Why We’re Thankful to Transform Smiles

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, many people are taking time to express their thanks all season long. Here at Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics, we have a lot to be thankful for—from our families and wonderful staff to our office and community. But the thing we’re most grateful for is our patients. We are so thankful for all of you and the opportunity you give us to transform your smiles. We’re proud to make a difference in the health and confidence of our smile family, and that really does make us feel thankful!

Thankful to transform your health

Every day, we’re able to help people on the road toward healthy and happy smiles. This looks different for each patient. While having aligned teeth can be cosmetic, our treatments also impact patients’ quality of life.

For those with temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMD), which causes headaches, discomfort, and pain, braces can fix misaligned teeth or bites. This can eliminate jaw clenching and bruxism (teeth grinding). For patients with crowded teeth, orthodontics can boost oral hygiene. And for those with bite problems, treatment helps them speak, eat, and chew more effectively. These are some of the many issues that make orthodontics a life-changing journey. We are so thankful to be a part of that! 

Thankful to transform your confidence

We are always so grateful when we see the confidence that a healthy, aligned smile brings to our patients. When patients come in as young kids, we watch them grow throughout their treatment and see the confidence their new smile brings them. With adults, we are grateful to help them solve issues that have often plagued them for years. In a survey conducted by Invisalign®, 92% of people reported having much more confidence with straighter teeth. And 60% of people said that they were perceived as being happier! Seeing our patients’ smiles, confidence, and overall health transform is the most rewarding process.

Thankful to deliver you the best care

Here at Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics, we’re grateful for each and every one of our patients. Because our smile family deserves the best, we only offer the very best services and treatment options. We’re always seeking to utilize the most effective techniques and technology possible. Treatments like Damon Braces or Invisalign and technology like our advanced dental imaging allow us to do just that.

This November, we’re thankful for you! As we all embrace gratitude this season, take time to share some smiles and thankfulness—you won’t regret it.

October is National Orthodontic Health Month!

This October, celebrate National Orthodontic Health Month by practicing your best orthodontic habits! Here at Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics, we want to help you do just that by sharing some of our favorite tips and advice so you can keep your teeth healthy and your journey going smoothly. 

Keep up with your daily dental care routine.

When life gets busy, sometimes it’s easy to skip over your dental care routine. But brushing and flossing as instructed will help keep your teeth healthy and your smile journey on track! If you don’t have braces or aligners, brush at least twice a day to combat plaque buildup. If you do have braces or aligners, brush morning, night, and after you eat. Plaque buildup can harden into tartar, leading to issues like gum disease and inflammation, which will slow down your treatment. While we love seeing you in our office, we know you want to finish your treatment quickly. Keeping up with your daily dental care routine is a vital step in that process.

Make easy food swaps to keep your teeth and equipment safe.

On your journey to a healthy smile, sometimes it is necessary to avoid certain foods. But that doesn’t mean you have to give up all the treats you love! There are many easy swaps you can make to enjoy what you eat—without sacrificing your appliances. Sticky candies, tough meats, crunchy snacks, and chewing on ice are all common ways that braces and teeth can be damaged. These foods can stick to or push against brackets, causing issues that can interrupt and prolong your treatment. Try soft, melt-in-your-mouth candies, steamed veggies, softer meats, and ice cream or frozen yogurt to help out your teeth.

Wear your retainer as directed.

When you finish your orthodontic treatment, it is vital to follow the retention directions given to you by Drs. Hutta and Hutta. If you neglect these instructions, your teeth may shift, and the treatment you worked so hard to complete can regress quickly. Make sure to clean your retainer, keep it somewhere you won’t lose it, and wear it as instructed to keep your smile aligned and healthy!

Follow your orthodontist’s instructions.

The bottom line for orthodontic care is to always follow our experts’ instructions. Every patient is different, so it’s important to follow your personalized treatment plan! Drs. Hutta and Hutta are directing your teeth into place; interrupting that process by not following instructions can slow down your treatment. Whether it’s how often to wear your aligners, when to wear your retainer, how you should be flossing, or anything else, the wise words of your orthodontist will keep you on track for a beautiful, aligned smile!

