Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Invisalign Can Work For You

Invisalign Can Work For You, Just as it has for over half a million smiles

Not only is Invisalign versatile, helping to correct a broad range of dental and orthodontic issues, but it really works. And there are over half a million smiles to back that up. But a confident smile isn’t the only benefit of correcting your dental issues with custom-made Invisalign aligners—your health can be positively impacted as well. Learn more about several common issues below that an experienced Invisalign doctor can work with you to correct.

Overly crowded teeth : This occurs when there is simply a lack of room within your jaw for all of your teeth to fit normally. When left untreated, overly crowded teeth can cause dental decay, an increase in chances of gum disease, and can prevent the normal function of teeth.Invisalign San Antonio

Widely spaced teeth : This occurs with abnormal continued growth of the jaw bone. When teeth are missing, this issue can also be caused by the other teeth shifting due to extra space. Spacing issues in teeth can cause some periodontal diseases.

Crossbite : This occurs when the upper and lower jaws are both misaligned. It causes one or more upper teeth to bite on the inside of the lower teeth, and can happen on both the front and/or the sides of the mouth. This issue can cause wear of the teeth, gum disease, and bone loss.

Overbite: What people commonly refer to as an “overbite” is known to dental professionals as “overjet.” It occurs when the upper teeth bite over the lower teeth. It’s typically caused by either genetics, bad oral habits, or over development of the bone that supports the teeth. This issue can lead to gum problems or irritation, and/or wear on the lower teeth and can cause painful jaw and joint problems.

Underbite: This occurs when the lower teeth protrude past the front teeth. It’s usually caused by undergrowth of the upper jaw, overgrowth of the lower jaw, or both. It can also be caused by missing upper teeth. This issue can prevent the normal function of front teeth or molars which can lead to tooth wear. It can also cause painful jaw and joint problems.

Our Invisalign orthodontist will work with you to create a custom-designed program that will treat your specific dental or orthodontic issue(s). Your treatment program will consist of a full set of aligners, made for you, and only you. While it’s important that you visit an experienced Invisalign doctor to see how well Invisalign fits your specific needs, you can get a head-start now by taking our self assessment.

And of course, there are other considerations when making the decision to straighten your teeth. Think about how Invisalign can fit in your life by providing a virtually-invisible option to getting the smile you want.San Antonio Invisalign Braces

What is Invisalign®?

The Invisalign® system is the virtually invisible way to straighten your teeth and achieve the dazzling smile you’ve always dreamed of. Using advanced 3-D computer-imaging technology, Invisalign depicts your complete treatment plan, from the initial position of your teeth to the final desired position. Then a series of clear aligners are custom-made for your teeth – and your teeth only – to move them little by little. Each aligner is worn for about two weeks before being replaced by the next in the series, until the final position of your teeth is achieved. Your Invisalign treatment time will be determined by your doctor, based on your specific needs.

What are the primary benefits of Invisalign?

Invisalign aligners are practically clear. No one may even notice that you’re wearing these virtually invisible “braces,” making Invisalign a seamless fit with your lifestyle and day-to-day interactions with others.

Invisalign is removable. Unlike braces, you have the flexibility to eat and drink what you want during treatment by simply removing the aligners. And you can also remove the aligners to brush and floss as you normally would for fresh breath and good oral hygiene.

Unlike braces, there are no metal brackets or wires with the Invisalign system that could cause irritation to your mouth. Plus since your office visits during treatment don’t involve metal or wire adjustments, you’ll likely spend less time in the doctor’s chair.

And finally, Invisalign allows you to view your virtual results and treatment plan before you start so you can see how your straight teeth will look when your treatment is complete.San Antonio Orthodontist

How do I get started with Invisalign?

Just make an appointment with Dr. Chong Lee & Dr.Joseph Oh, an Invisalign trained doctor for an initial consultation.

Can I go to any dentist to be treated with Invisalign?

