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If you decide to start your smile journey with braces, whether that be metal or ceramic, the first appointment involves bonding your braces on your teeth and placing your wires in. The process of getting braces can be daunting for some, especially if you don't know what to expect. Don't worry, we're here to explain it! The procedure itself is painless for most people and nothing should hurt during the appointment.

First, a device is placed into your mouth to help keep your mouth open and dry and to help keep your tongue out of the way. This acts as a suction device to help clear out any extra saliva. The goal of this suction device is two-fold: 1) To keep the teeth dry so that the composite braces glue will stick and 2) to make sure that you are not choking on saliva.

Then, we place "shampoo" on the teeth, which is a blue gel-like substance to help clean off the surface of the tooth. This is rinsed off and the teeth are dried with air to help make everything dry.

Then, we place "conditioner" on the teeth called primer. This is a substance that is placed on each tooth to prepare the enamel for the application of the adhesive. Now, your teeth are ready for the braces installation!

Braces on teeth in Arlington, VA

Composite glue is placed on to each bracket and each bracket is placed individually to the corresponding tooth. Each bracket is a different shape and is designed specifically for the corresponding tooth. The extra glue is cleaned off and the brackets are positioned in their ideal place. A blue curing light is shined on to each bracket to help the glue harden faster.

After all the brackets are glued on, the wires are placed. The initial wire is very thin and flexible but don't be fooled, you will probably feel some soreness in a few hours. Then, small rubber band-like ties are used to tie the wire to the brackets. This is when you can choose a color of your choice! When the wires are being tied into the brackets, it is normal to start feeling some pressure. The soreness typically starts to kick in a few hours after the appointment since it takes a little bit of time for the teeth to start to move. Once the wire is tied into all the brackets, you've got yourself a new smile! At VCO Orthodontics in Arlington, we go over all the instructions on how to take care of your braces and answer any questions you may have!

With the beginning of fall means Halloween is right around the corner. It’s time to indulge and consume as much candy as possible to satisfy that sweet tooth, but first let’s make sure that you’re being safe!

How is Halloween different with braces? You can still eat candy but it is important to check and make sure the candy you are eating are braces friendly. Anything that is sticky, chewy, hard, or crunchy are candies to avoid and can make brackets pop off or bend the wire. That can increase the time you’re in braces and is not ideal for your treatment. Candies like Starbursts, caramels, Tootsie Rolls, gummies, or toffees are a big NO for braces. Hard candies like Jolly Ranchers or lollipops are OKAY if you make sure you don’t bite into or chew on them.

What can you eat? Here is a list of safe sweets to eat on Halloween with braces:

  • Hershey bars or kisses

  • Reese's Peanut Butter cups

  • Kit Kats

  • Peppermint patties

  • Twix

  • 3 Musketeers

  • Milky way

  • Cookies and brownies

  • Ice cream

  • Sugar-free gum

At VCO Orthodontics in Arlington, we want you to enjoy your Halloween night with braces and don’t forget to brush your teeth! The most important thing is to make sure to brush and floss before going to bed to help avoid cavities and plaque buildup. There shouldn’t be anything scary in your mouth! It is unhealthy to have all the traces of sugar sitting on your teeth, so don’t forget to keep up good oral hygiene even on your sugar-high!

We have had many patients ask if and how COVID-19 has impacted Orthodontic treatment and we have

the answers for you! At VCO Orthodontics in Arlington, VA, we have seen an increase of interest in orthodontic treatment since the pandemic came about and here’s why!

First, the obvious. MASKS! So many of our patients, especially the adults, have been less focused on the

appearance of braces for treatment since nobody will see them! Masks have made concealing

undergoing orthodontic treatment super easy which makes deciding to do it that much easier, too!

Another benefit of orthodontic treatment during this time would be for patients who are using Invisalign clear

aligners for tooth movement. Since movement is planned into the trays ahead of time, we can usually

mail patients their next set of trays to their home to save them a trip out of the house! Talk about

getting creative with ways to social distance! Since most people are still working from home or doing

virtual schooling, it’s also much easier to brush after meals AND retainers and Invisalign trays aren’t as likely to get lost or broken!

If you are considering undergoing orthodontic treatment anytime soon, now is the PERFECT time to get

started. Our consultations are FREE so book today to see what treatment might be best for you! We

cannot wait to help brighten your 2020 year with a beautiful, brand new smile!

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