It’s Game Time! What to Know About Orthodontic Care and Sports

If your child is participating in sports while undergoing orthodontic treatment, it is important to know the facts to keep their teeth and equipment safe while they play. Competing in sports and continuing on a safe path to aligned teeth are two very important things! In order to make sure they can do both, here are some tips on how to ensure your child’s orthodontic health stays stellar this sports season.

Mouthguards

A common misconception about using mouthguards is that they are only necessary for contact sports, like soccer, hockey, basketball, baseball, softball, etc. But the list of sports for which mouthguards should be worn is longer than you might think! Protection should be worn in any sport that could involve contact of any kind with the face or even falling.

Just some of the sports that the American Dental Association recommends mouthguards for include gymnastics, volleyball, skiing, bicycling, equestrian events, and more. A good rule of thumb is that a mouthguard can’t hurt! If you’re unsure if your child should have a mouthguard this season, check with our orthodontists at your next appointment. Each year, mouthguards prevent expensive damage to equipment and painful injuries to the teeth, lips, cheeks, tongue, or gums.

Invisalign®

While wearing mouthguards with braces is a more well-known topic, you might be unsure what to do if your child is wearing Invisalign this sports season. Though Invisalign fits over teeth, it is not a suitable replacement for oral protection. It is typically recommended that Invisalign is removed and replaced with a mouthguard during sports. However, consult our orthodontists for specific instructions about your child’s treatment. No matter what, make sure that your little sports star is wearing aligners long enough each day. If your aspiring athlete replaces their Invisalign with a mouthguard during play, they must put their aligners back in after play is over.

Sports drinks

Sports drinks, like Gatorade, are very popular as a quick method to get electrolytes and hydration. But did you know that the sugars and acidity packed into these drinks can be very harmful on your child’s teeth? In fact, sports drinks can be even more damaging to teeth than sodas! The high acid content weakens the enamel, which can lead to tooth decay. This also puts the teeth at risk for tissue damage under the enamel, hypersensitivity, and higher susceptibility to staining. To better care for your child’s teeth this season, try having them use a straw with their sports drink or opt for a dental-friendly alternative, like water.

Stay safe for a happy smile

This season, you wouldn’t forget a helmet or shoulder pads. So, do not skip oral safety equipment! You will not regret keeping your braces, teeth, gums, and mouth protected.

Is it Time for Your Child to Start Orthodontic Treatment?

Why it’s important to see an orthodontist early!

As back to school season approaches, now is a great time to consider starting your child on their journey to a healthier, happier smile. There are many questions that come along with beginning orthodontic treatment. No matter the question, Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics is here to help you understand the process and provide you with answers!

When should I bring my child in for a consultation?

While growth and development are different for every child, it is recommended children see an orthodontist for a preliminary checkup by the age of seven. Typically, by this age, orthodontists are able to identify issues with the jaw, bite, and teeth as children continue to grow. Even if a child’s smile appears to be aligned, there may be other issues that are only evident to an orthodontist’s trained eye.

Why does treatment need to begin this early?

Not every patient requires early treatment. Though a consultation is recommended early on, a child may not necessarily begin treatment then. When given the opportunity to spot and track issues, we can begin treatment at just the right time—preventing more serious problems and delivering results that might not be possible after bones are fully developed. Bringing your child in for a checkup at an early age allows your orthodontist to treat issues before they become a larger problem as opposed to correcting them after.

With early, interceptive treatment, our experts can guide jaw growth, prevent the need for tooth extractions, guide permanent teeth into a more favorable position, lower the risk of trauma to protruded front teeth, improve the way the lips meet, and correct harmful oral habits.

What can we expect from a first visit?

For a young child, visiting the orthodontist for the first time can be intimidating. Here at Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics, we strive to ensure that children feel welcomed, comfortable, and excited to come into our office! Your first consultation typically takes an hour or less. We will take digital photos of your child’s teeth as well as a digital panoramic X-ray to assess the teeth and jaw. After this examination, we will discuss recommended treatment options and timelines as well as any concerns or questions you or your child may have. Our goal is to help you and your child to feel comfortable and informed every step of the way!

This back-to-school season, book your child’s first trip to Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics! Before the summer ends and fall schedules become cluttered, schedule an appointment and get them started on their smile transformation.

Masks Are Coming Off, and Smiles Are Coming Back!

