December 27th, 2017
- Does your child snore loudly at night?
- Does your child take long pauses in breathing while they sleep?
- Does your child experience night sweats?
- Does your child experience extreme drowsiness during the day?
- Does your child exhibit a change in behavior and/or a decline in school performance?
If your child is exhibiting any of these symptoms, it could be a sign that they are suffering from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
What is OSA? What is Sleep Apnea?
OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea) is a common sleep disorder that affects approximately 12 percent of children. It’s caused by partial or complete blockage of the airways during sleep. During sleep, your child’s throat muscles relax allowing the tongue and/or fatty tissues of the throat to fall back into the airways and block airflow. During an apnea event, air is restricted from moving beyond the obstruction reducing blood flow to the brain. As a result, the brain is signaled to partially awaken from sleep to tell the body that it needs to breathe. This is often followed by a loud gasping, choking, or snorting sounds as the person takes a deep enough breath to fight past the obstruction.
While this condition is fairly easy to treat, it is often left untreated because parents aren’t aware of the warning signs. So, how do you know if your kid actually has obstructive sleep apnea or if they are symptoms of something else? Visit your local orthodontist today. Due to their expertise and familiarity with growth and development as well as orthopedic and surgical correction of the jaws, orthodontists are ideally suited to diagnose OSA.
At Davis and Davis Orthodontics, Dr. Dale and Dr. Lisa are well trained in looking for the signs of Sleep Apnea. We are screening kids with our CBCT (a dental CT scan that allows us to gain a highly accurate 3-D image of your child’s anatomy from a single scan), looking at airways and discussing sleep issues. Currently we are administering a home sleep test and consulting on how orthodontics can change the architecture of the airway for better sleep and happy and healthier kids.
We make it a point to always ask new patients about their children’s sleep habits because it’s important to us to catch them early. Sleep Apnea can have significant side effects if left untreated, such as:
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Chronic acid reflux
- & Depression
If you notice any of the above signs in your child’s sleep, click below to schedule a complimentary consultation with Dr. Dale or Dr. Lisa. We look forward to meeting you.
December 21st, 2017
Patients have so many choices for straightening their teeth nowadays — clear aligners, ceramic braces, lingual braces, self-ligating braces — but who is best suited to guide them through orthodontic treatment? Well, an orthodontist like Drs. Lisa and Dale Davis in Midland, MI of course!
This may seem obvious, but there’s misinformation circulating with regard to the roles dentists and orthodontists play in treating patients’ oral health.
Dentists are trained to clean teeth, fill cavities, perform certain dental surgeries, and examine overall oral health. Many dentists now offer braces to their patients, but according to the American Association of Orthodontists, it’s better to consult an orthodontist if you need to straighten teeth or fix a bite.
Why an orthodontist? Because they are...
- Specialists in straightening teeth and aligning jaws, even advanced cases
- Required to study an additional two to three years after dental school
- Trained to choose the correct treatment option because they have worked with all the available options
- Trained to recognize the potential pitfalls with certain treatments and cases, which means there’s less chance of problems after treatment has started or been completed
- Familiar with emerging treatments and technologies so they can make the best choice for a patient’s case
Some dentists claim to have taken enough continuing education or additional training to offer braces to their patients. But this can't compare to the advanced training an orthodontist receives during his or her education.
Ideally, dentists and orthodontists work hand in hand to make sure oral health and the alignment of teeth and jaws are the best they can be. Think of a dentist as the one who is there for a lifetime, to make sure teeth and gums are healthy.
In contrast, an orthodontist is the highly skilled teammate who helps the dentist by straightening teeth and aligning the jaws over the course of a few years. Instead of one replacing the other, they work together for the health and benefit of their patients.
December 14th, 2017
Crooked or crowded teeth aren’t always just a cosmetic issue; they also are more difficult to clean, which can lead to tooth decay and gum disease. Likewise, if your teeth don’t align properly when you bite (known as malocclusion), this can cause chewing, swallowing, and speaking problems.
