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National Orthodontic Health Month

October 6th, 2021


As we begin the month of October, pumpkin spiced foods and beverages are appearing everywhere, leaves are beginning to change colors on trees here in Georgia and quite a few of us are still settling into our back-to-school schedules. For many of our patients, this month means Halloween, which in turn equates to candy! For the dental health world, October is National Orthodontic Health Month. A whole month devoted to celebrating healthy smiles, learning more about the benefits of orthodontic treatment, and the importance of good oral health. Our SmilesForever Orthodontics doctors and staff are concerned with overall dental, oral and orthodontic health and are eager to share this awareness with our patients.

Orthodontic Health Awareness can be highlighted by a few key facts.
  • The recommended age for a child’s first orthodontic check-up is age 7.
  • Orthodontic health relates to dental health and overall health.
    • Crowded teeth make it harder to brush and floss.
    • Certain habits such as thumb-sucking may cause changes in your child’s oral structures which may in turn affect speech and feeding.
  • Orthodontists straighten teeth, they correct abnormal bites.
    • Abnormal bites are categorized as overbites, underbites, deep bites, open bites and crossbites.
    • Other problems that can be corrected by a board certified orthodontist are crooked and crowded teeth, impacted or missing teeth, extra teeth, gaps or spacing between teeth.
  • Teeth can be straightened and bites can be corrected at any age.Yes, ANY AGE! In fact, one in three orthodontic patients is an adult. 
  • Orthodontist spend an extra three years of specialty training to obtain their Specialty Certificate, after completing four years of Dental School.
  • Dr. Brad Gilbert and Dr. Adam Wells put in those hard earned extra miles and obtained their Board Certification status from the American Board of Orthodontists. Did you know only one out of every three orthodontists achieve their Board Certification?

The American Association of Orthodontists urges patients to choose braces-friendly treats at Halloween time. During orthodontic treatment with braces, it’s always important to remember that certain foods should be avoided in order to reduce breakage.  Any hard, crunchy, sticky or chewy candies or gum are on the “Foods To Avoid” list.  These types of foods and candies not only break braces and bend wires, but can potentially break healthy teeth too! Though we can always fix broken brackets and orthodontic wires, this may add up to additional patient appointments and time in treatment. Alternative sweet treats are recommended, and Dr. Gilbert and Dr. Wells encourage our patients to always brush and floss after enjoying any treats!  Check out our Ghoulishly Delicious Treats Pinterest board for those braces-friendly fun Halloween treats!


SmilesForever Orthodontics is ready to help you to achieve and maintain a healthy, beautiful smile. If you do have any unfortunate breakage, please call us right away to schedule an appointment to assess repairing brackets or wires. We want to get you back to smiling as quickly as possible! 

We hope y’all enjoy the amazing sights, scents and tastes of Fall this season. Stay safe and smile healthy!

Back To School With New Braces

August 11th, 2021

Where did the summer go? It’s hard to believe, but summer is fading away and a brand new school year is under way. Many of our patients’ new school attire includes braces and they are returning to school with a new experience. Dr. Brad Gilbert, Dr. Adam Wells and our staff want all of our school-aged patients wearing braces, to have a smooth transition into the classroom and new school year. At SmilesForever Orthodontics, our goal is to make treatment as easy and as enjoyable as possible. If your child is going back to school for the first time with braces,  we’ve put together some tips below for making this adjustment easier.

Keeping Lunches & Snacks Braces-Friendly

Foods that are sticky, chewy and crunchy must be avoided to prevent damage to wires and braces. While it’s easier to avoid at home, if your child buys their lunches at school, indulging in some of their favorite forbidden foods can be a pretty strong temptation. Simply checking the school’s lunch menu each week, and making sure it includes braces-friendly options like spaghetti, chili or mac and cheese, is a great start to making sure there’s something safe for your child to eat.

If you find the school lunch choices are limited, packing a lunch can make things easier for them. Healthier foods and snacks like chicken salad, cheese yogurt and applesauce are gentle on the braces and can help your child feel full throughout the day. Prepping the night before, by cutting foods into bite sized pieces, and thinly slicing fruits and vegetables, can be a time saver in the mornings and help make it easier to chew and eat for orthodontic patients. 

