and jaws are still developing. Possible consequences if not corrected include:

  • the jaw shifting to one side
  • lopsided jaw growth
  • wearing down of outer layer of the tooth called “enamel”

How does an AAO orthodontist correct a crossbite?

Depending on the scope of the crossbite, treatment may involve the use of a palatal expander, a fixed or removable orthodontic appliance used to make the upper jaw wider. This would be used alongside an appliance designed to move the teeth, such as braces or clear aligners.

Dr. Pamela Johnson Willowbrook, IL who is a trained orthodontic specialist knows when each method, or both, and can help you determine which is best for you.

See an AAO orthodontist

When you choose an AAO orthodontist for orthodontic treatment, you can be assured that you have selected a highly skilled specialist. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile. aaoinfo.org

Athletes Are More Likely To Have Poor Oral Health

May 31st, 2022

Sport. Young athlete drinking water of bottle after running Sport. Runner. Top view sport drink stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images

Despite an outward picture of wellness and a healthy oral hygiene routine, athletes still tend to have more teeth-related problems than their peers. A recent study, published in the British Dental Journal, found that despite regular brushing and flossing, untreated tooth decay and gum inflammation was still prevalent among elite athletes.

Why?

Because they often refuel with high-acid drinks, gels and energy bars – all of which can weaken tooth enamel and damage teeth due to high sugar content and acidity.

The study found nearly half (49 percent) of elite endurance athletes had untreated tooth decay, and the majority of them had early signs of gum inflammation.

Even despite these same athletes reporting better dental hygiene than the general population – with 94 percent brushing their teeth at least twice a day, and 44 percent flossing regularly.

Let’s break it down (so your teeth don’t).

The acid in sports drinks and gels dissolves tooth enamel, a process called decalcification, and can lead to cavities. Once enamel dissolves, it does not come back. The loss and decay are permanent.

Add the sugar from sports drinks and gels to the mix, and the risk to tooth enamel doubles.

Plaque uses sugar and starches as food and expels acid as a by-product. If plaque is not removed regularly by brushing and flossing, the build-up can lead to additional decalcification, cavities, gum disease and loss of the bone that holds teeth in place.

What does this mean for orthodontic patients?

Athletes undergoing orthodontic treatment should be on high alert. Sports drinks are even harder on teeth with orthodontic appliances, such as braces or aligners.

For those wearing braces, visible white marks (decalcification) around your brackets can appear within a couple of months if plaque is not removed. For those wearing aligners, the damage may be amplified and occur all over because the acidic liquid seeps into the aligners and sits against teeth. Consult with Dr. Pamela Johnson for recommended beverages when undergoing your orthodontic treatment.

 

Bottom line – skip the sports drinks and gels.

Opt for water or other less-acidic choices. If that’s not an option, consider swishing water after sips, drinking through a straw or brushing and flossing after workouts. A fluoride rinse may also be helpful. See your dentist every six months for a professional cleaning and check-up, or more often if recommended.

Be aware that soda, sweet tea, bubbly flavored water and other carbonated beverages can have the same negative effects and should be avoided as well.

Trust an AAO orthodontist.

You can contact  Dr. Pamela Johnson of Johnson Orthodontics Willowbrook, IL. She is a member of the  American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) and can help you achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile. aaoinfo.org

Internet Trend To Avoid

May 26th, 2022

Can Mewing Reshape Your Face? How to Do It and What the Research Says

 

 

v

 

Despite popular opinion, the internet might not have all the answers…especially when it comes to your facial structure. The online do-it-yourself facial restructuring trend known as mewing (which, by the way, is not a medical term) suggests that tongue placement can define your jawline. While proper tongue alignment could alter your facial structure, there’s more to it.

There’s more to facial restructuring.

It’s a complex process that involves changes in jaw bones, facial bones and soft tissue.

The natural resting position of your tongue is an important clue to what’s going on in your mouth. It could lead to tongue thrusting, or the tongue can even push teeth out of alignment causing bite problems or speech and swallowing problems.

Before considering doing it yourself, individuals should always start by asking themselves if they are comfortable starting treatment without knowing what is happening below the surface. Any unsupervised attempts to move teeth/align jaws is not recommended by the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO).

What should you do if you’re concerned about your tongue’s resting position?

