Patient Care

Successful Treatment and Patient Care

Successful treatment and patient care at Davis Orthodontics doesn’t just mean straightening teeth. It’s built on open communication with our patients and their own ownership of their treatment.

Communication is key to our ability to provide the best possible care for you or your child. Sharing your concerns or asking questions about your treatment are always welcome. We are always happy and encourage our patients to speak to us about their treatment. Your teeth are just as important to us as they are to you.

It is also crucial to communicate with our team when something unexpected occurs. Letting us know allows us to better prepare and help you. For example, if you have a broken bracket, you can send a message through the dental monitoring app or call the office and speak to one of the “DO” crew so that we can add all the details such as tooth location and what occurred in your chart. This allows our team to schedule you promptly for the appropriate type of appointment, but it also prepares our clinical team so they can get you in and out of the office quickly.

If it’s a non-emergency, we can often extend your next appointment to allow for the extra time needed to make the repair. By communicating with us when issues arise, we can prevent you from falling behind in your treatment, discomfort, or inconveniences to your busy schedule.

Lastly, making it a priority to schedule and maintain appointments is vital to the success of your treatment. Orthodontic visits allow our team to monitor your progress as well as keep an eye out for things like changes in your bite, oral health, spacing, and tooth rotations just to name a few. Missing or consistently rescheduling orthodontic check-ups prevents us from making the adjustments or providing the care needed to keep your treatment moving on the originally proposed timeline. Therefore, missed or pushed out appointments can prolong your time to getting your desired results. Additionally, arriving late to your scheduled appointment often prevents our team from completing your full appointment to avoid delays and inconvenience for other timely patients.

We understand things come up and life throws curve balls, but by letting us know of delays, concerns, or questions we can do our very best to accommodate you. Together we can achieve your ideal smile.

 

Davis Orthodontics

Orthodontic Appliances Blog Post

Orthodontic Appliances

Most people are familiar with the “standard” equipment and materials for orthodontic treatment. Things like wires, brackets, aligners, and colored rubber bands are often the first things that come to mind. As the average person starts to elaborate on that list, orthodontic appliances come up, but the knowledge and familiarity around how these instruments are often limited. In this post we will touch on some of the most commonly used appliances in orthodontics.

Rapid Palatal Expander (RPE)

Rapid Palatal Expander

This appliance is usually the most commonly known orthodontic device. These appliances are often placed in younger patients that are still growing and are used to slowly widen a narrow upper arch to create more space for teeth where there is crowding or to help correct bite issues such as a crossbite. The tool is placed in the roof of the mouth and has connecting “rods” which are cemented to the patient’s molars. At the center of the device is a small screw with a hole that when turned, extends the “rods” outward and pushes them against the teeth. The screw is turned with a special “key” once a day. This is a very gradual expansion process which lasts over a period of 4-5 months. The RPE only moves .25 mm with each turn which allows the two bones in the palette to grow back together as they are slowly spread apart.

Herbst

Herbst

This functional device is used to help correct overjet issues. An overjet is where the upper jaw extends out past the lower jaw further than it should. An overjet often causes issues with how a person closes their mouth, chews food, speaks, and their overall facial appearance. The appliance has a hinge mechanism connected by screws that causes the lower jaw to move forward and repositions it into an ideal bite with the upper maxilla (jaw) which is held in place. By repositioning the jaw, it corrects the bite and makes it more stable.

Carriere (CMA)
Carriere (CMA)
This fixed appliance is used to correct a molar malalignment. The device can be placed on either the upper and lower arches and uses a metal rod that attaches from the back molar to the canine. A bracket with a hook is then attached to a tooth on the opposing arch and serves as an anchor tooth. Then an elastic band is used to connect the anchor tooth to the canine. Lastly the patient wears a clear retainer to hold the opposing arch in place. The CMA device uses light uniform backward force with controlled rotation of the molars while moving the whole canines to the molars segment as a unit. With proper patient compliance, the device moves the teeth into the proper position. A great indicator that the device (and the patient) has done the needed work is a small space forming between the canine tooth and the lateral incisor.

