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Going On Vacation? Tips for our Studebaker Ortho Patients

February 12th, 2019

Spring is right around the corner, and that means Spring Break!! Some of you may be flying off on a fun vacation, or just driving to the next town over. If you or your child have braces, you are going to want to be extra careful to ensure that no wires or brackets become loose or out of place while away. The last thing you want to do is take time away from your family or friends to try and fix your problem. Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics want to ensure you have a great vacation and follow our simple rules.

Be Mindful of What you Eat……..
One of the biggest threats to your braces during your vacation is what you eat. No matter where you go during your travels, you’re bound to come across a variety of delicious treats and meals that will make your mouth water. Remember that certain foods can cause damage to your braces. Specifically, you should avoid hard and sticky foods, since biting into something hard or chewing a sticky snack can apply enough force to bend your arch wire or snap a bracket right off your tooth! If that happens, your braces are not doing their job.

Don’t Break your Hygiene Routine……..
One of the purposes of vacation is to break away from your daily routine and go on an adventure. When you have braces, the oral hygiene part of your routine is something you can’t afford to let fall by the wayside. If you don’t maintain your regular brushing, flossing, and rinsing routine, you’re letting bacteria build up on your teeth, increasing the chance of developing tooth decay, or puffy and sore gums.

Always bring a Travel Kit………
Whether you feel sudden pain because a wire has started poking you, a bracket has come loose or food has gotten lodged between your brackets. Having the proper items will make you comfortable. Here are some essentials to pack in your travel kit:
• Toothbrush
• Floss/Floss Threaders
• Interproximal Brushes
• Orthodontic Wax
• Mouth rinse/Fluoride Rinse
• Nail clippers

Don’t Panic…..
Many problems with braces, while uncomfortable, are not truly emergencies that necessitate finding an orthodontist while traveling out of town. Some situations are easily relieved by “Dr. Mom” until you can get back home and into Studebaker Orthodontics.
The most common orthodontic emergency is a wire poking. The discomfort comes from the wire poking the gum tissue around the back band or the cheek. If this happens, get the end of the wire as dry as possible and place wax over the area until Dr. Studebaker can fix it. (A small cotton ball can also be dampened and place over the wire in the back. Occasionally, this may hold better than the wax). Another use for wax is loose or wiggly brackets. Get the loose bracket as dry as possible and cover with wax until Dr. Studebaker can replace the bracket. Clipping the wire with nail clippers can also help a poking wire. Clip the wire as far back as you can get and slide the wire out to make yourself or your child comfortable.

Keep up with Retainers………
Continue to wear your retainers every night. It’s tempting to leave retainers at home, but teeth can move in as little as a week and that’s a risk you do not want to take. Keep your retainers in a safe place, you do not want to lose them and spend part of your vacation “dumpster diving” to find them.

Enjoy your Vacation…….
Most importantly, have an absolutely wonderful vacation. Any minor orthodontic problems will be a distant memory when you look back at cherished photos, and don’t forget to call Studebaker Orthodontics at 281-251-9229, to help with any problems you may have encountered.

Why Is My Consultation Appointment So Long?

July 25th, 2018

Thinking about braces, or maybe your general dentist recommended you see an Orthodontist for an evaluation and consultation. Don’t let the prospect of you or your child starting braces overwhelm you. Learning about all the steps in the orthodontic process will make it stress free, and it all begins with your complimentary consultation at Studebaker Orthodontics. There’s a lot to discuss at this first appointment and we are here to help. The orthodontic consultation is the first step toward achieving your very best smile.

The length of your consultation depends on a few things. The complexity of your case is a huge factor. There may be multiple phases or steps necessary in the treatment. The goal of your consultation is for you to learn more about our practice and your potential treatment plan, and for us to learn about you and your teeth. The consultation will usually take about 1 hour.

During your consultation we will perform the following steps.

  • Tour of our office
  • A Panorex X-ray
  • Photographs of your face and teeth
  • Review of your medical and dental history
  • Oral Exam
  • Treatment Planning, (explanation of treatment)
  • Estimate, (explanation of costs, insurance coverage and payment options)

During your consultation it is important to make sure all of your questions are answered about the proposed treatment plan.

