How to Fix an Overbite
How to Fix an Overbite
Overbites are very common in both children and adults, with many having at least a tiny overbite. While not typically the most serious dental problem, a significant overbite can lead to several dental health problems. There are a number of ways to prevent or treat an overbite, and here at SET, we can help find the right treatment for you or your child.
What is an Overbite?
An overbite is when a person’s upper teeth extend beyond their bottom front teeth. The most frequent cause of this is the size of the jaw or teeth – there may not be enough space in the jaw to fit one’s teeth.
Other causes can include frequent nail biting, teeth grinding, and for children thumbsucking and using a pacifier after age three. Read more about the causes of an overbite.
Is an Overbite Bad?
An overbite can cause a number of problems, such as tooth decay, gum disease, and jaw discomfort. Since the upper and lower teeth are misaligned, an overbite can also cause enamel to be worn down or teeth to be chipped or cracked due to friction between teeth. An overbite can also make it more difficult to chew and bite since the teeth are misaligned.
How to Fix it
There are different ways to treat children and adults for an overbite. For children, braces can be used to slowly shift the teeth into a proper alignment. This is followed by a retainer to keep the teeth in place. Another treatment option for children is to use palate expanders, a type of growth modification device, to reposition the jaw during growth spurts. Another option is to extract baby teeth or permanent teeth to create room for adult teeth.
For adults, extracting teeth to create room for the remaining ones is also an option. Another treatment option is to use clear aligners, such as Invisalign®, to reposition teeth impacted by the overbite. This is an excellent option for many adults, as they are discreet and can be removed when eating.
If you or your child is experiencing an overbite, don’t wait for serious issues to develop. Call our office today at 203-763-1088. We’re here to help you get the best possible treatment in a safe and comfortable environment!
Is Water Flossing Better Than String Flossing?
Learn About Water Flossing With us at SET
Water flossers or water picks, technically an oral irrigator, if you’re asking, are increasingly popular, but are they effective? Only 32% of adults floss daily, so there is absolutely a need for an easier way to clean between teeth. Going without daily flossing, or some form of interdental cleaning leaves all of those people, most of us, at serious risk of gum disease. So let’s find out if water picks live up to the hype.
Are Water Flossers Better Than String Floss?
Water flossers seem to be very effective according to current research. A 2013 study on the effectiveness of water flossers compared to string floss found that water flossers were “significantly” more effective than string floss. Specifically, they found that after a single-use water flossers were 29% more effective at removing plaque. They were particularly better at removing plaque and accumulations from between teeth, and that’s most of why we floss, isn’t it?
Something that may be worth considering is that one of the authors of the 2013 study, Deborah Lyle, was employed by the Waterpik corporation from May 2004 until January 2022 as their Director of Clinical Research. Waterpik’s page for clinical research about water flossers lists many studies that include Deborah Lyle as a contributor.
However, other researchers were involved, and other studies exist that point to the effectiveness of water flossers. A 2021 study on the effectiveness of water flossers compared to string floss is an example, though they did not have such strong conclusions as the 2013 Deborah Lyle study did. They found instead that water flossers were just as effective as string floss, not more so. That is why they recommended water flossers to those with braces, retainers, or who have fine motor skill issues.
So, water flossers do seem to work and could potentially replace string floss or floss picks in your oral health routine. But are they superior to string floss? They might be, but considering, there doesn’t seem to be a reason to knock yourself if you haven’t hopped on the bandwagon just yet.
Are There Any Downsides to Water Flossers?
While great at cleaning your teeth, there are a few things to consider before you run out and get one. Water flossers can serve as a breeding ground for bacteria, according to a 2021 study. Put simply, because water flosser heads touch your mouth and stay wet, oral bacteria can grow on it. Even in spite of following provided cleaning recommendations. That’s not all, this study limited itself to studying only the nozzle, not the hose or water reservoir itself. So while trying to clean your mouth there is the possibility that you could be spraying your teeth with bacteria.