This summer, there are so many reasons to smile! As mask mandates continue to be lifted, there are more and more opportunities to put your smile on display as you enjoy all the activities you love during these sunny summer months. To prepare your teeth for the spotlight and make sure you feel confident, it’s important to keep up with your orthodontic care. Here are some tips from Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics to ensure that you’re ready to shine this summer!

Remember to keep up with brushing

Whether you have braces or not, it’s always important to brush every day. Cleaning your teeth helps to clear away nasty plaque buildup, which, if ignored, can lead to tartar. Poor oral hygiene can cause further issues like gum disease and inflammation, slowing down your treatment. If you don’t have braces or aligners, make sure to brush twice a day. If you do, brush morning, night, and after you eat.

Keep your tongue clean

With so much focus on keeping our teeth healthy, it’s easy to forget that the tongue is also very important for our oral health and cleanliness. Not only can the bacteria from your tongue spread around your mouth, but poor tongue hygiene can lead to bad breath! As you take off your mask this summer, make sure your mouth is looking and smelling good. 

Don’t forget to wear your retainer

If you’ve completed your orthodontic treatment, it’s important to continue wearing your retainer in order to keep your smile healthy and aligned. As your smile sees the sun again this summer, make sure it doesn’t regress. After all your hard work, you deserve to feel good about your grin for life!

Get on track for your best smile!

It’s never too late to invest in your orthodontic health! Whether it’s for you or your child, now is a great time to get an aligned smile. Book an appointment today, and we will help you find the best option on the path to a straighter smile. Whether it’s with Invisalign or braces, everyone deserves to love their beautiful smile when they smile without a mask!

From all of us, we hope you’re having a happy, healthy summer! Looking to start your alignment journey? Book your complimentary appointment with Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics today!

The Orthodontic Importance of Drinking Water

June 23 is National Hydration Day, the perfect time to drink up some new orthodontic facts! While you hear about the importance of drinking water often, it is easy to get dehydrated—especially if you don’t know why water is so important. Water has numerous oral health benefits, and we at Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics can’t wait for you to dive in.

1. Water prevents dry mouth.

Dry mouth is both uncomfortable and unhealthy. It can be caused by dehydration and results in many oral health problems, such as tooth decay and gum disease. Patients are more susceptible to cavities during orthodontic treatment, so healthy saliva is a must! In every drop of saliva, you’ll find minerals, like calcium, phosphate, and fluoride. These wash away leftover food particles (even the ones trapped in braces!), neutralize acids, and strengthen your teeth. Drinking water regularly can help minimize your risk of dry mouth and keep your smile healthy.

2. Water cleans your mouth and appliances.

Drinking water is also a great way to keep your mouth clean. A quick swish can wash away food particles that got trapped in your appliances or snuck between teeth. This is especially important since braces create plenty of hard-to-reach areas in the mouth where bacteria can hide and thrive. Increasing your water intake while undergoing orthodontic treatment is a simple, healthy way to preserve your oral health—especially in between brushes or while you’re on the go!

3. Water is the healthiest drink around!

Water is a calorie-free, neutral pH, fluoridated beverage. And, unlike any other drink, you can enjoy it without removing your aligners! It does not leave a sugar residue on your teeth, like juices, soft drinks, and milk—all of which expose you to tooth decay. Water does not wear down your enamel, like acidic and carbonated drinks. It also does not stain, like coffee and tea, which can make your aligners turn yellow or leave spots when your braces are removed. Plus, tap water is typically fluoridated, which means that it helps strengthen your teeth throughout the day!

Drink up and book your appointment 

This summer, choose water as your preferred drink! Hydrating yourself can greatly boost your health while you wear braces or aligners. If you or your children wish to undergo orthodontic treatment, call us today at 614-423-8177 to book your consultation.

5 Things No One Told You About Invisalign®

While many people know what Invisalign is, there are several misconceptions about this popular clear aligner treatment. Read on for our latest blog breaking down five facts you may not know about this orthodontic technology!

