Everything You Need to Know About Zoom!® Teeth Whitening

Zoom!® Teeth Whitening in Atlanta and Marietta, GAWe all want bright, white teeth. That being said, sometimes brushing and flossing just isn’t enough. Dr. Wright and his orthodontic team are proud to offer in-house Zoom!® teeth whitening treatments that allow our patients to get the white teeth they desire. Let’s go over what you can expect when you trust Zoom!®

What is Zoom!® Teeth Whitening?

Zoom!® is a quick and comfortable teeth whitening treatment that we offer at our very own office. Not only will Zoom!® teeth whitening help our patient get the white smile they deserve, but it also works overtime to reduce staining caused by:

  • Smoking
  • Dark colored colas
  • Red wine
  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Natural aging

How Does Zoom!® Teeth Whitening Work?

Unlike over-the-counter gels that sit on your teeth and break down your enamel, Zoom!® teeth whitening uses a 25 percent hydrogen peroxide solution. When activated with a specialized lamp, the Zoom!® solution penetrates through the enamel and bleaches stains on the actual tooth itself. This maintains the integrity and strength of your teeth while providing the results you desire.

How Many Zoom!® Teeth Whitening Treatments Will I Need?

The best part about our Zoom!® teeth whitening treatments is that you only need one to achieve your ultimate results. That’s right – you just need one treatment. Patients report being satisfied with the brightness and whiteness of their teeth for up to two years following their Zoom!® treatment.

How Do I Maintain the Results of My Zoom!® Teeth Whitening?

Following your in-house Zoom!® teeth whitening treatment, you will be given a take-home whitening kit to maintain your desired results. This kit will include a whitening tray that’s custom-fitted to your mouth to ensure you achieve the best results possible. Simply follow the directions in the kit provided by Dr. Wright to keep your smile as white as ever. We may also ask that you avoid consumption of food and drink that is known for staining teeth like coffee, tea, tomato sauce, red wine, and more.

If you’re interested in learning more about when or how to get started with your Zoom!® teeth whitening treatments, we encourage you to contact us and set up your private consultation with Dr. Wright. He’ll be happy to sit down with you, listen to your concerns, evaluate your teeth, and develop a personalized treatment plan to help you get a smile you can be proud of.

Orthodontic Office Closed? Here’s How to Care for Your Smile Between Orthodontic Visits

Whether it is mandated, or you’ve placed your family under self-quarantine, you may be unsure of when you’ll be back in your orthodontist’s office for treatment. Remember, you are also a partner in the process and your oral health care doesn’t end between visits.

Here are a few tips for caring for your teeth in between now and your next visit:

1. Clean your teeth multiple times a day.

If you’re sporting an orthodontic appliance, either braces or aligners, keeping your teeth clean is important no matter the situation. Follow the guidelines noted in step two below to ensure you’re doing the job well.

2. Use what you have at home.

You likely have all the supplies you need already. A little water, your toothbrush, some floss and toothpaste go a long way.

Rinse your mouth with water after drinking a sugary or acidic beverage. Brush your teeth and gums after every meal or snack. Floss once a day. And don’t forget to look in the mirror to make sure you’ve cleaned thoroughly each time.

3. Wear your elastics or retainers as prescribed.

Keep your orthodontic treatment on track by following the recommendations of your orthodontist. Running low on rubber bands? Don’t worry. Call your orthodontist to come up with a plan to get your hands on more.

4. Avoid problematic foods and drinks.

Due to the potential uncertainty of when you will be able to visit your orthodontist, it is especially important to handle your appliances with care. Avoid hard, sticky foods that could potentially break brackets. Skip or limit sugary beverages like sports drinks and soda. Water is best!

5. Call your orthodontist if you have any questions.

Your orthodontist is still there for you, even if they aren’t in the office. Contact them if you have any concerns during this time.

These are just a few steps you can take to help keep things on track with your orthodontic treatment. A little extra effort on your end now will pay off big time when you get back into your orthodontic routine.

Trust an AAO orthodontist

You can work with an American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) Orthodontist to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile. Find an orthodontist near you at aaoinfo.org/locator.

Handling Orthodontic Issues at Home

Due to COVID-19, your orthodontist’s office may currently be postponing any non-emergent appointments and you may be wondering how to handle potential orthodontic issues at home. While there are steps you can take to temporarily fix or alleviate discomfort and prevent additional damage, your orthodontist should always be notified. Contact them if you have any concerns during this time.  Many times, they may be able to handle the issue over the phone or virtually through video communication.

During this time, make sure to stay in contact with your orthodontist about when they plan to reopen if you need to have any appointments rescheduled. For many offices, information regarding this is available on practices’ Facebook pages and/or websites.

Tools + Supplies

With these tools and supplies on hand, you will be prepared to handle the most common orthodontic issues

  • Orthodontic relief wax
  • Dental floss
  • Disinfected tweezers
  • Q-tips
  • Salt
  • Interproximal brush
  • Toothpicks
  • Non-prescription pain reliever (acetaminophen or ibuprofen)
  • Topical Anesthetic (such as Orabase or Ora-Gel)

Lost O-ring

An “O” ring is the tiny rubber band or sometimes a very thin wire (ligature), that holds the orthodontic wire in the bracket/brace. If a rubber o-ring should come off, you may be able to put it back in place using disinfected tweezers. If a wire ligature comes loose, simply remove it with the tweezers. If the wire ligature is sticking out into the lip but is not loose, it may be bent back down with a Q-tip or pencil eraser to eliminate the irritation.  Should this happen, be sure to contact your orthodontist to notify them and come up with a plan for repair. Note: self-ligating brackets don’t use o-rings.

Discomfort

It’s normal to have some discomfort during orthodontic treatment as your teeth move however it should not last longer than a couple days. Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water and over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, may alleviate some discomfort.  If the discomfort lasts longer than a couple days, be sure to call your orthodontist to discuss.

Mouth Sores

Some patients are susceptible to episodes of mouth sores. While braces do not cause them, they may be precipitated or exacerbated by an irritation from braces. One or several areas of ulceration of the cheeks, lips or tongue may appear. This is not an emergency but may be very uncomfortable. Prompt relief may be achieved by applying a small amount of topical anesthetic (such as Orabase or Ora-Gel) directly to the ulcerated surface using a cotton swab – reapply as needed.  If after a couple days the discomfort does not resolve, call your orthodontist to discuss.

Irritation in Mouth

Sometimes braces or wires can be irritating to the mouth, especially when eating. A small amount of orthodontic relief wax makes an excellent buffer between metal and mouth. Simply pinch off a small piece and roll it into a ball the size of a small pea. Flatten the ball and place it completely over the area of the braces causing irritation.  Wax can be purchased at any drug store if you are unable to get some from your orthodontist during this time.

Protruding Wire

Occasionally the end of a wire will work itself out of place and can irritate the mouth. Use a Q-tip or clean tweezer and try to push the wire so that it is flat against the tooth. If the wire cannot be moved into a comfortable position, cover it with relief wax. Should changes with your wires occur during this time be sure to contact your orthodontist to make them aware of the issue.

Loose Braces or Bands

If the braces or bands have come loose in any way, call your orthodontist to determine appropriate next steps.

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Trust an AAO orthodontist

You can work with an American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) Orthodontist to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile at any age. Orthodontists are experts in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics – properly aligned teeth and jaws – and possess the skills and experience to give you your best smile. Find an orthodontist near you at aaoinfo.org/locator.

What Does That Mean for My Treatment?

Given the outbreak of COVID-19, your orthodontist may have made the difficult, but important, decision to postpone any non-emergent appointments. You can be assured that this decision was not made lightly but was made to protect patients, staff and families.

Given the closure, you may have a few questions.

Will this delay my treatment?

We know part of successful orthodontic treatment is showing up for your appointments. If that’s not an option under these unusual circumstances, it’s okay. Don’t panic. Though your appointments are scheduled out to achieve maximum success, this hiccup shouldn’t have much of an impact on your overall treatment plan. Given the situation, your orthodontist will work hard to get your treatment plan back on track when they reopen.

You can help keep treatment on track by following your orthodontist’s directions, avoiding hard and sticky foods and keeping your teeth clean.  With limited appointments available, now is not the time to be breaking brackets, and keeping your teeth clean will ensure the best possible result.

What now?

Make sure to stay in contact with your orthodontist about when they plan to reopen and get any appointments you’re going to miss rescheduled. For many offices, information regarding this is available on practices’ Facebook pages and/or websites.

A timeline as to when they reopen may be up-in-the-air, but you can rest assured they are making decisions with your best interest in mind.

My orthodontist said they will continue “essential dental care.” What does that mean? 

If you have an urgent need during this time, such as pain or injury, your orthodontist will likely be available for emergency appointments. Please contact their office to determine the best course of action for your specific situation.

There’s a lot of uncertainty right now, but what’s one thing we know for sure? 

Your orthodontist looks forward to seeing you back in our office soon!

For more information on AAO guidelines during this unprecedented time, visit aaoinfo.org/virus.

Marietta Orthodontic Retainer Care Instructions

Orthodontic Retainers in Atlanta and Marietta, GAAfter your braces come off, you will still have to wear a retainer to ensure that your teeth remain in place.

A retainer is a device worn around the teeth once braces are removed. Retainers allow the bones to tighten around your newly straightened teeth to assure that they stay in alignment. Your retainer is custom made to fit only your teeth, and it plays an essential role in the final stages of your orthodontic treatment.

How Long Will I Have to Wear My Retainers?

The amount of time that you will wear your retainers will depend on many variables. Typically, patients wear their retainers for a couple of years to ensure that the bone structure and the gums tighten around your realigned teeth. Throughout the retention process, you will meet with Dr. Wright to evaluate the fit of your retainer so that slight adjustments can be made if necessary.

You will wear your retainers 24 hours a day; however, they will be removed when eating, for cleaning, and when participating in contact sports.

How to Care for Your Retainers

Brushing your retainer is just as important as brushing your teeth on a daily basis. Cleaning your retainer allows you to remove food debris. To keep your retainers clean, brush them with a toothbrush and toothpaste every time you brush your teeth. If they are not kept clean, the retainers will get a plaque build-up and an odor. You should also rinse your retainer after every meal.

In addition to keeping your retainers clean, there are other important steps you should follow to safeguard your retainers. If you have pets, it is important to keep your retainer away from them. Pets look at retainers as chew toys.

You will be given a protective case for your retainer. Always keep your retainer in its protective case when it is not in your mouth. When you take your retainers out to eat, never wrap retainers in a napkin. You may forget about them and mistake them for trash that gets thrown away. Also, never put your retainer directly into your pocket, purse or backpack without the protective case. Your retainer might become bent or crushed, and it is costly to replace.

Keep your retainer away from heat to keep it from changing shape. Your retainer will melt or warp if it gets hot. Never leave your retainer in a hot car, or by a stove or heater. Never put your retainer in a washing machine or in hot or boiling water.

To learn more about retainers, contact us for more information or to schedule a consultation. Wright Orthodontics has two convenient locations to serve you in Atlanta and Marietta, Georgia. As always, your initial consultation at Wright Orthodontics is offered free of charge with no hidden fees.

SureSmile® vs. Invisalign® Services in Atlanta, GA

SureSmile® Braces in Atlanta and Marietta, GAYour smile is important, so you want the best treatment options to get that perfect smile. Dr. Wright offers the most advanced teeth straightening methods to help you achieve that smile in the best possible way.

If you are thinking about straightening your teeth, you will want to consider treatment with SureSmile® or Invisalign®. The following information tells you about both of these cutting-edge treatment plans.

SureSmile®

SureSmile® is an innovative orthodontic treatment that utilizes advanced technologies to straighten teeth in dramatically less time than traditional orthodontics. In fact, your treatment time with SureSmile® can be reduced by as much as 40 percent, with fewer office visits as well. Dr. Wright is one of only 10 dentists in Georgia who offers SureSmile® treatment.

SureSmile® is the most advanced teeth-straightening system available today. It straightens your teeth with greater precision and accuracy and achieves noticeable results in a shorter time frame than conventional braces.

By using imaging, software and special robotic technology, SureSmile® allows the orthodontist to design a series of customized archwires that create a more precise alignment of teeth. Traditional braces rely on taking molds of your teeth and bending wires by hand, but SureSmile® uses incredibly detailed 3-dimensional digital molds to guide treatment. With these 3-D models, orthodontists are able to design the individual movements for each of your teeth, from start to finish, through virtual simulation. By setting the final outcome up front, the orthodontist can keep teeth moving directly to the prescribed position through a more predictable process.

The SureSmile® robot will fabricate custom archwires to use at each step of the treatment process. When attached to the brackets on a patient’s teeth, these wires create the most comfortable positioning possible while driving more efficient movement of the teeth. Because the robot can make smaller and tighter bends in the wires, teeth move more precisely and directly toward their final situations.

When comparing SureSmile® to traditional braces, SureSmile® offers a higher level of precision, fewer office visits, less discomfort and quicker results.

Invisalign®

Invisalign® is an innovative orthodontic treatment that is much less obvious than traditional braces. Instead of metal brackets and wires, Invisalign® uses clear plastic aligner trays to straighten teeth and correct jaw issues. Invisalign® aligner trays are virtually unnoticeable, so you won’t feel self-conscious about your smile. These custom-made trays are very comfortable and easy to wear. Also, the trays can be removed when eating or drinking, making it easier to keep your teeth clean.

With Invisalign®, you wear a custom-made set of aligner trays for two weeks and then switch them out for another set that continues to slowly adjust your teeth with virtually no pain.

Some of the issues that can be corrected with Invisalign® include:

  • Crooked teeth
  • Gapped teeth
  • Widely spaced teeth
  • Overbite
  • Underbite
  • Crossbite

Invisalign® is a popular choice for both adults and teens.

To learn more about SureSmile® and Invisalign®, contact us for more information or to schedule a consultation. Wright Orthodontics has two convenient locations to serve you in Atlanta and Marietta, Georgia. As always, your initial consultation at Wright Orthodontics is offered free of charge with no hidden fees.

Four Indications You May Need Orthodontics

The American Association of Orthodontics recommends children see an orthodontist at age seven for an initial evaluation. This gives orthodontists a base of comparison as they grow and allows them to determine if there are any issues that might require early intervention. The most common issues that create orthodontic challenges include crooked or overcrowded teeth, gaps, misaligned jaws, speech issues and teeth misalignments.

#1: Crooked or Overcrowded Teeth

Whether baby teeth fell out too early or teeth just seemed to come in out of alignment, the result is crooked teeth. Crooked or overcrowded teeth can easily make people feel self-conscious about their appearance, especially when smiling. Luckily, orthodontics can reposition teeth for a bright and bold smile.

#2: Too Much Space Between Teeth

While some children have problems with overcrowding, others have too much space between their teeth. Braces straighten teeth to close the gaps.

#3: Speech Concerns

Speech impediments such as lisps are often due to the misalignment of the teeth. Orthodontics repositions teeth so that they are properly aligned thus greatly diminishing or eliminating common speech issues.

#4: Misaligned Jaw

One of the many benefits of orthodontics is the ability to realign the jaws so that they fit together as they should. This is something that orthodontists may detect during early intervention.

Orthodontics corrects a host of problems within the mouth and structure of the face, whether functional or cosmetic. If you’re interested in seeing an orthodontist, please contact us to set up a consultation with Dr. Marc S. Wright today.

Can Invisalign® Fix an Overbite?

Our patients with an overbite frequently inquire whether Invisalign® is a potential solution. The answer is “yes!” Invisalign® is a technologically-advanced orthodontic treatment that uses clear aligner trays to straighten teeth without being very noticeable. They are offered to adults seeking orthodontic treatments because they require more diligence and responsibility on the part of patients to consistently wear and care for them.

In its inception, Invisalign® was used to treat mild issues such as overcrowding and minor teeth realignment. As the treatment progressed, Invisalign® has been recommended for more orthodontic issues, including an overbite.

What is an Overbite?

An overbite is a dental condition in which the upper teeth noticeably protrude out from the lower teeth when the mouth is closed, and teeth are clenched together. It may result from thumb sucking, tongue thrusting, excessive use of bottles or pacifiers, or, simply, genetics.

For those with an extensive overbite, it is common for the upper teeth to protrude over the bottom lip (horizontal overbite). When adults suffer from overbites and want to correct their teeth, they may be even concerned about the awkwardness of wearing metal braces.

How Does Invisalign® Fix an Overbite?

Invisalign® is used most often in patients with mild to moderate orthodontic issues. Unless the overbite is severe, orthodontists can fix an overbite with Invisalign®. The key to successful treatments for overbites is following the protocol and wearing the aligners continuously to ensure the teeth are moved into the correct position.

With Invisalign®, clear aligner trays are worn about 22 hours a day – all the time except when eating and brushing. Over time, the aligners push protruding teeth back and into their proper position. Every two weeks, new trays are placed over the teeth to continue the process of moving the teeth.

Patients with overbites typically require treatment times of up to two years depending on the extent of the protrusion. Once the treatment is complete, they must wear retainers to ensure their teeth stay in place until the gums and bones around the teeth are able to secure the teeth.

What About Severe Overbites?

Severe overbites may require a more extensive protocol such as traditional metal braces. This is due to the control that the wire and brackets have in shifting teeth back into their correct positions then pushing them back to diminish the overbite. Some severe overbites require orthodontic treatments to expand the skeletal area of the mouth to accommodate the repositioning of the teeth.

Can Overbites be Prevented?

Overbites can be minimized or prevented by averting childhood habits like thumb sucking and nail-biting. When genetics is at play, early intervention is important. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends children see an orthodontist as early as age seven.

Let’s Correct Your Overbite

Adults with overbites have options to correct their misaligned teeth. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Marc S. Wright to see if Invisalign® or another treatment is the best option to correct an overbite.