• It’s Not Easy Being a Teenager with Braces

    It’s already complicated being a teenager and sometimes braces can only worsen the struggle faced by a young person while they navigate their way through adolescence. Braces can cause self-esteem issues and be nuisances in everyday activities such as eating, talking and playing sports. However, the work is always worth it in the end! In this article, we look at how we can help teenagers through their treatment and hopefully make it that little bit easier.

    Investigate Alternatives

    In many cases, there will be alternatives to a regular brace that can achieve the same result. If your teenager is particularly unhappy with the effect that braces have on their appearance, then you can look into lingual braces or Invisalign . These treatments can be more expensive than a traditional external brace, but if it makes the patient significantly happier then that means an easier life for them, their parents and their orthodontist!

    Find Someone Who Can Empathise

    Sometimes braces can be uncomfortable, painful and frustrating to wear. If you had braces yourself in the past, then talk about your experience with your teenager so that they know that you understand what they’re going through. If you’ve never had a brace, then ask a family member who has to have a chat with your child so that they feel they have someone to talk to about their issues.

    Perhaps an older sibling or cousin had braces previously and can show your teenager before and after photos of their treatment so that they know it’ll be worth it in the end – the important thing is that your teenager knows they aren’t alone.

    Turn Low Self Esteem into Brace Pride

    We live in a modern society and wearing braces doesn’t have to be a bad thing! Spend some time with your teenager looking at photos of celebrities who wear or have worn braces and you’ll be surprised at what you find. Try searching Instagram for #braces, #braceface or even #babeswithbraces and you’ll instantly find thousands of photos of people happily undergoing orthodontic treatment. A brace is an investment in a future perfect smile and with many options of colours and types of braces, your teenager has some control over customising their look.

    Focus on Results

    Your Brisbane orthodontist will be able to give you a rough estimation of how long the treatment will take, so keep your teenager upbeat by focusing on how soon the day will come when they are brace-free with a beautiful straight smile. To your teenager, it may seem like they’ll be wearing the brace forever but with a busy life of schooling, extra-curricular activities and socialising, the final day will arrive in no time. Take photos along the way when their brace is changed so they can visualise their progress for extra motivation.

    To find out about the range of braces we offer at Tony Weir Orthodontics, call us now on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.

  • Braces – Side Effects and Problems

    Braces can achieve amazing results in straightening your teeth and correcting misalignment or poor bites, but there are many factors you should consider before undergoing treatment. Here, we’re investigating the most common side effects and problems that patients experience during treatment.

    Discomfort after Tightening

    When you’re wearing a brace, the wires must generally be tightened every four to six weeks in order to gradually move the teeth into their correct position. These adjustments apply pressure to the teeth which can cause some discomfort or pain.

    Some patients at our Brisbane office experience soreness in their teeth or jaw for a few days after the adjustment, and the pressure on your teeth can cause your gums to be tender. Fortunately, this pain is usually short-lived and can be easily managed with painkillers.

    Oral Hygiene Issues

    You may have heard stories of people wearing braces and developing tooth decay or gum disease as a result but this is not true. Wearing braces does not have a detrimental effect on your oral health; it simply requires more attention to maintain. When you are wearing a brace, it’s very important to brush and floss your teeth after eating in order to keep the area clean and free of bacteria, but there is no reason that the braces themselves should affect your oral health.

    Injuries from Your Appliance

    It is unlikely that your brace itself will cause you any injuries but it is possible for this to happen on occasion. Loose or broken wires and brackets can scratch or irritate the cheeks, gums or lips, so it’s important to get breaks fixed as soon as they occur.

    You can reduce the likelihood of harming your appliance by avoiding hard and crunchy foods as these can catch in the wires or brackets.

    Mouth Ulcers or Canker Sores

    When your brace is first fitted, you may notice ulcers or sores inside your mouth caused by the appliance rubbing against your cheeks and lips. Over time, the inside of your mouth will become resistant to this contact and the sores will disappear. Until then, if you find your brace causing continued discomfort to the soft tissue of your mouth, you can try using orthodontic wax strips which form a protective barrier between your brace and cheeks.