  1. People of all ages love Invisalign. Invisalign is loved by millions across the world, and it’s no wonder why! Whether you are someone who has always wanted a more confident smile, a teenager who prefers a discreet treatment, or an on-the-go adult who doesn’t want to make the small lifestyle changes that come with braces, Invisalign could be right for you. And, like other orthodontic treatments, you are never too old to get started!
  1. An Invisalign transformation is efficient. Invisalign uses nearly invisible aligners to gradually transform your smile tray by tray. Because of this advanced technology, the entire process is streamlined, so there is no need to fret about a long process! While some patients may finish their treatment in several months, others may need more time depending on their unique smile needs.
  1. You can keep eating all of your favorite foods. Invisalign does not stop you from living your life. When it comes time to eat, simply remove your aligners and get to eating! After, thoroughly brush and floss before putting your aligners back on. Unlike with braces, that special candy and crunchy snack you love are all smile-friendly options during your Invisalign treatment. Just make sure you wear those aligners for 20 or more hours a day and keep your smile clean to stay on track!
  1. Your Invisalign treatment is highly advanced. In the world of aligner technology, Invisalign trays are the best in class—with the capability of transforming teeth, bites, and health! By scanning your smile with our 3D imaging tools, we create the perfect, customized treatment plan for your needs. In some cases, this may require attachments, which are tooth-colored buttons fixed to your teeth. These can help aligners complete complex tooth movements for optimal results and your healthiest smile.
  1. Invisalign may not be suitable for everyone. If Invisalign isn’t right for your treatment goals, our orthodontists have many other options! At our office, we offer a number of advanced treatments—all of which are more discreet, comfortable, and effective than braces of the past. Even if you are not eligible for Invisalign, we will work with you to achieve the results you have been dreaming of. Whether we use self-ligating Damon Braces (which come in clear!) or aligners, we can deliver a smile you’ll love and an excellent experience you deserve.

At Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics, we offer the orthodontic care you need for a confident, lifelong smile. If you are interested in learning more or booking a consultation, contact us at 614-423-8177. We’d love to see you in the office!

Spring Candy Guide for Braces and Aligners

With warmer weather underway, the grocery stores are filling up with pastel, spring, and Easter-themed candies. As vivid colors and fun family activities take over, don’t get lured in by the wrong candies, especially if you are in the middle of orthodontic treatment. Follow our Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics guide to ensure you enjoy springtime candy—without compromising your oral health, braces, or aligners!

Candies with braces:

Braces and candy do not always go well together. Candies like butterscotch, jellybeans, toffee, and lollipops can damage brackets. These chewy and hard options, when bitten into, can cause lots of damage to your appliances. Your brackets and wires may even need to be repaired or replaced. If that happens, book an appointment with us as soon as you can. Even if you do not bite down on hard candies, sucking on them still exposes teeth to sugar for long periods of time, so they are not ideal for your teeth.

We always recommend soft, melt-in-your-mouth candies, like chocolate. There are plenty of great options this season. You will be fine eating most chocolate bunnies and peanut butter eggs. And, even though treats like Peeps® are soft, it’s best to avoid them since they get stuck in the hard-to-reach (and hard-to-clean!) grooves of your teeth.

Candies with aligners:

For those with Invisalign®, many of the restrictions that come with braces do not apply. This is because aligners must be removed before eating any food. Though there won’t be damage to your appliances, some basic precautions should be followed with aligners, too. Firstly, never eat anything (especially candy!) while wearing aligners, even if it’s something like a mint that doesn’t require chewing. Secondly, keep your aligners safely in their case to avoid losing them when you eat. Lastly, always remember to clean your teeth and aligners before putting them back on. Aligners cover teeth and will trap any cavity-causing bacteria that isn’t brushed and flossed away.

Enjoy your spring safely!

No type of candy is without risks. High amounts of sugar and acid in candies can make your mouth a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. These bacteria can act on sugar to form acids, which dissolve away the enamel on your teeth. So, always remember to enjoy your candies or sugary foods/drinks in moderation.

By following simple precautions, you can enjoy a fun and safe spring celebration. Have any questions or ready to book your appointment? Call our team today!

orthodontist adjusting braces

Happy National Dentist’s Day

Did you know that March 6 is National Dentist’s Day? Dentists—professionals who take care of dental health—have been around for thousands of years. In fact, humanity has recognized the need to care for teeth even since the time of ancient Egyptians! When you think about dentists, your general dentist likely comes to mind. But did you know that orthodontists are also dentists? Read on to learn why specialized dental care, like orthodontics, is so important!

