Our Blog

  • The Importance of Wearing Your Retainer after Orthodontic Treatment

    March 6, 2018

    It’s the big day and your braces are finally coming off! Does that mean you are completely done? Not so fast! After you complete your treatment here at Norwick Orthodontics, Dr. Kenneth Norwick and our team will recommend you wear a retainer, which must be worn routinely after treatment in order to hold your teeth in their proper, new position while your gums, ligaments and bones adapt. Most patients are required to wear their retainer every night at first, with many also being directed to wear them during the day. It’s important to know there are different kinds of retainers, and today we thought we would explain the differences between them.

    Hawley Retainers

    The Hawley retainer is one of the most common types of retainers. It is a removable retainer made of a combination of a metal wire that typically surrounds the six anterior teeth and is designed to keep your teeth in place. This retainer is made from impressions of your teeth so that it fits snugly and comfortably in the roof of your mouth, while the wire and acrylic framing keeps your teeth in an ideal position. The acrylic can also be personalized with a large number of colors or patterns.

    Essix (Clear) Retainers

    The Essix retainer is a transparent removable retainer that fits over the entire arch of your teeth. This clear or transparent retainer fits over the entire arch of teeth and is produced from a mold. Similar to Invisalign’s clear aligner trays, Essix retainers have no metal or wires. They can also be used to produce minor tooth movements and can be helpful in prevention of tooth wear due to tooth grinding at night.

    Bonded Retainers

    Bonded lingual retainers are cemented directly to the inside surface of your lower canines. Dr. Kenneth Norwick and our team at Norwick Orthodontics encourage our patients with bonded lingual retainers to be careful with their bite as the bonding material may break due to incorrect biting and cause your teeth to shift. As with removable retainers, it is important to keep your bonded retainers clean. When brushing, make sure to carefully clean the inside of your lower teeth, as well as the wire itself.

    The retention phase of treatment begins when the patient’s braces are removed. Retainers are worn full time, typically for the first nine months, except while eating. Retainers should also be removed before brushing your teeth.

    If you have any questions about the retainers we offer or to learn more about post-orthodontic treatment, please feel free to contact us at our convenient Dearborn, MI office and we will be happy to answer any of your questions!

  • Cosmetic Braces Options

    February 27, 2018

    If you’re like most adults, you aren’t enthused about the idea of having to get traditional metal braces. The look, feel, and cost keep many people from getting the smile they want.

    However, many options are available at our Dearborn, MI office if you’re looking for a cost-effective and more discreet way to straighten your teeth.

    Choosing the right kind of cosmetic braces depends on the severity of your situation. Some cosmetic braces, such as clear aligners, are best suited for mild to moderate spacing or crowding of the teeth, and minimal bite alignment issues. But there are options for people who need more intense treatment.

    Below is a list of some of the most popular options available today.

    Invisalign® involves multiple clear aligner trays that you wear in a predetermined order to achieve the desired treatment result. Most people won’t even know you’re wearing them, and they offer solid results. Clear aligners might not be suitable for all cases; they are mainly for those with mild to moderate spacing or crowding of the teeth and minimal bite alignment issues.

    Ceramic braces are similar to traditional braces, but less visible due to translucent ceramic brackets and/or wires. They are not quite as discreet as clear aligners such as Invisalign, but they are more subtle than traditional braces and can be used for most cases.

    Lingual braces are attached to the back of your teeth instead of the front. They are highly discreet but effective at moving teeth and correcting bite issues. Their cost is higher due to the materials involved, and the additional time and effort required to place them accurately.

    Self-ligating braces are similar to traditional metal braces, but no elastics (ligatures) are required on the bracket because they have built-in clips to hold the wire against your teeth. People will perceive you’re wearing them, but they don’t need as many adjustments from Dr. Kenneth Norwick, so you’ll require fewer appointments and undergo a shorter treatment time.

    It’s only natural to have questions before you embark on a course of braces treatment. Speak with Dr. Kenneth Norwick or any of our staff members at our Dearborn, MI office about your goals, budget, and timeframe, and we’ll help you find the right fit!

  • Top Five Best Foods for Oral Health

    February 20, 2018

    Some foods are just terrible for your teeth — think cookies and candy bars — but there are certain foods that are beneficial to your oral health. Below, Dr. Kenneth Norwick and our team have covered five of the top foods to keep your teeth and gums healthy!

    1. Crispy, low-acid fruits and vegetables: Fruits like apples and vegetables such as carrots and celery act like “natural toothbrushes,” helping to clear plaque from your teeth and freshen your breath.

    2. Kiwis: These little green superstars are packed with vitamin C which is essential for gum health. The collagen in your gums is strengthened when you consume foods that are high in vitamin C, like kiwis, thus helping to prevent periodontal problems.

    3. Raw onions: Onions have long been studied for their antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties. Proliferation of bacteria is what leads to tooth decay and cavities. By including raw onions in your diet, you’ll be doing your part to wipe out those little microbes before they can multiply!

    4. Shiitake Mushrooms: A specific compound in shiitake mushrooms, lentinan, has been shown to have antibacterial properties that target the microbes that cause cavities while leaving other beneficial bacteria alone. It may also help prevent gingivitis, or inflammation of the gums.

    5. Green Tea: Often lauded for its high antioxidant content and many health benefits, it turns out green tea also benefits your oral health! A Japanese study found men who drank green tea on a regular basis had a lower occurrence of periodontal disease compared to men who drank green tea infrequently. It’s believed this is due to the catechins in green tea, a type of flavonoid that may help protect you from free radical damage, but more research needs to be done. Either way, drink up for your overall health, as well as your teeth!

    If you have any questions about your oral health, or are looking for even more oral health tips, contact our Dearborn, MI office!

  • The Origins of Valentine’s Day

    February 13, 2018

    When we think of Valentine’s Day, we think of cards, flowers, and chocolates. We think of girlfriends celebrating being single together and couples celebrating their relationship. We think of all things pink and red taking over every pharmacy and grocery store imaginable. But what Dr. Kenneth Norwick and our team would like to think of is when and how this joyous, love-filled day began.

    Several martyrs’ stories are associated with the origins of Valentine’s Day. One of the most widely known suggests that Valentine was a Roman priest who went against the law at a time when marriage had been banned for young men. He continued to perform marriage ceremonies for young lovers in secret and when he was discovered, he was sentenced to death.

    Another tale claims that Valentine was killed for helping Christians escape from Roman prisons. Yet another says that Valentine himself sent the first valentine when he fell in love with a girl and sent her a letter and signed it, “From your Valentine.”

    Other claims suggest that it all began when Geoffrey Chaucer, an Englishman often referred to as the father of English literature, wrote a poem that was the first to connect St. Valentine to romance. From there, it evolved into a day when lovers would express their feelings for each other. Cue the flowers, sweets, and cards!

    Regardless of where the holiday came from, these stories all have one thing in common: They celebrate the love we are capable of as human beings. And though that’s largely in a romantic spirit these days, it doesn’t have to be. You could celebrate love for a sister, a friend, a parent, even a pet.

    We hope all our patients know how much we love them! Wishing you all a very happy Valentine’s Day from the team at Norwick Orthodontics!