    For more information on the potential side effects of braces from the team at Tony Weir Orthodontics, call us now on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.

  • The Importance of Removing Overcrowded Teeth

    a female patient holds her mouth open to allow her orthodontist to inspect her teeth In certain situations, your orthodontist will recommend a tooth extraction in order to make room in your mouth or allow for tooth realignment to achieve the perfect smile . This is a very common and relatively simple procedure, so read on to learn more!

    When Is Extraction Necessary?

    Your Brisbane orthodontist will only recommend a tooth extraction when it is truly necessary, either to relieve pain, improve function or to allow successful brace treatment . Overcrowding is when there’s simply not enough space for your teeth to grow in proper alignment. The only way to cure this is by removing one or more teeth to allow for healthy future growth.

    How Does an Extraction Work?

    There are two types of extractions carried out to combat overcrowding, and the chosen method depends on the developmental stage of the tooth. When a tooth is fully erupted and can be seen in the mouth, it’s possible to have a simple extraction carried out by a general dentist under local anaesthetic. For teeth that have not fully come into the mouth or are below the gum line, a surgical extraction will be necessary. A small incision must be made into the gum before the tooth can be removed by an oral surgeon or dentist.

    Pain Management after Tooth Extraction

    Tooth extraction is a type of surgery and, as such, you can expect to feel some discomfort afterwards, but the pain should be manageable. The best course of action is to take anti-inflammatory painkillers such as Ibuprofen for the first few days after the extraction as this will combat both pain and swelling. If your jaw feels swollen and uncomfortable, you can apply an ice pack for 20 minutes at a time to reduce the swelling. Do not smoke, use a straw or spit for 72 hours after surgery as all of these can pull the necessary blood clot out of the gap where your tooth was.

    What to Eat after Tooth Extraction

    After a tooth extraction, you may find that cold foods soothe the discomfort and swelling in your mouth, so the good news is that you have an excuse to eat plenty of ice cream! It’s important to stick to soft foods for the first few days after surgery so ice cream, smoothies, scrambled eggs, mashed potato and yoghurt are all great options.

    For warm meals, soups or broths are good as long as you make sure to avoid anything spicy or too acidic. Now is not the time to be reaching for chips and popcorn; crunchy snacks are a no-go after surgery due to the risk of small pieces irritating or getting stuck in the empty tooth socket.

    To find out how the Tony Weir team can help with tooth overcrowding, call us now on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.

  • The Most Common Orthodontic Procedures

    a woman holds up two different dental retainers next to her beautiful smile Orthodontists are dental specialists who work to correct tooth alignment and bite problems in order to give you a perfect smile. Here, we’re listing a few of the most common treatments that orthodontists carry out.

    Traditional Braces

    Traditional metal braces are still a hugely popular form of orthodontic treatment across Australia for adults, teenagers and children. Braces consist of a series of brackets attached directly to your teeth, linked by wires which work to pull the teeth into their correct position.

    Your orthodontist will tighten or loosen the wires over time as your teeth move over the course of a few months or years, depending on your situation. At Tony Weir Orthodontics, we can use subtle tooth-coloured brackets to minimise the aesthetic impact of your brace.

    Lingual Braces

    Lingual braces are similar to traditional braces in that they attach to your teeth and work to correct improper alignment. To affix a lingual brace, your orthodontist will attach brace brackets to the back of your teeth so that they are hidden from view.

    The advantage of this system is that you still achieve the same straight smile but without having to feel self-conscious about wearing a brace. In addition to this, lingual braces have much less impact on your speech as they don’t interfere with the movement of your lips.

    Invisalign

    Invisalign is a highly effective method of straightening your teeth and correcting your smile without using braces. Instead of metal brackets and wires, you wear a clear plastic aligner tray on your teeth like a retainer. These trays get changed every two weeks to adjust to the changing shape of your teeth and can be removed for eating and cleaning throughout the day.

