My Blog
By KWONG ORTHODONTICS
August 01, 2018
Category: Oral Health

What are the criteria for receiving orthodontic treatment? In other words, how do you know you need braces? At Kwong Orthodontics in orthodontic treatmentsPortage, MI, you'll receive the answers to those questions and more when you see Dr. Thomas Kwong for a complete orthodontic evaluation. He and his team address the many situations which warrant correction with braces, clear aligners and TADs (temporary anchorage devices).

The problems with crooked teeth

Orthodontic correction of all kinds and complexities has increased dramatically in recent years. Even adults are pursuing clear aligners (such as Invisalign) and also traditional metal and ceramic braces.

In fact, the American Association of Orthodontists says that 20 percent of patients wearing some type of braces are adults. The same association advises parents take kids to a fully-qualified orthodontist by age 7 to see if braces are in their futures.

Why are these numbers increasing? Frankly, people see the value in beautiful, healthy smiles. Teeth which are poorly aligned, don't occlude (or bite together properly), are harder to keep free of damaging plaque and tartar, and lead to issues with:

  • Speech
  • Efficient biting and chewing
  • Mouth breathing
  • Gum disease
  • Tooth decay
  • Headaches
  • Jaw joint problems (TMJ and arthritis as examples)
  • Ear and facial pain
  • Teeth grinding and clenching (bruxism)

As such, orthodontics in Portage and across the world remains a mainstay of restorative, preventive and cosmetic dentistry, improving smiles, self-confidence, and overall health for the short term and for the long haul as well.

Do you need braces?

At Kwong Orthodontics in Portage, Dr. Kwong and his dedicated team will inspect your teeth and gums, take oral impressions, digital X-rays, photos, and more. All this information helps Dr. Kwong determine if braces are necessary, and if so, what type would work best. He formulates careful treatment plans aimed at optimal aesthetics and oral function.

Depending on the extent of the problem, orthodontic treatment ranges from simple realignment with clear aligners (for older teens and adults), Temporary Anchorage Devices (TADs), removable or bonded-on retainers, metal or ceramic braces, or lingual (tongue-side) braces.

Additionally, Dr. Kwong offers WildSmiles braces for children and teens. These appliances feature custom-designed brackets with special designs to add elements of fun and individuality to wearing braces.

Find the answers

Dr. Kwong is the orthodontist to see for an accurate and honest appraisal of your smile alignment needs. For
a one-on-one consultation for your child or for you, contact Kwong Orthodontics in Portage, MI, at (269) 327-4459.

By KWONG ORTHODONTICS
June 20, 2018
Tags: Invisalign   clear braces  

Learn more about the unique advantages you’ll enjoy when you get Clear Aligner treatment.

You want to get a straighter smile but perhaps you don't like the idea of wearing braces. We understand that wearing metal braces isn’t clear alignerssomething that a lot of teens or adults want to deal with. This is why our Portage, MI, orthodontist Dr. Thomas Kwong offers Invisalign a type of clear aligner treatment. A lot of adults are turning to these clear aligners to get the smiles they want and you could, too.

Here’s what makes Invisalign (clear aligners) so unique to other orthodontic treatment options:

Clear Not Metal Braces

Most people think of braces and immediately think of metal brackets and wires. Don’t worry; Invisalign doesn’t require any metal at all. In fact, when you get Invisalign in Portage, MI, the only thing you’ll receive is a set of clear, thin plastic aligners that are designed to fit comfortably over your teeth. These aligners look similar to whitening trays, but because they are custom-made just for your teeth, they will provide the perfect fit.

A Boost of Confidence

We know that wearing metal braces can very easily make you self-conscious and embarrassed to smile, especially if you are in college or in the professional world. Luckily, Invisalign allows you to carry on with your day and talk to those around you without worrying that they will immediately notice your braces. As long as you continue to keep those aligners clean they should be nearly invisible.

Eat What You Love

Nothing is worse than getting traditional braces and discovering that you can’t eat a lot of the foods you love. That’s because sticky, hard, crunchy and chewy foods could damage brackets and wire. Since Invisalign aligners are removable, all you have to do is take them out prior to mealtimes, rinse them out and then put them back in after you are done. There are no foods you can’t enjoy with Invisalign.

Keep Your Trusty Oral Care Routine

The idea of having to floss or brush around thin, delicate wires and brackets is enough to make anyone nervous; fortunately, since Invisalign aligners are removable you can just take them out prior to brushing and flossing. Your routine doesn’t have to change at all.

Kwong Orthodontics in Portage, MI, is dedicated to giving you a straight, beautiful smile no matter what orthodontic treatment you choose. Call our office today to schedule a consultation for you or your child. Let’s give you a smile you can be proud of.

By KWONG ORTHODONTICS
April 12, 2017
Category: Oral Appliances
Tags: Braces  

Not sure if you can benefit from orthodontics? Portage, MI, orthodontist, Dr. Thomas Kwong, explains how orthodontic treatment can improveorthodontist Portage, MI your smile and discusses popular brace options.

When is orthodontic treatment necessary?

Orthodontic treatment may be recommended if you're unhappy with the appearance of your crooked teeth or if you suffer from a bite issue. Although most people are familiar with overbites and underbites, several other types of bite issues, such as cross bites and open bites, can also be corrected with braces. Bite issues occur when the teeth in your upper and lower jaws don't fit together correctly. Depending on the type of bite problem you have, you may experience pain in your jaw, trouble chewing or speaking clearly, jaw stiffness, headaches, lacerations, headaches, temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) or low self-esteem.