Distal Jet

Distal Jet
A distal jet appliance is a device that is anchored against the roof of the mouth and consists of coiled springs that are attached to premolars and molars. The anchored springs apply constant backwards force to the molars, which slowly moves them back and creates the needed space to correct crowded teeth or for emerging teeth. It can also correct misalignments. Once proper alignment has been reached, a nance appliance replaces this device to hold the molars in place.

Nance

Nance

Like with anything new, there is a period of adjustment and getting used to having one of these in one’s mouth. It is not unusual to have some mild discomfort, but with a little time each of these devices will feel normal and you will be well on your way to reaching your ideal smile!

IPR

What is IPR?

 

IPR

To many, “IPR” is a funny word you have probably heard us use around the clinic at Davis Orthodontics. To decode and break down what we mean, “IPR” stands for “interproximal reduction.” This fancy term means reducing the spots or space between your teeth where they touch. To reduce the space, we basically use a high-speed nail file similarly to what you would see in a nail salon. A common way we use the “IPR” kit is to help correct teeth with rotations. We create a little space between the teeth to make room for the rotated teeth to turn in the proper direction. We also use “IPR” with our aligner patients to reduce the contacts between teeth to allow them to move into optimal alignment. It’s really just a little “tooth shaping”.

So, there is no need to panic if you hear this term come up when Dr. Davis is explaining your treatment plan. There is no numbing and no pain involved with this procedure. It’s just a little “tooth shaping”. You may see space between your teeth after “IPR” is completed, but don’t worry. By the end of our treatment journey, your teeth will be perfect with no spaces present. Don’t let scary abbreviation deter you from achieving the smile of your dreams.

 

Questions about Insurance?

payment

Insurance can be a confusing topic. Let’s go over some frequently asked questions to better understand your insurance.

“Does your office accept my insurance?” This is the most asked question during a new patient phone call. Here at Davis Orthodontics, we accept almost all insurance carriers. The amount insurance is expected to cover is dependent on your plan. We strive to help all our patients utilize their insurance policies if available. Think of your insurance as a coupon for treatment, it might have rules and restrictions, but it is there to help cover some portion of the cost.

“Can I change my insurance to the lower plan since I am already in orthodontic treatment?” Insurance companies cover your orthodontic treatment throughout your full treatment time. For example, if Dr. Davis recommends treatment for 15 months, then your insurance provider will set up a fee schedule to cover payments for 15 months. We highly suggest maintaining the insurance throughout treatment to receive the maximum benefit and to prevent having to cover the remaining balance from the insurance company. If you change employers and/or must cancel your coverage, we can file a treatment in progress claim to the new carrier. Keep in mind, some carriers do not accept treatment in progress which means since you started treatment with a different carrier, the new carrier will not cover the remaining balance.

“Why doesn’t my insurance cover more of the treatment fee?” An average orthodontic maximum is $1000 to $2500 depending on your employer’s plan that they are enrolled in. The expected coverage amount is also based on treatment time and the treatment fee. As previously mentioned, your insurance pays throughout the course of treatment.

“I have the same insurance, and I used my full orthodontic treatment a few years ago. Why doesn’t my orthodontic insurance benefit renew every year?” Orthodontic insurance benefits have a lifetime maximum, which means if you utilize the full benefits for a previous orthodontic treatment then no benefit will be available for an additional treatment. Lifetime maximum is per insurance patient. So, if you used all your benefits for your own orthodontic needs but have a child who needs treatment, they will have their own separate lifetime maximum.