Take Along A Braces Care Kit

It’s ideal for patients to brush after eating since braces and wires can trap food particles. We  recommend patients carry a braces care kit with them at school. For any braces related issues that may pop up during the day, having a few common items on hand in their backpack or school locker can keep them prepared to handle them confidently. Some of the Items we’ve found best to include are:

  • Soft-Bristled Orthodontic Toothbrush
  • Dental Wax
  • Dental Floss
  • Floss Threaders
  • Lip Balm
  • Toothpaste
  • Orthodontic Elastics (If prescribed)
  • Mouthguard

A comfortable orthodontic patient equals a more focused student! For lips that become dry and irritated from braces and appliances, we find that lip balm is a definite must-have! A small amount of dental wax can be placed over dental brackets and wires that sometimes can cause mild irritation to lips, gums and cheeks. 

Have our orthodontists prescribed elastics for your child to wear during treatment? Keeping an extra bag of orthodontic elastics in their care kit, locker and backpack will make it much more convenient to replace worn bands after eating lunch and snacks.

Oh, Mirror, Mirror On The Locker Wall!

Admit it! We’ve all experienced that moment. THE MOMENT when we look in the mirror and realize we’ve gone about our afternoon talking, smiling and laughing - only to realize we’ve had a food particle stuck in our teeth, SINCE LUNCH! Many of us are too polite to point out when someone has food stuck in their braces or teeth. Encourage your student to carry a small mirror with them or place one on the inside of a locker.  Checking their teeth after eating can help them in avoiding feeling self-conscious. Even sticking to braces-friendly foods, eating with braces and wires can be tricky. Nooks and crannies can easily trap food debris, which can cause your child embarrassment when noticed by others. 

Have A Mouthguard On-Hand

Protect that smile! Whether you have a student-athlete or your child or teen has recess or gym class, investing in an orthodontic mouthguard while in braces is highly recommended. Sports and other physical activities can increase the risk of injury to your child’s lips, cheeks and mouths as well as damaging braces. Because they are specially designed to wear with braces, orthodontic mouthguards are the simplest way to ensure oral health and prevent injury. These specialized mouthguards do not form to the teeth and are NOT the take home and boil guards typically sold at sporting goods stores. Though sometimes available at stores, for our patient’s convenience, we also offer these for purchase at our front desk. We’ve pinned our recommended care kit list and reminder on our Taking Care Of Your Teeth And Braces Pinterest board. 

Starting The School Year Off Right

You may want to head over to our SmilesForever Orthodontics Pinterest page to check out our Braces-Friendly School Lunches board for nutritious and yummy ideas. While you’re there, be sure to also check out our Taking Care of Your Teeth and Braces board for our Braces Care Kit flier of recommendations!

With a little encouragement and patience, your child can conquer the school year with a healthy, shining smile! When braces are new, it’s completely normal to feel nervous returning to school. After all, it’s a brand new experience! Working towards a healthier and straighter smile takes time and effort, but it won’t take long for it to become familiar to your child and they will adjust and adapt quickly. To become and remain active in their orthodontic journey, it’s important for patients to stay informed. Knowledge often creates a strong desire to do our best! Our SmilesForever Orthodontics doctors and staff are ready to help you and your child navigate a new school year with braces and we’re always happy to answer any questions you may have. Our existing and new patients are always welcome to call or drop by our Dacula, Duluth, Flowery Branch and Loganville, GA locations.

We wish all of our student-patients a happy, healthy and successful 2021-2022 school year!

Please take a moment to vote for your favorite 2021 Best of Gwinnett Orthodontic Practice here:

Vote SmilesForever Orthodontics Best Of Gwinnett 2021!

April is National Facial Protection Month!