It’s no secret that toothbrushes can be a source of illness and can serve as a breeding ground for bacteria. However, proper storage and sanitary precautions, even ones as simple as rinsing your toothbrush and letting it dry, have been shown to reduce bacteria considerably. Allowing it to dry is crucial and would be much more time-consuming to practice with a water flosser. Because a water flosser is a reservoir of water with an attached hose it seems proper cleaning would require draining it and its components and allowing them to dry after each use, at a minimum. Certainly more time-consuming than standard care and cleaning instructions would have you think is necessary for proper use.
Besides cleanliness, it’s also worth considering that no one is likely to travel with a water flosser. That just means that you’ll need to keep using string floss for overnight stays. That is to say, even if you get a water flosser, don’t throw out all your old string floss. You’ll still need it if you intend to keep up a daily hygiene routine.
If I Get One, What’s The Best Water Flosser?
The ADA, the American Dental Association, has an approved list of water flossers. The ADA only allows its seal to be used on products that “include data from clinical and/or laboratory studies that demonstrate safety and efficacy according to product category requirements developed by the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs”. The ADA is one of the largest professional organizations for dentists meaning that any product bearing the ADA seal can be reasonably trusted. If you are considering trying a water flosser we strongly encourage you to factor the ADA’s recommendations into your decision.Learn About SET Schedule Appointment
Blue Covarine Toothpaste: Does it Really Whiten?
Learn About Teeth Whitening and Blue Covarine With SET
There’s always a demand for new ways to whiten teeth. From at-home tips like brushing with charcoal to new professional whitening techniques like ultra violet light activated gels, there’s no end in sight. One ingredient that has been getting attention for the past few years is called blue covarine.
Blue covarine is an ingredient in some toothpastes that is supposed to gently whiten teeth through consistent usage.
Does Blue Covarine Toothpaste Really Whiten Teeth?
The evidence is mixed. A 2015 article in the Journal of Applied Oral Science found that toothpastes containing blue covarine were no more effective than standard whitening toothpaste. In that same study at-home teeth whitening products containing carbamide peroxide, a similar ingredient to hydorgen peroxide, and professional in-office teeth whitening treatments were both far more effective at whitening teeth than either toothpaste.
Another study investigating the effectiveness of blue covarine toothpaste found that it was no more effective than a regular toothpaste. Most of it’s effectiveness came from the abrasive effect of brushing itself rather than the toothpastes ingredients.
A 2019 study from the Journal of Applied Oral Science found that blue covarine toothpaste was less effective than either standard whitening toothpastes containing hydrogen peroxide or toothpastes containing microbead abrasives. Interestingly, toothpastes containing microbeads were the most effective at whitening teeth.
In conclusion, blue covarine toothpaste does not seem to compare to other whitening methods, even other mild teeth whitening products. There’s no reason to use blue covarine over other whitening toothpastes with better ingredients.
Professional Teeth Whitenings
Navigating the best way to whiten teeth are home can be overwhelming. You want whiter teeth, but you don’t want to risk damaging or risk wasting your money on something that doesn’t work.Learn About Teeth Whitening Schedule Appointment
What Does Flossing do?
Oral Hygiene Tips From SET
Flossing prevents gingivitis, or gum disease, by preventing the build-up of plaque on and between your teeth. Plaque is a form of biofilm a sticky bacteria that if left unchecked can cause serious harm to your teeth by causing cavities, decay, and even risking infections if you have an oral injury.
Flossing can also prevent halitosis, or bad breath, by removing excess food particles from your mouth. Some bacteria that naturally occur in your mouth also cause bad breath if left unchecked. The American Dental Association recommends flossing, stating that it can remove the vast majority of plaque. By flossing you prevent the bacteria from growing and spreading to the point where it can smell. Much of the bacteria in your mouth that causes bad breath will also feed on food stuck in your teeth.
Is Flossing Really Necessary?
Some people might feel like they already have oral health issues or that since they’ve neglected flossing so far, so there’s no reason to start now. But the truth is that there is never a point where starting good oral hygiene habits won’t help.
