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Rubber Bands and Your Smile

December 23, 2015

Many people don’t realize the importance of the small rubber bands that work to straighten your smile throughout treatment. Though they are small, both ligatures and inter-arch elastics are key players in aligning your jaw and straightening teeth. Ligatures are the small elastics that are placed around each bracket and hold your arch wire in place. You can choose to make these ligatures almost any color and they work to push or pull teeth in a certain direction.

Rubber bands (inter-arch elastics) are somewhat larger and work to align your jaw by applying pressure to reduce an under or overbite. While your ligatures work to move teeth along your gum line, rubber bands pull your jaw forward or backward to align your jaw for a more comfortable bite. Brackets with hooks are used on the side of your mouth so you can hook your rubber bands to correct any malocclusion that exceeds the acceptable measurement.

Wearing your rubber bands as advised by your orthodontist is extremely important for keeping your treatment on schedule. Though they may cause discomfort initially, wearing them as often as advised will only make them more comfortable. If you have any questions about your orthodontic appliances or treatment, simply ask at your next appointment or give us a call to learn more.

Orthognathic Surgery as an Option for Jaw Realignment

December 2, 2015

A large aspect of orthodontic treatment is aligning and positioning your jaw for better functionality and aesthetics. In some cases traditional braces are unable to effectively treat misaligned jaws, in which case orthognathic surgery may be the best option. Surgery can improve the aesthetics of your jawline and also increase your overall jaw function to  decrease pain.

The treatment process begins by establishing the benefits of surgical correction through computerized imaging. Surgery, and the following treatment, will be determined prior to the day of your surgery. Once your jaw is realigned, small screws and titanium plates are used to stabilize and strengthen your jaw. Orthognathic surgery has come a long way and thanks to the technological advancements most patients are able to return to their normal activities fairly quickly.

A healthy smile includes straight teeth and an aligned jaw.  At Ortega Orthodontics, we’re here to ensure that your teeth and jaw are just where they should be. By repositioning your jaw, you’ll find that your bite fits more comfortably, which will increase the functionality of your teeth and improve the overall look of your smile. As your Jacksonville orthodontist, we will be able to determine the best course of treatment to help you achieve your perfect smile. Schedule your appointment today!

Your Smile is No DIY

November 4, 2015

Over the years we have seen trends such as bell-bottom pants, perms, platform shoes, and more that should remain in the pages of history books rather than on the streets. But, a recent online trend is alerting more than fashionistas as people are attempting to straighten their teeth using rubber bands, paper clips, and elastic floss without the supervision of a dentist or orthodontist. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) is particularly concerned with this practice and the harmful effects it can have to people’s bodies and wallets.

One of the “quick fix” practices that the AAO is warning against is rubber bands promoted to close gaps in teeth. Not only can this cause extreme damage to teeth and oral health, it can result in thousands of dollars worth of dental repairs. A Tennessee orthodontist reports a patient who attempted to use rubber bands to close a gap in his teeth and forgot about the elastic until it was submerged under his gum tissue. This resulted in $50,000 worth of dental work to repair the loss of his two front teeth.

As your Jacksonville orthodontist, we want you to leave the teeth straightening to us. Orthodontists are highly qualified individuals with years of specialized training and the vast knowledge and experience to straighten your teeth safely and healthily. If you are ready to get to work on your beautiful smile, don’t try it at home, give us a call to schedule your appointment today.

Go Incognito

October 7, 2015

If you’re looking for straighter teeth without compromising your current smile, it may be time to go Incognito. Lingual Braces, or Incognito Braces, allow you to undergo your orthodontic treatment without others having any idea. Since Lingual braces are placed on the inside/back of your teeth, you can be on your way to a straighter smile and still show off your pearly whites in the process.

Incognito braces are a great option for adults who are looking for discreet treatment, or patients who are concerned about the appearance of traditional braces. No matter your reason for wanting a more confident smile – graduation, your wedding day, or a new job – Incognito braces achieve the same great result as traditional braces and are just as comfortable to wear. It may seem odd to have braces on the inside of your teeth rather than the outside, but you’ll spend time adjusting to the new hardware in your mouth and revamping your oral hygiene routine just as our traditional braces patients.

There’s no reason the cosmetics of orthodontic treatment should hold you back from achieving the smile you’ve always wanted. If you concerned with others seeing a mouth full of hardware before they see you, then Incognito braces are your perfect treatment option. Schedule your appointment today, so we can send your on your way to a healthier and more confident smile.

Your Orthodontic ABC’s

September 9, 2015

With the new school year underway, what better time to learn your orthodontic ABC’s? As your Jacksonville orthodontist, we want to make sure you know everything you need to be prepared for your orthodontic treatment, so study up!

A is for Age

Early orthodontic treatment can have a significant impact on establishing the proper foundation to assist with growth and development. By age seven, the permanent teeth begin to surface and we can check for problems related to jaw growth, cross bites, and the eruption of adult teeth. With our no-charge early examinations, we can establish the best time to start orthodontic treatment for your child. But, if you think that braces are just for the kids, think again! Healthy teeth can be moved at any age, it’s never too late to tweak your smile.

