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What is an Orthodontist?

orthodontist check up patientIs an Orthodontist Different from a Dentist?

Orthodontics is a specialty field in dentistry. An orthodontist must complete an additional three years of education after becoming a dentist. They gain clinical experience because they are required to complete a residency program. The responsibilities of an orthodontist include the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of dental and facial irregularities. The exact services provided are dependent on the individual orthodontist.

A general dentist often refers patients to an orthodontist due to their advanced education, training, expertise, and skill regarding specific dental issues. Orthodontists are regulated by the American Association of Orthodontists to ensure the practitioner is well educated in both bio mechanics and oral biology. To help prevent irregularities in the teeth and jaws, children should consult with an orthodontist when they are seven years old.

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jaw pains

What Causes (Abnormal) Jaw Pains

Pain in the jaw can occur for any number of reasons, some of which can be readily explained away and will dissipate in a couple of days. However, some jaw pains don’t dissipate and can actually worsen over time, causing you to desperately look for any solution that will get rid of the pain. Thankfully, this abnormal pain is typically easy to diagnose. Once diagnosed, there are several treatments available for you to choose from.

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overcome

How to Overcome Your Fear of Having Braces

LAST UPDATED: JUNE 28, 2018

Overcome Your Fear of Having Braces

Children and adults alike tend to have a fear of having braces, due to everything from how they appear to the pain they could cause. This fear is completely natural and is nothing to be ashamed of. However, if you need to have your teeth straightened, it’s important to know that there are ways for you to overcome your fear of having these orthodontic appliances placed on your teeth. The end result is a beautiful smile with straight teeth. Many people who delay getting braces due to their fear only become more afraid of doing so as time passes. If fear is the only reason that you are not going through with having your teeth straightened, it’s possible to overcome this feeling.

FAQ

How Can I Overcome Fear of Pain and Embarrassment With Braces?

There are many different types of fears a person could have when getting their teeth straightened. The two most common of these is a fear of pain and a fear of embarrassment. If you’re avoiding visiting an orthodontist because you think that your child will be in pain once the brackets have been glued on, you really shouldn’t worry. All types of orthodontic appliances will carry a small amount of pain with them, but the process is relatively painless. Since the brackets or the aligners with Invisalign make gradual movements to your teeth, the most pain you’ll experience during the process is a very dull pain that occurs for a short period of time after each adjustment. In almost all instances, some numbing ointment will ease any pain that occurs.

As for embarrassment, it’s important that you let your child know that they will have a great smile for the remainder of their lives if they simply wear the appliance for a couple of years. You should also tell them that there are plenty of children, many of which are in school with them, that wear braces during their younger years. It’s even possible for children to request Invisalign, which is comprised of invisible aligners that are practically impossible to see. If you’re an adult who wants to finally have their teeth straightened, Invisalign is also a great option for you, as are several other possible treatments that aren’t as visible as metal brackets. Even with metal brackets, the length of treatment is so short compared to having a healthy smile for the rest of your life.

How Can I Overcome Fear of Previous Bad Experiences With Braces?

One of the most crippling fears to overcome, especially for children, is a previous bad experience with an orthodontist. A bad experience can cause an actual trauma to develop when the child is in their formative years. The key to helping your child overcome this fear is by explaining to them that the experience they previously had won’t happen again. The orthodontists at McDermott Orthodontics have years of experience that has helped them understand how to keep each patient as safe as possible during treatment. However, it’s important that you don’t trivialize their fears and make it seem as though you’re ignoring them. If you do this, the fears that your child has could worsen.

How Can I Overcome Fear of a Lengthy Treatment Time with Braces?

What some children fear the most is that the treatment will last for a very long period of time. To a young child, even a year can seem like a decade. While there’s no way to make this time shorter, just tell your child that a year or two of wearing the appliance is exceedingly short when compared to a lifetime of a perfect smile. While this may not be enough to assuage your child’s fears entirely, it should help them to better understand the benefits of orthodontic appliances.

How Can I Overcome Fear of Not Knowing What Will Happen with Braces?

Fear of the unknown is very strong with children and adults alike. When a child has never experienced going to an orthodontic practice and having brackets or aligners molded to their teeth, it’s understandable why they would be afraid. The best way to help your child overcome this fear is by telling the orthodontist that your child is afraid of what the procedure entails. They will then explain to your child why these fears are unnecessary and should take them through every facet of the procedure. Once a child understands what treatment will be like, it’s very likely that their fears will dissipate.