The long-term effects of allowing bacteria to grow are serious and can range from cavities to gum disease and eventually loss of teeth and bone loss. Losing bone from your jaw is a serious and effectively irreversible consequence of long-term oral health neglect. But preventive maintenance, including flossing, can greatly reduce the risk of any of these problems.
Tips for Effective Flossing
A study published in a journal by the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) found that flossing before brushing is the most effective. This is particularly true when using toothpaste that contains fluoride.
Traditional string flossing has also been shown to be more effective than pick-style flossers. However, the most effective form of flossing is what works for you and will make you more likely to floss. While we might recommend that you try to floss the old-school way, the most important thing is that you figure out a style and routine for flossing that you’re able to maintain.Learn About SET Schedule Appointment Online
What Foods Stain Teeth: Common Culprits
Avoiding Food Stains With SET
Many people wish that their teeth were whiter. One thing that you may not realize is causing your teeth to be discolored is the things that you eat. The foods you eat can actually have a significant effect on the color of your teeth. Join us at SET in Fairfield, CT as we dive into some of the most common foods that can stain your teeth.
Coffees & Teas
Tea and coffee are both highly acidic, which can weaken the surface of your teeth, making them more susceptible to staining. Tea and coffee also both contain tannins, which help their coloring stick to your teeth. There is some evidence that having milk in your tea or coffee can help reduce the amount of staining.
Dark-colored sauces such as soy sauce, tomato sauce, and curries also cause staining. Switching to lighter or creamy sauces can help mitigate some staining.
Fruits & Berries
There are many vibrant fruits that can stain your teeth. Think of the fruits that can stain your clothes – pomegranates, cherries, blueberries, and blackberries just to name a few. In the same way that they can stain your clothes, they can stain your teeth.
Sodas are highly acidic thanks to their carbonation. In addition, the dyes in these drinks – including light-colored ones – can cause staining. There are also chemicals in the drink that eat away at your enamel.
How to Mitigate Staining
There are several things you can do to mitigate the effects of food on the color of your teeth. While cutting out the food listed above would be the number one way to reduce their effect, even we enjoy having them so we’ve included things you can do to reduce the staining while still enjoying your favorite foods.
- Use a straw. Using a straw when drinking your favorite beverage helps reduce the amount that the acidity and coloring of the drink comes into contact with your teeth.
- Brush after you eat. Brush your teeth about 30 minutes after you eat food that can stain. It’s important to wait a little bit of time to allow the acidity in your mouth to get balanced out so you don’t cause additional damage.
- Rinse your mouth. If you cannot brush your teeth after eating, rinsing your mouth with water can help reduce the acidity of your mouth and remove some of the staining agents from your mouth.
- Visit your dentist. Having regular checkups and teeth cleanings at your dentist is a great way to help your smile stay beautiful.
In addition to providing teeth cleanings, we also proudly offer teeth whitening services in the Fairfield, CT area. Please give our studio a call at 203-763-1088 or use the link below to schedule an appointment for a teeth whitening.Schedule Your First Whitening at SET Learn More About Teeth Whitening in Fairfield, CT
Best Gum For Your Teeth
Choosing the right gum can help support your teeth and prevent cavities. The wrong gum, whether too sugary or acidic, can undo most of the health benefits associated with gum chewing. When choosing gum it’s important to keep a few factors in mind, sweeteners, the American Dentist Association (ADA) seal, and acidity.
Sugar Isn’t the Only Sweetener
Sugar-free gum is the only choice if you’re looking for a healthy option. The best gum for your teeth will be sugar-free. Sugar-free gums usually contain xylitol as a substitute. Xylitol is a sugar substitute that provides sweetness without providing fuel to bacteria. Some sugar-free gums contain sorbitol as a sweetener rather than xylitol. Xylitol has been shown to offer better protection against cavities than sorbitol.
Be Aware of Acidity
Fruit-flavored gums in particular can have higher acidity levels than others. Research has shown that acidity can counteract the other benefits of sugar-free gum. This acidity, just like the acidity in fruits, sodas, and juices, can increase the risk of tooth decay. Sticking to less acidic flavors such as traditional mint flavors may be the safe option.
