Think Before You Drink That Energy Or Sports Drink

Sports Drink

It’s summertime here in Sioux Falls, SD. Time for sun and heat. Time for outdoor fun and sports. That adds up to thirst. To quench that thirst, many people turn to sports and energy drinks. These types of drinks have become extremely popular lately, especially with our young athletes. Unfortunately, they have been found to cause irreversible damage to the teeth of teens and young adults. General Dentistry published a recent study stating that energy and sports drinks contain so much acid that they can begin destroying teeth after only five days of consistent use. Wow!

According to the Academy of General Dentistry, it’s estimated that 30 to 50 percent of our nation’s teenagers consume energy drinks, and as many as 62 percent consume at least one sports drink per day. The high acidity levels in those drinks erode tooth enamel, causing irreversible damage. Once the tooth enamel is gone, it’s gone. There is no way to restore it. To learn more about tooth enamel, read our previous blog article, “Everything You Need To Know About Tooth Enamel.”

Orthodontists Dr. Kevin Horner and Dr. Keri Barrow encourage patients to limit their intake of sports drinks. That enamel erosion ultimately makes teeth more susceptible to bacteria, and can lead to hypersensitivity, permanent tooth staining, and tooth decay. If you do consume an energy or sports drink, always wait at least 45 minutes before you brush your teeth. That’s because consumption of acidic drinks causes the tooth enamel to soften, which makes teeth even more vulnerable to wear from the abrasives found in toothpaste. So make sure you always wait those 45 minutes (or more) before you brush after having that sports or energy drink.

Tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease, five times more common than asthma. It’s also preventable with the proper oral care. Dr. Horner and Dr. Barrow and the team at Horner Barrow Orthodontics can help identify early signs of enamel erosion, and also give you solutions on how to prevent further damage and more serious problems from occurring.

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 atmosphere that will ensure our patients feel relaxed and confident about placing their orthodontic care in our hands.


Interesting Orthodontic Facts

braces sisters

Whether you’re considering getting braces, or you’re currently in orthodontic treatment here at Horner Barrow Orthodontics, there are many things to know about straightening your smile. Orthodontic treatment isn’t just about wires, brackets and elastics. There are many interesting facts to learn about orthodontics and braces, and why straightening your teeth is easier than ever before.

• NASA originally created the wires that are used with braces.
Some wiring used for braces contains nickel titanium, an alloy that NASA originally developed for use in the space program. When used in orthodontic appliances, these light-weight, thin, highly-elastic and flexible wires are activated by body heat and will maintain their shape after being bent and attached to the teeth.

• Braces have been around for nearly 300 years.
Pierre Fauchard, born in 1728, and considered the Father of Dentistry, invented an appliance called a bandeau. The horseshoe-shaped strip of metal had regularly-spaced holes that fit around the teeth to correct their alignment. Fauchard would also operate on patients using a set of forceps called a pelican, to forcibly realign teeth and tie them to the adjacent teeth to hold them in place while they healed. Ouch!

Later, Christophe-François Delabarre (1787-1862) tried to separate overcrowded teeth by inserting swelling threads, or wooden wedges, between each space. In the 20th century, with a better understanding of malocclusion, dentist Edward Angle, considered the Father of Modern Orthodontics, introduced more advanced and modern orthodontic appliances, like brackets, to effectively address issues with tooth misalignment.

• All orthodontists are dentists.
All orthodontists are dentists, but only about 6 percent of dentists are orthodontists. An orthodontist is a dentist who specializes in the prevention and treatment of teeth irregularities, such as an improper bite. After graduating from dental school, an orthodontist must then successfully complete an additional two to three years of education from an accredited orthodontic residency program.

• The desire for straight teeth can be traced all the way back to ancient Egypt.
Even though braces weren’t created until the early 18th century, people have wanted straight, beautiful smiles for thousands of years. Several mummies were discovered with cords crafted from animal intestines wrapped around their teeth, similar to modern braces wiring. Archaeologists believe this was man’s first efforts to straighten crooked teeth.

• Retainers are as important as braces.
The long-term success of a patient’s orthodontic treatment depends on how their dedication to wearing their retainer. Approximately 25 percent of patients who wear braces have to get them again at some point in their lives because they failed to wear their retainers as instructed, causing their teeth to revert back to their original misalignment. Remember to wear your retainer as instructed by your orthodontist to maintain a beautiful, straight smile for a lifetime!