While Invisalign can be used with virtually any treatment philosophy, special training is needed. All dentists interested in treating patients with Invisalign must attend and complete specialized instructional sessions to become trained Invisalign providers before cases will be accepted from their office. Close to 30,000 doctors worldwide are already certified to treat patients using Invisalign. Find an experienced Invisalign-trained doctor near you.

How will Invisalign effectively move my teeth?

Like brackets and arch wires are to braces, Invisalign aligners move teeth through the appropriate placement of controlled force on your teeth. The main difference is that Invisalign not only controls forces, but also the timing of the force application. During each stage, only certain teeth are allowed to move. These movements are determined by your doctor as he or she maps out your unique Invisalign treatment plan.

What are aligners made of, and what do they look like?

The virtually invisible aligners, which are made of a thermoplastic material uniquely developed for the Invisalign treatment plan, look similar to tooth-whitening trays. Invisalign aligners are custom-made for you and only you to move your teeth in the sequence determined by your doctor.

How old is the company?
Align Technology, Inc., the company that manufactures Invisalign, was founded in 1997.

How many patients are being treated with Invisalign?
More than 500,000 patients worldwide have been treated with Invisalign. The number of Invisalign smiles grows daily.

Has the FDA cleared Invisalign?
Invisalign aligners are classified as Class II medical devices by the FDA, and Align Technology, Inc.has held the necessary 510K clearance from the FDA since 1998 to be able to sell and market the Invisalign syst

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Thursday, November 2, 2017

Does Invisalign Work

The question you often hear is

Does Invisalign Work?

Great things in life have their price. If you dream about having a perfect smile, and currently experience problematic teeth, you will need to try one of the braces systems mentioned on our blog, and be persistent. It will most likely take time and your patience, trust in your orthodontists skills and knowledge, but you will most likely get there.

The best answer might be found when you compare Invisalign and Braces.

Invisalign vs Braces ?

If you are considering buying invisalign, there are a few factors you should be aware of. There is no good for all product. Even such technological marvels like Invisalign might not suit you.

This site has been designed to help you make the final decision. We will offer you a comparison of Invisalign vs Braces, so you can make the final choice.

You will be able to see the advantages and disadvantages of both products, and through the comparison it will be much easier to decide.

Invisalign is made out of high quality, strong and transparent plastic.

An interesting story is related to the human face proportions. According to the most accomplished plastic surgeons, who study the proportions if beauty, the difference between a sparkling beauty and an ugly face is measured in millimetres. About the distance between your mouth and nose, eyes and mouth, the shape of your jaw. Braces by correcting your teeth, can reshape your face, and align the proportions properly. When your jaw works well, your face muscles can achieve harmonious balance. You use all the necessary one for a particular action, it also means less wrinkles in the future. The plastic surgery professionals say that the distance between a gorgeous face and an ugly one is one or two millimetres. Of course we know that the beauty standards are never stable, and what we call be beauty really means what makes us happy, and we all are gorgeous. But those who like to step us the standards, and put people on shelves, decided what an amazing face really means.

Unbelievable thing is that a very small change can completely transform your physical presence.

And there is another factor. Properly aligned teeth, make you healthy, help you digest food, and swallow it in smaller chunks. This way you look after your liver, stomach, cells and consequently the whole body.

Healthy and strong mind comes as a result of an optimally working body.

By going to other pages on our website you have most likely read about the two major orthodontic systems: Invisalign Braces and Traditional Braces. They differ in some areas highly (like the price, length of treatment, the ability to tell the end date), and the results people are getting are at times substantially different.

According to those who have worn Invisalign braces, there are many pros and cons, and every case is different. Most of the times, the traditional braces deliver the results the patients want. While in case of invisalign, the situation is not that clear.

Both systems work differently, and depend on the skills of the practitioner that deals with your teeth.

People who experienced invisalign say that for more complicated cases, braces work the best, also because of the time and cost- are cheaper. Patients say that invisible braces are not that invisible. During the treatment, very often you need to have attachments glued onto your teeth. (What are those? Attachments are simply tooth coloured blobs of material glued onto your teeth). Usually people need some time to adjust themselves to wearing them, but it helps.