The American Dentist Association Seal of Acceptance
Some gums, along with other types of oral hygiene products, will have the ADA Seal of Acceptance. To earn the ADA Seal of Approval products are vetted to ensure they are both safe and effective oral health products. Looking for this seal can be an easy and reliable way to choose dental hygiene products including gum.
The Best of the Bunch
- Spry contains a large amount of xylitol meaning it’s both very flavorful and effective at preventing cavities.
- Recaldent is another sugar-free xylitol-containing chewing gum. Recaldent however also contains other compounds that have been shown to help to re-mineralize teeth in a similar way to fluoride toothpaste.
- Trident is a popular sugar-free chewing gum brand that contains some xylitol making it a better option than many other popular brands.
The first step to a better looking, brighter smile is finding a hygiene routine that works for you. But it doesn’t stop there and we at SET is happy to help you continue the process. Call us at 203-763-1088 or schedule an appointment today to get started.Learn More About SET Teeth Straightening and Whitening
Is Teeth Whitening Safe?
Whitening Procedures at SET Teeth Straightening and Whitening
Teeth whitening has been around for decades and millions of people use whitening products – including plenty of dentists. According to dental professionals, they haven’t seen an increase in problems like cavity risk or tooth fractures after teeth whitening procedures. SET works to provide safe teeth whitening services for our patients in Fairfield.
The Side Effects
- Teeth sensitivity: your teeth may become more sensitive after getting them whitened. You may experience this after your first or second treatment, and it can diminish with time. Ask Dr. LoPresti if he can recommend products for treating sensitivity at your next appointment.
- Irritated gums: you may also experience gingival irritation, which happens when your gums become irritated. If the whitening products touch your gums, then they may become irritated, but SET takes precautions to eliminate this risk.
- Safety: The American Dental Association (ADA) has stated that hydrogen peroxide whiteners are safe and effective.
- It is a quick process: you can have whitened teeth in just one session rather than waiting months for at-home products to take effect.
- It saves time: you don’t have to have your teeth professionally whitened very frequently, in fact, whitening your teeth frequently can actually damage your teeth. With just a couple of sessions of professional whitening, you can achieve the desired color of your smile.
- You don’t have to worry about safety: we take care of your teeth like they are our own at SET. We only provide the safest procedures at our studio, the side effects of teeth whitening usually only apply to at-home products that can damage your smile.
If you are worried about your upcoming teeth whitening procedure or worried about an at-home product you are using, you can always ask Dr. LoPresti if the product is safe. SET offers professional teeth whitening that is safe and effective. If you would like to schedule a teeth whitening appointment, use the button below to schedule online, or learn more about teeth whitening at our Fairfield, CT studio.Schedule Online Learn More About Teeth Whitening
Is Fluoride Good For Whitening Teeth?
Curious about Fluoride and Teeth Whiteness in Fairfield, CT?
Fluoride is one of the most researched nutrients, with over 50 years of peer-reviewed scientific studies confirming its various dental health benefits. Fluoride helps prevent tooth decay by remineralizing and strengthening your teeth. This is why professional treatments often use fluoride after teeth whitening to reduce sensitivity and protect enamel.
Fluoride is a component of saliva that when combined with calcium and phosphate forms tooth enamel. It is often referred to as a cavity-fighting mineral. Water fluoridation has been around since the 1940s. Fluoridation is done because in some areas the water contains lower levels than are ideal for our oral health. In many places fluoridation is unnecessary because the water already contains optimal levels.
Because fluoride naturally supports your teeth it is an important part of maintaining teeth whiteness after whitening them. Many people also experience increased sensitivity after having their teeth whitened which fluoride diminishes. Any teeth whitening either professional or at home is best supported by maintaining proper oral hygiene, which includes supporting enamel with fluoride.
Why Do You Need Fluoride?
Fluoride is absorbed by the teeth and protects against tooth decay. Your teeth are constantly under attack by acids and bacteria. If these are left unchecked, these acids and bacteria will break down your teeth over time by causing tooth decay in the form of cavities. Cavities usually begin as microscopic damage to your tooth, but fluoride acts as concrete poured into a crack, protecting against such damage and even reversing early tooth decay.