How Can I Overcome Fear of Choking with Braces?

You or your child may have once heard stories of an orthodontic procedure going wrong where one of the tools fell down the throat of the patient and caused them to choke. It’s important to understand that such occurrences are extremely rare. The procedure is a very safe one and is performed by someone who knows exactly what they’re doing. No matter which fears you or your child is suffering from at the moment, it’s more than possible to overcome these fears. Once you’ve identified your fear, half the battle is over and you can now focus on getting rid of that fear once and for all so that you can have your teeth straightened as they should be.

Call McDermott Orthodontics to Schedule Your First Appointment

You can live a happier life by having your teeth straighten to correct your bad bite. Dr. Michael McDermott offers professional orthodontic evaluations at four locations in Minnesota that are located in these cities:

• Brainerd – 218-829-1630
• Delano – 763-972-4444
• Pequot Lakes – 218-568-5600
• Baxter – 218-829-1630

At McDermott Orthodontics, our orthodontist offers a variety of treatments that include:

• Retainers – to keep teeth in the proper positions
• Aligners – designed using Invisalign computer software
• Braces – ceramic, Damon System and metallic devices

Call McDermott Orthodontics today to schedule your free consultation to learn more about the AcceleDent Aura device.

How to Overcome Your Fear of Having Braces

MCDERMOTT ORTHODONTICS

13046 Falcon Drive
Baxter, MN 56425

Phone: 218-829-1630

Girl wearing red

What Does an Ideal Bite Look Like?

Woman smiling wearing black

Having teeth that are straight will not only allow you to have a perfect smile but can also help you keep your teeth and gums healthy. Even if you think that your teeth are straight when you look at them in the mirror, there’s still a possibility that there are small bite issues present in your mouth. Crooked or misaligned teeth could eventually cause such issues as the chipping and cracking of one or more of your teeth, both of which are issues that could become detrimental to your health if left untreated. If you’re wondering such questions as “what should a perfect teeth look like?” or “how should I know if I have the proper bite alignment?”, the following should answer all of these questions and more.

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retainers

How to Take Care of Your Retainers

retainers

How to Take Care of Your Retainers

Getting your braces off is an exciting time. While braces are the most efficient way to get the smile of your dreams, there are a lot of rules surrounding what you can and can’t do with your braces. The upkeep may be annoying, but the end result is well worth it. But if you’re given retainers after you get your brackets and wires off, you’re not quite out of the clear yet. There are a few care tips you need to know to maintain your new smile.

Top Retainer Care Tips from Your Orthodontist

Always listen to your orthodontist for tips relevant to your particular smile. However, here are some of the top tips you need to know to properly maintain your retainer.

Always Remove Your Retainer Before Eating

Remember when you had to be careful not to let food get trapped in your brackets and wires? The same idea applies to your new retainer. When food gets trapped in your retainer, it allows bacteria to grow. Because your retainer can cover more of your mouth, it is easy for food to get trapped. This trapped food can cause plaque to develop, hurting your oral health. Always take your retainer out before you eat. Put it away in its case or set it on top of a clean tissue or napkin. But be careful not to throw your retainer out with the rest of your trash!

Brush with Your Retainer Out

While you may think you can kill two birds with one stone by brushing your teeth and retainer in one go, your retainer actually covers too much of your mouth for this to be efficient. Your retainer may also be holding onto bacteria or food that you won’t be able to reach while it is still in. In the mornings, brush and floss before you put your retainer in. At night, take your retainer out before you brush and floss again. If you’re looking to save time, pop your retainer in a cup of water and baking soda to soak while brushing and flossing.

Avoid Harsh Chemicals or Boiling Your Retainer

Properly cleaning your retainer is crucial for keeping your mouth, teeth, and gums healthy. For the most part, using just toothpaste and water should be enough to clean your remove bacteria and leftover food. If you’re looking too deep clean your retainer, allow it to soak in a mixture of water and baking soda or vinegar. You could also potentially use a denture tablet. These are also great options for cleaning Invisalign retainers. However, you should never try to clean your retainer by using alcohol-based products or boiling it in hot water. Both can be damaging to the retainer’s plastic and may even cause it to change shape.

Clean Your Retainer Before You Store It

If you only need to wear your retainer for certain times of the day, you’ll want to ensure it is properly stored when you’re not wearing it. You should be given a special case for your retainer to set it in when it isn’t being used. Storing your retainer without properly cleaning it means it could grow bacteria and mold. If you put a bacteria or mold covered retainer in your mouth, you risk infection or getting sick. Always brush your retainer before you put it in your case. Let it soak in a cup of water and baking soda every so often to ensure you’re getting all the bacteria you may have missed.

