How Often Do I Need to Wear My Invisalign?

How often do I need to wear my Invisalign? Adjust my expander? Wear rubber bands, retainers, or mouthguards? These questions and more are some of our most asked questions during treatment. The short answer is that if you wear these appliances and are diligent with your oral health, your treatment will progress easier. Your compliance and the length of time you wear braces or have aligners are directly related. Keep reading to learn more about the Importance of Compliance During Orthodontic Treatment from Dr. Laurie McNamara McClatchey and Dr. James A. McNamara at McNamara Orthodontics.

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How Pregnancy Affects Your Oral Health

Pregnancy is an exciting time for many women as they prepare to welcome a new addition to their family. However, it’s essential to remember that pregnancy can also affect your oral health, leading to issues such as gum disease and tooth decay. To gain a deeper understanding of how pregnancy impacts your oral health, continue reading and discover valuable insights from Dr. Laurie McNamara McClatchey and Dr. James A. McNamara at McNamara Orthodontics.

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Can Orthodontics Fix a Speech Impediment?

If you’re a reader of our blog, you know that orthodontic treatment benefits our patients in many ways that may not be immediately obvious. Most people who seek orthodontic treatment focus on a crooked bite, crowded teeth, or a smile they are generally unhappy with. While we certainly love giving every one of our patients a smile they can’t wait to show off, there are other benefits to treating any issues with the bite.

One of those benefits is helping to solve issues a patient may have with their speech. Speech impairment is relatively common among children, and we see it frequently. Luckily, some simple orthodontic treatments can alter the anatomy and positioning of the tongue within the mouth, and these simple tweaks can make speech much easier and improve impaired speech. To learn more about how orthodontics can effectively address speech impediments, keep reading and find out how Dr. Laurie McNamara McClatchey and Dr. James A. McNamara at McNamara Orthodontics can help.

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How Your Orthodontist Can Improve Your Respiratory Health

Orthodontics is often thought of as a way to improve the alignment and appearance of your teeth, but did you know that it can also benefit your respiratory health? Your orthodontist is specially trained to identify and treat a range of issues beyond just your teeth, including respiratory disorders like asthma and sleep apnea. In this post, Dr. Laurie McNamara McClatchey and Dr. James A. McNamara at McNamara Orthodontics provide valuable insights on how orthodontics fits into the treatment of respiratory disorders.

Asthma is a common condition that affects millions of people worldwide. It can have negative effects on your oral health, including decreased saliva production and an increased risk of tooth decay and cavities. Your orthodontist can help by adjusting your treatment plan to accommodate your asthma symptoms. By doing so, they can ensure that your orthodontic treatment doesn’t exacerbate your respiratory issues.

Sleep apnea is another disorder that can benefit from orthodontic treatment. In fact, orthodontists are often the first to identify signs of sleep apnea in patients during a routine exam. If you are diagnosed with sleep apnea, your orthodontist can work with other specialists to create a treatment plan that addresses your breathing issues.

In addition to treating respiratory disorders, orthodontic treatment can also improve your overall facial appearance and breathing. By adjusting the position of your teeth and jaw, your orthodontist can create a more balanced facial profile that improves your breathing and speech.

Orthodontics is a valuable tool for addressing a wide range of issues beyond just the appearance of your teeth. If you suffer from asthma, sleep apnea, or other respiratory issues, consider speaking with your orthodontist to see how they can help improve your breathing and overall health.

The Anatomy of Orthodontics

For those of us who haven’t gone to school for dentistry or orthodontics, some of the terms your provider may use can be a bit confusing. As a patient it’s important to understand how different parts of the mouth work together to create healthy teeth. From the jaw up to the tooth, each part inside the mouth is important to a healthy smile! It’s always beneficial for a patient or a parent of a patient to know a bit more about what’s going on behind the scenes during treatment. Dr. Laurie McNamara McClatchey and Dr. James A. McNamara at McNamara Orthodontics share important topics to know before heading into a consult. 


The Tooth

Many people don’t know this, but teeth are joints too! The space where the tooth connects to the jaw and gums is a joint called a gomphosis. The tooth is the only example of this variety of joints in the human body. A gomphosis joint is similar to a peg in a hole and is a stationary joint, which means it is not capable of movement on its own. The part of the jawbone that the teeth connect to is the alveolar bone, and is part of the tooth joint system. Essentially, it moves your teeth when you chew, swallow, or talk. 

The tooth itself is composed of four layers of tissue. Three of these layers are hard tissue, which means they are calcified. The enamel, dentin, and cementum make up the hard parts of the tooth, while the pulp, a soft tissue, houses the nerves present on the inside of the tooth. The pulp is the only layer of soft tissue within the tooth. The cementum covers the root of the tooth below the gum line.

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Whitening Your Teeth

Having a pearly white smile is often a top concern our patients bring to our office. One of the most common questions we get as orthodontists during braces treatment is whether white spots on the teeth are to be expected. Even our patients who don’t have braces are concerned about maintaining a clean white smile. Luckily Dr. Laurie McNamara McClatchey and Dr. James A. McNamara at McNamara Orthodontics have some tips and tricks for you in this post about white spots from braces, professional whitening services, and at-home whitening methods that are safe for your teeth. 


White Spots 

The white spots that appear because of orthodontic treatment are called white spot lesions (WSLs. Typically patients with WSLs see them under brackets or in hard to reach places between teeth and close to the gums.  Orthodontists are frequently asked about the possibility of white spots after braces, but what determines if WSLs will be present after treatment is your brushing habits, and they are avoidable. 

Preventing WSLs is easy, you just have to keep your teeth clean and practice the best oral health routine you can. This involves brushing twice a day, flossing, and using fluoride. You could even upgrade to an electric toothbrush to better reach spaces blocked by your braces. 

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