Orthodontic Tips August 31, 2011

Tight lips and cheeks can be managed.

For some unknown reason some people suck their lips and tongue.
This habit results in severely crowded teeth. Notice in this picture that both the posterior and anterior teeth are tipped lingually toward the tongue.
If any teeth are extracted, the dentition will cave in and the be ruined.
The correct treatment for this problem is to hold the cheeks and lips away from the teeth and let the natural action of the tongue push the teeth forward and laterally towards the lips and cheeks.
I use upper and lower lip bumpers to treat this kind of malocclusion. That is what I did for this 9 year old. Continue reading

The Great Divide

Orthodontic Tips August 22, 2011

Sometimes I see things so clearly that I can taste it.

How come patients don’t always see it the same way?

This week a woman in her early 20’s came for her annual check of her TMJ splints.

“How is it going?” I asked innocently.

“Great!” was the answer. “No more headaches; but I don’t wear the mouth pieces as much as I should.” Continue reading

Orthodontic Tips August 9, 2011

Hygienist Training

I did “in office” hygienist training this week.

I feel that I have the best hygienists working for me. They do great work and they are enthusiastic team members. But, they are not me.

I reviewed the bonding techniques that hygienists do all the time. I talked about what goes through my head when I do the work. I pointed out what I look for and why I want the plastic and wire in exactly “this” position.
The response was very positive. How could the hygienist know what was in my head? The staff was very appreciative because I invested my time with them. Continue reading