Don’t Wear Your Retainer While Playing Sports

Retainers are expensive and annoying to replace if they’re lost or damaged. While you can’t avoid any action that may cause damage to your retainer, you should avoid wearing it in certain circumstances. If you play a sport where you may get hit in the mouth, you don’t want to risk damage to your retainer. Whether you have a traditional retainer or an Invisalign retainer, take it out while at practice or a game. Even sports you may not think of – like swimming – could be dangerous for your retainer. You don’t want to stop swim practice because your retainer is lost somewhere in the pool!

If you play contact sports, such as basketball, football or hockey, be sure to talk to your orthodontist about getting a special mouth guard. A properly-made mouth guard can replace your retainer during practices or games and protect your new smile from damage.

Improve Your Smile With Orthodontic Treatment at McDermott Orthodontics

If you live in Minnesota, then schedule an appointment with McDermott Orthodontics. We have several offices, including:

• Pequot Lakes – 218-568-5600
• Delano – 763-972-4444
• Brainerd – 218-829-1630
• Baxter – 218-829-1630

By undergoing orthodontic treatment, it is possible to have an attractive smile with beautiful white teeth. More importantly, you will have straighter teeth that will ensure that you can consume a healthy diet that includes fresh vegetables and fruits. Dr. Michael McDermott offers several types of orthodontic devices at his facilities, including:

• Ceramic braces – made with color-matching brackets
• Damon System braces – made with self-ligating brackets
• Traditional braces – made with metal brackets and wires
• Invisalign aligners – made from durable clear plastic

Call us today to schedule your free consultation at McDermott Orthodontics.

McDermott Orthodontist
708 Elm Ave. E.
Delano, MN
55328
TEL: 763-972-4444

What Happens Immediately after Removal of Braces?

Woman with a sunglass in the head

You’ve made it through your course of orthodontic treatment with braces. Whether it’s been two years or more, it is such a liberating feeling when those metal brackets and wires finally are removed. You can truly enjoy your beautiful smile with teeth that are properly aligned now that there is nothing to block the view of your pearly whites. You might think that your journey is over, but there is more to come before you can say that your orthodontic work is complete. Your orthodontist will be your guide, pointing you in the right direction as you think about what to do next.

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invisalign

How Can Invisalign Help Straighten Teeth and Boost Self-Confidence

LAST UPDATED: APRIL 24, 2018

How Can Invisalign Help Straighten Teeth and Boost Self-Confidence

Do you find yourself wondering if people are noticing your teeth when you talk? Have you found that you don’t show your teeth when you smile? Are you struggling to be happy with your smile when you do see your teeth in photos?

If you answered yes to any of the above, you have probably thought about working with an orthodontia provider, discovering how you can straighten your teeth, and deciding whether this is the right choice. Straightening teeth as an adult is an important decision – it will require a significant time and monetary investment, and for many adults, they may question whether it is worth it in the long-term, especially given the inconveniences that traditional metal braces can present. Fortunately, you have other options. One of these options, Invisalign, is a modern alternative to traditional orthodontics. If you’re wondering if this treatment option is right for you, read below for more information about how it can help you achieve the perfect smile you’ve been dreaming about!

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FAQ

Knowing What To Expect

One of the many benefits of Invisalign is that your orthodontic treatment is mapped in a computer software system. After your orthodontist takes impressions of your teeth, they are sent to the company for analysis. Soon after, the company will send your provider a treatment plan that includes the length of treatment, any attachments or filing that will need to be completed and when, and a clear model of what your teeth will look like when the treatment concludes. When you start your treatment, you will be able to meet with your provider and learn these results – you’ll know exactly what to expect.

The Low Maintenance Option

Unlike the traditional metal alternative, the trays used in this option are plastic molds designed to fit over your teeth and slowly adjust your smile over time. Upkeep and maintenance are extremely easy – you simply remove the trays when you want to eat or drink, brush your teeth, and place them back in when you are done. Traditional braces may require the insertion and removal of rubber bands, careful food removal of bits that get stuck, and restrictions on what you can eat. Since you can remove the plastic trays when needed, you can maintain your diet without worry!