• Braces aren’t just for kids.
Just because you didn’t wear braces as a child doesn’t mean your chance for a straighter smile has passed you by. According to the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), approximately one in five orthodontic patients is an adult, and many of those patients are in their 50s, 60s and 70s. Kids, parents and grandparents can enjoy the benefits of a straighter smile with orthodontic treatment.

• Right now, millions of people in the United States are wearing braces.
According to the AAO, approximately 4 million people in the United States are wearing braces, or some type of orthodontic appliance, to straighten their teeth. 75 percent of those receiving orthodontic treatment are younger than age 18.

• Famous people wear braces to straighten their teeth, too!
Do you ever wonder how celebrities get those Hollywood smiles? It’s not always due to good genetics. Just like the rest of us, many famous actors, singers and other well-known professionals have worn orthodontic appliances to correct dental issues and enhance their smiles. Those who’ve worn braces include Angelina Jolie, Tom Cruise, Ryan Seacrest, Faith Hill, Gwyneth Paltrow, Faye Dunaway, and Britain’s Prince Harry, as well as many other famous people.

• Don’t believe all the stories you hear about braces.
Many of the rumors you have heard about braces are simply not true. Braces do not set off metal detectors. You cannot “lock braces” when kissing someone who’s also wearing braces. Braces do not interfere with radio signals. Wearing braces will not increase your chance of being struck by lightning. Yes, you can still play a musical instrument, or safely play sports while wearing braces.

• An orthodontic evaluation by age 7 is very important.
The AAO recommends bringing your child in to have an orthodontic evaluation as soon as any tooth irregularities appear; and no later than age 7. An early evaluation will help to determine if problems are present, and to schedule the most appropriate timeframe for orthodontic treatment, if deemed necessary. This is important because many conditions are much easier to treat if they are identified early.

Now that you’ve read these interesting orthodontic facts, you can see how the techniques and tools used by orthodontists to straighten teeth have evolved and improved over many, many years. One thing that hasn’t changed; people have always desired a straight, beautiful smile.

If you want to learn more about improving your smile with braces, call our Sioux Falls, SD office today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Kevin Horner or Dr. Keri Barrow about the options for orthodontic treatment. If you’re considering getting braces, there are many things you should know about straightening your smile. Orthodontic treatment isn’t just about wires, brackets and elastics. There are lots of facts to learn about braces, and why straightening your teeth is easier than you may have thought possible.

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 atmosphere that will ensure our patients feel relaxed and confident about placing their orthodontic care in our hands.

Everything You Need To Know About Tooth Enamel

smiling girl

There’s been a lot of talk lately about tooth enamel. What is it? How important is it? How can you protect the enamel on your teeth? At Horner Barrow Orthodontics, we want you to have all of the knowledge you need to properly care for your teeth, before, during and after orthodontic treatment in our Sioux Falls, SD office. So here are the answers to all of your enamel questions.

The enamel on your teeth is the hardest and the most highly-mineralized substance in your body. Enamel covers the outer layer of each tooth, and it is the most visible part of the tooth. The color of the enamel can vary from light yellow to grayish white. Because tooth enamel is semi-translucent, it is only partially responsible for the color of your teeth. Enamel is made up mostly of minerals, primarily hydroxyapatite. Hydroxyapatite, also called hydroxyapatite (HA), is a naturally-occurring mineral form of calcium apatite. It is a major component, and an essential ingredient of normal bone and teeth. Hydroxyapatite makes up bone mineral and the matrix of teeth. It is what gives bones and teeth their rigidity.

Enamel plays a very important role in protecting your teeth from decay, so it’s important to do everything you can to prevent your enamel from eroding. It forms a strong barrier that protects the inner layers of your teeth from the effects of acids and plaque. It also protects the sensitive inner layers of your teeth from very hot or very cold foods and beverages.

If your enamel is destroyed, your body will not make more to repair or replenish it. Unlike other parts of your body (your bones, for example), enamel does not contain any living cells, so it cannot regenerate.

You can protect your tooth enamel while wearing braces, and after your braces are removed, by avoiding foods that are known to cause the most damage. Sugary foods and acidic fruits and beverages (especially those popular energy and sports drinks) are among the most damaging to your tooth enamel. When those substances stick to your teeth and interact with the bacteria present in your mouth, lactic acid is produced, which can damage your enamel. Avoid these foods when you can, and if you do consume them, remember to brush thoroughly afterward. If you are not able to brush afterward, be sure to thoroughly rinse your mouth with water.