Why does dentistry matter?

A trip to your general dentist helps keep your smile in tip-top shape. Seeing a dentist regularly allows patients to maintain healthy teeth and gums; spot issues, like oral cancer, early on; and prevent future problems, like decay, from arising. Importantly, dental hygiene feeds into all aspects of health—from boosting your immune system to improving brain function, and even reducing the risk of heart disease.

However, some patients face issues that require more specialized dental care than biannual appointments. Some dental issues, like misalignment, a bad bite, or a narrow airway, can lead to insecurity, pain, worn teeth, or poor oral function. This is where orthodontists come in!

Dentists vs. orthodontists

Orthodontists are a specialized subset of dentists. Both orthodontists and general dentists have a DDS (Doctor of Dental Surgery) or DMD (Doctor of Medicine in Dentistry) degree. These degrees are identical. However, while a general dentist’s training can end here, orthodontists go on to complete an additional two-to-three-year residency program for specialized education.

Like general dentists, orthodontists are concerned about oral health. However, orthodontists use appliances, like retainers, palatal expanders, braces, and aligners to align teeth, bring the face, jaw, lips, and teeth into harmony, correct misaligned bites, and influence facial growth. These treatments boost aesthetics while reducing the chances of developing cavities, relieving bruxism, improving oral function, and treating issues, like TMJ disorders.

For your best smile, you need both a general dentist and an orthodontist. While dentists help keep our teeth clean and healthy, orthodontists go a step beyond. By improving facial structure, tooth alignment, and a patient’s bite, orthodontists set up your smile for life.

Book your appointment today

If you are interested in learning more about orthodontics and how treatment could help you, contact our team today. From all of us here, we wish you a happy Dentist’s Day!

Show Your Smile Some Love This Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is a sweet holiday—filled with heart-shaped candies and love-filled hearts. But, what is often forgotten about amid all the fun and excitement is your teeth! This Valentine’s Day, our Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics team wants to remind you about the importance of good dental care. A healthy smile is what we love most of all! Read on for our top three tips for a braces- and aligner-friendly holiday.

1. Pick the right candy. Braces and many candies generally do not mix. However, you don’t need to kill the fun of Valentine’s Day and forego candy altogether! For those with braces, chocolate, soft cookies, and chocolate-dipped strawberries are smile-friendly options. Before you dive into the chocolates that your Valentine gave you, make sure you give them a look over. Nougat, caramel, nuts, and toffee are all bad ideas as they can easily get stuck in your brackets or break them.

Pro Tip: Life is not always like a box of chocolates. You can predict which chocolates you will get! Round or oval chocolates usually have soft cream or ganache fillings. Caramel and toffee are almost always cut into squares or rectangles to minimize waste during chocolate production. Chocolates with tin foil or wrappers around them tend to have liquid centers, and easy-to-avoid nut chocolates often have a bumpy appearance.

2. Love your appliances. Braces and aligners are a huge investment, so take good care of them. While wearing braces, avoid foods that are too chewy or have a tendency to get stuck in your teeth. Then, brush and floss after every meal or snack. We recommend that you rinse your mouth with water to get rid of all the small food particles beforehand.

For those with clear aligners, always remove them before eating or drinking. This helps avoid stains that can make your aligners less-than-clear and prevents tooth decay. Be sure to brush and floss thoroughly before putting aligners back in. While wearing aligners, your acid-neutralizing saliva cannot rinse away bacteria on your teeth, so thorough oral hygiene is extra important.

3. Keep your breath fresh. Sharing a COVID-safe Valentine’s Day smooch? Even if your Valentine’s date is virtual this year, no one wants bad breath! Halitosis is more common with braces since food particles can get stuck in your teeth. Regular, thorough cleaning is important to freshen up your breath. Drinking plenty of water and keeping sugar-free mints on hand are also smile-friendly solutions. If you are out of the house this Valentine’s Day, bring along a travel toothbrush!

We hope you have a sweet day—while keeping your smile pearly white and healthy. Practice moderation while you indulge in Valentine’s sweets, and be mindful of the amount of sugar you’re eating. The last things you want are tooth decay and plaque buildup! For more information or to schedule an appointment, call us today.