How Do You Receive Fluoride?
Unfortunately, the amount of fluoride obtained through food is not sufficient to protect your teeth. Throughout both childhood and your adult years, your dentist will apply fluoride treatments at appropriate intervals. These fluoride treatments are put directly on your teeth and are usually in the form of a rinse, gel, or foam. You leave the fluoride in your mouth for a minute or so before either spitting it out or having it rinsed away. This is typically the part in your dentist visit where your dentist asks you the type of flavor you want!
Fluoride and Teeth Staining
Too much fluoride can cause a condition known as fluorosis. This typically occurs when too much fluoride has been ingested by children and can cause discolorations and long-term stains. Professional Teeth whitening for fluoride stains and fluorosis is actually a very effective solution.
Hearing about how fluoride can cause teeth stains might make you anxious, particularly if you are already concerned about the whiteness of your teeth. If that’s the case it is important to remember that fluoride occurs naturally and only overexposure, particularly at a young age, poses real risks. Fluoride-free toothpaste and teeth whitening toothpaste without fluoride isn’t advisable. This is because your teeth won’t be remineralized which actually increases the chances of staining.
Fluoride is an incredibly important part of your oral health routine. You should go to your regular dentist every six months for a checkup, where you should get a fluoride treatment. This will help prevent decay and maintain teeth whiteness. If you are interested in teeth whitening in Fairfield, CT because of fluoride stains or another reason, give us a call today.Learn More About Teeth Whitening in Fairfield, CT Compare Professional vs At-Home Whitening
A Good-Looking Path to Better-Looking Teeth: Invisalign® Systems and Other Clear Aligners
Are You Ready for a Better Path to Straight Teeth at SET Teeth Straightening and Whitening?
Braces can feel like a bit of a contradiction. You want a clean, straight smile, but you first have to wear a highly visible device on your teeth for months on end. You want a well-aligned bite, but for a while, braces make some day-to-day tasks, such as brushing your teeth and eating some foods, more difficult.
Fortunately, for those who want to show off their pretty pearly whites as they go AND show off the results of their realignment as soon as possible, one option is clear plastic removable aligners such as Invisalign® aligner systems available in Fairfield, CT.
The Benefits of Clear Aligners
Clear aligners, as their name suggests, are clear plastic devices intended to straighten your teeth over time. They are nearly undetectable by observers. Not only are they more difficult to see (getting you closer to being able to show off that perfect smile), but they can be taken out temporarily when needed, allowing you to brush your teeth or eat without distraction.
The Clear Aligner Fitting Process
For most clear aligners, including Invisalign® systems, your dentist will take a mold of your teeth and send it in. From there, orthodontic experts will determine the difference in positions between where your teeth are and where you want them to be and will create several stages of aligners to gradually move your teeth into the desired position. You’ll have to wear the aligners most of the time—about 22 hours a day. At certain points in the process, as your teeth change position, you’ll move on to the next device, switching them out until your teeth are right where you want them to be.
How to Pay for Clear Aligners
At many offices, Invisalign® clear aligner treatment can cost as much as $7,000. SET offers all-inclusive Invisalign® treatment for just $4278. Learn more about the cost of Invisalign®.
SET Teeth Straightening and Whitening partners with Lending Point to offer payment plans which allow you to split a large bill into smaller payments over time. At SET we never want anyone to have to choose between being confident in their smile and other important things in their life.
For those who can use them, clear aligners such as Invisalign® systems can be the least intrusive solution for straightening teeth. Many adults are hesitant to receive teeth alignment treatment because of the stigma associated with traditional braces, Invisalign® takes any self-consciousness out of the process. Clear aligners offer relief to any anxiety about braces meaning you don’t have to worry about the looks and inconveniences of traditional braces! The initial cost of clear aligners may seem daunting, but options are available to help pay for them. If you have any questions about clear aligners give us a call at 203-763-1088. We’ll be happy to walk you through your options and help you find the best possible solution for your smile.Learn More About Invisalign® in Fairfield, CT