Breaking Orthodontics: The Dangers of Chewing Gum

Sticky and hard foods are things that you need to avoid once you get teeth straightening treatment. Not only do they impede the repair and realigning process of your teeth, but they may also potentially damage your teeth’s inner mechanism. While the list of things you should not chew and eat is long, chewing gum is the one thing that stands out, thanks to its availability and relative popularity.

The Dangers of Gum

bracesWhile harder food items can physically knock off and break the brackets off your braces, chewing gum bends the wires. Normally, the wires of the braces are straight to align your teeth perfectly. Constantly chewing gum bends these wires, and since your teeth follow the contours and shape of the braces, it will follow where the wire bends. If you keep chewing gum while you have braces on, it does the exact opposite of correcting your teeth, making it even worse, and potentially lengthening the time of your treatment.

Pain is something you will also experience when you constantly chew gum while you have braces on. Your teeth extend far below into your gums, and are firmly rooted within the bone. When you chew gum, the wire bends in unusual positions, which in turn causes your teeth to move around in its place. Within your gums, its roots will also start to move around, which can be quite painful and may even cause your gums to bleed.

Plaque Risk

The movement of your teeth into different and unusual directions may also cause holes and spaces between your teeth to form. Not only is this counterproductive to what your braces are trying to achieve, but you are also placing yourself at a greater risk of accumulating plaque. This colourless film of bacterial waste settles between the spaces and gaps of your teeth, and due to its acidic nature, it breaks down the enamel of your teeth. If left unattended, it may even turn into a more serious gum disease.

Our team at Weybridge Orthodontics understands how dangerous a little bit of gum can be when you have braces. Visit our website at for more information about our orthodontic treatments like Invisalign and Incognito. Arrange a consultation with us today.

Teeth Straightening, Crooked Speech: Lisp and Orthodontics

A person wears teeth straightening appliances like Invisalign or Incognito to correct their set of crooked teeth. However, while primarily a corrective action, braces sometimes impede speech fluency. Slightly slurred speech and other difficulties are to be expected as a normal response to the initial adjustment period.

weybridge orthodonticsAlthough it may sound very disheartening, know that it is not a hopeless situation. With enough practice and getting used to, you will be able to go back to being fluent once again. Unfortunately, some develop a lisping effect in their speech due to neglect.

While there are lingual braces available that help improve speech ability, our team at Weybridge Orthodontics believes all it really takes to conquer any type of speech impediment caused by braces is exploring the tongue, the mouth and the teeth’s ability to form sounds.

It’s Only Temporary

Any speech impediment or difficulty resulting from adjustment to wearing dental braces is temporary and not permanent. The tongue may be having difficulty reaching places and you may find yourself lisping at times.

Lisp occurs when a person cannot articulate fricative or affricate consonants, such as /s/, /z/, /sh/, /ch/ and other variations of the same sounds. The lisp is primarily a misarticulation that results in unclear speech and is mostly due to error in tongue placement within the mouth.

Corrective Action

When a person wears braces that are too thick or wrongly fitted, the tongue protrudes beyond the front teeth. This would obviously result in heavy speech impediment. However, even if the braces are a perfect fit, it could be the strange sensation the wires bring that cause difficulty in pronunciation.

The most efficient way of correcting a lisp or speech impediment due to the braces you are wearing is working on correcting your articulation. Isolate sounds and work on correcting each sound in isolation. The phoneme, or the basic sound, is selected as target for treatment.

You can consult with a speech-language pathologist (SLP) or tell us about your concern so we can look at the possibility of other orthodontic treatment that may be friendlier to your condition. We at Weybridge Orthodontics take great pride in the use of dental appliances that combine comfort, aesthetics and function.

Book an appointment today for beautiful teeth and a smile that will not compromise your speech.

Crowded Teeth may Make You a Candidate for Pancreatic Cancer

Crowded teeth may be the reason for your headaches and jaw pains. The effects of malocclusiondo not limit themselves to the oral region, however. A recent study revealed that crooked teeth increase your chances of acquiring serious non-oral diseases like pancreatic cancer.

