Orthodontics on Silver Lake!

(302) 672-7776

Why are younger patients ages 8-10 seen by Dr. Steckel at OSL?


Facts about early treatment options for 8-10 year olds:

preteen group

  • A typical 8-10 year old may still have 12 baby teeth
  • Sometimes the baby teeth are stuck and can interfere with the permanent teeth erupting on schedule
  • Sometimes the permanent teeth erupt into the wrong path or position
  • Your family dentist may rely on an orthodontist, such as Dr. Steckel, to check these developmental problems


  • Interceptive Orthodontics may be recommended by Dr. Steckel in Dover, DE for your 8-10 year old after she reviews the diagnostic records
  • This is different than braces, because it is planned to correct a developmental problem with your preteen’s teeth


  • Interceptive treatment can involve an expander, partial braces, space maintainers, or other treatment methods which Dr. Steckel and Team OSL will review with you during your complimentary consulation
  • Call today for your Preteen’s smile evaluation at 302-672-7776 or visit us at www.doverorthodontics.com




See below for a great example of how Dr. Steckel helped a happy pre-teen with his smile:


The Three Keys to Total Smile Creation and Management at Orthodontics on Silverlake (OSL)

  1.   We Know the value of a Good First Impression
  • @OSL-We know our patients! Our patients are seen at their scheduled appointment, and 98% finish their treatment on time or early.
  • There’s no substitute for a complete orthodontic evaluation, and cosmetic treatment planning
  • Dr. Steckel customizes each plan, and gives regular progress updates
  • Everybody wants a Red Carpet smile!


  1.   We Know the Evidence*:
  • Early treatment of Class II malocclusions: Parents and patients need to know 2 phases of treatment may not be better in overall outcome and will cost more in time and dollars.
  • Treatment of Open bite malocclusions: Spontaneous closure (13%-40%) is possible with an orthodontic appliance in the mixed dentition. Open bites are very difficult to treat, and to retain. Dr. Steckel encourages patients to be active participants in making their treatment decisions.
  • Treatment of Class III malocclusions: Young patients with small upper jaws may benefit from early treatment. Other patients with more severe “underbites” may benefit more from waiting and addressing the malocclusion surgically.
  • Retention– Interproximal reduction may help reduce relapse. Bonded retainers are sometimes preferred by patients. Removable retainers provide the opportunity for better oral hygiene.
  • Treatment for Patient Satisfaction: Patients rate their highest satisfaction when treatment results include reduction of overjet, improved dental esthetics, oral comfort and appointment policy

* “Evidence-Based Orthodontics” (Ref: Huang, Richmond, Vig 2011, Wiley-Blackwell)


  1.  We Know the best time to start
  • For 7-10 year old patients- esthetic concerns? Can we combine into one Phase of orthodontics?
  • Tweens-Teens – Are all the teeth present? Impactions?
  • Adults- never had treatment OR had treatment and want to re-create a smile they’ve always wanted
  • For Everybody-Periodontal status? Oral hygiene status? Clenching/Grinding? Oral habits? Oral piercings? Time commitments?
  • @OSL- If you like your smile, wear your retainer! “Every night, for a Lifetime”


October is Orthodontic Health Month. Dr. Steckel and Team OSL believe in helping our patients stay out of sticky situations and keeping their smiles bright!

Have a White Christmas!

We at Orthodontics on Silver Lake (OSL) wish our patients and their friends and families a fantastic holiday this year!

All through the year, we answer questions in the office about teeth whitening. It’s important to remember that what we do everyday has an impact on the color of our teeth, so

  •  Always remember to brush 2 minutes twice per day and floss daily
  • Avoid dark beverages, or brush whenever you can after drinking them (this includes sodas, sports drinks, wines, etc.)

teeth-whiteningA recent meta analysis of home-applied teeth whitening products, similar to those we have available for our Dover, Smyrna, and Kent county patients, showed that 73% of people who whiten their teeth will experience a whitening that is 2 shades lighter than the placebo group. 20% of people will experience a whitening effect that is 5 shades lighter. Retreatment for 50% of people may be necessary in 6 months, to maintain this effect.  (Niederman R. et al. “Effectiveness of dentist-prescribed, home-applied tooth whitening. A meta analysis”).

