April 22nd, 2019
One exciting part about wearing braces from Cascade Orthodontics is getting to choose the colors of your rubber bands. Orthodontists place elastic bands, or ligatures, over each bracket to secure the archwire in place. These rubber bands may be individual or connected, depending on your mouth’s needs. From Dr. Zach Ehrmantrout, you have the option of choosing the color of your elastics, which are changed about once every month at every visit. Our offices keep a color wheel handy to help you choose which ones suit you best!
Children and teens often enjoy picking different colors each month to express their creativity and coordinate their braces with outfits. Decorating your mouth with your favorite colors is fun for kids and takes some of the stress out of wearing braces. Adults who wish for subtlety have color options that blend in with the metal brackets and archwire. Common choices for adults include silver, clear, and gray tones.
Common Color Combinations for Rubber Bands
With individual ligatures for each bracket, you may choose different color combinations for special events. You can have alternating colors or place an entire rainbow over your teeth. Here are a few options to consider:
- School spirit colors
- Favorite sports team colors
- Patriotic colors
- Holiday themes
Some patients choose only one color to match their mood, personality, or favorite outfits. The palette of choices allows you to make bold statements with your braces or go for subtler tones that blend in with the metal structures. Keep in mind that bright colors make your teeth look whiter, while lighter shades, such as yellow and white, may cause your teeth to appear less bright.
What Your Rubber Band Color Says About You
- Red tones indicate that you are ready for action and take charge of your life with aggressive, forward-thinking steps.
- Blue tones are calm and relaxing. You are conservative and exhibit integrity when dealing with situations.
- Green tones represent growth and balance. You are level-headed and look for opportunities to grow emotionally and spiritually.
- Purple tones attract creative energies. You like to have fun and use your imagination in every aspect of your life.
- Orange tones indicate that you are optimistic and thrive in social situations where communication is open.
- Pink is a romantic color that represents a caring personality. You also enjoy having fun with silly games and endless laughter.
April 15th, 2019
Whether you’re heading out for a day with friends or running from classroom to volleyball practice, you don’t always have the luxury of taking care of your braces or aligners in the comfort of your home. But don’t stress! Here are some suggestions for handy items you can take with you to handle most of the dental situations that might come up.
Basic Care Kit
- Travel Toothbrush—the perfect size for quick cleanings after a meal on the go. You might want to bring a travel size tube of toothpaste as well.
- Dental Floss, Threader, and Dental Picks—you don’t want something stuck in your teeth or braces through three hours of play rehearsal.
- Water Bottle—if you don’t have time to brush, a good rinse will help keep teeth and appliances clean.
- Small Mirror—to make sure your smile is picture perfect after eating.
- Our office phone number—just in case. If something happens to your braces or aligners, or if you suffer a dental emergency, call our Federal Way, WA office immediately.
- Orthodontic Wax—if one of your brackets is irritating your mouth, you’ll be ready.
- Braces-Friendly Snacks—soft, healthy foods that will help keep your energy up while keeping your braces intact.
For Aligners or a Retainer
- Your case! If you need to take your aligners or retainer out, use your case to protect them and keep them from getting lost. You have better things to do after lunch than sifting through a garbage can full of used napkins. Much better things.
All of these items can fit easily in a case or bag in your glove compartment, locker, or backpack. Want more tips? Talk to Dr. Zach Ehrmantrout and our team on your next visit, and let’s work together to make caring for your orthodontic appliances a quick and convenient addition to your busy schedule!
April 8th, 2019
Most kids love candy; actually, most people in general love candy. So when it comes time for you to get braces there can often be a natural conflict between candy consumption and maintaining the integrity of your braces. For that reason, Dr. Zach Ehrmantrout and our team know that it’s good to know which types of candy are not good for your braces. To better illustrate, here are some candies that you will want to avoid.
Caramel is a sweet and often exceedingly sticky and chewy type of candy that just does not mix well with braces. Caramel can cause a mess in regular teeth, but teeth with braces are a whole other story. The sticky candy can very easily get lodged and stuck between the teeth, gums, and braces, making for a difficult task of cleaning your mouth. And if your teeth don't get cleaned properly, cavities can easily form. If you get cavities while you have braces, that could mean additional appointments at our Federal Way, WA office and an extended treatment time.
Salt Water Taffy
Another sticky and chewy candy to avoid with braces is salt water taffy. For many of the same reasons as caramel, it is best to avoid taffy until you get your braces removed. It may be a long wait, but when it comes to the health of your teeth, and the purpose of your braces, it really is best to avoid taffy.
Popcorn of any kind is best to avoid when you have braces. The kernels can easily do damage to the braces as you chomp on them, and they can get stuck between your teeth and the braces causing discomfort and further complications. In this sense it does not matter which flavor of candy popcorn you eat, all popcorn is bad news until you get your braces off.
Generally speaking, any candy that is chewy, crunchy, or sticky is not a good idea to eat with braces in your mouth. These types of candy will make life wearing braces much more difficult than if you were to just wait until your braces come off. With a little patience you will be back to eating all your favorite candy again, and with straightened teeth at that.
April 1st, 2019
Many teens want straighter teeth but dread a mouth full of metal. Because of that, Invisalign Teen treatment has become a popular choice among teens. It produces great results without the hassle of traditional braces.
If you’re like most teens at our Federal Way, WA office, you love hanging out with your friends, and you don’t want to look different or have to watch what you eat. If you’re unsure about the benefits of Invisalign Teen clear aligners, we’re here to explain some of the perks.
You can eat what your friends eat
Invisalign Teen aligners can be removed easily for meals and snacks, so you can eat just like you normally would. You don’t need to worry about food getting stuck in your braces or a bracket popping off. Unlike with braces, you can enjoy the following foods with your friends during Invisalign Teen straightening treatment:
- Popcorn at the movies
- Trail mix with dried fruit ribs and chicken wings
- A peanut butter sandwich, apples, and carrot sticks
You can take care of your teeth more easily
Since Invisalign Teen aligners are removable, you won’t have to worry about finding tooth decay once your braces are removed. You can brush and floss your teeth as you normally would, just by taking the trays out of your mouth.
People won’t know you’re wearing them
We’ve saved the best for last: Invisalign Teen aligners are nearly invisible. Chances are, the only people who will know you’re getting your teeth straightened are the people you tell yourself!
Getting straighter teeth can be a massive confidence-booster in the long run. With Invisalign Teen clear aligners, the treatment isn’t that bad! Learn more at our Federal Way, WA office.