Dr. Studebaker, a board certified orthodontist, will evaluate every patient and provide the treatment plan that best fits your needs. Having a great smile, with healthy teeth, gums and jaw is an investment that will last you the rest of your life. We provide orthodontics to children, teens and adults. We invite you to schedule your complimentary consultation with Studebaker Orthodontics at, 281-251-9229 today.

 

How Are You?

June 21st, 2018

How are you? It’s a simple question, just three little words. If we were to ask you, “How are you today?”, the majority of you would say, “I’m fine”. Our society has trained us to think that this is the right answer.  But when you think about it, this response has little meaning.

This is a very common question we are asked as you walk through our front doors at Studebaker Orthodontics. Just to shake things up a little bit, the next time someone asks you, “How are you?”, answer with something other than, “fine”.  This will open the dialogue for some real or interesting conversation.

According to “Dr. Google”, here are some common one word answers……….Thankful, Happy, Crazy, Fabulous, Blessed, Excited, Sleepy, Hopeful, Nervous, and there are many more.

We ask you that question, and we sincerely care and are concerned for you. We always have our listening ears on and are prepared to get to know you. We may even ask you, “What is the best part of your day so far?”. We know your answer will be, coming to see us at Studebaker Ortho.

So next time you’re in the office, let us know how you really are, and if you’re having a great day. We’re here and we’re listening!

New Studebaker Orthodontics Office Coming Soon...

August 29th, 2016

Summer has come and gone, school is back in full swing and we are getting excited and getting ready to move to our new Studebaker Orthodontics home. Our contractor, Mike Newhouse and his team from HM General Contractors along with Dr. Studebaker and his team have been working non stop to create a wonderful new office that we are hoping would feel more like an extension of home to our patients, parents, colleagues and friends.
Our new office will be located at 6525 FM 2920 Road, just 400 yards west of our current location. We have scheduled our move for the week of September 19th thru the 23th and we are hoping to be back to tend to our amazing patients and families Monday, September 26th. We wanted to share some of our construction pictures so you can have a sneak peek of our new Studebaker Orthodontics home. We can't wait to share our new office with you all and to provide a new setting where we can continue creating memories, having fun, developing friendships and meeting new people while crafting healthy, functional and amazing looking smiles. See you all soon!

Groundbreaking for the future home of Studebaker Orthodontics

February 17th, 2016

We are excited to announce that the construction of the future home of Studebaker Orthodontics is underway. The construction is scheduled to be ready by Summer 2016. Dr. Studebaker and his team are excited to provide a new office to the wonderful families that have that graciously entrusted in us their orthodontic needs and we are blessed that we can provide a more comfortable and ample space with special amenities that will make our families feel welcome.  We will keep you updated on the progress of our new office, which could not have taken place without your support. We want to thank you for making our journey of providing beautiful smiles such a rewarding experience and we look forward to making this new home an extension of yours.

Why is flossing so important when I have braces?

December 19th, 2014

You've made an investment on spending money on getting braces, so why not keep your teeth in good health while undergoing orthodontic treatment?  Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics will tell you it is just as important to develop a regular hygiene routine while you're wearing braces as you did before proceeding with treatment.

Flossing is essential to the health of your teeth and gums when you're wearing braces. Because braces may hold food, sugars and liquids upon eating, it is very important to keep on top of your brushing and flossing, as well as visiting our office for regular adjustments.

While we know it's tough enough to get kids to floss daily without braces, that battle becomes even tougher when braces are involved. Remember that by not flossing, you will become more prone to cavities and gum disease during your treatment.

When flossing, remember to gently massage your gums in between the teeth. You will find that flossing with braces takes extra time, as you will have to weave the floss through each bracket. When flossing, there should be no signs of blood. If you see blood, you are not flossing enough or properly.

Using an electric toothbrush is also a good idea to massage your gums before or after flossing as electric toothbrushes can help remove any harmful bacteria that are lingering in your mouth. And don't forget to add a mouthwash to your routine to break up any bacteria that has formed. A good mouthwash will help keep your teeth and gums in good shape during your treatment.

If you have any questions about flossing or your orthodontic treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics please don't hesitate to give us a call or during your next adjustment appointment!

How do teeth move with braces?

December 12th, 2014

Although teeth seem to be solidly fixed in their sockets (at least they don’t wobble when we chew!), all teeth can easily be moved if Dr. Robert Studebaker and our staff attach brackets and wires to them called braces. In the past, all braces were made of stainless steel, but today’s advanced dental technology gives people the option of wearing transparent, acrylic mouth trays called Invisalign®, or relying on traditional metal braces for correcting malocclusions.

