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Archive for December, 2011

The Underbite

Problems to watch for from the AAO

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So you think you or your child has an underbite?  As it turns out that is one of the symptoms of jaw disharmony your orthodontist can help with.  The American Association of Orthodontists recommends a child visit the orthodontist by the age of 7.

The underbite can develop because of hereditary, functional shifts, and trauma among other reasons.  If the parents have a strong jaw or chin, the child may follow suit.  Many of the cases that present are also caused by a functional jaw shift into that position.  What that means is the bite can be aided into the underbite position by the teeth or muscles.  An orthodontist can take a few minutes to examine the patient and identify a shift by conducting “opening and closing” exercises.  One indicator that the relationship may not improve is if the teeth lock into that underbite position via interdigitation of the surrounding teeth (click here for an example).

Early treatment at Global Smiles Orthodontics can catch some of the developing problems so they don’t get worse and can also make treatment easier to fix later on.  Starting early can benefit a growing child because the orthodontist can help guide jaw growth, correct habits, improve the appearance and self-esteem of the youngster or the adult, and ultimately guide the permanent teeth into their position so the patient has maximum function, aesthetics, and jaw harmony.

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About those retainers…

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Why does my orthodontist ask me to wear my retainers after my braces come off?  The reasons is because you were a naughty patient and your orthodontist wants to punish you!  Just kidding! 🙂

The literature supports the need for lifetime retention.  This means the patient should keep their retainer handy forever.  The reason is that teeth tend to move back to their original location, i.e. before braces treatment.  In addition, the oral environment is dynamic in that the very dimension of the mandible tends change slightly throughout a person’s life.  The arch (bite form) can also change rather quickly if a patient looses a tooth for example.  What this means is teeth follow the laws of physics too and will move to an area of least resistance if a force, or lack thereof, allows it.  This is where our retainers come in.  The retainer will keep the teeth in the position they were in when the retainer was first made.

So don’t forget to wear those retainers!

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Dr Mendieta Accepted: ADA Institute for Diversity in Leadership

American Dental Association Institute for Diversity in Leadership group picture

Dr. Mendieta accepted to the Institute for Diversity in Leadership

Established in 2003 by the American Dental Association, an integral part of the ADA Institute for Diversity in Leadership learning experience is having the participants put the leadership principles and training they’ve received at the American Dental Association to practical use.  Dentists select an issue or challenge in their community, organization or the profession and develop and execute a plan to address it.

Over the course of the year, the 12 dentists selected to participate in the Institute attend three leadership training sessions conducted by faculty from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management at ADA Headquarters in Chicago. Dentists have the opportunity to network with the ADA Board of Trustees, leaders from the program’s corporate sponsors and non-profit organizations, faculty from the Kellogg School of Management and ADA staff—all in small group settings.

Dr. Edgar Mendieta will use his training to proudly focus on our community here in Columbus, Ohio.