    The biggest advantage of choosing Invisalign is that the aligners are virtually invisible so no one will know that you’re wearing them. This means that there’s no need to deal with confidence issues whilst you’re undergoing treatment as you will look exactly the same, only with your smile becoming straighter over time.

    Retainers

    A retainer or removable appliance is recommended for patients who have recently had tooth realignment treatment in order to maintain the new shape of their teeth. In order to keep your bite corrected and prevent teeth from shifting back into their original place, your orthodontist will prescribe you a retainer to wear at certain times.

    There are a number of different types of removable appliances and the right one for you will depend on the treatment you’ve had and the issues that remain. Banded or bonded retainers can be glued to the back of teeth to maintain correct placement of one or more teeth, or a clear retainer can be worn overnight.

    Orthodontic Elastics

    Orthodontic elastics are a special type of rubber bands which are used in conjunction with your braces to help correct jaw problems or tooth alignment. These bands can pull your jaw forwards or backwards in order to improve your bite and speed up the process of tooth alignments.

    To find out about how orthodontic treatment can help you get that killer smile, call Tony Weir Orthodontics now on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.

  • Our Product Recommendations – Toothbrushes, Floss and Mouthwashes

    With hundreds of dental care products making claims to improve your oral health at home , it can be difficult to know what to choose. The most important thing is to make sure that you’re brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes; however, by using some of the great products listed below, you can achieve an even better clean without relying on your dentist.With hundreds of dental care products making claims to improve your oral health at home , it can be difficult to know what to choose. The most important thing is to make sure that you’re brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes; however, by using some of the great products listed below, you can achieve an even better clean without relying on your dentist.

    a woman stands in a supermarket aisle choosing between different toothbrushes

    Best for a Deep Clean

    Piksters Interdental Brushes

    These are small round brushes, designed to clean the most hard-to-reach places between your teeth and gums to give a deeper clean. Where dental floss cleans in a straight line between teeth, Piksters have lateral bristles that spring out to remove plaque in the small crevices where dental decay and gum disease begin. This easy-to-use design is overtaking flossing as the most popular supplement to oral care routines around the world.

    Best for Sensitive Teeth

    Sensodyne Repair and Protect Toothpaste

    This toothpaste can provide lasting relief from sensitivity as well as containing an ingredient called NovaMin, which builds a reparative layer over your teeth and protects them from pain. Sensodyne also contains fluoride to prevent cavities and has a great fresh taste. After a short time using Sensodyne Repair and Protect, users find that their sensitivity to hot and cold is significantly reduced so you can continue to enjoy your favourite food and drinks without worrying about sensitive teeth!

    Best Investment for At-Home Care

    Foreo Issa Electric Toothbrush

    This is not a cheap toothbrush, but if you have issues with gum disease or tooth decay then this futuristic product is well worth the investment. The high-tech pulsating silicone brush is 35 times more hygienic than standard brush heads, generating the perfect amount of friction to remove stains and plaque while being gentle on tooth enamel and sensitive gums. The flexible brush head can adapt to clean any tooth surface and navigate hard to reach places. Treat your teeth to this revolutionary tool and we guarantee you’ll notice the difference.

    Best Everyday Brush

    Colgate Extra Clean

    If you’re looking for a great toothbrush for all the family on a budget, look no further than the Colgate Extra Clean brush, available in soft or medium varieties. The bristles are different heights in order to give an all-over clean for your teeth and gums, with a special cleaning tip to access the very back of your mouth. On the back of the head, you’ll find a tongue cleaner to remove odour-causing bacteria, and the handle is ergonomically designed with rubber thumb grips for better control.

    Best All-Round Mouthwash

    Listerine Total Care Zero Alcohol

    Most mouthwashes simply cover bad breath with a fresh scent, so it’s best to choose a product that has genuine anti-bacterial properties in order to promote good oral health. Listerine contains active ingredients which are proven to kill germs, reduce plaque, protect gums and prevent tartar build up. The zero alcohol formula has a less intense taste so you feel minty fresh without an overwhelmingly strong scent.

    To find out more about dental care at home or to make an appointment for an orthodontic consultation call us now on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.

