September 6th, 2018
Sports and energy drinks cause irreversible damage to the teeth of teens and young adults. A recent study published in General Dentistry states that energy and sports drinks contain so much acid that they begin destroying teeth after only five days of consistent use. According to the Academy of General Dentistry, an estimated 30 percent to 50 percent of U.S. teenagers consume energy drinks and as many as 62 percent consume at least one sports drink per day. The high acidity levels in the drinks erode tooth enamel and the result is irreversible damage.
Dr. Gerald Spencer and our team at Spencer Orthodontics encourage our patients to limit their intake of sports drinks. The enamel erosion ultimately makes teeth more susceptible to bacteria and that can lead to hypersensitivity, staining, and tooth decay. If you do consume an energy or sports drink, make sure to wait at least 45 minutes until you brush, as consumption of acidic drinks causes tooth enamel to soften, making teeth more vulnerable to wear from the abrasives found in toothpaste.
Tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease, five times more common than asthma. It’s also preventable with proper care. Dr. Gerald Spencer and our team can help identify early signs of erosion and offer solutions on how to prevent further damage and more serious problems from occurring.
May 25th, 2018
The team at Spencer Orthodontics loves to help adults achieve straighter teeth and a beautiful smile. If you are considering getting braces, here are some things you’ll need to know.
Can braces work for adults?
The good news is that braces work for just about anyone. There are several different types of braces, howver, and not all of them may work for you. The different kinds of orthodontic treatments include:
- Ceramic braces
- Metal braces
- Self-ligating brackets
- Lingual brackets (braces behind the teeth)
- Invisible braces
- Rubber bands for bite correction
- Headgear and other appliances
Schedule a consultation with Dr. Gerald Spencer, and we can help you determine the best option for your needs.
How do I get started?
We understand that braces can be a daunting prospect for many individuals. They may appear expensive and time-consuming; however, the process can be relatively pain-free! Here are the first steps you need to take on the road to straight teeth.
You will probably have a lot of questions and concerns before starting. Here are a few questions you should ask:
- What kind of braces do you recommend for my teeth?
- How long will the treatment take?
- How often will I need to come in for adjustments?
- What is the total cost of the treatment? Do you accept insurance? Will you require the full amount up front, or do you have payment plans?
During your first meeting with Dr. Gerald Spencer, we’ll take some X-rays and molds of your teeth to help you determine your best treatment plan. To ensure your treatment is as effective as possible, we may include preliminary dental work before your braces are placed.
After you’ve chosen a treatment plan and undergone any necessary prerequisite dental work, you’ll be on your way to a better smile! Call our Sedalia or Knob Noster, MO location so you can get started today!
May 18th, 2018
Dr. Gerald Spencer and our team recommend always wearing a protective mouthguard to participate in most physical sports. We especially encourage this if you have braces that can potentially cut your mouth or cause damage to your teeth. You have various choices to consider when you’re looking for a protective mouthguard.
One option is a full facial guard, which is often used for contact sports, such as football or hockey. This type offers full protection of the face from external impact. You should also consider an additional mouthguard to protect yourself from cuts inside your mouth, and avoid possible damage to your braces.
Boil-and-bites are another version of mouthguard that can be used for more physical sports. This type is used just the way its name implies: You warm the mouthguard in water to soften the material, then bite down gently once it’s at the correct temperature to form it into the shape of your mouth. These are fine to use temporarily, but they don’t always provide the best protection if they don’t fit properly.
Another option is to have Dr. Gerald Spencer make a custom mouthguard for you. The mouthguard will be designed with built-in layers to protect both your teeth and braces when it’s worn. Having Dr. Gerald Spencer create a custom-fitted mouthguard will ensure optimal protection and a comfortable fit whenever you participate in physical activities.
Protecting your teeth and braces is essential when you compete in sports. Accidents happen, and having a preventive mouthguard can potentially save you from oral pain and damaged braces. Our Sedalia or Knob Noster, MO office is happy to assist you in creating a custom-made mouthguard for any sports activities you want to pursue.
If you’ve experienced a mouth injury that has caused damage to your braces, please contact us immediately so we can fix the problem right away. Remember, prevention is key when it comes to your oral health!
May 11th, 2018
According to the American Association of Orthodontists, orthodontic treatment for children should start at around age seven. Dr. Gerald Spencer can evaluate your child’s orthodontic needs early on to see if orthodontic treatment is recommended for your son or daughter.
Below, we answer common questions parents may have about the benefits of early childhood orthodontics.
What does early orthodontic treatment mean?
Early orthodontic treatment usually begins when a child is eight or nine years old. Typically known as Phase One, the goal here is to correct bite problems such as an underbite, as well as guide the jaw’s growth pattern. This phase also helps make room in the mouth for teeth to grow properly, with the aim of preventing teeth crowding and extractions later on.
Does your child need early orthodontic treatment?
The characteristics and behavior below can help determine whether your little one needs early treatment.
- Early loss of baby teeth (before age five)
- Late loss of baby teeth (after age five or six)
- The child’s teeth do not meet properly or at all
- The child is a mouth breather
- Front teeth are crowded (you won’t see this until the child is about seven or eight)
- Protruding teeth, typically in the front
- Biting or chewing difficulties
- A speech impediment
- The jaw shifts when the child opens or closes the mouth
- The child is older than five years and still sucks a thumb
What are the benefits of seeking orthodontic treatment early?
Jaw bones do not harden until children reach their late teens. Because children’s bones are still pliable, corrective procedures such as braces are easier and often faster than they would be for adults.
Early treatment at our Sedalia or Knob Noster, MO office can enable your child to avoid lengthy procedures, extraction, and surgery in adulthood. Talk with Dr. Gerald Spencer today to see if your child should receive early orthodontic treatment.