Consult an orthodontist, Dr. Pamela Johnson Willowbrook, IL who is a member of the AAO can evaluate your tongue position. Orthodontists are trained in understanding the structure of your teeth, jaw bones and facial bones. They can also properly evaluate how changing one part of the mouth may impact other parts—for example, how the natural resting position of your tongue may be affecting your speech or causing bite problems.

Before considering a DIY treatment, patients should consider the potential irreversible and expensive damage if not done correctly.

Trust an AAO orthodontist.

Orthodontists are the only dental specialists who have additional education and training focused exclusively on the movement of teeth, jawbones, facial bones, and soft tissue–3,700 hours of specialized training to be exact. They understand growth and development and are also called dentofacial orthopedists.  Find an orthodontist near you at aaoinfo.org/locator.

Happy Memorial Day From All Of Us At Johnson Orthodontics!

May 25th, 2022

Have A Happy And Safe Memorial Day Pictures, Photos, and Images for  Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, and Twitter

Foods To Keep Your Teeth And Body Healthy

May 11th, 2022

Nutrition

Photo of teen girl drinking a class of milk

Eating healthy foods helps keep your teeth and body healthy. Don’t eat or drink too many sweets. If you have something sweet, try to eat or drink it with a meal to limit the exposure time to your teeth. That's because certain foods can put you at risk for cavities and other oral health problems? Here are some tips.

What to Eat:

Fruits and vegetables. Combined these should be half of what you eat every day.

  • Grains. Make sure at least half of the grains you eat are whole grains, such as oatmeal, whole wheat bread and brown rice.
  • Dairy. Choose low-fat or fat-free dairy foods.
  • Lean proteins. Make lean protein choices, such as lean beef, skinless poultry and fish. Try and vary your protein choices to include eggs, beans, peas and legumes, too. Eat at least 8 oz. of seafood a week.

Snacking tips:

  • Snacking is hard to resist but you can do your mouth a favor by watching the amount of soda, juice or other sweetened beverages you drink.
  • If you want a snack, try and choose something like fruit, low-fat cheese, yogurt or raw vegetables.
  • If you chew gum, make sure it’s sugarless. Certain sugarless gums have earned the ADA Seal of Acceptance for helping prevent cavities by strengthening teeth. Look for the ADA Seal on the package.

If you have braces: Good oral hygiene is especially important for people wearing braces. Dr. Pamela Johnson Orthodontist in Willowbrook IL, may recommend avoiding certain foods that could interfere with braces or accidentally bend the wires. These foods may include nuts, popcorn, hard candy, ice and sticky foods like chewing gum, caramel or other chewy candy.   Source/mouthhealthy.org

Orthodontic Treatment Results In A Healthier Mouth

May 9th, 2022

 

 

 

Boy Visiting Dental Clinic For Treatment Of Braces Latin teenage boy with dentist adjusting new elastic bands on braces braces rubber bands stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images

Braces and orthodontic treatment are used to correct “bad bites,” or malocclusion (teeth that are crowded or crooked). In some cases your teeth may be straight, but your upper and lower jaws may not meet properly. These jaw or tooth alignment problems may be inherited or could result from injury, early or late tooth loss, or thumbsucking.

If you have an abnormal bite Dr. Pamela Johnson, an Orthodontist in Willowbrook IL,  may recommend braces or another orthodontic treatment to straighten out your smile. Correcting the problem can create a nice-looking smile, but more importantly, orthodontic treatment results in a healthier mouth. Not correcting an abnormal bite could result in further oral health problems, including:

  • tooth decay
  • gum disease
  • tooth loss
  • affected speech and/or chewing
  • abnormal wear to tooth enamel
  • jaw problems

Straightening your teeth can be accomplished in different ways. The kind of orthodontic treatment you have will depend on your preference and the options provided by Dr. Pamela Johnson. Traditional braces realign teeth by applying pressure. They usually consist of small brackets cemented to your teeth, connected by a wire, which is periodically tightened by Dr.Johnson to gradually shift your teeth and jaw. The brackets may be metal or tooth colored. Sometimes they are placed behind your teeth. Under the direct supervision of  Dr. Johnson, removable aligners are another option for treating orthodontic problems.