  • Children and Orthodontics

    Orthodontics plays an important part in both your child’s health and the appearance of their smile. Early detection and prevention is the key to their future oral health, so read on to find out more about children’s orthodontics.

    a happy young girl wearing braces holds up her hands to the camera showing they are covered in paint

    When Should My Child First See an Orthodontist?

    The Australian Society of Orthodontists recommends the first orthodontic appointment around the age of 6 or 7. This is the stage at which adult teeth usually appear and enough baby teeth will have erupted for developmental issues to become clear. At this stage, your orthodontist will decide whether treatment is necessary straight away or if it would be better to wait until your child is a little older.

    Early Intervention is Key

    Early intervention in your child’s orthodontic issues aims to reduce or eliminate the need for further treatment in later life. As a parent, early treatment can represent huge potential savings on more serious treatment at a later date as well as avoiding the stress of oral surgery. Professional treatment of tooth alignment or jaw issues at an early age can set your child up with a beautiful healthy smile for life.

    Why Does My Young Child Need Treatment?

    In some circumstances, it is recommended to postpone treatment for a few years but in many cases, your orthodontist will choose to intervene as early as possible when there is something wrong. A young child’s teeth and jaws are easier to shape so treatment is much simpler than on a fully-grown adult mouth. Your orthodontist’s goal is not just to fix problems but to prevent them occurring in the future.

    Childhood Orthodontic Treatments

    The most common orthodontic treatment for children is a brace or retainer . These are designed to correct misalignment which is both a functional and aesthetic issue. If severe misalignment goes untreated, this can cause problems with eating and speaking in later life as well as self-confidence issues from having a crooked smile.

    Braces for children are very common and can be made to look as subtle or brightly-coloured as your child would like. Other problems such as protruding teeth, overcrowding, poor bite alignment or congenitally missing teeth can be solved using specific treatment methods.

    Signs Your Child Should Visit an Orthodontist

    All children develop in their own way so it can be difficult to tell if your child’s teeth are growing in properly. However, there are a few warning signs to watch out for when monitoring your child’s oral health. If your child loses their baby teeth very early or late, has difficulty chewing or biting, or has teeth that seem to meet abnormally then it’s worth getting this checked by an orthodontic specialist.

    In addition to this, there are several common oral habits amongst small children that can give rise to orthodontic issues in the future, such as thumb sucking, breathing through the mouth, tooth grinding and tongue thrusting.

    To find out about how orthodontic treatment can help your child, call Tony Weir Orthodontics now on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.

  • Conquering Your Dental Anxiety

    Dental anxiety affects many Australians and it’s very common for patients to be nervous when visiting their orthodontist, too. Here at Tony Weir Orthodontics, we understand that many of our patients experience nervousness around their treatment and we endeavour to do everything we can to make your visit as stress-free as possible. Below, we list a few of our top tips on how to alleviate dental anxiety.

    a female orthodontist and her assistant speak to an older man about his dental anxiety

    Honesty is the Best Policy

    If you’re nervous about your upcoming appointment, then make sure to tell your orthodontist . They will be very familiar with your concerns and if they know that you are nervous, they can help you to feel more comfortable. Try to speak to the orthodontist that you will be seeing in advance so you can discuss what your appointment will involve, what tools and techniques will be used and how long the process will take.

    Often, the biggest part of dental anxiety is a fear of the unknown, so finding out as much about your treatment as you can will make it a lot less nerve-wracking. If you know of ways in which your orthodontist can help to alleviate your fears, let them know – they want you to have a positive experience and will do everything they can to make that happen.

    Bring a Companion

    There’s no need for you to be alone during your appointment, unless medically necessary, so ask your orthodontist if you can bring a friend or relative. Having someone with you who understands your feelings can be very calming and they can also be a distraction when you need it. Whether you want someone to hold your hand, pull funny faces to distract you or talk you through what’s going on inside your mouth, these can all help reassure you during your appointment.