Brackets, Slots, and Arch Wires – Oh My!

When light pressure is consistently exerted on teeth, they will gradually move in the direction of the force. For example, affixing brackets to front teeth and threading a flexible, metal wire through tiny slots on the front of the brackets allows the orthodontist to tighten this arch wire enough to initiate desired movement of teeth. Generally, orthodontic patients visit Studebaker Orthodontics once a month to have this wire tightened to keep teeth moving in the desired direction.

Tissues surrounding the teeth that experience pressure from arch wires will slowly (and, for the most part, painlessly) stretch, and allow the socket to enlarge so the tooth and its root become looser temporarily. This allows the root to move without causing bleeding or pain. Once Dr. Robert Studebaker and our staff are satisfied with the repositioning of teeth, we will remove the braces and let bone material fill in the socket so that teeth are solidified into their new (and straighter) positions.

Clear Braces vs. Traditional Braces

Both types of orthodontic corrective devices move teeth in the same manner: by applying a continual force against teeth. Clear aligners, like Invisalign, are mouth trays made of hard acrylic material that people wear for at least 23 hours a day. Unlike metal braces, Invisalign can be removed for eating and brushing purposes and the aligners are nearly invisible because of their transparency.

Invisalign aligners are usually reserved for people with gaps between their teeth or whose teeth are only slightly crooked. Traditional metal braces are often necessary when severe malocclusion exists and requires more pressure than Invisalign offers.

How Your Pearly Whites Can Help You in Life

December 5th, 2014

At Studebaker Orthodontics, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our staff have found that patients who like their smiles have better self-esteem. People who don’t like their smiles are often skittish about talking to other people. According to the National Women’s Health Resource Center, when women are asked about what they’d most like to change about themselves, many point to their smile. Despite wanting to change their smiles, quite a few of the people who are unhappy about that part of themselves won’t consider getting braces.

Most Americans Don’t Have Straight Teeth

The American Association of Orthodontics estimates that 4.5 million Americans wear braces or other orthodontic equipment to straighten their teeth and to get a healthier mouth. One in five of those braces wearers are women. The organization’s statistics also show that about 75 percent of the population doesn’t have straight teeth, and those people would benefit from getting braces.

While the main benefit of braces is straight teeth, and to improve the look of your smile, there are other benefits that make braces even more useful, including:

  • Straighter teeth help people chew better.
  • Straighter teeth give people a proper bite.
  • People speak better when they have straighter teeth.
  • When people have straight teeth, they have better overall gum and mouth health. A healthier mouth means flossing and brushing are easier, and that means your entire mouth stays healthy.
  • A healthy mouth is also linked to a healthy body.

When you feel proud of those pearly whites, you feel better about your smile, and that contributes to a better self-image and improved self-esteem. Ultimately, that can lead to greater career success and a more fulfilling social life.

What should I ask during my orthodontic consultation?

November 28th, 2014

If you have been thinking about undergoing orthodontic treatment to straighten teeth or correct jaw alignment, the first step is scheduling an orthodontic consultation at Studebaker Orthodontics. During the consultation we will actively listen to your concerns and address all of your questions, as well as discuss a treatment options that would best suit you or your child's situation.

Here are the top five questions that most patients want answered during their initial orthodontic consultation:

  • Can I benefit from orthodontic treatment, and if so, how long will it take?
  • How frequently will my appointments be scheduled?
  • Can I expect any pain when getting braces? (Ask Dr. Robert Studebaker about the ways we address pain management).
  • Will I need to have teeth extracted, headgear, expansion appliance, etc.?
  • How much will it cost and what payment options do you offer?

Visit our website for more answers to your questions prior to your initial consultation. Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics are happy to answer all your questions and concerns, and excited to explain all aspects of your treatment plan, as well as the expected outcome. We believe your orthodontic experience should be comfortable, hassle-free, and most importantly, leave you with the smile you've always wanted.

Thanksgiving

November 21st, 2014

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we love to celebrate the holidays with vigor! Dr. Robert Studebaker would love to share some unique ways of celebrating Thanksgiving from beyond the Spring, TX area to the national level!

