PALOS HILLS ORTHODONTIST
10059 S. ROBERTS RD. SUITE 2A
PALOS HILLS, IL 60465

What You Should Know About Sensitive Teeth and Braces | Orthodontist Near Me

Palos Hills IL Orthodontist
Palos Hills IL Orthodontist

There are many conditions can cause teeth to become sensitive. Receding gums, tooth decay, exposed roots, and thinning tooth enamel are just a few. All these factors can cause teeth to become extremely sensitive to temperature changes, or sweet and acidic flavors.

Even worse, If you have sensitive teeth and are undergoing orthodontic treatment, you are at risk of developing even sensitivity.

One in eight people with braces will experience some tooth sensitivity. The level of discomfort varies from patient to patient, and each level of discomfort is due to the pressure that is placed on the teeth by braces. This sensitivity is not permanent and will usually only last a few days. 

Factors Impacting Sensitivity

What causes teeth to become sensitive? The most common reason is over brushing your teeth.  You can brush away your gum line exposing the sensitive root area by brushing your teeth too aggressively.

Teeth will become extremely sensitive if the gum line recedes, as it exposes porous root surfaces. Brush your teeth in soft and even circles (especially if you use a battery-powered brush) to protect your gums and avoid pain and discomfort.

Another reason for sensitive teeth resulting from braces is not brushing regularly or taking care of your oral hygiene properly. When you are not practicing correct dental hygiene, plaque and buildup are likely to form on your teeth, weakening the teeth and raising the chance for sensitivity.

Patients with braces are prone to plaque and buildup because debris gets trapped in between the teeth and braces. In the long run this will make it more likely to develop sensitive teeth.

Steps To Be Taken

There are several things you can do to help stop pain and sensitivity. Start with a good dental hygiene routine by brushing with a soft toothbrush in a small up and down motion while making little circles. Add flossing to your daily routine. Last, combine all this with an over-the-counter anti-sensitivity toothpaste.

If your sensitivity is caused by scheduled orthodontic adjustments, you can take over the counter pain relievers like ibuprofen.

If these things do not provide you relief, our dentist can offer other treatment options. Contact our orthodontist office in Palos Hills, IL today to schedule a consultation and we will be glad to discuss what’s right for you.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

6 Quick Facts About Braces | Palos Hills Orthodontist

Orthodontist in 60465
Orthodontist in 60465

Since the beginning of recorded history, people have yearned for straighter teeth. Over the centuries, dental care has evolved exponentially. Traditional braces have become more comfortable and efficient than ever before.

Follow along for six things you might not know about braces:

  1. The Ancient Egyptians Wanted Straighter Teeth Too

Some Egyptian mummies have been found by archaeologists with cords wound through their teeth, possibly in order to straighten them. What were these ancient braces made from? Animal intestines.

You will be thrilled to know that our orthodontist uses far more modern and sanitary materials.

  1. Many People Have Them

Did you know that an estimated 4 million people in the US are currently wearing some form of braces or aligners to straighten their teeth? If braces are recommended to straighten your teeth, you can feel confident knowing that you are definitely not alone.

  1. Getting Braces is Like Rocket Science

Nitinol 60 is the flexible material used in braces. Believe it or not, NASA scientists use this material on the International Space Station. The heat from your mouth makes nitinol return to its original shape, gently guiding your teeth to where they need to be. 

  1. Don’t Forget Your Retainer

An estimated 25 percent of those who wear braces don’t wear their retainer. Don’t be one of the people that ends up needing a second set of braces. 

  1. Braces Are Older Than You Think 

Braces have been around since the year 1728, when Pierre Fauchard developed them by using flat metal brackets and connected them to the teeth using thread. That means braces are 48 years older than the United States of America.

  1. Myths About Braces Debunked 

Is there a greater chance of getting struck by lightning when wearing braces? The answer is a huge no.

Also, there is no way your braces will interfere with any radio signals.

