It's an Emergency!

March 26th, 2024

At Kennell Orthodontics, we know orthodontic emergencies are never convenient nor timely. If you are a patient of Dr. Kennell's orthodontic office, he and his team are committed to your dental health and are more than willing to see you after hours or over the weekend. As a general rule, you should call the office when you experience severe pain. We’ll be able to schedule an appointment to resolve the problem as soon as possible. If you have a orthodontic emergency after regular office hours, you can still give us a call. If you are calling us after hours, please follow the emergency prompts to learn how you may be able to solve the problem yourself, or, if you cannot, how to contact Dr. Kennell and team. Someone is always on call and will be able to get back to you as soon as they can.

Tooth soreness is to be expected after getting braces or Invisalign treatment, this would not count as an emergency as it will take a few days to get used to them. Some things that help are sticking to a softer food diet (ex: ice cream, mashed potatoes, mac & cheese, etc). Taking Advil or Tylenol can help relieve the soreness as well. If your gums are irritated, using a warm saltwater rinse can help with healing. At our office, we provide wax to put on your braces to help protect your lips and cheeks from any other irritation as your mouth gets used to having them on.

You might be surprised to learn that you may be able to temporarily solve many problems yourself until you visit our office.

Common emergencies include:

-Broken Braces (If still attached to wire, you can leave it be or add wax if it's irritating you. This is not urgent unless it is causing persistent pain)
-Broken Wires (If it is poking you can try to put wax on it or use the end of a pencil eraser to protect your lips/cheeks. If it is not poking, you can leave it be and give us a call)
-Tie has come off of a Brace (This is not an urgent emergency, it can be fixed at your next appointment, but if you call and let us know we can fix it easily)
-Loss of a Separator (Give us a call, if it is close enough to the next appointment it should be okay, but if not, we will schedule you to come in and get it replaced)
-Wire Poking (At the beginning of treatment the wires tend to get long. You are welcome to try and clip the wire yourself with CLEAN nail clippers, or any sharp pliers that are small enough to fit in the mouth. You can try to cover it with wax, or a pencil eraser for the mean time)

To conclude, it doesn't hurt to give us a call if you are having concerns, but hopefully after reading this you can be alleviated that not all of your emergencies are URGENT!

Can I Still Whiten My Teeth during Invisalign Treatment?

February 14th, 2024

A common question you might be wondering is if you can still whiten your teeth while being in Invisalign treatment. We used to always inform patients that they should wait until they are done with treatment to use whitening strips. It still holds true that you should not use whitening strips, but there is now a solution to the whitening!

Invisalign now offers the Invisalign Professional Whitening System that is safe to use during and after your treatment.

Why it is safer to use this system than whitening strips is because it will be able to whiten your teeth despite the attachments. Trying to use a whitening strip would not be able to go through the attachments, leaving spots that are not as white when they some day come off. This Invisalign Professional Whitening System contains 10% carbamide peroxide formulation which breaks down into water, oxygen, and reactive oxygen molecules. The reactive oxygen molecules are what are able to change the stained molecules, making them lighter. Due to this reaction, the whitening solution will spread through the entire tooth without actually having to cover every part of it. So even the tooth surface underneath the attachments will still be getting whiter just the same.

The at-home kit allows you to easily whiten your teeth professionally! The kit comes with 4 syringes of whitening gel. At Dr. Kennell's orthodontic office they are sold for $150 and can be used throughout your treatment. It is instructed for you to lightly insert the gel just enough to cover the aligner so that it does not overflow to your gums. It is recommended for you wear them for at least 8-10 hours to get the full benefits. It is important to know that if you start to feel any sensitivity during these whitening treatments, you should take the aligners out. Using a toothpaste like Sensodyne along with your treatments will be helpful in reducing the sensitivity. This whitening gel is also made with potassium nitrate, used to reduce dental hypersensitivity, and fluoride, which helps strengthen the teeth.

Luckily, this whitening system can be used for Invisalign patients (during and after treatment), any patients that are in a Vivera/clear retainer, or anyone that is simply interested in just whitening their teeth! Make sure to ask your orthodontist/dentist about the Invisalign Professional Whitening System next time you are in the office, it will be worth it!

Phase I vs. Phase II Treatment, What is the Difference?

January 12th, 2024

With the new year starting, getting your teeth fixed might be, or should be part of your New Years Resolutions! Whether it is for your child or for yourself it could be a good idea to see an orthodontist. Knowing the difference between Phase I and Phase II treatment can help give you a better understanding of how soon to have your child looked at and the importance of it.