Orthodontic treatment can be provided by Dr Pamela Johnson, an orthodontist, who specializes in the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of dental and facial irregularities. Dr.Johnsons treatment will depend on the severity of your case.

Since abnormal bites usually become noticeable between the ages of 6 and 12, orthodontic treatment often begins between ages 8 and 14. Treatment that begins while a child is growing helps produce optimal results. That doesn’t mean that adults can’t have braces; healthy teeth can be orthodontically treated at any age.
Treatment plans will vary based on your situation, but most people are in treatment from one to three years. This is followed by a period of wearing a retainer that holds teeth in their new positions. Today’s braces are more comfortable than ever before. Newer materials apply a constant, gentle force to move teeth and usually require fewer adjustments.

While you have braces it’s important to maintain a balanced diet for the health of your teeth. Of course, a healthy diet is always important, but eating too many sugary foods with braces can lead to plaque build-up around your brackets that could permanently stain or damage your teeth. Avoiding foods like popcorn, corn on the cob, chewing gum, whole apples, and other sticky foods is also a good idea. Ask Dr. Pamela Johnson about foods to avoid while you are in treatment. Not all of us are born with beautiful smiles, but with a good oral hygiene routine, and a little help from orthodontics, you can have a beautiful and healthy smile.
At  Pamela Johnson Orthodontic Solutions in Willowbrook IL,we can offer easy to understand treatment options with exceptional outcomes. Call us to schedule your first orthodontic evaluation. - source/mouthhealthy.org

ORTHODONTICS FOR A BEAUTIFUL SMILE

May 2nd, 2022

 

 

 

Image result for small size dental pictures of a family with braces

Orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics is the formal name of the dental specialty concerned with the diagnosis, prevention, interception, guidance and correction of bad bites. The purpose of orthodontic treatment is to create a healthy bite—straight teeth that properly meet opposing teeth in the opposite jaw. A good bite makes it easier for you to bite, chew and speak.

If your teeth are crowded, protrusive, spaced too far apart, meet in an abnormal way, or do not meet at all, correction may be recommended. Braces and aligners are the “appliances” Dr. Pamela Johnson,Orthodontist located in Willowbrook IL, most commonly use to guide your teeth into their proper positions. Retainers preserve and stabilize the results of your orthodontic treatment.

In the past, orthodontic treatment was associated with children and teens, but today many adults seek orthodontic treatment to correct long-standing problems, or problems that stem from maturational changes. Dr. Pamela Johnson can help people of any age achieve a healthy and beautiful smile.

For more information, visit My Life. My Smile. My Orthodontist.

6 Travel Tips for Your Teeth

June 15th, 2021

Vacation marked on a calendar

The summer is almost here, and we know many of our patients and their families will be traveling this year. Here are some great dental travel tips to keep your summer both fun and healthy!

  1. Schedule a Dental Visit Beforehand

    No one wants to have a dental emergency during vacation. If you can, schedule a checkup with your general dentist and make sure you have seen Dr. Johnson if you are due for an appointment. That way both can check to make sure your teeth and the orthodontic appliances are in good shape.

  2. Have Emergency Contacts Ready

    Have your general dentist and Dr. Johnson's phone number in your phone or their businesses cards in your wallet before leaving for vacation. Many dental emergencies can be solved at home or over the phone.

  3. In Case of an Emergency...

    If you are out of the country and you need to see a dentist immediately, contact your local consulate or U.S. embassy. The concierge at the hotel may give recommendations, but the local consulate or U.S. embassy will provide independent recommendations.

  4. If You Forget Your Toothbrush

    No toothbrush? Rinse vigorously with water or put toothpaste on a clean washcloth or your finger. When you have a chance, go to the nearest drugstore to get a toothbrush with the ADA Seal of Acceptance. If you don't see the seal, get the softest brush you can find.

  5. How to Properly Pack Your Toothbrush

    Letting your toothbrush air dry is the best way to avoid bacteria and keeping it clean at home. However, when traveling, it's more important to keep your toothbrush clean and out of contact with other things than to air dry. Use resealable plastic bags to keep your toothbrush separate from everything else in your luggage. Once you arrive, then you can take it out to air dry.