As time and technology have progressed, braces have become more efficient and far more comfortable than ever before. If you are ready for that perfect smile, our experienced orthodontic team is ready to work with you to achieve the results you are looking for.

If you have any questions about braces, contact our orthodontics office in Palos Hills today and schedule an orthodontic consultation.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

Why You Should Avoid DIY and Mail-Order Braces | Orthodontist 60465

Orthodontist 60465
Orthodontist 60465

For some, the idea of DIY braces and mail-order aligners is attractive because they cost less than dentist-guided orthodontics. However, some solutions can damage both your teeth and your bank account. Before taking matters into your own hands, schedule an appointment with our orthodontic office to discuss your options.

What are DIY Braces?

The internet is filled with videos and “tutorials” on alternatives to traditional braces. Small rubber bands are the most common DIY orthodontics advice. Please understand this does not work and is, in fact, dangerous. It does not provide you with a safe, long-lasting solution for misaligned teeth. 

Why are Rubber Band Braces Dangerous?

Moving your teeth without professional guidance can cause a blockage of blood supply to teeth, resulting in discolored and infected gums, root damage, and even tooth loss. Obviously, missing teeth, bleeding gums, and serious infections are not the results you want to see from braces, but these risks are inherent in DIY orthodontics. 

Another danger is that your teeth can shift back if you move them too quickly. The amount of damage you can do to your teeth will require further professional help, likely in the form of costly restoration.

The Risks of Mail-Order Aligners

The American Dental Association (ADA) and the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) have issued consumer warnings against mail-order braces. Without a proper diagnosis and direct supervision by a dentist in an office, you risk tooth loss, infection, and permanent bite problems using at-home aligners. Many patients have underlying problems such as tooth decay, gum infections, or abscessed teeth that can be aggravated by orthodontic treatment.

Furthermore, some conditions call for treatment with traditional braces instead of aligners. A salesperson in an office can’t make that call; only an in-person examination by an orthodontist can.

The Case for In-Office Treatment with an Orthodontist

The AAO explicitly states that moving teeth is a healthcare procedure that requires the professional experience of an orthodontist. It must be done very gradually so teeth and gums will not be damaged.

Our office is staffed with a knowledgeable, experienced orthodontic team devoted to improving smiles in a proper, hands-on manner. We pride ourselves on working with each patient in a safe, professional environment.

DIY braces pose a significant danger, especially to children and young adults who, surveys show, take healthcare advice they find on the internet seriously. However, the pain, irreparable damage, and costly fixes are not worth it. When it comes to dental care, leave it to the professionals.

 For more information about braces or to schedule an appointment, please contact our orthodontic office in Palos Hills, IL.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

How to Brush Your Teeth When You Have Braces | 60465 Dentist

Orthodontist in Palos Hills
Orthodontist in Palos Hills

If you or your child is getting braces, you know how important it is to step up your oral hygiene game. Of course, this can be tricky, especially for kids, so we have compiled some of the best tips to make it easier.

Practice Patience

Allow extra time to brush and floss. Taking extra care with oral hygiene is important to avoid tooth decay and gum inflammation. Adopt the mindset that these normal routines will just take longer for a while. For children, consider adding a reward system for using proper oral care techniques.   

Begin Your Routine with Rinsing

Before you begin brushing, vigorously rinse your mouth with water. This will help loosen food and debris stuck between teeth, in bands and brackets, and in other nooks and crannies. 

Brush in Stages

Use the standard brushing technique but divide it into two stages: Above brackets and below. Angle your brush head at 45 degrees and brush gently at the gumline. After that, move from the gums to the edge of the brackets, making certain to reach all the way around each bracket. Repeat the process for the other half of the teeth, angling the brush from the bracket edges toward your lips. While it might be more difficult to thoroughly brush the interior surfaces (facing the tongue), take extra time with this step. Finally, focus on chewing surfaces.

Master Flossing with Braces

Flossing can be a bit trickier with traditional braces, since the arch wires bisect the teeth. Many patients find that using a floss threader makes this process easier. In a short time, you will get used to placing the pointed threader end between both “halves” of the teeth. Always angle floss up into the gumline to thoroughly remove debris.  