It is important for you to realize that if you do not live in the USA, where there head quarters of Invisalign company is based, and al the manufacturing takes place, it will take some longer time to deliver your retainer. But it should not be a big problem, as long as it fits well.

Like with all new and different, you will need some time to learn to remove them, and you need to keep personal mouth hygiene to prevent the development of the bacteria and bad smell.

The another issue is that after a long treatment, when you have had let’s say 20 liners that took 40 weeks, you may hear about another several months and liners.

You need to be aware of the fact that the results vary, and there are patients who are very happy with their results and the way the treatment goes. It is very much dependent on the severity of your case. Your best choice is to find a respected and accomplished orthodontist, who will be able to give you an honest advice.

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Tuesday, October 3, 2017

What are Lingual Braces

What are Lingual braces?

Lingual braces work in much the same way as their traditional counterparts. However there’s one important cosmetic difference; the lack of the usual metal supports on the front of your teeth. In the past braces could only be fit in a certain position; right on the front of your teeth but due to developments in dental technology this is no longer the case. The key difference with Lingual Braces is that they can be placed on the rear of your teeth, hiding the majority of the metal parts. This means that they can realign your teeth just as effectively as a traditional brace but without the aesthetic worries.San Antonio lingual braces

How are Lingual Braces fit?

Firstly, your dentist will need you to press your teeth into a mould in order to take an impression of them. This mould is then sent off to a specialist laboratory where each bracket in your lingual brace is custom made to fit your teeth. In order to help the brackets remain in the correct shape they are usually set in wax and kept safely inside a plastic applicator. During your follow-up visit your dentist will transfer the brackets to the back of your teeth and cement them in place. It’s usual to have several follow up visits with your dentist in order to monitor your progress.

Lingual braces have several advantages over their traditional counterparts. The main advantage is cosmetic, as Lingual braces aren’t visible from the front which makes them an excellent option for patients who wish to avoid the highly-visible traditional braces. In addition to being completely invisible, your lingual braces will strengthen and realign your teeth in the same time frame as traditional braces (which can vary from case to case but usually requires braces to be worn for a number of months). In many cases traditional braces aren’t suited to patients who play contact sports or certain wind instruments making Lingual braces the safest and most convenient option. Lingual braces can be used on patients of any age (as opposed to other types of invisible brace which have to be used early on in life) and are increasingly popular in older patients who want dental treatment without the orthodontic equipment interfering with their day to day life. Also, lingual braces can be a great alternative to patients who are sensitive to plastic and as such, can’t use any invisible braces made of it.

What’s it like living with Lingual Braces?

As not all orthodontists are trained in the use of Lingual braces there can be some issues which occur with access to treatment for follow-up visits. Wearing any kind of brace will have some affect on certain parts of your lifestyle and in addition, lingual braces usually tend to cost more than their traditional counterparts. This is due to the fact that the treatment requires specialist training, customised brackets and computer-aided design technology. Therefore it’s important to take all these factors into consideration and discuss them with your dentist before deciding to have the treatment. As lingual braces are placed on the inside surface of your teeth, they may take a while longer to adjust to than traditional braces. There can be issues with food getting trapped and catching your tongue on the brace but most patients fully adapt to having the brace within a few days. Patients with lingual braces can eat relatively normally but it’s important to avoid certain foods and snacks such as chewing gum or sticky toffee. Similarly it’s important to avoid hard foods and fizzy drinks and in some cases an excess of fruit juice can also cause damage your braces. It’s usual for your dentist to advise regular visits to the hygienist as it’s easier for food to become trapped in lingual braces, due to their position. Lingual braces may affect your speech and some patients develop a slight lisp or have problems forming certain words but this is usually temporary. orthodontics san antonio

It may be necessary at some stage of the treatment to be assigned some extra dental gear to wear in the evenings or at night in order to provide extra pressure to your teeth to help them move in the right way. After the initial treatment period is finished you’re usually required to carry on using a retaining brace so your teeth won’t revert to their former position. This can either be fixed or removable and the length of time you’ll need to use this for varies greatly from case to case. Most patients wear braces for between 1 to 3 years before a positive result is achieved.