From malocclusion to pancreatic cancer

Weybridge OrthodonticsIt is easy to maintain proper oral hygiene when your teeth are straight and perfect. Disease-causing bacteria have a lower likelihood of lingering and infecting your teeth and gums.

On the other hand, crowded teeth cause difficulties in brushing or flossing your teeth, creating an opportunity for bacteria to thrive. Malocclusion, combined with poor oral hygiene, may lead to periodontitis or infection of the gums. Gum disease may lead not only to tooth loss but to pancreatic cancer, as well.

Researchers suggest that some bacteria from malocclusion-related gum disease contain carcinogenic compounds called nitrosamines, which may react to digestive chemicals in the gut. These might cause the body to become vulnerable to the development of pancreatic cancer. Other studies note that C reactive protein (CRP) found in the blood may be the cause for the likelihood of pancreatic cancer for people with periodontal disease.

A study published in the journal Gut revealed that certain types of gum disease-causing bacteria lead to twice the risk of developing pancreatic cancer. In addition, researchers found that men with a history of gum disease had a 64% increased risk of pancreatic cancer compared with those who never had gum disease. People with malocclusion have a higher risk of getting gum disease, thus increasing the chances of getting pancreatic cancer.

Treatment and Prevention

In acknowledgment of the link between crowded teeth and pancreatic cancer, dentists emphasise the importance of preventing malocclusion early. Observe proper oral hygiene by brushing twice and flossing once a day. Avoid grinding hard objects, thumb sucking, tongue thrusting and other habits that may affect teeth alignment.

Orthodontic treatments are necessary for those with signs of malocclusion, as well. Dentists encourage the use of teeth aligners, which come as conventional metal braces or discreet varieties.

Small discomfort and unsightly appearance are not the only things to worry about when you have crowded teeth. These may cause cancer and other serious diseases if left untreated. Surrey Orthodontics Limited providesclearRXaligners, allowing you to enjoy straight teeth and a nice smile even during treatments. Call us for more information on our orthodontic treatments.

Life After Getting Braces: Managing to Eat with Braces

Newly-installed braces may feel odd and a bit painful inside your mouth. After installation, it obviously feels different and heavier, due to the metal brackets and other materials inside your mouth. Your first braces will plant the idea that you have limited choices in terms of what you can eat.

Weybridge OrthodonticsDentists remind patients of the importance of avoiding certain foods that can damage your braces. In addition to being difficult to chew, these foods can ruin your braces’ capability of shifting your teeth. When you bite into food while wearing braces, brackets can easily pull away and break.

Regularly eating crunchy, sticky and tough food may require you to wear your braces for a longer period, not to mention visit your dentist more often.

You might be wondering: ‘Does this mean I cannot eat my favourite meals?’

Fortunately, you can still eat certain food types without worrying about your new braces. Life after braces need not be difficult and ‘tasteless’—all it takes is some precaution, restraint and the help of your knife and fork.

Soft foods are always an option

The first day with braces is probably the most difficult in your journey to a better smile. Since your teeth are adjusting to the foreign object inside your mouth, you will quite certainly feel some pain. Soup and pudding are your best mates on the dining table during this time. Choose food that you can easily swallow, as chewing will be difficult during the first few days.

Softer foods are always an option while you have braces on. Rather than force yourself to eat steak, choose chicken or fish instead.

Brace yourself for easy-to-chew options

Braces, despite their durable nature, are susceptible to damage, especially when forced to break down tough food types. A steak dinner is not the best way to celebrate your new braces. Before you take a bite, consider if the food is easily chewable. If not, make sure to cut your food into smaller pieces to avoid damaging your braces.

A list of foods you can enjoy

Life with braces can still be full of delicious flavors. Here are some foods you can have:

  • Soft fruits (e.g. oranges, kiwis and grapefruit)
  • Dairy products
  • Eggs
  • Sweet treats such as pudding and ice cream
  • Soups
  • Seafood
  • Non-tough meats

Take care of your braces by being mindful of what you eat. At Weybridge Orthodontics, we also help you prolong the life of your braces for a better, brighter smile. Call us now for more information.