 Swish Again

Follow your brushing and flossing with a second rinse of water or mouthwash. This step will help sweep away any remaining food particles. Mouthwash will make your mouth feel fresher and cleaner. Children can use water or special alcohol-free rinses. Our orthodontist can recommend specific rinses.

The rewards of orthodontics include a more attractive smile and better functioning teeth. Ensuring proper oral hygiene during treatment is worth the extra effort. Contact our orthodontic office in Palos Hills, IL to discuss any questions or concerns about oral care, or to schedule your next visit. In the meantime, keep up your good hygiene habits.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

Frequently Asked Questions About Orthodontics | Orthodontist in Palos Hills

Orthodontist In Palos Hills

Orthodontist In Palos Hills

Frequently Asked Questions About Orthodontics | Orthodontist In Palos Hills

Braces can be life-changing for people who would benefit from a straighter smile. Here are answers to your most common questions about orthodontics. 

What are the benefits of orthodontics?

Straight teeth can improve the way you bite, chew, and even speak. Properly aligned teeth are easier to keep clean. They collect less plaque and promote healthier gums. A straight smile can also contribute to self-confidence at almost every age. 

When should I consider braces?

Primary reasons for getting braces include teeth crowding and spacing issues, an overbite, underbite, or crossbite, and jaw misalignment.

Will braces hurt?

Although wearing braces usually doesn’t hurt, you may feel slight discomfort the first few days after getting them or immediately after periodic adjustments. Your teeth are simply adjusting to the pressure needed to move them into an optimal position. 

Can adults benefit from orthodontics?

Yes. Adults account for one in four new orthodontic cases, according to the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO). Teeth can be treated at any age to create a healthy, straight smile. Many orthodontic problems can be corrected as easily for adults as for children.

What is the best age to visit the orthodontist?

The AAO recommends that children get an initial evaluation at age seven. If you bring your child to our orthodontic practice, our doctor will monitor their bite and begin treatment later if it’s needed. 

Do I need to brush my teeth more often when I get braces? 

When you have braces, it is important to brush your teeth after every meal, if possible, to prevent food from getting stuck between teeth or in the hardware. It is also vital to floss frequently. Rinse vigorously with water when you’re on the go and can’t brush.  

How long does orthodontic treatment take?

It depends on the individual. Teeth must be moved very slowly to avoid damaging the roots. However, you can keep the process on track by following our doctor’s instructions. If you are required to wear rubber bands, for example, make sure to wear them as directed.

How often should I visit my general dentist while I have braces?

When you are wearing traditional braces, it is easier for food to get stuck in places where your toothbrush can’t reach; so even with good oral hygiene at home, it is important to keep up with general dentist appointments as directed. 

Will having braces interfere with playing sports or a musical instrument?

Not at all. Braces will not stop you or your child from participating in either activity. However, if you are playing a contact or ball sport, talk to our orthodontist to get fitted for a [protective mouthguard.

If you have more questions about traditional braces, clear aligners, or other forms of orthodontic care, please give our Orthodontist in Palos Hills office a call. 

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

Palos Hills Dentist | 6 Things You Never Knew About Braces

Oak Lawn orthodontist

The desire for straighter teeth goes back thousands of years. We’ve come a long way in improving our smiles. Braces have evolved over time to become more comfortable and efficient. Here are six things you probably never knew about braces.

  1. Ancient Egyptians May Have Wanted Straighter Teeth

Archaeologists have found mummies with cords wound around their teeth, likely to straighten them. What were these ancient braces made from? Animal intestines. Thankfully, our orthodontist has more modern materials to work with!

  1. You’re Not Alone

An estimated 4 million people in the US currently are wearing braces or another device to correct their teeth. That’s a little more than the number of people living in Los Angeles.