What results can I expect?

Your lingual brace will help aid your teeth to grow straight by applying small but continuous pressure to your teeth. After treatment you should see a noticeable cosmetic difference in the appearance of your teeth and any problems with crowding, gaps, overbites or underbites should be fixed.

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Thursday, September 7, 2017

Invisalign or Traditional Metal Braces, what is your Choice

Invisalign or Traditional Metal Braces, what is your Choice

There are many factors to consider when deciding whether to get invisalign or traditional metal braces. Several of the key comparisons are the following:


The great advantage of invisalign over metal braces is that it is barely visible. This is obviously not the case with metal braces, as they are visible the moment you open your mouth.
Children orthodontics san antonio


Invisalign tends to cost more than metal braces, as the technology behind it is more expensive. If pricing plays an important role when deciding between the two, do some thorough research. The cost of invisalign varies patient to patient and depends on your geographical location and the severity and duration of your case. Most orthodontists do offer payment plans, many of which are interest free, so consult and research beforehand!


On average, treatment is quicker with invisalign than with traditional braces. The reason why this is the case is because of frequency of movement. With metal braces, you come into your orthodontist’s office approximately every 6 weeks to get your braces tightened. With invisalign, you change trays every 2 weeks, thus causing your teeth to shift at three times the pace. The average invisalign treatment is 12 months.
Invisalign clear braces san antonio


Invisalign doesnt involve metal that can irritation your teeth and gums, while metal wires and brackets used in braces can cause irritation. Pain is generally minimal with invisalign. Most patients feel pain only in the first day or two of each new tray change. Because invisalign trays are changed more frequently than metal braces are tightened (2 weeks vs. 6 weeks), the adjustment and movement with invisalign is more gradual, and so there is much less pain to bear. What I prefer to do each time I need to change trays is to change in the evening before bedtime. I take 2 tylenols, put on the new tray, and by the morning time, the tray has had time to loosen up and becomes a bit easier to remove.


Teeth hygiene is very important, and in this case, invisalign is the clear winner. Because invisalign is removable, you can brush and floss your teeth as thoroughly as you normally would. Unfortunately, this is not the case with braces. You cannot floss for the whole duration of your braces treatment. This results in food particles getting stuck in between your teeth and very possibly resulting in decay. This is not to say that there are no risks with invisalign. In fact, in my research through dental blogs and forums, I have come across some people who reported getting several cavities during their invisalign treatment. This could be just coincidental, or it can be a result of the invisalign. If you practice good hygiene and follow the basic instructions of invisalign, you should be fine. You are not supposed to eat or drink anything while wearing your trays with the exception of water. If you drink a soda or anything other than water, that sugar will get trapped in the trays and as you may know, wetness is a breeding ground for bacteria. It is important to adhere to the water only rule AND to remember to brush after every meal so that food and sugars do not linger and cause possible cavities or decay.


Since you remove your invisalign trays for all meals, you can go on eating and drinking anything you’d like. Traditional braces limit you in what you can eat since certain foods are more likely to get trapped and stuck in the wire.


When first starting invisalign, you might have a slight lisp for a few days until your tongue gets adjusted to the new material in your mouth. This usually passes pretty quickly for most people and is hardly noticeable to others.