How do braces work?

Braces slowly reposition your teeth, changing both your appearance and your bite. Metal and ceramic braces use a system of wires and brackets to realign your teeth. If you choose lingual braces, the wires or braces will be attached on the back surfaces of your teeth and won't be noticeable. During your visit to Dr. Kwong's Portage office, you'll be given the opportunity to use WildSmile Braces in place of the usual brackets. WildSmile brace brackets are available in several fun shapes, including flowers, hearts, soccer balls, hearts and super-diamonds.

If you prefer a wire-free treatment, you'll want to consider Invisalign. There are no wires or brackets needed with this brace system. Clear, removable aligner trays shift your teeth instead, offering a less obtrusive option to traditional braces. Trays are removed to eat and are usually worn for 20 hours per day. After you've worn a set of trays for two weeks, you'll set them aside and begin wearing a new set.

Why should I visit an orthodontist for braces?

Orthodontists have specialized training in managing tooth movement. After graduating from dental school, they complete a three-year orthodontic residency that gives them the opportunity to perfect their skills by working with patients with many types of orthodontic issues.

Don't let crooked teeth or a bite issue keep you from smiling! Call Portage, MI, orthodontist, Dr. Kwong, (269) 327-4459 to schedule an appointment.

By KWONG ORTHODONTICS
February 08, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Braces   Orthodontics  

Braces can change your bite and smile for the better. However, understanding the benefits of orthodontic treatment can be a tricky task. bracesFortunately, your Portage, MI, orthodontist can help you determine if braces are the best treatment for you and your smile. Learn more about orthodontics with Dr. Thomas Kwong at Kwong Orthodontics.

What is orthodontic treatment? 
Orthodontic treatment uses gentle pressure applied to the teeth to move them into new, corrected positions which better benefit your smile’s bite and appearance. An orthodontist, while they have the same training as a dentist initially, has continued education in orthodontics and normally specializes in this branch of dentistry.

How can braces help me? 
Braces can benefit your smile in more ways than one. Straightening your teeth can make your smile look great, boosting confidence and self-esteem. It can also eliminate hard-to-reach areas where teeth overlap or crowd together, helping to decrease the chance of tooth decay. Braces also help correct the mouth’s bite, decreasing the symptoms of conditions like TMJ disorder and making chewing and eating easier or more comfortable.

What are my orthodontic options? 
Orthodontic treatment may bring images of traditional metal braces to mind. However, thanks to modern dentistry and orthodontics, you now have more options than ever. Treatments like Invisalign use plastic aligner trays to move teeth rather than the traditional metal brackets and wires. Additionally, clear braces use ceramic, tooth-colored braces to move the teeth.

Orthodontic Treatment in Portage, MI 
Orthodontics usually require an appointment with your dentist once every four to six weeks for adjustments and general maintenance. These important visits allow your orthodontist to ensure that your progress moves forward according to plan and that you do not have any signs of tooth decay or gum disease during treatment.

For more information on orthodontic treatment or braces, please contact Dr. Kwong at Kwong Orthodontics in Portage, MI. Call (269) 327 4459 to schedule your consultation with Dr. Kwong today!

By KWONG ORTHODONTICS
December 19, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Braces   Orthodontics  

How your orthodontist in Portage, MI can help your smile

Your orthodontist performs many different procedures to correct improper jaw alignment and poor tooth positioning. Growth rates of your orthodonticsoral structures and genetics play an important role in whether you might need the services of an orthodontist. Dr. Thomas Kwong at Kwong Orthodontics in Portage, MI wants to share some important facts about how an orthodontist can help your smile.

Orthodontists complete at least two years of additional training after completing dental school. Your orthodontist is an expert at learning how to restore full chewing function by re-aligning your jaws and creating a cosmetically beautiful smile by moving your teeth into their correct positions.

When you visit Dr. Kwong, he will use state-of-the-art technology including precise x-rays and models to evaluate your jaw and tooth alignment. Using technology and expertise, he will create a treatment plan designed to correct your jaw and tooth alignment, giving you a beautifully straight smile.

Orthodontists like Dr. Kwong use techniques to correct these common aesthetic and functional problems:

  • Correcting poor bite alignment to restore good chewing function
  • Improving the appearance of your smile by closing gaps between your teeth
  • Improving the ease of cleaning by moving crowded or overlapped teeth
  • Preventing excessive wear by repositioning rotated teeth

Dr. Kwong offers a full range of orthodontic treatments for you to choose from including:

  • Invisalign clear plastic aligners which straighten your smile invisibly, comfortably, and in less time.
  • Lingual braces, using braces cemented to the back of your teeth, creating a better cosmetic look
  • Conventional orthodontics, with tooth-colored or clear brackets and wires
  • Conventional orthodontics, with metal brackets and wires

Your orthodontist can straighten smiles in children as young as seven, and adults of any age. You are never too old to have a straight smile!

Your orthodontist can give you a straighter, more beautiful smile than you ever thought possible. If you have an uneven, crooked smile, don’t despair! Call Dr. Thomas Kwong at Kwong Orthodontics in Portage, MI. To find out more about orthodontics and orthodontic treatment and how they can help your smile, call today!





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