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4 Reasons to Love Your Smile

December 15th, 2015

A smile isn’t just the thing between your nose and chin.  It's actually a bunch of muscles that are attached to your brain. There are scientific reasons everyone should be smiling.

1. Smiling Helps Reduce Stress- In 2012 scientists Tara Kraft and Sarah Pressman from the University of Kansas published an article in Psychological Science on how this works.  They had participants in a study complete multitasking activities designed to be stressful.  During these tasks some participants were told to hold chopsticks to their mouth in a certain way.  They were not told that what they were doing was forcing a smile.  The groups that were told to do this experienced a reduction in heartrate and self reported stress levels! “The next time you are stuck in traffic or are experiencing some other type of stress,” says Pressman, “you might try to hold your face in a smile for a moment. Not only will it help you ‘grin and bear it’ psychologically, but it might actually help your heart health as well!”

2. Smiling Makes You More Creative- Research from the University of California, San Francisco suggests that being in a good mood can get your creative juices flowing.  When you are happy, more dopamine is released which is linked with motivation.  This increases your control over your mind which can also give a boost to the parts of the brain that are used for making decisions, learning and processing.

3. Smiling Boosts Your Productivity- In 2010 a group of economists at the Warwich business school studied the effect of emotions on productivity.  It came out strikingly obvious that the group that was happier and smiling had a 12% increase in productivity over the other group.

4. Smiling Can Improve Your Mood- For decades scientists have been conducting research about how individuals can be happy.  There are books out there on the subject and lots of theories, but one easy way is to just smile.  Even a fake smile will slowly boost your mood.  You may have heard the comment, “fake it ‘til you make it”. That’s right even a fake smile can help.

The best part about this all is that SMILES ARE FREE! Since even fake smiles help there’s no reason you should not be smiling.  If you are unhappy with your smile and that prevents you from grinning ear to ear, Blue Ridge Orthodontics can help.  Call or CLICK HERE to schedule online a no obligation COMPLETELY FREE consultation.  You can meet with one of our doctors to go over your smile and learn about options to help you LOVE YOUR SMILE!

Invisalign® vs. Traditional Braces

September 28th, 2015

A great smile can go a long way. Scientific research suggests that people who smile are perceived as more attractive and confident than those who don’t flash their pearly whites. When it comes time to invest in orthodontics to improve your beautiful smile, choosing the best option can be daunting. Comparing Invisalign to traditional braces is a great way to determine what orthodontics make most sense for your unique smile.

How is Invisalign different?

Unlike traditional braces, in which brackets are affixed onto each tooth and connected by wires Invisalign corrects orthodontic problems using a set of clear trays. These trays are specially formed to fit your teeth, allowing you to wear them 24/7.

Aesthetics

One of the primary advantages of Invisalign is that the clear trays are nearly invisible. Particularly for adults self-conscious about appearing professional with traditional braces, Invisalign can correct orthodontic issues without capturing the notice of others. Their nearly invisible appearance is one of the topmost reasons that orthodontic patients choose Invisalign.

Complexity of the Orthodontic Problem

Invisalign works well for people who have relatively minor problems, such as crooked teeth or small gaps between teeth. For more complex problems, particularly issues with bite or vertical problems (i.e., one tooth being significantly higher than another), traditional braces may be better at pulling teeth into alignment.

Eating and Drinking

Invisalign trays are removable, meaning that you cannot eat or drink while wearing them. Unlike traditional braces, however, you are not limited in the foods you may eat. Chewy, sticky, or hard foods may be eaten, provided that you brush your teeth before reinserting the Invisalign trays.

In the end, only you can weigh the pros and cons of Invisalign versus traditional braces. Consult with Drs. Roberts and Alvarado to understand how these orthodontic interventions may work for your unique situation.

Caring for Your Smile While Wearing Invisalign®

September 21st, 2015

Getting your braces off is exciting. You’ve been working on your new smile for months or years, and it’s time for the trips to our Asheville, NC office to pay off. Can you imagine how bad it would be to discover that your teeth are straight, but that there’s decay?

Caring for your smile while wearing Invisalign goes beyond just waiting for your teeth to get straighter. It involves cleaning your teeth regularly and thoroughly to prevent tooth decay. That way, your smile will be more beautiful than ever when you’re done with your Invisalign treatment.

Take Your Trays Out

The first difference you may notice between Invisalign and traditional metal braces is that Invisalign aligners are invisible, but there’s another important distinction as well. Invisalign braces are removable. You can take the trays out, and you should. Remove the trays while you’re eating so you don’t get food stuck in them. Also, remove them while you’re cleaning your teeth so that you can have full access to all the nooks and crannies in your mouth.

Brush Normally

The guidelines for brushing your teeth with Invisalign don’t change compared to braces. Brush your teeth at least twice a day using a soft toothbrush and a fluoride toothpaste, being sure to get all surfaces of your teeth. If possible, brush after each meal.

If you can’t, be sure to drink some water and swish it around in your mouth when you’re done eating to get rid of the extra food on your teeth. Leaving carbohydrates, such as sugar and starch, on your teeth opens the door to tooth decay.

Floss and Wash

Flossing your teeth gets out the bits and pieces stuck between them. It’s a time-consuming task when you need to navigate the wires of traditional metal braces, but thanks to Invisalign’s removable design, flossing is no problem. Rinsing your mouth with a fluoride antibacterial mouthwash also helps clean your teeth because it gets into all of the spaces. Floss and rinse one or two times daily.

Cleaning Your Trays

Cleaning your Invisalign trays keeps them from getting riddled with bacteria, and it helps keep your teeth free from excess food. You can use the Invisalign cleaning system, which involves placing the trays in a tub with cleaning crystals. The plastic trays are clean after 15 minutes. You can also ask Drs. Roberts and Alvarado for other ways to clean your trays.

Invisalign Teen®: What Parents Should Know

September 14th, 2015

Invisalign Teen is one the newer styles of braces, and perfect for those who do not like the standard metal braces. They are available in a clear material that is practically invisible called aligners that are replaced every two weeks. The aligners are custom made for each patient and gradually straighten teeth without all of the metal and rubber bands that come with traditional braces.

Is Invisalign as effective?

If your child will wear them as directed to, then the answer is yes, they are as effective as traditional metal braces. However, to make sure the child is actually wearing them correctly you will notice a small blue spot on the back of each aligner. This is called an indicator and if worn correctly will fade over a period of two weeks. Drs. Roberts and Alvarado will be able to tell if the patient is not wearing them correctly.

Can Invisalign be removed?

Parents should be aware that the Invisalign aligners can be removed for up to four hours per day to eat, brush teeth, play sports, or play musical instruments. With the option of removing them it actually makes brushing and flossing easier and helps oral hygiene. The recommended time to wear them is at least 20 hours per day.

How long does treatment take and what is the cost?

Your teen will wear Invisalign as long as traditional braces. However, each patient is different so you should speak with Drs. Roberts and Alvarado to determine how many months your child can expect to wear them.

The cost is also very similar to other traditional braces; however there is no set fee. The cost will depend on your child’s unique orthodontic need.

Overall Success

Invisalign Teen has had remarkable success because patients are happy to have the option of having clear aligners for treatment. With the child more confident they are actually more prone to keep up with their treatment and many do complete their treatment sooner. You should speak with Drs. Roberts and Alvarado as soon as possible to learn about the benefits of Invisalign Teen.