We offer 2 types of whitening products at OSL, and the results have been consistently good for our patients. Even those with braces can whiten their teeth while their braces are working to create their new smile! Our Teen Invisalign and Adult Invisalign patients follow a slightly different procedure, with consistent results as seen in the meta analysis. It helps that we at Orthodontics on Silver Lake have used this whitening product ourselves, so we can better hermeyhelp you have a successful experience. Call us today at 302-672-7776 to find out more about this cosmetic service we offer.

AND remember Dr. Steckel’s and Hermey’s advice: “Be nice-not naughty-to your teeth!”


Invisalign for Teens

Are you a teenager in Kent County who isn’t happy with your smile? Do you want to straighten your teeth, but don’t like the idea of having metal brackets and wires on your teeth? Invisalign Teen may be the option for you!

handsome smiling facesDr. Steckel and the OSL team have been treating teens with Invisalign in the Dover, Smyrna and Harrington areas since Invisalign Teen’s inception in 2005. Since then, she believes this ever-advancing process has become more and more predictable for orthodontic corrections.


The advantages of Invisalign Teen are that it is clear, comfortable and virtually invisible! No more worrying about those brackets and wires invading your smile when you’re playing sports, on a date or hanging out with your friends. invisalign alignersSince Invisalign Teen is removable, with easier brushing and flossing, less dietary restrictions, and no “wire poke” emergencies for you and your parents to deal with! And no worries about lost clear aligner costs; three free replacements are included.


Invisalign Teen is changing the way teens in Invisalign teen patientTownsend, Magnolia, Camden-Wyoming, and the surrounding areas look at orthodontic treatment. You’ve got enough to worry about as a teenager, so why not cross braces off the list, and consider the comfortable and clear option of Invisalign Teen before heading back to school this fall!


“Straight Talk from Your Orthodontist” –Call Dr. Steckel on Tuesdays- between 5-6pm- with your orthodontic questions- 302-672-7776.

DIY Orthodontics?

About half of adults use the internet to access information regarding their health decisions. However, not all of this information is accurate, or easy to understand. Some information has the potential to be dangerous. There are Youtube videos describing the use of rubber bands, paperclips and other household items for “Do it Yourself” (DIY) orthodontics. (1) PastedGraphic-1

Many authors of orthodontic topics, such as oral hygiene with braces, or treatment with Invisalign are orthodontists. Dr. Steckel publishes this monthly blog on our website to provide accurate, easy to understand, and relevant answers to common questions.

Her sources for these blog topics are the current literature, and clinical experiences in her practice. Please see previous OSL blog posts on February 2015, and May 2014 as examples.

The concern with DIY is the risks of unintended consequences, and gum tissue not being healthy enough for orthodontic treatment. The risks include loss of teeth, damage to gum tissue, and the need for expensive restorative treatment to replace the damaged teeth.

You do not need a referral from your dentist to make an appointment with Dr. Steckel. At your first appointment, she will determine the health of your gums and teeth, and help you choose which orthodontic option will benefit you. Orthodontic treatment can transform your smile, and the foundation for this is healthy gums and good oral hygiene!

(1) A.J. Zak; Orthodontic Products, April-May 2015 pgs. 70-74

Question: What is Clear, Comfortable, and Virtually Invisible?

Question: What is Clear, Comfortable, and Virtually Invisible?
Answer: Invisalign is!
More and more patients at OSL are achieving their orthodontic goals with Invisalign. Dr. Steckel is happy to provide this opportunity for her patients to realize their goals
with this ever-advancing technique.
Advantages for Invisalign:
1. Easier brushing and flossing, less dietary restrictions, no “wire pokes”.
2. Comfortable to wear, and not obvious to most people that you have the aligners on
What patients need to know: It will change your daily routine to some extent. You need to wear them 22 hrs per day to complete treatment on schedule.
Disadvantages of Invisalign:
1. Being consistent with your aligner schedule is very important, or the treatment can take longer or not work.
2. Some patients still need braces on some of their teeth to get the best results. This can be determined at your initial appointment with Dr. Steckel.
A patient is shown below who recently finished Invisalign treatment, and then was able to have restoration with his dentist to complete his perfect smile.
Both he and his dentist were happy with the results achieved:

When is the Best Time To Begin Orthodontic Treatment?