When Americans sit down to dinner on the last Thursday of November, the day that Abraham Lincoln designated as the day on which Thanksgiving would be celebrated, they do so thinking that the first Thanksgiving feast was held at Plymouth in 1621. According to National Geographic, the Spanish explorer Francisco Vásquez Coronado and his men celebrated a feast of Thanksgiving in Texas in 1541, giving Texas the distinction of being the first place where Thanksgiving was celebrated.

Different Types of Celebrations

Native Americans had rituals around which they celebrated in hopes of ensuring a bountiful harvest. The Cherokees had a Green Corn Dance that they did for this very purpose. The Pilgrims (not to be confused with the Puritans,) rejected any type of public religious display. They held a three-day long non-religious Thanksgiving feast. Although they said grace, the focus of their celebration was on feasting, drinking alcohol (they did have beer,) and playing games.

The Pilgrims at the Plymouth Plantation celebrated a different day of Thanksgiving in 1623. Plagued by a crop-destroying drought, the settlers prayed for relief. They even fasted. A few days later, they got the rain they so desperately needed. Soon thereafter, they received another blessing when Captain Miles Standish came with staples they couldn't otherwise get. He also told them that a Dutch supply ship was en route. In gratitude for the abundance of good fortune, the Plymouth settlers celebrated a day of prayer and Thanksgiving on June 30, 1623.

The Story of Squanto

No discussion of Thanksgiving is complete without a discussion of Squanto, or Tisquantum, as he was known among his people, the Patuxet Indians. It is believed that he was born sometime around 1580. As he returned to his village after a long journey, he and several other Native Americans were kidnapped by Jamestown colonist, Thomas Hunt. Hunt put them on a ship heading to Spain where they were to be sold into slavery.

As fate would have it, some local friars rescued him and many of the other kidnapped natives. Squanto was educated by the friars. Eventually, after asking for freedom so he could return to North America, he ended up in London where he spent time working as a ship builder. By 1619, he was finally able to get passage on a ship headed to New England with other Pilgrims.

Upon arriving at Plymouth Rock, he learned that his entire tribe was wiped out by diseases that accompanied earlier settlers from Europe. In gratitude for passage on their ship, he helped them set up a settlement on the very land where his people once lived. They called the settlement Plymouth. Since they knew nothing about how to survive, let alone how to find food, Squanto taught them everything, from how to plant corn and other crops, how to fertilize them, how and where to get fish and eels and much more.

After a devastating winter during which many settlers died, thanks to Squanto's teaching, they had an abundant harvest. After that harvest, they honored him with a feast. It is this feast of 1621 which was celebrated between the Pilgrims and Wampanoag Indians that is widely considered the first Thanksgiving celebration.

About the Meal of the Plymouth Settlers

Surviving journals of Edward Winslow that are housed at Plymouth Plantation indicate that the first Thanksgiving feast was nothing like what Americans eat today. The meal consisted of venison, various types of wild fowl (including wild turkey,) and Indian corn. There were no cranberries, stuffing, pumpkin pie, potatoes, or any of the other “traditional” foods that appear on modern menus.

Today, Thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November, the day that Abraham Lincoln designated as the holiday. It is still a day of feasting, and for some, a day of prayer and thanksgiving. For others, it is a celebration of gathering, especially for families. Still others may celebrate in entirely different ways, including watching college football bowl games, or by playing family games.

If you ever wonder why you're so tired after the Thanksgiving meal, it's because turkey contains an amino acid, tryptophan, and it sets off chemicals whose chain reaction combine to make people sleepy.

Five Braces-Friendly Dinner Recipes

November 14th, 2014

Did you know that more than four million children throughout the US and Canada have braces? At Studebaker Orthodontics, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our staff know that kids can be picky and meticulous eaters. If cooking for children without braces is difficult, preparing meals for children with braces is especially daunting.

“Comfort food takes on a whole new meaning when cooking for children with braces,” says Pamela Waterman, author of The Braces Cookbook: Recipes You and Your Orthodontist Will Love. “Whether you have new brackets, elastics, headgear, or more, there are great foods you can eat; it just takes some thought.”

These five braces-friendly dinner recipes will be sure to keep your kids smiling!