Extremely hard or crunchy foods, such as hard candy or ice cubes, can also damage your enamel by causing it to crack or chip, so these foods should also be avoided. If you do have a piece of hard candy, suck on it but don’t bite down on it.

You can also protect your enamel by practicing good oral hygiene habits, like regular brushing with a fluoride toothpaste, flossing, and visiting your dental professional for regular professional cleanings.

Enamel is an important substance that deserves to be taken care of and protected as part of good oral hygiene, whether or not you are wearing braces.

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 atmosphere that will ensure our patients feel relaxed and confident about placing their orthodontic care in our hands.


Here’s 8 Great Reasons To Smile!

smiling womanAt Horner Barrow Orthodontics we love creating beautiful smiles for our patients. Just one tiny muscle movement is all it takes to turn up the sides of your mouth, and that smile packs a surprising amount of power!
Smiling stimulates our brain’s reward mechanisms in a way that even chocolate simply cannot match. In a study conducted in the United Kingdom, British researchers found that just one smile can provide the same level of brain stimulation as up to 2000 chocolate bars!
Smiling is a universal, and also frequent, means of communicating. More than 30 percent of us smile more than 20 times a day and less than 14 percent of us smile less than 5 times a day. In fact, children may smile as many as 400 times a day. That’s a whole lot of chocolate bars!
Here are 8 great reasons to flash your beautiful Horner Barrow Orthodontics smile:
1. Smiling Makes YOU Happy
The simple act of smiling sends a message to your brain that you’re happy. When you’re happy, your body pumps out lots of feel-good endorphins. It’s been documented that when people mimic different emotional expressions, their bodies produce physiological changes that reflect that emotion too, such as changes in heart and breathing rate. Psychologists have found that if you smile for just 60 seconds, even fake or forced, it releases serotonin which tricks the body into making YOU feel happy.
2. Smiling Lowers Your Blood Pressure
Believe it or not, lots of smiling can actually make you healthier. Smiling has documented therapeutic effects. It has been associated with reduced stress and anxiety hormone levels (such as cortisol, adrenaline, and dopamine) which in turn lowers blood pressure.
3. Smiling Boosts Your Immune System
Many medical studies have found that smiling lowers ones heart rate, steadies breathing, and relaxes the body, which, in turn, results in a stronger immune system, and could even help you sleep better. So smile more to ward off colds and stay healthy.
4. Smiling Can Make Others Happy
“When you’re smiling, the whole world smiles with you.” Remember that song, made famous by Louis Armstrong? Well, it turns out it’s true. Research shows that smiling is contagious. Have you ever been around someone who just had something wonderful happen to them? Seeing their delighted smile, it’s almost impossible not to feel good, too. Studies show that something as simple as seeing a friend smile can activate the muscles in your face to make that same expression, without even being aware that you are doing it.
5. Smiling Will Make You Look More Youthful
News Flash! Smiling is a natural facelift! It plumps up the cells of the facial skin and gives you a warm, radiant glow. In fact, a study conducted found that 69 percent of people find women more attractive when they smile than when they are wearing makeup!
6. Smiling Increases Your Productivity.
Smiling can diminish negativity, which in turn revitalizes and boosts your productivity. Studies have proven that a few minutes of smiling and laughter motivates people to work harder, and can even enhance their creativity.
7. Smiling Builds Trust
It’s been shown that a genuine smile increases the trust that the recipient of that smile feels. In fact, the bigger your smile (a big, approachable smile), the more others will trust you.
8. Smiling May Help You Live Longer
When you are smiling, it’s hard to be negative, and a positive attitude has been shown to increase life expectancy. Studies have shown that you can add up to seven more years to your life by genuinely smiling often. Now, who wouldn’t want that?
Food For Thought:
“A smile costs nothing, but creates much. It enriches those who receive, without impoverishing those who give. It happens in a flash and the memory of it sometimes lasts forever.” – Dale Carnegie, How to Win Friends and Influence People.
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 atmosphere that will ensure our patients feel relaxed and confident about placing their orthodontic care in our hands. Call our Sioux Falls, SD office today!