  6. Pack ADA Approved Gum

    Chewing sugarless gum can help relieve ear pressure during a flight – and help keep cavities at bay on vacation. Research shows that chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes after a meal can help prevent cavities. That’s because it gets saliva flowing, which helps wash away cavity-causing bacteria.

www.mouthhealthy.org/

Adult Orthodontics

June 8th, 2021

Today, one in four orthodontic patients is an adult. Leaving misaligned teeth untreated may lead to other dental problems such as tooth decay, gum disease and difficulty chewing. Orthodontic treatment creates a better bite, making teeth fit better and decreasing the risk of future dental problems regardless of age.

Advances in orthodontics have also made treatment more comfortable and less noticeable than ever for individuals of all ages. Many of today’s treatment options are designed to minimize the appearance of the appliance to better fit any lifestyle.

Our office offers clear braces, traditional metal braces, and Invisalign. Give our office a call to set up a consultation with Dr. Johnson.

aaoinfo.org

My Retainer Feels Tight. Can I Wear It?

May 25th, 2021

As long as your retainer doesn’t hurt and still fits over your teeth, you can wear it – even if it feels tight. Your teeth may have slightly shifted, and you may need to wear your retainer longer each day to prevent your teeth from moving.

Try wearing your retainer full-time for a few days to encourage your teeth to move back into their correct positions. If the retainer continues to feel uncomfortable, call Dr. Johnson's office to determine the next steps.

What if the retainer doesn’t fit at all or feels painful?

Don’t force it. Contact Dr. Johnson, who will evaluate your situation and determine what actions, if any, are needed. It could be as simple as making a new retainer or, if necessary, making some clear aligners to tweak a tooth or teeth back into proper position.

aaoinfo.org

Natural Teeth Whitening: Fact vs. Fiction

May 20th, 2021

Patient getting her teeth whitened at the dentist

When it comes to teeth whitening, you may see many different methods featured online and in magazines—from oil pulling to charcoal, and even turmeric. It's no surprise that DIY whitening is top of mind, either. When the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry asked people what they’d most like to improve their smile, the most common response was whiter teeth.

Healthy smiles come in many shades, though it's tempting to think ingredients in our own kitchens could hold the key to a brighter smile. Still, just because a method is natural doesn’t mean it’s healthy. In fact, DIY whitening can do more harm than good to your teeth. Here’s how:

Fruits

 

Fiction:
The approach maintains you can make your teeth whiter and brighter using household staples that are naturally acidic (like lemons, oranges, apple cider vinegar), contain digestive enzymes (such as pineapple or mango) and something that is abrasive (like baking soda).

Fact: 
When eaten as usual, fruit is a great choice. However, fruit and vinegar contain acid, and you put your pearly whites at risk when you prolong their contact with your teeth or use them to scrub your teeth because acid can wear away your enamel. Enamel is the thin outer coating of your teeth that protects you from tooth sensitivity and cavities.

 

Scrubs

 

Fiction:
These methods claim that scrubbing your teeth with ingredients like activated charcoal or a baking soda-hydrogen peroxide paste will bring a shine back to your smile.

Fact:

There is no evidence that shows dental products with charcoal are safe or effective for your teeth, according to the September 2017 issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association.

Also, using materials that are too abrasive on your teeth can actually make them look more yellow. Enamel is what you’re looking to whiten, but if you’re using a scrub that is too rough, you can actually wear it away. When that happens, the next layer of your tooth can become exposed – a softer, yellow tissue called dentin.

 

Spices and Oils

 

Fiction:
Swishing oils like coconut oil in your mouth (oil pulling) or using spices like turmeric can help whiten your teeth.

Fact:
There is no reliable scientific evidence to show oil pulling or turmeric whitens teeth. Save the oil and spices for healthy meals instead.

 

Still Interested in Whitening?

 

The best natural ways to keep your teeth white are everyday healthy habits, including:

  • Brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes
  • Use a whitening toothpaste with the ADA Seal of Acceptance
  • Cleaning between your teeth once a day
  • Limiting foods that stain your teeth, like coffee, tea and red wine
  • Not smoking or using tobacco
  • Regular visits to your dentist for checkups and cleanings

If you want to try a specific whitening product or service, just talk to Dr. Johnson or your general dentist before you begin. There are at-home bleaching options that have earned the ADA Seal of Acceptance, which means they’ve been tested to be safe and effective for your teeth.