  1. Macaroni and cheese is the ultimate comfort food. Pasta is soft, so it’s easy for children with braces to eat. The warm, gooey cheese melts in the mouth and doesn’t get stuck in the braces like hard or sticky foods. Chances are good that even the pickiest eater has a soft spot for this homespun classic.
  2. The key to braces-friendly cooking is to replace hard, crunchy foods with softer substitutes. In other words, burritos are a better option than tacos, and lasagna is a better choice than pizza. At the same time, if you have the culinary skills to whip up a pizza with a soft crust, you’re going to win the Best Mom (or Dad) of the Year award.
  3. Your child may not like fruits and vegetables. In fact, he or she may even try to convince you that with new braces, fruits and vegetables are off limits. Nice try, kids. While your child is wearing braces, prepare meals with cooked vegetables instead of raw vegetables. A vegetable stir-fry is a healthy and soft dinner choice for kids with braces.
  4. Whether it’s beef or chicken, meat is a good source of protein. However, meat, even when it’s carefully taken off the bone (kids with braces should never eat meat from a bone), can easily get caught in braces. Sloppy Joes are a good alternative. The beef is softened by the addition of the sauce and less likely to get strung in the wires and brackets of the braces. Serve the Sloppy Joes with a side of mashed potatoes.
  5. Ask any child and he or she will tell you that the best part of dinner is dessert. While hard candy, licorice, taffy, caramel, popcorn, and all other chewy candies should be avoided, ice cream and cake are braces-friendly treats that keep kids smiling.

Need more braces-friendly food ideas? Feel free to ask any member of our team.

Invisalign® vs. Traditional Braces

November 7th, 2014

A great smile can go a long way. Scientific research suggests that people who smile are perceived as more attractive and confident than those who don’t flash their pearly whites. When it comes time to invest in orthodontics to improve your beautiful smile, choosing the best option can be daunting. Comparing Invisalign to traditional braces is a great way to determine what orthodontics make most sense for your unique smile.

How is Invisalign different?

Unlike traditional braces, in which brackets are affixed onto each tooth and connected by wires Invisalign corrects orthodontic problems using a set of clear trays. These trays are specially formed to fit your teeth, allowing you to wear them 24/7.

Aesthetics

One of the primary advantages of Invisalign is that the clear trays are nearly invisible. Particularly for adults self-conscious about appearing professional with traditional braces, Invisalign can correct orthodontic issues without capturing the notice of others. Their nearly invisible appearance is one of the topmost reasons that orthodontic patients choose Invisalign.

Complexity of the Orthodontic Problem

Invisalign works well for people who have relatively minor problems, such as crooked teeth or small gaps between teeth. For more complex problems, particularly issues with bite or vertical problems (i.e., one tooth being significantly higher than another), traditional braces may be better at pulling teeth into alignment.

Eating and Drinking

Invisalign trays are removable, meaning that you cannot eat or drink while wearing them. Unlike traditional braces, however, you are not limited in the foods you may eat. Chewy, sticky, or hard foods may be eaten, provided that you brush your teeth before reinserting the Invisalign trays.

In the end, only you can weigh the pros and cons of Invisalign versus traditional braces. Consult with Dr. Robert Studebaker to understand how these orthodontic interventions may work for your unique situation.

Halloween: Candy, costumes, and more!

October 31st, 2014

All Hallows' Eve, more commonly known as Halloween, is a yearly event celebrated on October 31, and one that is anticipated by the young and young at heart all over the world. Some scholars claim that Halloween originated from Celtic festivals that honored the dead or that celebrated the harvest, while others doubt that there's any connection at all to Samhain (a Gaelic harvest festival.) Regardless of its origin, our team at the orthodontic office of Dr. Robert Studebaker hopes that Halloween is fun and enjoyed by all of our awesome patients!

Trick or treat?

In North America, Halloween is predominantly celebrated by children who dress up in costumes, which range from scary to cute, who then go around the neighborhood knocking on doors asking "trick or treat", and they are given candy in return. Trick-or-treating is a time honored tradition, and though many parents groan at the pounds and pounds of candy collected by youngsters and fear for the health of their teeth, there are a few things you can do to help their teeth stay in great shape until the candy is gone:

  • Limit the amount of candy they can consume each day
  • Have them brush their teeth after eating candy
  • Avoid hard, chewy candies as they can stick in hard to brush places
  • Keep candy out of sight to reduce temptation
  • Don't buy candy too far in advance to limit pre-Halloween consumption
  • Help or encourage your children to floss

Halloween Fun

Halloween isn't just about gorging on candy; there are other events associated with this festive day including carving jack-o'-lanterns, painting pumpkins, decorating sugar cookies, bobbing for apples, going to haunted houses, or just curling up on the couch with a bowl full of popcorn and watching some classic, scary movies.