    Distract Your Focus

    When you’re nervous about undergoing orthodontic treatment, it can be hard to think about anything else. Although most treatments will be painless, they can be uncomfortable, and focusing on your discomfort will not help you to feel calm. Ask your orthodontist whether it’s possible for you to listen to headphones while they carry out their work and you can distract yourself with your favourite podcast or playlist.

    If this isn’t possible then think up some other mind distractions before you get in the chair – this could be replaying the plot of a movie you saw recently, planning the details of your next holiday or trying to remember every item in your last grocery shop.

    Gain Back Control

    Often the nerves surrounding orthodontic treatment stem from the lack of control you may feel over what’s happening whilst you’re in the chair. If you think this is the root cause of your anxiety, speak to your orthodontist in advance to arrange a signal you can give to show that you feel uncomfortable or worried. Even just having the option of using this signal can make you feel more in control of what’s happening and calm your nerves.

    To speak to our friendly team about your concerns and find out how we can help, call us now on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.

  • What is the Difference between an Orthodontist and a Dentist?

    Orthodontists and dentists both serve similar roles in looking after your oral health, but they do this in different ways. In this article, we look at the similarities and differences between these two disciplines.

    Varying Educational Backgrounds

    Both dentists and orthodontists have completed 5 years of dental training to obtain a bachelors degree in dentistry. At this stage, you become a qualified dentist but you must then undertake 3 further years of postgraduate study to become a specialist orthodontist . All orthodontists are therefore qualified and trained dentists, but dentists are not qualified in orthodontics which is why your general dentist will refer you to a specialist for orthodontic treatment.

    Different Focus of Treatment

    This is where the main differences between the two professions lie. Dentistry is a broad discipline which deals with many issues of teeth, gums, nerves and jaws whereas orthodontics focuses on tooth alignment , bite correction and occlusion. Your dentist is focused on improving and maintaining your overall oral health but more severe teeth and jaw problems are dealt with by an orthodontic specialist.

    Complementary Practices

    Dentists and orthodontists can work together to treat patients. If your regular dentist thinks you need orthodontic work, they will refer you to a specialist and vice versa. You don’t need a referral to go to an orthodontist or a dentist in Brisbane, but when you do get a referral from a professional, you trust you’re going to the right place.

    Who Do I Need to See?

    If you think of an orthodontist as a specialist for correcting the alignment of your teeth, and a dentist as a caretaker for your overall oral health then it’s simple to work out which professional you need to see. If you have a problem with infection, disease, tooth pain or are looking for cosmetic treatments such as whitening or veneers then your general dentist covers all of these. For braces, Invisalign and other tooth straightening treatments, you’ll need an appointment with an orthodontic specialist.

    To find out if orthodontic treatment is the right choice for you, call Tony Weir Orthodontics on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.

  • How to Get a Killer Smile

    We would all love to have a smile that lights up the room and makes you feel like a Hollywood star, so aside from proper brushing and flossing, what else can you do to achieve your dream look? Read on to find out!

    Whitening

    Tooth whitening is one of the most affordable and fast ways to improve the appearance of your teeth. There is a huge range of options for whitening procedures including both at-home and in-chair treatments. The right choice for you will depend on your budget, time constraints and the overall effect you want to achieve. Whitening is a great first step in your smile makeover to give you an instant confidence boost.

    Braces

    Braces are the most popular way to correct tooth alignment for adults and children across Australia. A system of brackets and wires across your teeth helps to slowly guide them into the correct position to reveal a beautiful straight smile when treatment is complete. Braces are an affordable way to realign teeth. Here at Tony Weir Orthodontics, we offer tooth-coloured brackets to give a subtler look.

    Lingual Braces

    If you want to straighten your teeth without wearing visible braces, then lingual braces – also known as ‘incognito braces’ are a great option. For this treatment, the brackets and wires attach to the back of your teeth so they are much less noticeable and don’t distort the natural contour of your lips so they won’t affect your speech in the same way.

    Invisalign

    Invisalign is the future of tooth realignment. This system uses a series of clear, removable brace trays to straighten your teeth with guaranteed results. Your treatment will be mapped out using 3D imaging so your progress is highly predictable, and the aligners are virtually invisible. Our patients find that wearing their Invisalign trays is very comfortable and, as they can be removed for eating and cleaning, they affect your daily life much less than traditional braces.

