If You See Pink…Go to the Sink!

If you see pink…go to the sink!
All of our patients at Orthodontics on Silver Lake (OSL) in Dover,DE share one common goal: “White, straight teeth” 
And all of us at OSL love helping our patients get there.

Whether you use a power or manual toothbrush or interdental brush; rubber tip or dental floss, or water pik; mouthrinse, each of these oral hygiene products have instructions to follow for the best results.

Optimum Results=Plaque-free teeth, non-bleeding gums, and fresh breath
Poor Results=Plaque and food particles left on the teeth and surface of your tongue. The bacteria in your mouth then break down the food particles, releasing chemicals that have a strong odor leading to bad breath.
One way to check that your oral hygiene efforts are working is to use a pink disclosing tablet after brushing and flossing. This tablet produces a harmless pink stain that clings to plaque, the film of bacteria that is always forming on the teeth and gums. It is a built in check for the user to see where he/she missed brushing.  If you see pink…go to the sink, and brush off the plaque to reveal your clean teeth.
If Dr. Steckel recommends a mouth rinse for you, then it’s best used after your teeth are completely clean.
Any questions? Call us at (302)672-7776 to speak with Anna or Annabel to take the first step to your “White, straight teeth” 

Ref: JADA, Vol 135, December 2004

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:
Before
After

“Brush up” on Your Knowledge for Children’s Dental Health Month

Children’s Dental Health Month is a great time to “brush up” on dental health knowledge. It is important to brush two times a day, using small circles, for two full minutes. Watch the video below to see how.

A trip to the orthodontist can also be an important part of dental health. Teeth that are aligned properly look and feel good. The ability to speak, chew, and bite, as wellCDHM as good dental health can all be dependent on properly aligned teeth.

If your child’s teeth are not properly aligned, it can lead to dental problems. A check-up, no later than age 7, will help Dr. Steckel provide treatment at the right time in your child’s developmental process. Call us to schedule your child for his or her first orthodontic appointment today! 302-672-7776

Summer Drinks For A Healthy Mouth

Refreshments To Keep Your Teeth And You Happy This Summer

In our last blog, we learned something pretty surprising about oral health – consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages are a stronger risk factor for dental decay than snack food OR poor oral health. That means that just maintaining good oral hygiene is not enough to protect your teeth from the corrosive effects of sugar-sweetened drinks. Why? Sugar is food for the bacteria that naturally live in your mouth, and when they break down sugar they release harmful acids that can eat away at the enamel and structure of your teeth.

So for this blog, we’re giving you a couple summer refreshment ideas that are great for cooling off and keeping your teeth happy and healthy!

Alternatively Sweetened Homemade Lemonade


Everyone loves lemonade. The sound of ice clinking in a big glass pitcher, the distinctive summer sunshine color, and that classic sweet & sour taste all just say summer. But there’s danger lying in that glass – most lemonade is absolutely loaded down with sugar to counteract the tang of the lemon juice. And that sugar, combined with the citric acid from the lemons, spell disaster for your teeth, leading to cavities, tooth decay, and possibly a fortune in reparative dentistry.

But have no fear! You can still enjoy this timeless summer treat. Skip the store-bought stuff, where you have no control over the ingredients, and make your own – it only takes about a half an hour. Instead of cane sugar, try sweetening the lemonade with honey, coconut nectar, coconut sugar, or xylitol.

Milk

It turns out it’s not just good for cereal – milk has also been shown to contribute to the strength and health of your teeth. Milk is high in calcium, and while we all know calcium is great for bones, calcium also helps to protect your mouth from periodontal disease. You need Vitamin D to absorb all that calcium, though, so be sure to pair your milk with vitamin D rich foods! Or try the ultimate vitamin D producer – sunshine. Your body can produce almost a week’s worth of vitamin D with just a half hour of exposure to direct sunlight.

Water

Last but certainly not least, water is really the ultimate tooth-health elixir. Not only is it refreshing, vital to our survival, and thirst-quenching, but water actually does a lot to promote oral health. Water washes away bits of food debris and acid that accumulate in your mouth, reducing the corrosive agents acting on your teeth. What’s more, water helps to regulate the amount of saliva in your mouth. Saliva contains proteins and minerals that counteract tooth-eating acids, making it a number one protector for your teeth. If you want to mix things up a bit, try adding some sliced strawberries, lemons, mint, or cucumbers to your water pitcher to give it a refreshing essence!

Your Local Dover, DE Orthodontist

Although all of these delicious summer refreshments are good for your teeth, they certainly won’t move them anywhere! At Orthodontics On Silverlake, we are committed to providing you the very best in orthodontic care, including Invisalign, In-Ovation, and traditional metal braces. Dr. Steckel and our team of highly trained orthodontic specialists will work with you to craft a smile that is healthy, straight, and beautiful. To make an appointment, simply use our online formor give us a call at our Dover, DE
practice. And check back soon for the next entries on our blog – more fun stuff to come!

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
Question
: 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…?

How to Best Prevent White Spots

We all know that wearing braces can lead to the accumulation of plaque, and plaque is a major etiologic factor in the process that can lead to demineralization or “white spots.” Nobody wants to see white spots on their teeth after finishing their braces, especiallyDr. Steckel

Brushing is a great start!

How do we reduce the chances of white spots from happening? Well, if you are a patient at Orthodontics on Silverlake (OSL) you know we talk about brushing your teeth at every visit- whether you’re a fantastic brusher of if you need help to improve your brushing. So good brushing on a regular basis, what else? Avoid eating acidic foods and drinking acidic drinks like sodas and sports drinks- they can scar your teeth by reacting with the enamel of your teeth.

Using Flouride Can Help!

How about using fluoride-containing toothpastes, rinses, gels? When used regularly, these products keep the surface of your teeth protected against white spots to strengthen the enamel and saturating the saliva with protective fluoride ions.(1) So we recommend using these, as does your general dentist, when you get your teeth cleaned every 6 months.

Chewing Gum Sweetened By Xylitol


Chewing gum has a cleansing affect as well, and this is improved significantly when the gum is sweetened with Xylitol. Xylitol is a naturally-derived sweetener found in the Stevia plant. A study was done to evaluate the effectiveness of chewing-gum and the progression of dental decay. (2)The results showed a significant difference between children who chewed the gum sweetened with Xylitol vs. those that did not. No untoward side-effects from chewing the gum was noted.

I encourage patients who want to chew gum to chew gum with this natural sweetener! We haven’t seen any untoward effects as well, only happier patients at Orthodontics on Silverlake!

After Treatment

Once you get done with your orthodontic treatment, you want to be done! We want to help you with that by preventing white spots, tooth decay and any other common problem. By following these helpful tips, brushing regularly with fluoride toothpaste and chewing gum that is sweetened by Xylitol, you are significantly reducing your chance of continued treatment after braces. Our staff at Orthodontics on Silverlake is happy to answer any questions you may have so feel free to contact us as we are always delighted to speak with our patients!

(1) Hellwig, E., Lennon A.M. 2004 Systemic vs Topical Fluoride. Caries Research 38,pp 258-262
(2) Kandelman, D., Gagnon G. 1987 Clinical Results After 12 months…Consumption of Chewing Gum containing Xylitol, JDR 66:8 1407-1411