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Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Initial Examination

Initial Examination

When you visit our office for an initial orthodontic evaluation, the orthodontist will perform a comprehensive examination to determine if orthodontic treatment is needed and present the initial findings to you that same day. During the exam the doctor will evaluate jaw, teeth and facial growth to determine if now is the best time to begin orthodontic treatment. If additional growth is recommended, prior to beginning orthodontics, the orthodontist will place your child in the practice recall system and continue to monitor your child as necessary as the permanent teeth erupt and the jaws and face continue to grow. This service is complimentary. If your child or yourself is ready to begin orthodontics immediately the doctor along with the practice treatment coordinator will explain to you the recommended treatment plan, show you the types of appliances available to treat your particular case, review estimated length of treatment, provide a cost estimate and work with you to customize a payment plan that fits your needs, and scheduled to have your appliances placed.Children orthodontics san antonio

Early Treatment

When necessary early treatment or interceptive treatment may be recommended to guide facial growth and tooth eruption to prevent more serious problems from developing. Early intervention frequently makes the completion of treatment at a later age easier and less time consuming. A variety of early treatment appliances are now available to help your child correct an orthodontic problem. One example is an appliance that expands the palate while the jaw and face are still growing to make room for more teeth and create a broader smile. The following early warning signs may indicate that your child should have an orthodontic examination as soon as possible:

Difficulty in chewing

Open-mouth breathing

Thumb or finger-sucking

Overlapping or crowding of erupting permanent teeth

Jaws that tend to pop or clickorthodontics

Developing underbite, overbite, protruding front teeth, or other abnormal bite development

Diagnostic Records

Following the initial examination, diagnostic “Records Will be taken on each patient. Records confirm the doctor’s diagnosis and treatment plan and serve as documentation of the position of your teeth, lips and profile when you started treatment. Typically records include the following five items:

Panoramic x-ray – This type of x-ray takes captures an image of your teeth and jawregion. It helps in identifying any extra teeth, blocked out teeth, missing teeth, or any problems with your jaws, jaw joints or roots. Depending on your particular problem you may have to have several Panoramic x-rays taken throughout treatment.

Cephalomatic x-rays – This type of x-ray captures an image of your entire skull and profile. It is used to identify any potential growth problems and for recording diagnostic measurements.

Bite registration – Typically your bite registration is taken by having you bite your teeth together into a piece of thin wax. This allow your orthodontist to evaluate how well your top teeth line up with the bottom teeth.

Impressions/ Study Models – In order to make plaster models of your teeth (study models), you will need to have impressions taken as part of the records process. This entails biting into a tray of soft toothpaste or pudding like material (alginate) for about one minute. The material becomes set (or hardened) to a consistency of silly putty and then is taken out. Impressions are taken one at a time and you need one for the top and one for the bottom. This process is painless but can sometimes taste bad. In order to make this more enjoyable we offer a variety of alginate flavors for you to choose from.

Diagnostic photographs – These are pictures taken of your smile, profile, face, teeth and mouth. These pictures are again used to document your current status and will help the doctor track your progress and see how your smile is changing.

Final Treatment Plan
After the records have been reviewed, we will discuss with you and your child the final orthodontic treatment plan including what orthodontic appliances will be used, how long treatment will last, what foods to avoid, proper care of the appliances and teeth during treatment, etc.

Length of Treatment
The length of treatment for each patient varies based on the patient’s age, severity of the bite, and correction needs, but most cases can be completed in approximately 18-24 months. After the braces are removed, a retainer is prescribed and is to be worn continuously for a few months to a few years in order to set the tissues surrounding the newly straightened teeth. When ready, your orthodontist will inform you that you can now just wear the retainer at night or occasionally to make sure the teeth do not shift. In some cases, a permanent retainer can also be prescribed, which is a metal wire that is bonded to the back of the teeth to insure that the teeth remain in proper position.

Patient Cooperation
Patient cooperation is the key to successful orthodontics. Braces are strong enough to withstand the normal forces created during chewing, however, if they are abused, the braces can break. Broken braces and wire may poke into the cheek or tongue and cause sores in the mouth. Broken appliances can also lengthen the treatment time. Appliances must also be worn as prescribed to achieve the desired results.

Dental hygiene is also very important to prevent tooth decay or decalcification during treatment. Certain foods should be avoided to prevent breakage of appliances and also reduce the chance of tooth decay. We will discuss this with you in more detail on the day the appliances are placed, but for more information, please go to the “Caring for Braces” section.