Halloween Around the World

Some countries, like Australia, frown upon Halloween, claiming it is an American event and not based in Australian culture, while others like Italy have embraced the fun and celebrate much as Canadians and Americans do. Mexicans have been celebrating this fun day since around 1960, and it marks the beginning of the Day of the Dead festival. Some countries in Europe have come late to the party, but since the 1990s, countries like Sweden, Norway, and Germany have started celebrating Halloween as well, and finding children in costumes or having ghosts hanging in windows has become commonplace.

Halloween is about fun; stepping outside our normal lives and donning a costume or gathering with friends to knock on doors and ask for candy is as much a part of our culture as hot dogs and barbecue on Labor Day. Have a safe and happy Halloween from the team at Studebaker Orthodontics!

Are you visiting the dentist during your orthodontic treatment?

October 24th, 2014

If you’re brushing your teeth twice a day during your orthodontic treatment, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team think that’s wonderful! But, don’t forget that it’s also important for you to visit your general dentist every six months, or as recommended, in addition to brushing your teeth and flossing. (And visiting Studebaker Orthodontics for regular adjustments, of course.)

Dental checkups are crucial for maintaining good oral health. Your general dentist can check for problems that might not be seen or felt, detect cavities and early signs of tooth decay, as well as catch and treat oral health problems early. During an oral exam, your dentist can also check the health of your mouth, teeth, gums, cheeks, and tongue. Checkups will also include a thorough teeth cleaning and polishing.

If you have not been to the dentist in the last six months, let us know during your next adjustment visit and we will provide a few great references in the Spring, TX area!

Braces-Friendly Recipe: Breakfast

October 17th, 2014

Kids can be picky eaters. How many times have you seen your child try to hide the peas under a mound of mashed potatoes?

At Studebaker Orthodontics, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team understand how hard it can be to get your child to eat the recommended daily allowance of fruits and vegetables. The task of providing fun, nutritious meals becomes even more challenging if he or she wears braces. It's an age-old saying that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. These five braces-friendly recipes are not only nutritious, but they will have little Jimmy flashing his “tin grin” when he sits down at the kitchen table in the morning.

  1. Scrambled eggs are soft and easy to eat if you have braces. If you drown them in ketchup (which many kids love to do), eggs become even mushier. Minimal chewing is required, and that’s the key to a braces-friendly recipe.
  2. A healthy breakfast provides energy and jump-starts metabolism. A smoothie is not only a good source of fruit, but it’s also gentle on braces. More importantly, smoothies are fun to create. You can toss anything in the blender (bananas, mangoes, strawberries, spinach) and create a drink that’s loaded with vitamins and antioxidants.
  3. If you wear braces, eating crunchy cereals or granola for breakfast is out of the question: Bite down the wrong way and you might snap the wires or dislodge the brackets. However, you can get your grains and oats by substituting oatmeal for cereal. This mushy breakfast treat has a host of health benefits.
  4. Pancakes are not the healthiest breakfast choice. Still, this Sunday morning favorite is braces-friendly. The idea is to make it healthier by hiding blueberries in the pancake batter just like your child hides peas in the mashed potatoes.
  5. Toast with jam is ok, but skip slathering peanut butter on the bread. If you have braces, the general rule of thumb is to steer clear of foods that are hard or chewy. These types of foods can break wires. Of course, most kids will agree that toast isn’t the most exciting breakfast recipe. Make it a Pop-Tart instead!

For more braces-friendly recipes, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office!

How do I know if I need braces?

October 10th, 2014

Perhaps you feel your teeth are not perfectly straight, or you think your bite could be adjusted. It’s quite possible that braces and other orthodontic treatments might be the right choice for you. As orthodontic professionals, our team at Studebaker Orthodontics works with your general dentist in order to determine the best options for your oral health and cosmetic appearance.

You might need braces if ...

