Braces and Your Summer Vacation


It’s Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start to summer! That means many people are planning and preparing for their summer vacations. We realize that holidays and vacation planning can get a bit hectic, so we ask that you please keep your team at Horner Barrow Orthodontics in mind! Remember to schedule an appointment before your vacation to ensure your orthodontic treatment is proceeding as planned. If you happen to be out of the state or the country with a broken bracket or poking wire, please don’t hesitate to visit the nearest orthodontist who can make you more comfortable. Although we suggest seeing another orthodontist for your comfort, please, DO NOT receive any orthodontic treatment outside of our office. Dr. Kevin Horner and Dr. Keri Barrow dedicate a considerable amount of time to personalize each of our patient’s treatment plans, and work together with our talented team to ensure that your office visits are handled as outlined at the start of your orthodontic treatment. We expect our patients to remain compliant with treatment, at home and during those fun trips! So come to our Sioux Falls, SD office to have your braces adjusted or repaired before you leave for your summer getaway.

Pointers for Braces Problems on Vacation

Remember, these pointers are for vacation; whether it’s hiking in Yosemite, sunning on the beach in Cape Cod, or anywhere in between. Whenever you are at home and experience any issues, please be sure to call us.

Even though you’re on vacation, your orthodontic treatment isn’t. You should continue to avoid foods that can damage your braces. The number one cause of trouble with braces is eating things that can damage your braces which then may make you uncomfortable. And, because plaque never goes on vacation either, brushing your teeth and gums twice a day is still a must-do.

Most broken brackets (usually the lower brackets) are not too much of a problem. They may move around a bit, but won’t hurt you or cause you discomfort. Any discomfort you might have would be the result of the change in forces on your teeth due to that missing bracket. This can be repaired when you return home and visit our office.

Poking wires: With braces, if the poking wire is in the very back, at the ends of the archwires, place wax on the bothersome wire. This will help to keep you comfortable until you’re back home. If the small ligature wire around a bracket is sticking out and poking you, use a spoon or a pencil eraser to gently tuck the end out of the way.

Most other wire issues can be handled (carefully) with a clean nail clipper or small pair of wire cutters.

At Horner Barrow Orthodontics, we are committed to delivering excellent quality orthodontic treatment to each and every patient. To provide a friendly, caring, and pleasant atmostphere that will ensure our patients feel relaxed and confident about placing their orthodontic care in our hands.

Have a wonderful vacation!

Braces 101. How Exactly Will Braces Straighten My Child’s Teeth?

ss-2508811smMany parents and patients that come in to our Sioux Falls, SD office ask us, “How do braces work to straighten teeth?” Believe it or not, we get a lot of questions about how exactly those little metal bands and wires work together to create the desired end-result; a beautiful, healthy, straight smile. Many patients are also curious as to why their braces have to stay on for so long. (Some patients can be in braces for up to three years.)

So, to answer those questions you might have about how exactly braces work, here are the basics:

Horner Barrow Orthodontics’ Braces 101
• The braces installation process starts when Dr. Kevin Horner or Dr. Keri Barrow attaches a bracket to each tooth using a special bonding product. Each bracket is specifically-designed for the structure and needs of its corresponding tooth. Once the brackets are placed on each tooth, they are then connected to each other using arch wire.
• The connection process begins with very thin, round wire, which will be replaced repeatedly at regular intervals until thick, rectangular wire is in place. We use this process because moving teeth and their roots is best done at a slow, gradual pace. Starting the orthodontic treatment process with hard wires would cause the patient a considerable amount of discomfort and pain.
• A more flexible wire will be placed once the teeth are better positioned, so that we then can fine-tune the alignment by bending the wires. For our orthodontic patients with under- or overbites, rubber bands may be utilized to move the jaw into a straighter bite position.
• Throughout the orthodontic treatment process, the pressure placed on the periodontal membrane shifts. The bone structure of the tooth roots changes, allowing for the continued movement of each tooth. It can take up to a year for this bone-changing, or remodeling, process to be completed. That is the main reason why so many patients wear braces and/or retainers for what seems like a long time.

We know that your child’s desire for a straight, beautiful smile is counter-balanced with your concerns for their overall comfort and safety. Our orthodontic team strives to make certain that all of your questions and concerns are completely addressed before planning for your child’s orthodontic treatment.

If you have more questions about how braces work, check our patient education or our treatment page to see if the answers you seek are there. Then, call our office to schedule your initial consultation.

At Horner Barrow Orthodontics, we are committed to delivering excellent quality orthodontic treatment to each and every patient. We provide a friendly, caring, and pleasant atmosphere that will ensure our patients feel relaxed and confident about placing their orthodontic care in our hands.

Correcting An Overbite. Don’t Wait!

Do you think your child has an overbite issue? Don’t wait until he or she is older to have it corrected!

When a child has an overbite, it is usually because the upper jaw is deficient. This causes the upper teeth to overlap the lower teeth, beyond the normal alignment between the upper and lower teeth.