  1. Getting Braces is a Little Like Rocket Science

NASA scientists were looking for a flexible material for solar panels and turned to a metal called nitinol 60. As nitinol heats up, it reverts to its original shape. Today, nitinol is used in braces. The heat from your mouth makes the metal return to its original shape, helping guide your teeth to where they should be.

  1. Wear Your Retainer!

Did you know that an estimated 25% of braces wearers neglect to wear their retainer? Many end up needing a second set of braces. Don’t be one of the 25%. Wear your retainer for lasting results and a perfect smile.

  1. Braces Are Older Than America

If you consider 1776 to be the birth year of America, braces have another 48 years on the United States. The first modern braces were developed in 1728 by Pierre Fauchard. He used flat metal brackets and connected the teeth using thread.

  1. Busting Braces Myths

You don’t have a greater chance of being struck by lightning when wearing braces. Your braces also can’t interfere with any radio signals. Take some comfort in knowing not everything you’ve heard about braces holds true.

Though braces have been around for hundreds of years, today’s braces are more efficient and comfortable than in the past. Our experienced orthodontic team will help you get the results you desire. If you are ready for your perfect smile, set up a consultation with us today.

For more information about braces or to schedule your orthodontic consultation, please contact our Palos Hills orthodontic office.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
Url: http://www.paloshillsortho.com/
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

Orthodontics in Palos Hills, IL | Healthy Teeth for Sick Kids

Palos Hills IL Orthodontist

Along with cooler weather and the end of year school break, winter brings the return of cold and flu season. When you are focused on a child with a fever, cough, or vomiting, it can be easy to question getting them out of the sickbed to brush their teeth. However, keeping mouths clean and teeth healthy can be even more important during illness. Here are some useful tips for protecting your child’s oral health when they’re sick.

Brush and floss

Brushing and flossing helps prevent build-up of harmful germs and bacteria in your child’s mouth. This helps keep their immune system focused on fighting the cold or flu virus. If your child’s illness includes vomiting, their teeth are exposed to acids that can weaken teeth. Help them rinse thoroughly and brush their teeth to avoid damage.

Hydrate

When your child is sick, they need plenty of water to stay hydrated, soothe a sore throat, and keep sinuses moist. In addition, dry mouth can occur during illness and increase risk of tooth decay. Drinking water helps combat dry mouth and congestion.

Watch out for sugars

Cough drops and cough syrups can contain high amounts of sugar to improve the medicine flavor. However, this can leave sugary residue on the teeth. Look for sugar-free options when possible and rinse well after any medicine with sugar.

Disinfect dental appliances

If your child has a dental appliance, such as a retainer, athletic mouth guard, or night guard, be sure it is cleaned thoroughly between uses. Contact our office for information on the type of cleanser that is appropriate for your child’s device.

Follow-up

When your child is well again, replace their toothbrush. Even a clean toothbrush may retain some bacteria or germs following use. To help protect your child from reinfection, discard the used toothbrush in favor of a new one.

For more tips on keeping teeth healthy through an illness, contact our office.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
Url: http://www.paloshillsortho.com/
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

Palos Hills Orthodontist | The Advantages of Invisalign®

Invisalign® is offered by many orthodontic offices across the country, and is an alternative to traditional metal braces. While both do the job of straightening your teeth, Invisalign® offers a number of advantages in terms of comfort and aesthetics. 

Invisalign® was introduced to the orthodontic market in the year 2000. Rather than having metal brackets affixed to the teeth, Invisalign® treatment is accomplished with the use of a series of clear, BPA-free plastic aligners designed to subtly and gradually move your teeth. They are made from three-dimensional scans of your mouth to achieve a perfect fit. Each set of aligners is numbered and is worn for a period of time before graduating to the next set. Invisalign® was designed to provide professional, doctor supervised orthodontic care without interrupting your life. 

The timeframe needed for effective Invisalign® treatment will vary substantially from patient to patient. 

How Does Invisalign Work?

Invisalign® is not just one aligner. Rather, it is a series of them designed to shift the teeth a little more into alignment with each successive aligner. Invisalign trays are similar to retainers in that they are removable so you can eat and drink comfortably. With braces, you have to avoid certain foods to avoid damage to the delicate brackets and wires.