  • You lost your baby teeth relatively early in life. If your baby teeth fell out too early and your adult teeth did not come in for a while, this could have affected the way your adult teeth grew and developed.
  • Your teeth look crowded or crooked. If you are embarrassed to smile because your teeth are not straight, it might be time to consider the cosmetic options available to you.
  • Your jaw shifts or makes sounds. This can signify a developmental issue with your teeth and your jaw line, and orthodontic treatment may be able to help. Set up an appointment with Dr. Robert Studebaker if your jaw is recessed or protruding as well.
  • You are constantly biting the sides of your cheek or hitting the roof of your mouth. This could indicate that your teeth are not properly aligned. Braces can address an underbite or an overbite.
  • You have a difficult time chewing your food. This is not only an inconvenience, but it can also be detrimental for your health. Braces can help fix the alignment of your teeth.
  • You have to breathe through your mouth on a regular basis. You may not attribute this to an issue with the development of your teeth or jaw, but orthodontic treatment might be able to help.

The ideal age for a child to be seen by an orthodontist is age seven. However, there are many orthodontic treatment options available to adults. It is becoming increasingly common for adults to wear braces and other orthodontic devices. We recommend that people who are interested in braces and other orthodontic treatment options set up a consultation appointment with Dr. Robert Studebaker today.

What's on your fall reading list?

October 3rd, 2014

How better to spend the fall months than inside by the fireplace with a warm cup of cider and a book in hand? Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics encourage you to warm up your mind this fall season with a few great books. Sure it may be easy to put off reading when balancing a hectic schedule, but reading is vital to brain development. Besides, reading is always a blast!

This week, we thought we’d ask what you or your child are reading this fall. Do you have any suggestions for must-read books this year? Out of ideas for great fall reads? Ask us for suggestions, and we would be happy to provide a few. You may also ask a local librarian here in Spring, TX for some ideas.

Happy reading! Be sure to share with us your fall picks or your all-time favorites below or on our Facebook page!

How long does orthodontic treatment take?

September 26th, 2014

The dental procedures that focus on the correction of alignment and bite are known as orthodontic care. With the aid of braces, aligners, retainers, brackets, and similar appliances, orthodontic treatment can correct oral disorders such as protruding teeth, crowding, difficulty biting or chewing, and speech issues. Seeking orthodontic treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics can drastically improve your oral appearance, comfort, and health, while also encouraging proper oral hygiene and enhanced self-esteem. Both growing children and adults with oral alignment issues can benefit greatly from completing customized orthodontic treatment with Dr. Robert Studebaker.

Due to the uniqueness of each mouth and the severity of each malocclusion disorder, there is no one set timeframe for orthodontic treatment. The length of your treatment is determined by many factors, including the severity of your alignment issue, your age, the health of your teeth, and the specific orthodontic procedure you need to undergo. Nevertheless, typical treatment usually takes between 12 and 36 months.

Avoiding alignment issues

While some alignment issues are brought on by unavoidable matters such as accidents, genetics, and physical disorders, some issues arise out of certain actions you should not be doing. Finger sucking and improper oral hygiene are the two most common self-inflicted reasons for alignment issues. Constant finger sucking can alter the pattern in which your teeth grow, which in turn may cause bite issues. Improper oral hygiene such as infrequent dental visits and improper brushing and flossing can lead to decay and loss of teeth, which will interfere with the bite in your mouth.

To avoid advanced alignment issues, it is important to establish a relationship with a quality dentist when you’re young and seek orthodontic treatment at the first sign of alignment problems to encourage healthy and straight teeth for a lifetime.

For more information about orthodontic treatment, or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Robert Studebaker, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office!

Besides straight teeth, what are the benefits of braces?

September 19th, 2014

Everyone wants a naturally aligned and beautiful smile, and it is no secret that orthodontic braces from Studebaker Orthodontics can help deliver one. However, there are greater benefits to wearing braces than just having straight teeth. You’ll gain many oral health benefits in addition to the cosmetic ones.

Tooth Decay and Gum Disease

Crooked or crowded teeth may overlap each other and create tight spaces in between. These can make it very difficult to brush and floss effectively, allowing bacteria and plaque to build up, and eventually leading to tooth decay and gum disease. With orthodontic treatment, your teeth will become properly aligned and spaced, which allows for more effective brushing.

