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Do You Know Where Your Mouthguard Is?

October 5th, 2017

With school and fall sports in full swing, we thought it would be a great time to remind all our patients to protect their teeth and orthodontic appliances while out on the playing fields.  According to the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation, school-aged athletes have more than 3 million teeth knocked out in youth sporting events annually.

So how do you protect your teeth?

One of the most important pieces of sports equipment you can wear on the field is a mouthguard, especially when playing contact sports such as soccer, football and field hockey. Wearing a mouthguard can help kids with and without braces avoid serious sports injuries. In fact, the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation reported that athletes who don’t wear mouthguards are 60 times more likely to damage their teeth.

Whatever your sport, the right protective gear can save your face, your teeth, and your braces. If you or your child suffers dental trauma such as a knocked-out or broken tooth, Dr. Godwin suggest that you contact your dentist for immediate attention. For those in braces, it's also important to contact our office to schedule an appointment for repair since damage to braces can lengthen treatment time and affect treatment results.

If you're wearing braces, Dr. Godwin and the team at Bel Air Orthodontics are happy to supply you with a special orthodontic mouthguard. Feel free to ask us more about mouthguards and sports safety at your next visit. Have a great sports season!

Bel Air Orthodontics Gives School Nurses A Helping Hand

September 25th, 2017

It's back-to-school time, and that means the school nurses have their hands full. To make their job a little easier, Bel Air Orthodontics recently visited schools throughout Harford County to make sure that nurses are prepared to handle orthodontic emergencies during the school day. Our complimentary kits provide school nurses with much needed dental supplies such as orthodontic wax, floss, toothbrushes and paste, along with a Nurse's Guide which is filled with helpful tips and emergency care information.

With some minor intervention and guidance from the school nurse, many of our patients with minor emergencies such as broken brackets, loose and/or poking wires can return to class and finish out their school day. So if you're not sure how to handle an orthodontic emergency while at school, stop by the nurse's office. They've got the know-how and supplies to help you out thanks to the team at Bel Air Orthodontics.

Since some orthodontic emergencies may require repair by your orthodontist, Dr. Godwin also recommends that you contact our office as soon as possible so that we can address your concerns and/or schedule an appointment.

Back-to-School Scheduling

September 13th, 2017

Staying on track with your appointment scheduling is important to the success of your orthodontic treatment. Now that schools are back in session, Dr. Godwin would like to remind all of our patients about the importance of scheduling appointments in advance. With school, clubs, sports and family responsibilities to consider, we know that it can be challenging to find time to visit your orthodontist. After-school appointments are typically filled a month in advance, so remember to plan ahead and schedule your next appointment before leaving the office.

While some orthodontic procedures have special time requirements that may conflict with work or school, we'll do our best to find an appointment time that is convenient for you. For more information on appointment scheduling, visit our website at www.belairortho.com/appointment-scheduling. As always, please remember to give us advance notice if you're unable to make your regularly-scheduled appointment. Early notification allows us to offer your reserved time slot to other patients and permits us to effectively accommodate everyone with busy schedules.

Access Your Appointment Information 24/7

Did you know that patients at Bel Air Orthodontics have access to their appointment information 24 hours a day, seven days a week? From our website's Patient Portal, you can look up your appointments, access your account details, and establish email and/or text reminder preferences with a click of a mouse. If you haven't already signed up for this convenient service, contact our office today to set up your online account login.

We hope you enjoyed the lazy days of summer. Have a great school year!

It's Back-to-School Time . . . Are You Ready?

September 6th, 2017

It's back-to-school time, and parents everywhere are checking school lists, buying classroom must-haves, and scrambling to find that perfect pair of sneakers. If you're undergoing orthodontic treatment, we'd suggest adding a few extra supplies to your backpack. Here's a list of items that will help make your school year braces-friendly and worry-free:

Orthodontic wax - Sometimes braces can be irritating to the mouth. If you have a poking wire or a loose bracket, a small amount of non-medicinal relief wax makes an excellent buffer for your gums. It will keep you in school and out of discomfort until you can visit our office for repair.

Elastics (rubber bands) - If Dr. Godwin has prescribed elastics, they must be worn as instructed. Often, they are worn 24/7, except while eating and brushing your teeth. During the school day, you should remove the elastics for lunch, but don't forget to replace them with fresh, clean elastics when you are through. Packing an extra bag of elastics will ensure that you have them available at all times.

Travel toothbrush and floss - Keeping your teeth and braces clean throughout orthodontic treatment is a priority. Besides that, your friends and teachers don't want to look at food stuck to your braces - Yuk!  Keep your teeth and Dr. Godwin happy . . . Remember to brush after every meal.

Floss Threaders and Interproximal Brushes -  Orthodontic appliances can often make flossing and brushing more challenging. Products like floss threaders and proxy brushes can help take the hassle out of cleaning around brackets and wires. Proxy brushes are great for removing trapped food particles that can get lodged in and around orthodontic appliances. Floss threaders and products like Oral-B Superfloss are made with special, rigid ends that make flossing with braces much easier and more effective.

Retainer case - If you are wearing removable orthodontic appliances, you'll need to take them out before eating lunch. When retainers or other removable appliances are not in your mouth, they should ALWAYS be in a retainer case. Most retainers are lost in school cafeterias or restaurants, so keep yours safe . . . Take your retainer case to school!

Braces-friendly snacks and/or lunches - Pack non-stick snacks and lunches that are easy to chew and won't damage your orthodontic appliances. Don't forget to stay away from sugary drinks and treats that can lead to cavities. There are lots of braces-friendly alternatives. For more ideas, visit bracescookbook.com

If you have any questions, or need any of the above items for your backpack, feel free to contact the team at Bel Air Orthodontics. We hope you have a fun and successful school year!

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