Whitening may not work on all teeth, and if you are a candidate, some methods—whether at-home or in the dental office—may be better for your teeth than others.

source: mouthhealhty.org

How Strong Are Your Teeth?

May 11th, 2021

strong tooth with arms

The right smile can leave you laughing, fill you with joy or make you melt with emotion. But, ultimately, the best smile is one that is healthy and strong. Here are some of the “tooth truths” about how tough your teeth really are – and how to keep them that way.

1. Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the body.

The shiny, white enamel that covers your teeth is even stronger than bone. This resilient surface is 96 percent mineral, the highest percentage of any tissue in your body – making it durable and damage-resistant.

2. Your bite is powerful!

Did you know your teeth can exert an average of 200 pounds of pressure when you bite down? That’s probably what tempts us to use our teeth as tools from time to time – but as your dentist will remind you, that’s one of the worst habits when it comes to preserving healthy teeth.

3. Teeth can last for hundreds of years.

Thanks to the durability of tooth enamel, our teeth actually outlast us. In fact, some of the most fascinating things we know about human history come from the study of our forebears’ dental remains. For example, we know that the first travelers to leave Africa for China set out as many as 80,000 years ago – and that early humans used a simple form of aspirin for pain relief – thanks to teeth!

4. Strong as they are, teeth can’t heal on their own.

All other tissues in our bodies have the power to repair themselves, but our teeth can’t. When damaged, they must be repaired by a skilled dentist using caps, crowns, fillings or veneers. When our teeth fall out, the only options are partial or full dentures or dental implants. (Just one more reason to take great care of your teeth every day!)

5. Healthy teeth have the power to resist decay, but they need our help.

Did you know there are more than 300 kinds of bacteria that can attack your teeth? The good news is that with healthy dental hygiene habits and regular checkups, you can protect your teeth from bacteria and other substances that can weaken teeth and cause decay.

In addition to cleaning and checking your teeth for signs of trouble, your general dentist and their team can help you learn what food and drink choices are good for your teeth and which ones to avoid. The professionals in your dental office are also ready to help you create a personalized plan to care for your teeth so you can enjoy good dental health for life.

source:mouthhealthy.org

National Facial Protection Month

April 28th, 2021

April might almost be over, but Spring sports are just beginning!

Remember to wear a mouth guard when you're at practice or any games. If you don't have one, Dr. Johnson can get you suited up! Call our office at 630-887-1188 to help protect your smile.

 

Teeth Grinding

April 15th, 2021

Teeth, Mouth, Dental, Dentist, Tooth, Lips, Oral, Gum

Teeth grinding can be caused not just by stress and anxiety but by sleep disorders, an abnormal bite or teeth that are missing or crooked. A study in the November 2016 issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association suggests that teeth grinding is also associated with alcohol and tobacco use. People who drink alcohol and smokers are approximately twice as likely to grind their teeth.

In a September 2020 report, the ADA Health Policy Institute found that more than half of dentists surveyed saw an increase of patients with dental conditions often associated with stress: Teeth grinding and clenching, chipped and cracked teeth, and symptoms of a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder such as jaw pain and headaches.

The symptoms of teeth grinding include:

  • dull headaches
  • jaw soreness
  • teeth that are painful or loose
  • fractured teeth

Dr. Johnson or your general dentist can fit you with a mouth guard to protect your teeth during sleep. In some cases, your dentist or physician may recommend taking a muscle relaxant before bedtime. If stress is the cause you need to find a way to relax. Meditation, counseling and exercise can all help reduce stress and anxiety.

Teeth grinding is also common in children. However, because their teeth and jaws change and grow so quickly it is not usually a damaging habit that requires treatment and most outgrow it by adolescence.

Although in adults teeth grinding is often the result of stress, the same is not always true with children. Other possible causes of teeth grinding in children include:

  • irritation in the mouth
  • allergies
  • misaligned teeth

If you’re concerned about your child’s teeth grinding, ask your child’s dentist or Dr. Johnson about the potential causes and, if necessary, the possible solutions.

source: mouthhealthy.org

Sparkling Water - Is It Good For My Teeth?