Financial Arrangements
You will be pleasantly surprised that orthodontics may not be as expensive as you thought. The total cost will vary by case and complexity, but we offer a number of flexible and affordable payment plans that will fit your individual needs. These will be discussed with you on the day of your new patient examination. Options include, but are not limited to the following:

25% Down and monthly payments spread out over the remaining treatment time. No interest.

Courtesy Booking discount for payment in full prior to the day appliances are places.

No down and low monthly payments spread out over the time of treatment. Interest based on credit history.

Direct Debit from your checking account monthly

Direct Debit from your credit card monthly

Most major insurance carriers accepted

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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Frequently Asked Questions about Braces

Frequently Asked Questions about Braces

1. Why do people need braces?
There are many reasons one person may need braces: crowded teeth, missing teeth, extra teeth, jaws not growing right, bad overbite, open bite and the list continues. Not everyone needs braces if they go early enough to the orthodontists and have their teeth checked out.Children orthodontics san antonio

2. What is the best age for braces?
There is NO best age for braces as all ages can be treated. However, the best time to be seen by an orthodontist is around 7 years old. At 7, any jaw growth problems can easily be corrected.

3. What is Phase I Treatment?
It means that if a problem exists (such as a bad overbite or a lot of crowding of teeth) treatment can or will be started as early as 7 or 8 to correct the problem. Most of the time, Phase I Treatment can save the patient from extraction of good permanent teeth, headgear or major jaw surgery.

4. What is Phase II Treatment?
Phase II Treatment is treatment with “braces”. Patients who have had Phase I Treatment to take care of a major problem (severe overbite or crowding) may need some type of Phase II Treatment with braces to detail their bite. However, not everyone needs Phase II Treatment. For someone who does not have Phase I Treatment but needs braces, they go directly to Phase II Treatment (that is, treatment with full braces).

5. How do braces work?
Braces work by putting light forces on teeth through special wires. Orthodontists also use special rubber bands to bring teeth into the right position. Treatment takes some time because teeth move slowly (only 1mm a month or less) into the right position.

6. Does it hurt to put braces on?
No, the braces are put on with special cement. However, in the beginning, teeth may become a little sore once they start moving.

7. How long does it take to put braces on?
The appointment to put the braces on is 1½ hours but to actually cement the braces in place will take approximately 10-15 minutes.

8. How long does treatment take?
Depending on the severity of a case, it could take as little as 6 weeks or up to 20-24 months for complete treatment. Once treatment is started, a patient would be seen every 8-12 weeks depending on their needs.

9. Do you talk funny with braces?
Just like anything new, it takes about a week to get used to the feeling. Most people adjust very well and have no problems.

10. Can you play sports with braces?
Yes, but with much care. You may need a mouth-guard to prevent injury and damage to the braces, your teeth and gums. We will gladly provide one for you.

11.Can I eat anything with braces?
No. There are some restrictions. We ask that you avoid sticky or hard foods (such as caramel, sticky gum, candy, popcorn, etc.). A little extra care with what you eat can go a long way and can prevent braces from breaking or becoming loose.braces San Antonio

12.Can you get a “shock” if braces are touched with something metal (fork, spoon, etc.)?
Usually not.

13.Can the braces set off alarms in stores or airports?
No, the metal is stainless steel and does not set off alarms.

14. What are rubber bands and why do people need them?
Rubber bands bring the teeth together to make them fit perfectly. Most people need them at the end of treatment for a couple of months.

15. What are retainers and who needs them?
After treatment is finished, retainers are given to hold the teeth in position until they become used to their new “home”. All patients need retainers and Dr. Petrol will instruct you to wear them according to your personalized needs.

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Monday, June 19, 2017

First blog post

This is your very first post. Click the Edit link to modify or delete it, or start a new post. If you like, use this post to tell readers why you started this blog and what you plan to do with it.


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