You can put these risks to rest and look amazing, however, with well-thought-out orthodontic treatment from Drs. Lisa and Dale Davis. More and more adults are opting for orthodontic treatment and changing their lives in the process.
Childhood is of course the ideal time to get treatment, since the mouth and jaws are still growing, but many adults still can get beautiful and lasting results which can be achieved discreetly and effectively with modern orthodontic appliances and technologies.
Traditional braces used to be the only thing going, and many adults understandably don’t like the way they look. There are so many other options for braces these days that it’s possible for almost any patient to be treated effectively and efficiently — usually in one to two years.
Here are some of the technologies being implemented in our modern Midland, MI orthodontic office:
- Clear aligners: Practically invisible clear plastic aligners are great for less severe cases.
- Lingual braces: These are placed on the back of your teeth instead of the front, and can handle anything that traditional braces can.
- Ceramic braces: Translucent ceramic brackets make for effective and more discreet treatment.
- Self-ligating braces: These require less manipulation by the orthodontist, which means fewer appointments and quicker results.
It should also be noted that the goal of orthodontic treatment (especially in adults) isn’t always limited to straightening teeth and/or correcting a bite. Teeth provide support for the lips and cheeks and help define your face.
The relationship between the jaws, teeth, face, soft tissues, and underlying skeleton of the face are important, and an orthodontist takes this into account when designing a smile.
In short, getting orthodontic treatment won’t just give you a good-looking and healthy smile; it can help define and enhance the entire appearance of your face. Knowing just how crucial your teeth are in determining how you look and live will help you age positively and confidently.
December 7th, 2017
It’s useful to know some of the common problems that can arise when you get braces. Even if you take great care of your braces and teeth, you might not be able to avoid certain issues or side effects that accompany braces. But don’t worry: These are all common problems that can be taken care of by following some simple advice.
If you just had your braces put on, you may notice some general soreness in your mouth. Your teeth are starting to adjust to having to shift, so they may ache, and your jaw might feel tender at first. This will subside once your mouth becomes used to the new appliance in residence.
You may experience soreness on your tongue or mouth, which may be a sign of a canker sore. Canker sores are common when braces rub against your mouth. You can use ointments to relieve pain and numb the area that’s been irritated. Canker sores are commonly caused by broken wires or loose bands on your braces.
- Loose brackets: Apply a small amount of orthodontic wax to the bracket. You might also apply a little between the braces and the soft tissue of your mouth.
- Loose bands: These must be secured in place by Drs. Lisa and Dale Davis. Try to save the band for repair.
- Protruding or broken wires: Use the eraser end of a pencil to push the wire carefully to a less painful spot. If you are unable to move it, apply orthodontic wax to the tip. If a mouth sore develops, clean your mouth with warm salt water or antiseptic rinse.
- Loose spacers: These will need to be repositioned by Drs. Lisa and Dale Davis and possibly replaced.
You should avoid certain foods that could cause major damage to your braces. No matter what you eat, make the effort to cut your food into small pieces that can be chewed easily. This will prevent chunks of it from getting lodged between brackets.
Avoiding hard and chewy foods is also wise. Some foods can break your hardware: for example, popcorn, nuts, apples, gum, taffy, and hard candies. Avoiding any foods that easily got stuck in your teeth when you didn’t have braces is a good rule to follow.
The appliances in your mouth are bound to attract food particles and make it easier for plaque to build up. By making sure you brush and floss carefully every day, you can prevent stains and cavities from developing over time. Drs. Lisa and Dale Davis and our team recommend brushing and making sure that food isn’t lodged between your braces after every meal.
Having braces can be very exciting, but it can also be challenging at first. Watching for these common issues during your first few weeks can prevent problems down the road. If you experience a lot of pain from your braces, contact our Midland, MI office and we can try to resolve any issues.
Braces can sometimes be a pain, but they’re well worth it once your new smile gets revealed!