April 5th, 2021

glass of sparkling water

Is the satisfying fizz of your favorite sparkling water putting you at risk for tooth decay? Because any drink with carbonation—including sparkling water—has a higher acid level, some reports have questioned whether sipping sparkling water will weaken your tooth enamel (the hard outer shell of your teeth where cavities first form).

So, Is Sparkling Water Affecting My Teeth?

According to available research, sparkling water is generally fine for your teeth—and here's why. In a study using teeth that were removed as a part of treatment and donated for research, researchers tested to see whether sparkling water would attack tooth enamel more aggressively than regular lab water. The result? The two forms of water were about the same in their effects on tooth enamel. This finding suggests that, even though sparkling water is slightly more acidic than ordinary water, it's all just water to your teeth.

Tips for Enjoying Sparkling Water—and Protecting Your Teeth

  • Sparkling water is far better for your teeth than sugary drinks. In addition, be sure to drink plenty of regular, fluoridated water, too—it’s the best beverage for your teeth. Water with fluoride naturally helps fight cavities, washes away the leftover food cavity-causing bacteria feast on and keeps your mouth from becoming dry (which can put you at a higher risk of cavities).
  • Be mindful of what’s in your sparkling water. Citrus-flavored waters often have higher acid levels that does increase the risk of damage to your enamel. Plan to enjoy these in one sitting or with meals. This way, you aren’t sipping it throughout the day and exposing your teeth over and over again to the slightly higher level of acid it contains.
  • Sparkling water brands with added sugar can no longer be considered just sparkling water. They are a sugar-sweetened beverage, which can contribute to your risk of developing cavities. So remember—sparkling or not—plain water is always the best choice.

source: mouthhealhy.org

Can I Use My HSA or FSA for Orthodontic Treatment?

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.

Water Flossing: What is it and should I do it?

March 18th, 2021

Woman using ADA-accepted Waterpik water flosser

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.

source: mouthhealthy.org

Why are Mouth Guards Important?

March 11th, 2021

Mouthguard

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.

source: mouthhealthy.org

Dental Assistant Appreciation Week!

March 2nd, 2021

We wanted to thank our Dental Assistants for their hard work and dedication! We couldn't do what we do without them!

National Children's Dental Health Month

February 4th, 2021

This year's theme for National Children's Dental Health Month is "Water, Nature's Drink." Developing good habits at an early age and scheduling regular dental visits help children get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.

And to celebrate at Johnson Orthodontics, we're hosting a coloring contest! Come grab a coloring sheet in our office, create your masterpiece, and return it by March 15, 2021. You can either return it in person or mail it to us. Three will be chosen randomly to receive a mystery gift card! Good luck and have fun!

The Benefits of Clear Braces

January 27th, 2021

Have you considered straightening your smile lately?

Many adults are turning to orthodontics because they didn’t have an opportunity to correct their smiles as a child or, over the years, their teeth have drifted back out of alignment. The problem is, what adult wants to spend a year or more wearing metal braces? The awkward teenage years were bad enough the first time!

Nevertheless, orthodontic technology continues to improve, and we are able to offer a option for our patients using Invisalign

Invisalign, a clear braces system that relies on transparent aligners instead of metal brackets and wires, can help straighten your smile without the hassles that most people associate with braces.

For instance:

  • With Invisalign, you take out your aligners while you eat, which means you don’t have to worry about food restrictions or miss out on your favorite crunchy or chewy treats.
  • You also remove the aligners to brush and floss your teeth, so there’s no need to brush around brackets or attempt to thread floss through wires.
  • You’ll be provided with a series of aligners at a time, so you don’t have to keep coming back to the office for “tightening” – you just switch to the next aligner in the series.
  • As long as you wear your aligners for the recommended 22 hours per day, you can remove your clear braces for a special event if you like (although the aligners are virtually invisible, so there’s very little need).

Invisalign can be used to treat mild to moderate misalignments and correct crowded, widely spaced, overlapping, and twisted teeth. We are more than happy to assess your smile and see if Invisalign will work for you!

Benefits of Early Orthodontic Care

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:

  1. There may be no need for treatment at the time.
  2. Treatment may be needed in the future, so periodic appointments for observation would be recommended.
  3. A problem already exists that would benefit early treatment and will be discussed during the consultation.

Source: aaoinfo.org

Ready to start your Smile Transformation?

Back to Top
Contact Us!
call email