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Posts for category: Oral Health

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
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!

By Kwong Orthodontics
June 22, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Orthodontics  

A minor overbite or a few slightly crooked teeth are the types of dental imperfections that can make a smile individual and unique. In fact, with cosmetic dentistry now making it possible for anyone obtain white, straight teeth, a little gap here and there can be a beautiful sign of individuality. However, when the teeth are significantly misaligned, the resulting bite problems may require orthodontics to shift the Bracesteeth back into proper alignment.

Get Straighter Teeth in Portage

On the surface, crooked teeth may appear to be a strictly cosmetic problem. But teeth that are severely out of alignment can lead to a series of dental problems, and even cause distortions to facial features in extreme cases. Dr. Thomas Kwong, an orthodontist in Portage, MI recommends scheduling an appointment with an orthodontist for an adult or child experiencing any of the following symptoms of malocclusion (bite problems):

  • Frequently biting the lining of the cheeks
  • Crowding (not enough room in the mouth for the teeth; new teeth that do no fully erupt)
  • Teeth that cut or poke the roof of the mouth or cheek lining
  • Difficulty chewing or speaking clearly

Orthodontic correction is most common in childhood, when malocclusion issues first become apparent and are easier to correct. However, it is never too late to visit an orthodontist, and adults can also benefit from tooth alignment with braces or aligner trays. Schedule an appointment with an orthodontist if you or your child are suffering from any of the following bite problems:

  • Crowding
  • Underbite
  • Abnormal eruption
  • Excessive spacing
  • Open bite
  • Protrusion/overjet
  • Overbite/deep bite
  • Crossbite - front and back of teeth

Contact an Orthodontist in Portage

Not sure if braces are right for you or your child? For more information, contact Kwong Orthodontics by calling (269) 327 4459 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Kwong today.

By Dr. Thomas Kwong
April 15, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Straight Teeth  

Getting braces doesn't have to mean that you must give up your favorite sport. Dr. Thomas Kwong, your Portage, MI orthodontist, explains how you can protect your teeth and your braces when you're on the playing field.

Watch that ball!Straight Teeth

Balls, sticks, elbows and falls can break wires and brackets and damage your teeth. Unfortunately, sports wouldn't be much fun without those things. Luckily, you don't have to sit on the bench just because you have braces. An orthodontic mouthguard can provide the protection you need to avoid injury.

How is an orthodontic mouthguard different than a regular mouthguard?

Regular mouthguards are made of harder plastic than orthodontic mouthguards. If you do get hit in the mouth, your wires or brackets can break when the mouthguard is pushed against them. Orthodontic mouthguards are made from soft silicone, a material that helps absorb the impact of a blow and protect your braces. These mouthguards also help keep your lips from being pushed into your teeth during a fall or blow. When you get your braces, let your Portage orthodontist know that you'll need this special mouthguard.

Are some types of braces better for sports than others?

Although metal braces are very effective at moving your teeth, some athletes prefer to wear braces that can be removed while they play sports. Invisalign braces are not only removable, but are also clear. Since they're transparent, no one may even know that you're wearing braces. These braces are typically worn for 20 hours every day, but can be removed for special events, like games and practices. If you choose Invisalign, it's still important to wear a mouthguard to prevent injury to your teeth, lips and mouth.

What happens if I have a mouth injury?

Call your orthodontist as soon as possible if you experience an injury during a game or practice. He'll let you know if he thinks you need an emergency appointment.

Interested in learning how braces can improve your smile? Call Dr. Thomas Kwong, your Portage, MI orthodontist, at (269) 327-4459 and schedule an appointment.