Brace Face No More: Understanding the Invisalign Process

Invisalign paves the way towards dental modernisation through subtle teeth straightening without the obvious appearance of braces. While there are other options available for straightening needs, only Invisalign offers an unmatched level of convenience and comfort for users.

bracesThese transparent alignment trays are made from smooth invisible plastic users wear over their teeth. Once worn, these retainers will gradually shift teeth into place according to your Invisalign dental treatment plan. Unlike traditional braces, Invisalign requires no metal brackets and twisted wires—just a clear mouthpiece over your teeth.

Hesitant to undergo the procedure? Here is what you need to know about the Invisalign process:

Specialised treatment for you

The first step towards a successful Invisalign journey begins at an examination in the dental clinic. The exams determine whether a patient is a good candidate for the procedure or not. Once the exam qualifies you, your dentist will take records of your teeth and face, including dental impressions and X-rays, and send the results to Invisalign. The company creates custom aligners designed according to your teeth’s structure.

How the treatment progresses

Once your treatment begins, you will wear a set of Invisalign trays for two weeks at a time. Each aligner is straighter than the previous tray, moving 1/10mm per tray. During each stage, only a particular set of teeth will move due to controlled force.

As you progress through a series of trays, your teeth move little by little. Every new tray puts additional pressure on your teeth to match the current mould of each new aligner.

During the process, your dentist will recommend occasional check-ups to monitor your progress and provide additional adjustments.

How long and How often FAQs

The treatment process depends on your case as determined by your Invisalign provider. An average Invisalign treatment takes about 12 months for adults; length of time for teenage patients varies per case.

Most dentists recommend wearing the aligners 20 to 22 hours per day for more effective results. Patients can only remove the aligners during meals, brushing and flossing. Dentists will schedule regular appointments to ensure treatment is progressing.

With Invisalign, you need not struggle with metal brackets and further twisting. Weybridge Orthodontics offers the Invisalign procedure to help you achieve that straight smile you have always wanted. Get in touch with us now.

Aesthetic Braces: 3 Alternatives to Metal Brackets

One of the most successful innovations in dentistry is the creation of cosmetic braces. For decades, people had no choice but to rely on unattractive braces with metal brackets and wires to correct their teeth. This significantly affected their self-confidence, and even prompted many to skip braces entirely.

Weybridge OrthodonticsNow, patients actually have a range of much more appealing orthodontic treatments at their disposal. While there are many kinds, you can generally sort them into three categories.

Clear Aligners

Aligners are the perfect blend of practicality and style, as you can remove them whenever you want. Invisalign is the most famous in this category, and countless people all over the world have experienced just how wonderful it is. Besides the almost undetectable appearance, a removable aligner also has a few other significant benefits:

  • Better oral hygiene – You can remove the aligner to brush your teeth and floss easily
  • Convenient eating – Meals are much more convenient, and there are no food restrictions
  • Flexibility – You can also take the aligner off when going to a social event or taking pictures

Not every orthodontic case is suitable for Invisalign or other clear aligner, but we can evaluate your condition to see if this is an option for you.

Tooth Coloured Brackets

The closest one to conventional braces on this list, options like Damon Clear have tooth-coloured brackets and wires that are difficult to see from a distance, giving you a more beautiful smile. An added bonus of the Damon System is that it is much more comfortable; the “passive” slide mechanism reduces friction, and allows your teeth to move more quickly – thereby reducing the treatment time.

Lingual Braces

Arguably the most discreet option, lingual braces are located directly behind your teeth, making it almost impossible for casual observers to see them. The Incognito™ Lingual Bracket System we offer is fully customised for each patient’s dental needs. It is suitable for all ages, so you can benefit from it, whether you are a working professional or a high school senior.