The most common treatment method for an overbite is orthodontics. After examining the mouth and jaw positioning, an orthodontist can determine the course of treatment that will be most effective for your child’s misalignment.

It is important for interceptive orthodontic treatment to begin as early as possible, while the jaw bones are still “soft” and malleable. The jaw is easier to manipulate in a younger patient. Once the jaw bones are solid, the treatment becomes more extensive (and more expensive), and the process is longer, usually requiring the need to break and re-align the jaw bones.

Most children aren’t referred to an orthodontist until they are between the ages of ten and twelve years old, but if suspect your child has overbite issues, they will need to be seen by an orthodontist much sooner.

An early interceptive treatment plan is crucial! The time, cost, and effectiveness of the treatment all become factors when dealing with an overbite issue.

The term “occlusion” refers to the alignment of the teeth. A malocclusion is a deviation or misalignment from a normal occlusion. Overbites, crossbites, underbites and open bites are all types of malocclusions. An overbite is when the upper teeth stick out too far beyond the lower teeth.

Malocculsions fall into one of three categories. Class One is when a normal bite is accompanied by a slight overlap of the upper teeth. This is the most common malocclusion. Class Two is when the overbite is severe, often known as a retrognathic. Class Three is a severe underbite; when the lower teeth overlap the upper teeth. It’s referred to as prognathic.

Overbite causes:
Although some overbites are hereditary, others are caused by a malformed jaw. Jaws can actually grow unevenly under the pressure of certain habits when a child is young, resulting in an underdeveloped lower jaw or an overdeveloped upper jaw. Habits formed during early childhood such as thumb-sucking, prolonged bottle-feeding or tongue-thrusting, can cause this overbite. And habits developed later in life, such as improper chewing, eraser head-chewing or nail-biting, can form an overbite as well.

Problems a child with an overbite can face are:
• jaw pain
• excessive wear and tear on the teeth and the tooth enamel
• speech issues, which can then lead to self-esteem issues
• tooth decay
• gingivitis (gum disease)

How Do I Know If My Child Has an Overbite Issue?
Though most overbites are not considered serious, there are some that do need treatment. A severe overbite is noticeably visible and usually causes the problems listed above.

Here are some examples of malocclusions (bite problems):










Don’t Wait! The Time to Act is Now.
If you think your child has or may develop an overbite issue, don’t wait until it’s too late (and much more expensive) to have it corrected! Call our Sioux Falls, SD office to schedule an appointment with Dr. Kevin Horner or Dr. Keri Barrow as soon as possible for an orthodontic evaluation, and to discuss the possible treatment plan options.

At Horner Barrow Orthodontics, we are committed to delivering excellent quality orthodontic treatment to each and every patient.

Happy Mother’s Day To Great Moms Everywhere!

ss-15043600smSunday, May 8 is Mother’s Day. With Mother’s Day right around the corner, we think it’s important to take some time to show your mom just how truly special she is. At Horner Barrow Orthodontics, we interact with our patients and their families every day, and we are very thankful to have the opportunity to meet and get to know all of you. So we thought it would be nice to celebrate all the amazing mothers out there, and all they do for our patients!

The History Of Mother’s Day
The origin of Mother’s Day goes back to the time of ancient Greeks and Romans. The roots of Mother’s Day history can also be traced to the United Kingdom where a “Mothering Sunday” was celebrated long before the holiday was observed in the United States. The modern Mother’s Day holiday is relatively recent; not even a hundred years old. Thanks to the efforts of the pioneering women of their times, today’s celebration of Mother’s Day spans 46 countries (on different dates) and is a very popular holiday.

Millions of people, globally, take the day to honor their mothers, and to say thanks for raising them and always being there to support and advocate for them. The earliest Mother’s Day dates back to the ancient annual spring festival that the Greeks dedicated to maternal goddesses.

Horner Barrow Orthodontics would like to recognize the hard work and sacrifices of mothers right here in Sioux Falls, SD. If it wasn’t for these moms, most of our young patients would have a difficult time keeping up with all of the care needed to achieve a great orthodontic result, and a healthy beautiful smile for a lifetime. Kids can’t wait to get their braces on, but, soon after, they can’t wait to get them removed. During orthodontic treatment, their moms are the ones who make sure the proper care is taken to achieve the best possible outcome. Unfortunately, sometimes mothers, and all they do for their children, are taken for granted.

What a Mother Does:
• Arranges and rearranges her schedule to accommodate her family’s appointments
• Runs the family “taxi service” to get to those appointments
• Encourages her child to brush and floss his or her teeth regularly
• Checks to make sure her child is wearing his or her orthodontic rubber bands (and picks them up from all over the house)
• Makes sure her child eats the right foods so his or her orthodontic appliances don’t get broken or damaged
• Teaches her child to be responsible for removable retainers that can easily get lost (or eaten by the family dog when left out within nose height)

Mother’s Day is the day once a year that we say thank you to great moms everywhere. Let’s all do something special to thank the mothers who have always been there for us, day in and day out. From Dr. Kevin Horner, Dr. Keri Barrow and the Horner Barrow Orthodontics team, happy Mother’s Day!