“I have two different active insurance policies; can I file both?” Absolutely, we are more than happy to assist you with both policies. This is called having primary and secondary insurance coverage. Usually, the way insurance works is you are required to file primary first then you can file secondary. As long as both policies have something called coordination of benefits (COB), we will file claims and could possibly collect benefits from both. The estimated amount of benefit is determined based on the COB within each of the policies. This means they will coordinate with each other to reach the lifetime maximum on the primary first and then the secondary will pay any remaining benefit if available. For example, if you have $1500 lifetime maximum coverage with your primary and only $1000 with secondary coverage. You will only be estimated to receive a lifetime maximum benefit of $1500 from primary. Secondary will not cover any benefit. Another example is if your primary benefit is $1000 and your secondary benefit is $2000 then it is estimated that you will receive $2000 benefit, $1000 from primary and $1000 from secondary. Again, these are only estimated examples. In all cases, the responsibility for payment of the entire orthodontic fee rests directly from the patient.

The Dental Monitoring Difference

The Dental Monitoring Difference

The Dental Monitoring Difference

Do you hate always sitting in traffic trying to get to your orthodontic appointment on time? Are you wondering how well your child is taking care of their teeth? Have questions about your treatment but despise being put on hold to wait for the right answers? Well, we don’t blame you. That’s why Davis Orthodontics now offers Dental Monitoring.

Dental Monitoring is an intelligent platform that is designed to connect patients and doctors along the entire treatment journey with remote monitoring. With a small device that connects to your phone along with an app, you can take scans of your teeth from your home to work to even the beach. Did a bracket come off? Did you run out of elastics? Are you wondering why a tooth looks funny? We have that covered too. The message system allows you to ask questions or express concerns anytime, anywhere.

A simple scan once a week allows Dr. Davis to monitor progress and makes treatment more customized without being seen in the office every month. Oh wait! Did I mention you can also see your progress? Dental Monitoring allows you to also see your progress when you click on the before and after video feature. With Dental Monitoring, we can provide continuous supervision of your treatment, but also give you more freedom and flexibility throughout your journey. By enhancing your patient experience through Dental Monitoring, we can give you the best treatment experience and outcome.

Davis Orthodontics

Setting Up an Orthodontic Consultation

Setting Up an Orthodontic Consultation

Here at Davis Orthodontics we love walking our patients through every step of the orthodontic process so that they feel comfortable and knowledgeable. From the time that you call our office to set up a new patient consultation to the time you are starting treatment with us, we want you to feel good about the process. The initial step in your treatment journey is scheduling your new patient consultation. Sounds simple, right? Yes, but we will need more than just your name and when you would like to come in and see us.

When setting up a consultation it is important to have as much information as possible readily available for our new patient coordinator such as who’s your general dentist or what dental insurance (if any) you will be using. We also require that you are up to date with your cleanings from your general dentist. This way we know we have a clean bill of health to start your next journey onward. Starting orthodontic treatment requires your mouth to be cavity free and healthy gingiva and bone.

We will also want to know how you found out about Davis Orthodontics. Were you referred to us by your dentist or did you find us through a general internet search or social media? We like to know this information so that we can thank our partners in dental health or if you have enjoyed our social media presence on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, or YouTube.

After these preliminary questions, we will gather all your basic information such as name, address, and date of birth along with your phone number and email address. Once we have those details, we can gather any insurance information so that we can check your orthodontic benefits prior to your consultation visit. We understand you will likely have several questions regarding your coverage and treatment, but rest assured our treatment coordinator and Dr. Davis will discuss not only the recommended treatment, but will also cover insurance payments and fees.

Here are links to our Dental Monitoring Page and Financing Page.

Once you are scheduled at a convenient time and date, we will send you all the necessary paperwork by email or text to make sure all your information is correct. Now you are ready for your first visit! We can’t wait to see you!

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“But everyone is doing it!”

image-cred

You have probably heard the name of at least one of these mail order aligners or as they call it “‘Invisible Braces”. These companies boast “straight teeth in as little as six months,” and claim it’s “cheap, fast, and effective.”

DIY aligners through one of these companies typically involves taking an impression of your teeth from an at-home kit or snapping photos of your smile. From these, clear aligners and a treatment plan are created. You then undergo treatment without the inconvenience of in-person appointments and everything is remote.  While it sounds promising, is it too good to be true? Hate to break it to you, but oftentimes it is.