Discrete Treatment

While metal orthodontia is increasingly used by adult patients, they are extremely noticeable. Even though getting your teeth straightened is a rewarding process, you probably don’t want your orthodontic wear to be the first thing others see in your smile! The trays used in this treatment offer patients the ability to straighten their teeth without others knowing that they are doing so. The plastic is clear and, as the name suggests, is nearly invisible – you’ll be able to complete your treatment without worrying if your smile is distracting others.

Comfort of Treatment

When patients choose a traditional orthodontic option, they must be prepared for the discomfort that they will experience throughout the treatment. In addition to soreness at each tightening, many patients have pain at other times due to the metal attachments on their teeth rubbing against the interior of their mouth. One of the many benefits of using a tray-based option is that discomfort is minimal. Although many patients report a feeling of “tightness” when they first switch to a new set of trays, it usually passes within just a couple of days, making this treatment one of the most pain-free orthodontic options.

Cost & Results

Although traditional options are the best for some patients, more and more patients are turning to tray-based treatment, even for very complicated cases. Patients that choose this alternative can expect a treatment lasting for as little as six months and up to two years – generally, a faster treatment plan than you’d expect with metal braces. Additionally, one of the many myths of this treatment choice is cost of Invisalign – that it is far more expensive than traditional options. Since treatment time is usually less, the price is typically similar to or less than metal options. The smile you can have will be just as beautiful and cost-effective as other orthodontic choices. Not only can you improve your smile, but you will find your confidence when smiling and talking vastly improved.

Ready To Take The First Step?

If you want to learn more about whether or not Invisalign is the right choice for you, your first step is to contact an orthodontist for an assessment of your case. Your orthodontist can provide you with information about all options for orthodontic treatment, review whether or not you will be a good candidate for a tray-based option, and provide a length and cost of treatment time. You’ll have the opportunity to ask additional questions that can vary from provider to provider: How often will I need to come in for a tray check? What will my payment options be? Who can I contact if I have a question in between appointments?

Contact Us to Schedule Your First Orthodontic Appointment

If you live in Minnesota, then you can have an expert examination from a knowledgeable orthodontist at McDermott Orthodontics. Dr. Michael McDermott offers appointments at several facilities, including:

• Baxter – 218-829-1630
• Brainerd – 218-829-1630
• Pequot Lakes – 218-568-5600
• Delano – 763-972-4444

Dr. McDermott has been caring for adults, teenagers and children for 15 years, making sure to provide customized orthodontic devices that include:

• Invisalign – clear plastic aligners for teenagers and adults
• Braces – ceramic, metal and Damon
• Retainers – worn after orthodontic treatment ends

For patients who want to reduce their treatment time, we recommend using the AcceleDent Aura system at home for 20 minutes each night. Schedule an appointment today.

How Can Invisalign Help Straighten Teeth and Boost Self-Confidence

McDermott Orthodontist
708 Elm Ave. E.
Delano, MN
55328
TEL: 763-972-4444

green toothbrush and toothpaste

How to [Floss] Your Permanent Retainer

Toothbrush, Toothpaste and Floss

Anyone who understands what wearing braces for years has experienced the pain that it brings and the hardship it poses when it comes to cleaning the teeth. Apart from the pain, there are other embarrassing moments that come up when you wear braces. For instance, you might find yourself smiling to your friends, and your brackets and wires are full of food. If you have experienced some of these embarrassing moments, you know that the journey with the braces to the point of removing them cannot be for anything less than a perfect smile. This investment has to be taken care of after braces have been removed using retainers, for the teeth to maintain their correct position. Retainers start their work at this phase. The most common retainers being used are permanent retainers. There are other temporary retainers, but what is a permanent retainer and what is it used for?

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invisalign

Are Traditional Braces Cheaper than Invisalign?

LAST UPDATED: MARCH 27, 2018

Are Traditional Braces Cheaper than Invisalign?

Cost is a major factor that must be weighed into your decision to seek orthodontic treatment. Today, you have many options available to help straighten your teeth and create a more beautiful smile. For most people, it will come down to two main options: Invisalign and the traditional wire braces with which most people are familiar. Understanding the differences between the two types of appliances is critical to deciding whether or not the cost should be a significant factor regarding which way you go with your treatment.

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Why Should I Feel Confident About Invisalign?

invisalign

LAST UPDATED: NOVEMBER 28, 2017

Creating Confidence With Invisalign

Invisalign helps you create a confident smile that is completely different from the smile you have today. You may schedule a complimentary consultation with your orthodontist who will guide you about the process for using Invisalign.

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