    Reshaping

    If you only have one or two small imperfections in your teeth then reshaping or contouring could be the solution for you. This simple procedure can correct irregularities in the shape and texture of your teeth, such as small chips, pointy canines, overlong teeth or surface flaws. Contouring can also be carried out in conjunction with realignment treatment such as braces or Invisalign to complete your smile transformation.

    Removable Appliances

    Once you’ve completed treatment to achieve that killer smile, now you have to maintain it! Orthodontic procedures such as braces or Invisalign are highly successful in realigning your teeth and perfecting your smile; however, in order to keep your teeth from shifting back into incorrect position, you’ll need to use a removable appliance (or retainer ) after your treatment. This can be a clear retainer worn at night, a plate retainer for upper or lower arches or a discreet bonded retainer on your lower front teeth.

    To find out how the Tony Weir Orthodontics team can help you to get the killer smile you’ve always dreamed of, call us now on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.

  • How to Choose an Orthodontist

    Choosing an orthodontist is an important decision as you will be spending significant time and money on your treatment. Below, we list some of the key factors to consider when making your decision.

    a young female orthodontist stands in her treatment room with a family of patients

    Convenient Location

    When searching for a new orthodontist, finding a practice in a convenient location is an important factor. Make sure the location fits into your daily routine and not simply near your home – if you are planning orthodontic treatment for yourself then a location near to your workplace will be most convenient. If you are arranging treatment for your child, a practice near their school will minimise time away from the classroom. The Tony Weir team works out of two offices in Corinda and Greenslopes so you can arrange appointments at whichever location is best for you.

    Practical Opening Times

    At Tony Weir, we understand it can be difficult to fit orthodontic appointments into your busy schedule, so we offer extended opening times for your convenience. Tuesday-Saturday, one of our offices is open from 7.45am so you have the freedom to make appointments before school or work begins for the day. In addition to this, our Corinda office is open on Saturdays for those times when a weekday appointment just isn’t possible.

    Advanced Technology

    We believe that in order to give the best possible care to our patients, it is vital to keep up with the latest advances in orthodontic technology, including the best in diagnostic imaging and treatment services. One example of the technology that we use is heat-activated brace wires which control the rate of your teeth movement and result in fewer adjustment visits.

    Client Focus

    Orthodontic treatment can take upwards of 12 months to complete, so you want to know that you’ll be spending time in a caring environment with dental and office staff who put patient needs first. At Tony Weir Orthodontics, we see your first consultation as the start of our relationship and pledge to always do the very best we can in looking after you, we listen to you when you talk and do our very best to minimise waiting times.

    Leaders in the Field

    Whether you’re looking for Invisalign, braces or combined treatments, you want to be safe in the hands of an experienced and knowledgeable team. Our practice was the first in Australia to achieve platinum-level certification from Invisalign and our founder, Dr Weir, has continued to drive the practice forward ever since. With over 30 years of experience, Dr Weir is not only a highly qualified orthodontic specialist but also a lecturer and clinical consultant for Invisalign internationally.

    Reputation

    A great way to choose your next orthodontist is by relying on recommendations, testimonials and past patient experiences. When you know patients before you have had successful treatment and a positive orthodontic experience, it gives you peace of mind that you’re making the right decision. Check out our smile gallery to see the stunning transformations we have worked to achieve for real patients.

    Understand the Costs

    Shopping around for treatment doesn’t just mean choosing the cheapest service but finding a solution that is right for your unique needs. At Tony Weir, we do not claim to be the cheapest practice in Brisbane, but we are committed to providing the best possible treatment using the most appropriate products. We will provide you with a detailed treatment quotation in advance so that there are no nasty surprises and no hidden costs. We can also offer payment plans to help ease the burden.

    To learn more about what we offer at Tony Weir Orthodontics, call us now on 07 3054 6767 or visit our contact page for more ways to get in touch.