Unfortunately, many patients that opt for the DIY route often have not seen a dentist or an orthodontist and put themselves at risk for injury to their teeth, bite, and jaw. Combine that with the fact that there is no direct supervision while in treatment, it creates the potential for oral disaster.

When teeth are moved incorrectly or too quickly it can result in bite misalignment which can lead to more problems than a wonky smile such as nerve damage, neck and jaw strain, and migraines. Consequently, if there is gum disease or tooth decay, you can break teeth or cause irreparable damage such as root resorption or bone loss.

Many of these DIY orthodontics companies state they have a network of dentists and orthodontists to oversee your treatment and you are supposed to send photos of your teeth every three months so that they can monitor your progress. But A LOT can happen in three months, and a photo does not give a complete picture of oral health and progress.

Furthermore, there is no real way to hold these companies accountable if there are issues or there need to be changes to your treatment such as a refinement to get the desired results. Most of these companies place the responsibility of a patient’s treatment on the designated doctor. What if the doctor never responds to your concerns? It’s like asking a telehealth doctor to diagnose a broken bone, send you a cast, and have you set the break. It’s just too much room for error.

When it comes to something as important as my smile, oral health, and the ability to enjoy meals, let’s leave it to the professionals.

For more articles on the closing of Smile Direct Club, please visit the news articles below:

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-67675431

https://www.nytimes.com/2023/12/09/business/smiledirectclub-shutting-down-liquidation.html

https://www.cnn.com/2023/12/09/business/smiledirectclub-shutdown-bankruptcy/index.html

braces

Which type of braces are right for me?

DAVIS ORTHODONTICS CAN HELP YOU DECIDE WHICH METHOD IS BEST FOR STRAIGHTENING YOUR SMILE!

Braces are one of the most effective ways to improve the alignment of your teeth. Straight teeth look better, feel better, and are easier to care for. So which type of braces are right for you? The type of braces that will be best for you will depend on a few things. At Davis Orthodontics, we will take into account the severity of your dental issues, your age, certain time constraints, and other key factors before helping you decide which dental braces are ideal for your situation.

There are many impressive dental alignment options currently available. Braces can be used to gradually help your teeth align over a designated time period. Below, we will discuss three popular types of braces: The Invisalign® dental alignment system, traditional metal braces, and ceramic braces.

INVISALIGN® – REMOVABLE CLEAR PLASTIC ALIGNERS

Invisalign® aligners, also known as clear-aligner-treatment, are a great option for anyone with minor dental alignment issues. Invisalign aligners are custom-made clear plastic orthodontic devices that are similar to retainers or mouthguards. The difference between retainers/mouthguards and Invisalign mouthpieces are in their purpose and functionality. While a retainer holds your teeth in a certain position, Invisalign® slowly helps guide your teeth into a better position over about a year.

So how long does Invisalign take? This will depend on the severity of your dental issues. The Invisalign® System can take anywhere from 36 to 60 weeks. You’ll likely switch out your aligners every two weeks, gradually helping your teeth shift into the right position. This means you will use anywhere from 18 to 30 different aligners from your own custom-made system on average.

Invisalign aligners are nice because they can be removed when you eat. They also make it easier to clean your teeth and prevent plaque and staining.

These aligners are extremely effective for minor alignment issues. They are also often more comfortable than other kinds of braces. However, an Invisalign® System won’t work for everyone. Your orthodontist can let you know if Invisalign is right for your teeth.

TRADITIONAL METAL BRACES – A HIGHLY EFFECTIVE OPTION

Traditional metal braces are a time tested orthodontic tool that straightens your teeth using wires. They can be used to great effect even on severely misaligned teeth. Metal braces are positioned on your teeth and are adjusted over time until the desired dental positioning is achieved. Metal braces can take anywhere from a few months to a few years to straighten your smile. Your unique dental situation will determine how long you will need to wear metal braces.