April 6th, 2021


Spring is the time of year when many of us become more physically active and are excited to resume outdoor activities. Skateboarding and rollerblading along with baseball, basketball, volleyball, tennis and other sports, once again become part of our active lifestyles. National Facial Protection Month is founded just by the American Association of Oral and Maxiofacial Surgeons (AAMOS), which encourages awareness on facial protection each April due to increased physical exercise during springtime. Diligent in educating our patients as they begin orthodontic treatment, National Facial Protection Month this month also brings our SmilesForever Orthodontics doctors and staff, the opportunity to remind our patients of the importance in wearing mouthguards during physical recreation in order to protect your face, teeth, and soft tissue.

Protect Your Mouth and Smile

Whether involved in recreational or team sports, children and adults alike spend a lot of time and money gearing up for an active lifestyle, but one important piece of equipment—a mouthguard—is often overlooked.

Mouthguards are often associated with extreme contact sports such as hockey, football and lacrosse. However, an accidental fall or physical blow to your jaw or mouth can cause serious damage to your smile and they are equally as important during outdoor activities. Without a mouthguard, you risk damage to your lips, gums, face, jaw or tongue. Without one, it’s also very easy to chip or even dislodge a tooth! Proper orthodontic care means taking the necessary safety measures in finding a mouthguard to protect your mouths and smiles from avoidable injuries, which Dr. Brad Gilbert and Dr. Adam Wells, both professional members of the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), take very seriously.

In fact, it’s such an important issue the AAO has joined the American American Dental Association, the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the Academy for Sports Dentistry as a National Facial Protection Month sponsor.

So Many Options!

Mouthguards protect your upper and lower teeth, tongue and gums by acting as a cushion for your face during accidental impact. There are quite a few varieties of mouthguards available including: orthodontist-recommended mouthguards, custom-made mouthguards, mouth-formed boil-and-bite mouthguards, ready-made stock or store-bought  mouthguards and with-straps mouthguards.

How To Choose?

While in orthodontic treatment finding the right mouthguard that is comfortable, fits over your orthodontic appliances and braces and does not prevent treatment progress is an important safety decision. It’s also extremely important that you do not boil and mold your mouthguard to fit, as your teeth still need to move into position.  A professionally recommended and fitted mouthguard, especially while in braces, is essential. Should you require one, Dr. Wells and Dr. Gilbert recommend a specific orthodontic mouthguard for our patients. Our orthodontists and team will aid in protecting your smile by making sure your new mouthguard fits properly in relation to your orthodontic appliance. 

What Can You Do?

 

Celebrate National Facial Protection Month by taking the necessary precautions to avoid sports injuries. Please contact SmilesForever Orthodontics on orthodontic care and if you need assistance in purchasing a proper orthodontic mouthguard. We’re available and look forward to helping you at any of our four practice locations in Dacula, Duluth, Flowery Branch and Loganville, GA.

SMILE and enjoy a healthy and safe Spring season! 

To learn more about National Facial Protection Month, visit AAOMS.org/SaveFace.

Adult Orthodontic Treatment

March 4th, 2021


Almost one third of our SmilesForever Orthodontics patients are adults. In fact tooth alignment can be achieved at any age! A bad bite and crooked teeth often contribute to tooth decay, gum and bone loss, headaches, abnormal wear of tooth enamel and jaw joint (TMJ/TMD) pain. A great smile can dramatically improve your self esteem and personal appearance, not to mention studies clearly show that healthy gums and aligned teeth have a positive effect on your health, and your heart in particular.

Dr. Brad Gilbert and Dr. Adam Wells are highly skilled in using new techniques which greatly increase comfort levels, while decreasing the frequency of visits and often shortening overall treatment time. New technology also provides discerning adults today with several lower profile treatment options, that may include clear braces with tooth color arch wires, mini metal braces and Invisalign. Drs. Gilbert and Wells specialize in blending treatment goals with outstanding results, and in many cases, work closely with your general dentist or other specialists to ensure that all treatment objectives are met.

Are you ready to discuss your options for a healthy, beautiful smile? We’re happy to help schedule your complimentary orthodontic evaluation with Dr. Gilbert and Dr. Wells at any of our four convenient locations in Dacula, Duluth, Flowery Branch and Loganville, GA. Give us a call today at (770) 963-3963 or simply click on the provided link to request your free appointment. We can’t wait to greet your smile!

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