Weybridge Orthodontics is dedicated to giving you a beautiful, flawless smile through our state-of-the- art solutions. Do you want to learn more about the treatments we offer? Give us a call or email at any time, and let us schedule your free consultation.

The Problems Caused by Malocclusion

How well do your teeth fit together? There are many different kinds of malocclusion, ranging in severity from almost imperceptible to severely misaligned bites and crowded teeth. Braces can usually fix it, but surgery might be required for the most extreme cases.

BracesMalocclusion can greatly affect your self-confidence because of how much it alters your smile. However, what many people do not realise is that it causes multiple other problems as well.

  1. Appearance – The most obvious consequence of malocclusion is the way it affects your Not only does it make your smile noticeably less attractive, significant overbites or underbites can affect the profile of your face. This is why many people look different after getting braces.
  1. Poor hygiene – Having crooked teeth and an abnormal bite makes it much harder to properly clean your Food particles can get trapped in hard to reach spaces, leading to bacteria growth and plaque build-up. This increases the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
  1. Chewing issues – When your teeth do not properly fit together, you will likely find chewing or biting to be more You might also experience pain and discomfort, especially over extended periods of chewing, or when eating harder food.
  1. Speech difficulties – Some people develop lisps and other speech difficulties because of severe Teeth play a crucial role in speech production, which is why their position and form can sometimes affect how clear your voice sounds.
  1. Jaw strain – Malocclusion can strain your jaw and temporomandibular joint. You may notice severe jaw joint pain, headaches, or even a clicking noise when opening and closing your In some cases, the uneven pressure applied on your teeth can also make some more vulnerable to damage.

Having imperfect teeth is much more than just an aesthetic issue. We have the solutions that can help secure your oral health, and give you the smile you have always wanted. For a complimentary consultation, contact us at your convenience.

Why Retainers are an Important Part of Post-Braces Care

Orthodontic solutions, such as braces and Invisalign, aim to help you achieve that stunning and fantastic smile. Initially, wearing metals in your mouth or tight trays can be burdensome. Nevertheless, you will love them the moment you see some progress.

Weybridge OrthodonticsThe orthodontic treatment, however, does not end once the braces are removed. The dentist may prescribe the wearing of retainers. You may flinch about the idea and may even come up with some retorts. Let Weybridge Orthodontics explain why retainers are a crucial part of your treatment.

The Possibility of Shifting

Retainers are a small and customised dental device that you should wear after the brackets and the wire are removed. The purpose of wearing a retainer is to strengthen the new position of the teeth.

The positions of your teeth move as you get old. Even small amounts of pressure from activities, such as licking and biting can undo the work of braces.

Period of Wearing

After the removal of the braces, we will assess your smile and bone structure. The period of wearing the retainer will depend on the evaluation. Usually, we recommend patients to wear them full-time (all day long) at first. Eventually, we may put some limitations on wearing it. Whilst you may use some breaks when wearing your retainer, it is important that you keep it consistent.

Your Options

At Weybridge Orthodontics, we provide a number of options on retainers. We have bonded wire retainers, which are fixed behind the incisors. We have Essix retainers, which are clear trays that you may remove when eating and cleaning your teeth.

If you are currently on an orthodontic treatment and are planning your post-braces care, get in touch with us today. Our team includes trained Treatment Coordinators who will guide you through the various treatment options in a friendly environment.

My Story by Julie Rogers (Our Head Nurse)

Once upon a time back in Feburary 2013. “I decided to have braces”. My reason for this decision was I turned 30 and I had a crown of which the margins started to show, so I thought to myself ‘I need to have my crown replaced…..!!so why not have my teeth straigtened first’ . I went for the InovationC fixed braces because it was a self ligating brace (no elastics) which means I can have as many curries as i like without my braces changing colour. Also, they are not that visible. Having braces fitted wasn’t too bad just a long time to have your mouth open. I had a bit more of pain that evening but a couple of painkillers took the edge off. All together I had a pleasant experience. Thanks to everyone at WO.




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