While you may be familiar with the metal braces of the past, today’s metal braces are more comfortable and advanced than ever before. For example, heat-activated archwire braces are now available. These braces work quickly and efficiently, using the heat in your mouth to help your teeth shift more comfortably and at a faster rate.

CERAMIC BRACES – A SIMPLIFIED AND SUBTLE ROUTE

Ceramic braces are very much like metal braces in many ways. They perform the same function, to slowly help your teeth align with time. However, ceramic braces differ in their look. They are made of a ceramic material that better matches the color of teeth. This makes them a great option for adults or teenagers who would otherwise feel embarrassed about the way metal braces look.

Ceramic braces are an effective option that works well for most people with teeth that aren’t as straight as they would like. However, they do tend to be more expensive than metal braces and can become stained if not cared for properly.

LET US HELP YOU ACHIEVE THE SMILE OF YOUR DREAMS!

Your orthodontist will be able to tell you for sure which kinds of dental braces are best for your teeth. That’s what we are here for, after all! To find out what you can do to straighten your smile, please feel free to call us today! The staff here at Davis Orthodontics can answer all of your questions and help you find braces that will be best for your unique situation.

National Dental Care Month

Oral care plays an integral role in your aesthetic and physical health. At Davis Orthodontics, we invite you to read the importance of maintaining optimal dental health, a brief history of National Dental Care Month, and how you can observe the occasion.

DENTAL HYGIENE FOR CHILDREN AND ADULTS

Practicing good dental hygiene should begin during childhood and continue throughout your life. Children are less likely to experience problems like tooth decay and gum disease. However, oral care problems in children could contribute to potentially serious problems like oral infections, pain, and even nutrition deficiencies due to the inability to chew or digest foods properly. Dental care professionals recommend that children start receiving oral care as early as six months old and receive subsequent care at least once or twice per year.

Adults who fail to practice optimal oral hygiene stand at risk of developing serious oral care problems, lost teeth, and severe gum disease. Additionally, poor oral care in adults has been linked to potentially serious, even life-threatening illnesses like systemic infections, cardiovascular disease, certain kinds of head and neck cancers, and diabetes.

HISTORY OF NATIONAL DENTAL CARE MONTH

National Dental Care Month was founded by Dr. Tim Stirneman and Jim Wojdyla after the discovery that there were not enough national holidays that celebrate oral health. At the start of 2018, the National Day Calendar made it official to observe National Dental Care Month annually during the month of May.

OBSERVING THE OCCASION

The best way for you to observe this national holiday is to remember the importance of maintaining proper oral hygiene and engaging in practices designed to help you achieve this aim. This includes:

Brushing And Flossing Regularly
Oral care experts recommend that you brush at least twice per day and floss at least once. Brushing should be executed for two to three minutes per session using wide, circular strokes to read every tooth. Floss should gently be placed between the teeth. Both of these activities remove lingering food products and help cleanse bacteria from the mouth.

Limit Sugar Intake
Sugar has a notorious reputation for damaging teeth. Therefore, the consumption of foods and beverages containing sugar should be reduced to avoid further damage.

Avoid Cigarette Smoking
The chemicals contained in cigarettes can stain teeth and damage the tooth enamel. Additionally, smoking weakens the body’s immune system, which can prove detrimental to the gums, especially following injuries and dental procedures.

Visit Oral Care Professional Routinely
Optimal oral health involves seeing your dental care provider at least once or twice per year. During these visits, oral care practitioners can provide professional cleanings, identify any underlying problems, and address issues before they require more aggressive treatment.

CONTACTING US

If you are looking for an experienced dental care professional, we encourage you to consider the experts at Davis Orthodontics. We pride ourselves in combining old-fashioned customer service practices with cutting-edge technology to offer you care that is second to none. For further information about our practice and the services we provide, contact our offices today.

Sources:
1. https://www.colgate.com/en-us
2. https://nationaldaycalendar.com/national-dental-care-month-may/
3. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/324708#drink-water