Our orthodontist, Dr. Stephanie Steckel agrees with the American Association of Orthodontists’ (AAO) recommendation that a child should receive his or her first orthodontic evaluation by the age of 7. By the time a child reaches this age, several aao_logopermanent teeth have erupted, allowing orthodontists to identify possible problems. For some young children, early treatment can reduce the time spent in braces and possibly eliminate the need for future tooth extractions. Even though many children do not need treatment when they are young, a thorough evaluation can help determine if treatment would be beneficial for the child’s dental future.


missingtoothWhen Dr. Steckel has the opportunity to see patients at an early age, she can correct small problems before they become larger, more expensive ones. Early orthodontic intervention may consist of the patient wearing removable or fixed appliances to allow for proper jaw growth and improved tooth spacing.




It’s Never Too Late for Orthodontic Treatment


While starting orthodontic treatment at a young age can be very beneficial in many ways, it is never too late to achieve a healthy, straight and beautiful smile! These days, braces aren’t just for kids, and many of the patients we see at our Dover orthodontic practice are adults. Adults now have many choices when it comes to wearing braces. We offer several different types of braces including metal braces, clear ceramic braces, In-Ovation self-ligating braces and Invisalign, which is a very discreet way to improve one’s smile. Many of the adults we treat opt for clear braces or Invisalign as both are very low-profile in nature.

Invisalign logo






Individualized Treatment Based on Evidence


At Orthodontics on Silver Lake, we believe in evidence-based treatment, meaning that we follow clinical evidence to identify the best treatment options and techniques available for every patient. For each patient we see, we provide a clear explanation of his or her specific orthodontic needs, detailed information about the patient’s options, and expert guidance in making the right decisions.


Another reason to get orthodontic treatment as an adolescent

Whether fixed braces or Invisalign (R), most patients will have a stage in their treatment where elastics or rubber bands are worn for optimum results.
imgres One recent Case Report in the American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics (AJO-DO) August 2014, Vol. 146, Issue 2, pages 227-237) showed the power of consistent elastic wear with upper jaw expansion in a growing patient. This treatment could not be done with an adult due to limited treatment options available when growth is not happening.
Elastics align the top teeth to properly fit with the bottom teeth, to fix cross-bites, and to finalize the patient’s treatment results. And, (as they did for the patient above) they can play a role in effecting a jaw correction in a cooperative, growing patient.
A literature review comparing treatment effects of different overbite (“Class II”) correcting appliances showed the results are similar when Elastics are compared with Herbst or imgres2Forsus (R) appliances. Using Elastics with Teen Invisalign can also minimize the side-effects seen with these Class II appliances. The elastics are worn full-time and are a light-type elastic. (AlignTech, March 25, 2014: Common Sense Class II Invisalign Teen Treatment; Barry J. Glaser DMD)
NOTE: These results are comparable ONLY in growing patients, not adults. The changes seen in Teen patients are a combination tooth changes (63%) and skeletal changes(37%).
Which type of appliance is most effective? It depends on the individual situation!  We are seeing  excellent results with our motivated Dover Air Base patients!  Call us for a consultation and Dr. Steckel will meet with you and your child to review options before we begin treatment.
Invisalign Teen Logo
Whether girl or guy- our patients at Orthodontics on Silver lake are rewarded with great results for their “super” efforts with Elastics!

Mrs. IncredibleMr. Incredible

Summer snacks, cool drinks and your teeth

Hope you are having a great summer-whether simply getting outside more and or going to local events in Kent County, DE, we’re busy at Dr. Steckel’s office helping our patients keep their smile improvements on schedule, and healthy.
Our advice for our patients on diet choices was recently supported by a clinical study (Jain, P., Gary J.J; May/June 2014 General Dentistry, pgs. 63-68) undertaken at Southern Illinois University, to examine the relationship between
1. Oral hygiene
2. Consumption of snack foods and
3. Consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages
: Which of these behaviors (or lack there of) present the greatest risk to developing dental decay? What do you think?






Answer: Sugar-sweetened beverages are a stronger risk factor for dental decay than snack foods!! The types of snack foods included fruit, ice cream, salty snacks, and soft candy.
Even though we may brush thoroughly,
maintaining good oral hygiene is not sufficient to prevent dental decay!
Sugar-sweetened beverage consumption is the stronger indicator of dental decay
All Orthodontics on Silverlake patients know this, and make a promise to limit their intake of these beverages.
Look for the next blog post for suggestions on some summer beverage suggestions to keep those pearlies white!

Until then, how about a tall glass of water…?

Call us: (302) 672-7776 | 42 Hiawatha, Lane, DE 19904 View Map