Dr. Sean M. Rooney, Children and Adult Orthodontics

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April is National Facial Protection Month

April 22nd, 2017

April is National Facial Protection Month

Take Five: Sports Safety Tips for National Facial Protection Month

Calling all MVPs, team captains, full roster players, practice squads, coaches, teachers and parents/caregivers. Five of the nation’s top dental associations want to remind everyone to play it safe during recreational and organized sports to help prevent serious, painful facial injuries that can take the fun out of the game. Take five, and take in these five simple safety tips.

  1. Mouth Guards are a Must. Mouth guards are significantly less expensive than the cost to repair an injury, and dentists and dental specialists can make customized mouth guards that hold teeth in place and allow for normal speech and breathing.
  2. Helmets are always Helpful.  Helmets absorb the energy of an impact and help prevent damage to the head.  IMG_3392
  3. Have 20/20 Vision with Protective Eyewear.  Eyes are extremely vulnerable to damage, especially when playing sports.
  4. Face Shields Save Skin…and more.  Hockey pucks, footballs and racquetballs can cause severe facial damage at any age.
  5. Cheer and Shout Out Your Support for Mandatory Protective Gear.  Athletes who participate in football, hockey and boxing are required to wear mouth guards. If mouth guards have been proven to significantly decrease the risk of oral injuries, why is it not mandatory in every sport for kids to wear them?

Whether your child is playing a contact sport or just monkeying around on the monkey bars, accidents happen. A recently published study by the University of Alabama at Birmingham analyzed data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS), a database of injuries treated at hospital emergency departments, for the period 2001-2008. Researchers found the five most common causes of childhood injuries were, in order of frequency, basketball, football, bicycling, playgrounds and soccer. 1

An estimated 12 million people ages of 5 and 22 years suffer a sport-related injury annually, which leads to 20 million lost days of school2 and approximately $33 billion in healthcare costs.3 Yet, some of these injuries could be prevented with protective gear. “A properly fitted mouth guard is an essential piece of any athlete’s protective equipment,” says Dr. Paul Nativi, DMD, FASD, and past president of the Academy for Sports Dentistry. “Talk with your dentist about what kinds of activities your family enjoys and ask about ways to make sure their teeth and face stay protected.”

Every April, National Facial Protection Month strives to raise public awareness and remind parents/caregivers, coaches and athletes to play it safe while playing sports. The Academy for Sports Dentistry (ASD), American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS), American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), and the American Dental Association (ADA) are collaborating to promote the 2015 April is National Facial Protection Month observance to help people learn more about how simple it can be to take five and make a play for better safety that protects not only your mouth and face, but also your peace of mind.

References:
1. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/10/141013152656.htm. 2. National Athletic Trainers’ Association. (unpublished media review). 3. Ferguson RW. Safe Kids Worldwide Analysis of Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) data, 2013.

Toothbrushes

February 2nd, 2017

 

Electric or Manual Toothbrush: What’s the Difference?

You live in the golden age of toothbrushes. Until a few decades ago, people used twigs or brushes made from animal hair to clean their teeth: not very soft and none too effective. Now you have a choice of manual brushes with soft, medium, or hard bristles. Or you might choose to go with an electric toothbrush instead. Have you ever wondered whether manual or electric brushes provide better cleaning? Actually, they both do the job. The key is to brush and floss every day, regardless of the kind of brush you prefer. At our office, we like to say the best brush is the one you’ll use. So if you prefer manual, go for it. If you prefer electric, turn it on. Both types have their advantages but both types will get the job done as far as removing plaque, if used properly.

Electric Toothbrushes

  • Provide power rotation that helps loosen plaque
  • Are great for people with limited dexterity due to arthritis or other physical limitations
  • Are popular with kids who think the electric brushes are more fun to use
  • Can come with variable speeds to help reduce pressure on sensitive teeth and gums
  • Uses timers to ensure you brush evenly across the four quadrants of your mouth and for the optimal two minutes each session

Manual Toothbrushes

  • Can help brushers feel they have more control over the brushing process
  • Allow brushers to respond to twinges and reduce the pressure applied to sensitive teeth and gums
  • Are more convenient for packing when traveling
  • Are cheaper and easier to replace than the electric versions
  • In many ways, the golden age is just beginning. There are already phone apps available to remind you to brush and floss. New apps can play two minutes worth of music while you brush, help you compare the brightness of your smile, or remind you to brush and floss throughout the day. Maybe someday, there will be an app that examines your teeth after brushing to identify spots you might have missed.

Retainer Wear

January 5th, 2017

Keep Your Smile Straight with Retainers

Retainers will help to protect all the time and money you’ve invested in your newly aligned teeth by keeping them in place and beautiful for many years to come.

We offer two types of retainers: removable and fixed. Both are effective at keeping newly straightened teeth in place, and both have advantages and disadvantages that depend on your lifestyle.

Removable Retainers

Removable retainers offer the advantage of easy use: You will generally put in a removable retainer at night and take it out in the morning. Regardless of your retainer schedule, you’ll be able to enjoy some time with no retainer.

Another advantage of a removable retainer is that you can take it out and brush and floss your teeth with ease. This is more of a challenge with a permanent retainer.

However, a removable retainer can easily be forgotten or misplaced. If that happens, you won’t be taking full advantage of teeth retention.

Fixed Retainers

Fixed retainers are the best choice for patients who want to “get it and forget it.” Once your fixed retainer is placed in your mouth, you won’t need to worry about daily retainer schedules.

Because teeth begin to shift naturally as we age, a fixed retainer typically offers better long-term results for teeth straightening than a removable one. You can’t forget to put it in; it’s already there!

One drawback to fixed retainers is flossing. If you find it more difficult to floss with a fixed retainer, we can show you some tips and tricks the next time you’re in our office.

 

Proper Tooth Brushing Techniques

December 1st, 2016

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