What Are the Advantages of Invisalign®?

  • Subtlety – Invisalign® is almost indetectable. Many patients choose Invisalign for aesthetic reasons. 
  • Maintenance – Metal braces require thorough cleaning every day to avoid becoming plaque breeding grounds. Aligners are easy to keep clean. 
  • Foods and eating – Since Invisalign® trays are removable, you don’t have dietary limitations, as you would with traditional braces. 
  • Less prone to injury – Invisalign® trays fit comfortably against your teeth and gums, preventing the irritation that traditional braces can sometimes cause. 

Both braces and Invisalign® are effective at shifting your teeth into proper alignment. Invisalign® is a more discreet system involving less hassle and more flexibility. To learn if you’re a candidate for clear aligner orthodontic treatment, contact us today

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
Url: http://www.paloshillsortho.com/
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

Orthodontist in Palos Hills | Mouthguards For Braces

Braces don’t have to keep you from living an active lifestyle. Many people who are undergoing orthodontic treatment regularly participate in intramural and school sports. Some treatment options like Invisalign can be safely worn through physical activity. Metal braces, however, present a unique challenge. Fortunately, there are mouthguards designed to be worn over your braces to protect them and allow you to participate.

What Are Orthodontic Mouthguards?

Orthodontic mouthguards can help protect your braces and teeth. They are made from a high-strength silicone and are custom-fitted for the shape of your mouth. They also take your brackets and wires into account for a comfortable fit. Orthodontic mouthguards feature rubber flanges that fit under your lips to keep them in place. This way, they’re not too tight against your gums and won’t catch on your brackets.

Things To Consider

Talk with your child’s coach to find out the specifics of team and league insurance. Some sports and teams require double mouthguards: one for the upper teeth and one for the lower teeth.

When you’re getting fitted for your custom mouthguard, we’ll ensure the mouthguard fits properly to maximize your comfort and protection.

Your mouthguard will have to be adjusted over time. Most orthodontic guards are easily adjusted by your orthodontist to accommodate the shifting in your teeth. Having us handle both your guard and your braces helps to keep everything working together.

Modern mouthguards can be made to fit over braces, ensuring that those who wear them can continue to participate in the sports they love. Our team can keep you from worrying about your braces getting damaged and your treatment being disrupted. To find out more about orthodontic mouthguards and how they can work for you, contact Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills today.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
Url: http://www.paloshillsortho.com/
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

Orthodontist Near Me | Is Headgear Necessary?

Headgear is used to change the way teeth come together, and in younger patients, to guide the growth of the jaw.

What Are The Different Types of Headgear?

Orthodontic headgear generally combines a series of straps and elastic bands on the outside of the head that attach to braces inside the mouth. Some headgear may incorporate head caps for anchorage or hook directly onto the teeth.

Headgear is often used for one of the following reasons:

  • Cervical pull – Cervical pulls are used to correct a bad bite called an overjet, also known as a malocclusion. This occurs when the top teeth jut out over the bottom teeth. Cervical pulls use straps attached to braces to guide the upper jaw into proper alignment.
  • High pull – High pulls can also be used to correct overbites, but are mainly used to correct open bites. Open bites are when there is no contact between the upper and lower teeth when the mouth is closed.
  • Reverse pull – Reverse pulls are used to correct underbites, when the lower teeth jut past the top teeth. It often uses rubber bands attached to braces on the top teeth.

When Is Headgear Necessary?

While braces are typically used to shift teeth into proper alignment, headgear deals more directly with the alignment of the upper and lower jaws which can help enhance tooth function and facial aesthetics.

Due to innovations in orthodontics, headgear is not as commonly prescribed as it once was. If needed, headgear may be recommended for 12 to 14 hours daily over the course of 1 to 2 years.

If you have questions about orthodontic headgear, or think you may benefit from this treatment, contact us today at Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
Url: http://www.paloshillsortho.com/
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465