Let's start with Phase I, or early age orthodontics. This phase of treatment can be very useful in cases when patients have crowding, misaligned bites, jaw discrepancies, and or protruding teeth. Phase I treatment usually starts in young patients between 7 to 10 years old. A child is still growing and developing with a mix of baby teeth and adult teeth during this age range. This gives the perfect advantage to start correcting dental issues before they can get worse.

Some options for Phase I treatment include retainers, palate expanders, space maintainers, braces, and in some cases Invisalign. Removable retainers can help teeth stay in place to prevent shifting, guiding adult teeth into place, and even help with jaw development. Space maintainers will aid in maintaining the space needed to allow the adult teeth to grow and erupt correctly. Palate expanders help with correcting jaw growth problems in patients with narrow palates. Expanding the palate will make teeth less crowded and make room for the proper alignment of adult teeth. The use of limited braces is typically for cases when patients have overcrowding or issues with their bite.

All in all, Phase I orthodontics will do the early work in guiding the adult teeth in the right direction, whether its making space or maintaining the space for them to develop.

This is a type of palate expander called a Hyrax.

Braces are another type of Phase I treatment, but usually only a few brackets are placed on the teeth.

This space maintainer is called an LLA (Lower Lingual Arch).

These are examples of Upper and Lower Hawley retainers.

This now leads us into the next phase of treatment, Phase II orthodontics. Some patients who were in Phase I treatment will still need Phase II treatment later on, but less work is needed. Other patients do not need Phase I treatment and will just begin with Phase II.

Depending on how severe the misalignment of the teeth are, or if there are any jaw discrepancies or impacted teeth, it would be important for the patient to begin their treatment sooner than later.

The most common treatments in Phase II orthodontics include braces, traditional or clear brackets, and clear aligners, usually Invisalign. Both treatments can succeed in fixing misalignment or malocclusions based on what the patients needs are. It also depends on preferences, if you do not prefer to have the braces showing, maybe clear brackets or clear aligners would suit you best. In certain cases, extractions may be a necessity to make room for overcrowded teeth. If a patient has impacted teeth they may need surgery to expose the tooth and guide it in the right direction. The orthodontist will develop a treatment plan that will go over all of the expectations throughout your treatment.

Invisalign uses clear aligners to move teeth.

Some offices may offer clear brackets which are less apparent.

Traditional braces is a very common treatment in Phase II orthodontics.

To conclude, the main difference between Phase I and Phase II orthodontic treatment, is the desired result. Phase I aims to fix urgent issues that cannot wait until the permanent teeth develop. Whereas Phase II is important in making sure the adult teeth come together in proper alignment.

Setting up a consultation with your local orthodontist would be a good idea, especially when it comes to whether your child will need Phase I treatment or not. Dr. Kennell of Laconia, Plymouth, and Littleton, NH offers free consultations and will inform you if Phase I treatment is needed or if there is still time to wait!

Naughty vs. Nice Foods for the Holidays!

December 13th, 2023

The holiday season is all about spending time with family and friends, giving gifts, and of course eating plenty of food. Unfortunately not all of the foods during the holidays are braces friendly. We want to make sure you are aware because our office will be closed from Christmas until after the new year. Nobody wants to spend their holiday break with broken brackets!

Let's see what is on the Naughty and Nice lists this year!

Naughty List of Foods:

  • Candy Canes are a Christmas classic, but are very hard. If you do choose to have them make sure you only lick/suck on them!
  • Caramel is usually included during some holiday desserts, unfortunately it is so gooey and sticky that it will be stuck all over your braces.
  • Snack Mix usually has nuts and or other hard, crunchy ingredients that you'll want to avoid.
  • Popcorn is a typical holiday treat that comes in all different flavors, but the kernels will get stuck in your braces, especially the caramel corn. Steer clear even though its tempting!

Nice List of Foods:

  • Pie in flavors like pumpkin, apple, cherry or any other fruit will do!
  • Ice Cream is a great side to have with your pie!
  • Fudge is a nice, soft dessert to have as long as it doesn't have caramel or nuts.
  • Deviled Eggs are a great snack that is so easy to overeat, but were not judging!
  • Veggie Platters are a healthy choice to have just make sure your carrots and crunchy vegetables are chopped up smaller before you eat them.
  • Meat is usually the main course for holiday dinners, whether its turkey or ham you should be good. If you're enjoying a prime rib just make sure to cut it up into smaller pieces!

So, if you want to stay on Santa and Dr. Kennell's nice list, you will do your best to avoid naughty foods this Holiday season! It is totally fine to still indulge in some wonderful sweet treats, but don't forget to keep up with your brushing and flossing too!

We wish you a merry and bright holiday season this year from Dr. Kennell's Orthodontic Office!

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