B is for Braces

Traditional braces consist of metal wires and brackets and are so popular because of their affordability and effectiveness. But did you realize the amount of options available for achieving your perfect smile? Here at Ortega Orthodontics we offer clear braces, Invisalign, Lingual braces, orthognathic surgery, and retention options so that we can find the treatment plan that is just right for you.

C is for Cost

Orthodontics is one of the best investments you can make in the overall dental, medical, and psychological well being of children and adults. We believe that financial considerations should not be holding you back from a more confident you, which is why we’re happy to offer flexible payment options for our patients.
If you need further review of your orthodontic ABC’s, feel free to give us a call or schedule an appointment. And, to all of our patients back to school, we hope you have a great year!

Three Tips for Cleaner Braces

July 1, 2015

Braces certainly take some getting used to. From the feeling in your mouth to you new dietary restrictions there’s a lot to take in. Brushing your teeth and keeping your braces clean is admittedly the hardest part of going through an orthodontic treatment. You’ll be spending a lot of extra time in the bathroom brushing and flossing, but with these tips you should be able to get sparking clean teeth and braces without dreading your twice daily routine.

  • Get a Waterpik – Waterpiks are the best first step now that you’ve got braces. They can help you get large food particles out of your teeth before you take a brush to them.
  • Use your proxabrushes – Proxabrushes are your new best friend. They’re the most effective way to clean behind your braces, and can save you time by easily taking care of those hard to reach places.
  • Invest in floss threaders – Floss threaders are your other new best friends. Flossing is by far the most tedious activity you’ll encounter with braces. You can’t just stop flossing for a year or two. Threaders make this step bearable and a lot simpler.

While having braces and keeping them clean is a commitment, it’s one you’ll be happy you made when your teeth are straight, you jaw is aligned and you don’t have any dental scarring or cavities when you get them taken off. If you have any questions about how you can keep your braces clean and teeth healthy while undergoing orthodontic treatment, call Ortega Orthodontics today.




Smile – It’s Tax Day!

April 15, 2015

As you likely already know, today is April 15th – tax day. For many, tax time is an opportunity to formulate a game plan for financial health for the next year. Have you considered using a tax refund to help fund your oral health? The team at Ortega Orthodontics can help! Whether you are counting on a tax refund check or not, many families here in Jacksonville, Florida have contemplated orthodontic treatment for themselves or a member of their family and now is the perfect time to take action.

Orthodontic treatment can take a variety of forms – including traditional braces, clear (ceramic) brackets, Invisalign, and more. Treatment lengths and options vary based upon the unique needs and goals of the patient, and the doctors here at Ortega are available to help assess your particular needs and draw up a plan tailor-made for you!

While orthodontic treatment is an investment, the dividends include a straighter smile, improved oral health, and less stress on your bite. So don’t delay and make an appointment for a consultation today. By tax time next year, you could be well on your way to experiencing the most rewarding return of all– a whole new smile!

Be Confident in Your Adult Treatment!

March 9, 2015

Have you considered how your life would change with orthodontic treatment? You might not be a teenager anymore and that’s ok! As your Jacksonville orthodontist we can move your healthy teeth at any age. There are several treatment options that you can choose from depending on the specific needs of your oral health.

While adolescence is a popular time for treatment because it is a time of growth, it is not the only window for treatment. As an adult, you can be confident in your decision to improve your smile once and for all! There are several different treatment options to choose from depending on the needs of your teeth and bite, several much less noticeable than traditional braces. These treatments include Invisalign, lingual braces, and ceramic braces.

At Ortega Orthodontics we enjoy treating smiles of all ages. When you’re ready to feel great about your smile, look no further than your Jacksonville orthodontist. We look forward to giving you something to truly smile about!

When Should Your Child Have an Orthodontic Evaluation?

December 17, 2014

Did you know that the American Association of Orthodontists recommend for your child to see an orthodontist by the time they reach the age of seven? While that might come as a surprise to you, don’t be alarmed as these early evaluations don’t typically result in early treatment.

Early evaluations are performed in order to establish a solid foundation for healthy growth and development. By the age of seven, your child’s permanent teeth have likely erupted and developmental issues can be identified. With an early evaluation, we are able to determine a likely timeline of development and treatment options. Jawbone growth, bite, and facial development are just some areas Dr. Holland and Schellhase will focus on during these early exams.

There are never any fees for an early exam here at your Jacksonville orthodontist. If you are curious about whether your young child would benefit from an early orthodontic evaluation, please contact our office today to schedule your initial visit.

Retention, Retention, Retention!

September 24, 2014

As your resource for orthodontic treatment in the Jacksonville area, we are happy to help our patients achieve the brilliant smiles they’ve always dreamt of. While braces are capable of straightening your teeth, the entire orthodontic treatment process is not complete without the retention phase.

At Ortega Orthodontics the beginning phase of orthodontic treatment typically requires years of wearing braces. Though this stage is essential to achieving a straight and healthy smile, it is not the last step of the process. Following the initial phase of braces, the retention phase will begin. During the retention phase patients are required to take on responsibility for wearing his or her retainer daily. The retention phase usually lasts approximately one year and retainers must be worn at least 22 hours a day. In order to achieve a long lasting straight smile, it is imperative to wear your retainer for as long as your doctor recommends.

As your resource for healthy, straight teeth in Jacksonville, Florida we look forward to helping you realize the beautiful, radiant smile you deserve. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment.