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THE DANGERS OF DIY BRACES

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The DIY trend has taken over everything from home decor to car repairs to clothing design. And now, the DIY trend is making its way through the field of orthodontics with DIY braces.

The recent DIY trend of creating your own braces was sparked by a video posted on YouTube when a young teen demonstrated how she closed her gap using rubber bands she purchased from the drug store. The video became popular and other similar videos followed. New businesses even started selling “gap” bands online. However, many who tried the DIY technique soon discovered the hard way that using bands to straighten teeth is a very bad and painful idea.

JUST SAY “NO”
Not only is the act of using bands to straighten teeth a bad idea. It’s a very, very bad idea. Using elastic bands or “gap” bands can cause permanent damage. As pressure from the bands moves up the tooth, they begin putting pressure on the root. In many cases, this has caused the tooth to come out completely. There are also many cases out there where the bands have slipped from the tooth and moved under the gums requiring surgery and even removal of the tooth in some cases in order to remove the bands completely. In addition to tooth loss, using bands to straighten your teeth can have other negative effects.

-Tooth discoloration
-Inflamed and/or infected gums
-Bone loss
-Root Damage

This trend has become so concerning to dentists around the country that the American Journal of Orthodontics has issued a consumer alert on the use of the “gap” bands in an effort to educate people on the dangers and prevent serious problems from occurring.

WHY FACE-TIME IS IMPORTANT
Meeting face-to-face with a dentist that has advanced orthodontic training and experience is more important than you think. They can take x-rays, assess the degree of your overall oral health, and take note of any major issues such as an extreme overbite. This helps the dentist put together a special treatment plan that is just right for you. During the course of the orthodontic treatment, you will have regular face-to-face visits so that your dentist can make any necessary adjustments.

Having face-to-face time is important for many different reasons. Dentists with advanced orthodontic training and experience go through years of school in order to give each patient the precise treatment they need to straighten their teeth. Each person is different; therefore, each treatment is different and seeing you in person is the only way to make sure your treatment is doing what it needs to do to create a beautiful smile.

REESE FAMILY DENTISTRY CAN HELP
Remember, you only get one set of adult teeth, so take care of them. If you would like to learn more about the process of braces and what that would look like for you, please contact our office today at (870) 424-5900 or click Request an Appointment. We would be happy to schedule your no cost initial orthodontic evaluation and get you on the path to a straighter smile. 



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WARNING SIGNS OF IMPACTED WISDOM TEETH

Do you still have your wisdom teeth? For some reason, this one little question is quite the ice breaker. People talk about their post-surgery diet or joke around about the things said right after having their wisdom teeth removed. Some even pull out their smartphone and show everyone a video of their post-surgery antics. However, having impacted wisdom teeth is no joking matter. In fact, many dentists suggest having your wisdom teeth pulled before the problems begin.

Not everyone decides to take the advice given and many will end up waiting until removing their third set of molars/wisdom teeth is a must. If you still have your wisdom teeth, here are the most common warning signs that your wisdom teeth may be impacted and need to be removed.

SWOLLEN OR PAINFUL JAW
One of the most noticeable signs that your wisdom teeth have become impacted is a swollen or painful jaw. This pain may be noticeable when you bite down and usually generates in the back of the mouth near the affected area. If your wisdom teeth are the cause of the pain and swelling, the symptoms will only become worse and could even cause severe pain when trying to open your mouth.

SORE, SWOLLEN, OR  BLEEDING GUMS
There are many different causes of sore, swollen, and bleeding gums such as gum disease. Impacted wisdom teeth can also cause problems with your gums. If you are finding it difficult to floss and brush due to the pain or bleeding of your gums, you should give our office a call immediately.

HEADACHES
Headaches can be caused by a number of things: allergies, stress, lack of sleep, etc. However, headaches that become constant and don’t easily go away are more than your average headache. Headaches caused by impacted wisdom teeth are due to pain in the temporomandibular joint. As the pain increases, it radiates throughout your jaw to your head and face.

COMPLICATIONS OF IMPACTED WISDOM TEETH
Serious complications can occur if you choose to wait on getting your wisdom teeth pulled. Impacted wisdom teeth can push teeth out of place and cause alignment issues. They are likely to become infected, cause tooth decay, and gum disease. However, the most painful complication is that impacted wisdom teeth can form cysts which can cause nerve damage and severe pain.

SCHEDULE YOUR APPOINTMENT WITH DR. REESE TODAY!
If your wisdom teeth are partially or fully impacted, these symptoms will only become worse as the wisdom teeth continue to push their way to the surface. Don’t go another day with pain and discomfort. Call Dr. Paul Reese of Reese Family Dentistry at (870) 424-5900 to set up a consultation or fill out the Make an Appointment form so that he can find the root of your problem and discuss a plan of action. 



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