Difficulties with Speech

Your teeth play an essential role in speech. When they are out of line or lean too far forward or backward, this can affect your speaking patterns, and possibly cause embarrassment and frustration. Braces can readjust the positioning of the teeth to allow for clearer, more professional speech.

Bone Erosion

Bone and gum tissues begin to erode when there are no teeth to support. This is also true for poorly aligned teeth that leave gaps and spaces or place too much pressure on the jawbone due to a bad bite. With braces, the bones and tissues are less likely to erode and can continue to support the teeth in their new alignment.

Digestion

Your teeth play an important role in digestion. Before food ever enters your stomach, it has been partially digested by the teeth. If teeth are severely out of line, however, they may not play their role in breaking down food as effectively as they should. With braces, your teeth will be straightened into optimal alignment for eating and chewing.

Dr. Robert Studebaker and staff will be happy to answer any of your questions about your orthodontic treatment. Visit us in Spring, TX today!

Not-So-Sweet Sweets: The five worst candies to eat during orthodontic treatment

September 12th, 2014

Sticky, hard, and gooey: these candies fill your dopamine receptors with spasms of sugar-filled joy, but if you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics to straighten your teeth, then these sweets are not so sweet. While you may have a Willy-Wonka-sized sweet tooth, there are some candies you’re going to have to avoid while wearing braces.

Here are five bracket- and wire-destroying culprits that Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team recommend leaving on the candy aisle and not put in your mouth, no matter how tempting they may be.

  1. Gum is sticky and stringy. It can get tangled like fishing net in your braces. You don’t want to be that boy or girl trying to pull knots of Wrigley’s out of your braces without being seen.
  2. All chewy, gooey candies need to be avoided. When you’re wearing braces, don’t even think about putting a caramel candy in your mouth. Caramel will not only stick to your braces, making it look as if you haven’t brushed your teeth in a week, but the gooey texture can pull apart the wires, and trigger an emergency visit to Studebaker Orthodontics.
  3. Hard candy may seem like a safe choice, but it’s not. What’s the problem? Nobody ever just sucks on hard candy; sooner or later, we bite down on it. Biting a hard candy may cause part of your braces to snap. Furthermore, once the candy is broken into a bunch of little pieces, it’s not uncommon for one of those sugary shards to get wedged between your braces and teeth … and that’s a cavity waiting to happen.
  4. The taffy you enjoy getting at a seaside boardwalk is going to have to go on the back burner. Like caramel, taffy can pull apart and damage your braces. You don’t want to have your expensive orthodontic gear replaced.
  5. Please, just one lollipop? Nope. A lollipop is nothing more than hard candy on a stick. If you can’t have hard candy during orthodontic treatment, then you shouldn't have hard candy on a stick either.

Have any more questions about what you can and can’t eat when you have braces? Please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office to learn more, or ask Dr. Robert Studebaker during your next adjustment visit!

September is Self-Improvement Month!

September 5th, 2014

These days, Americans everywhere are putting greater emphasis on health and self-improvement, and more people are seeking orthodontic treatment to improve their smile. September happens to be Self-Improvement Month, and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics knows that orthodontic treatment is an investment in self-improvement that will provide benefits for a lifetime. Recent advances in orthodontia now make treatment more comfortable for many interested in obtaining that beautiful smile.

Not only does orthodontic treatment give you a beautiful smile, it can also benefit your dental and general health. If teeth are poorly aligned, removing plaque and tartar by brushing and flossing may be difficult. A bad bite may result in fractured or excessively worn tooth surfaces, and the extra stress caused by a bad bite may even result in problems with your jaw joints.

If you’ve been thinking about getting that perfect smile, Dr. Robert Studebaker would love to have you visit for an initial consultation. Please give us a call to schedule a visit! See you soon!

Celebrate Labor Day by Getting Away

August 29th, 2014

Labor Day honors the contributions that workers have made to this country, and for many Americans, the holiday is a great time to relax at home with family and friends. But there are quite a few people who celebrate the holiday by getting out of town, with an estimated 33 million people traveling more than 50 miles over Labor Day weekend each year. If you’re dreaming of a great Labor Day escape but you’re not quite sure where to go, here are a few ideas from our team at Studebaker Orthodontics to give you some travel inspiration.

Explore a National Park

On a national holiday like Labor Day, it’s only fitting to experience the beauty of America’s landscapes by heading to the nearest national park. If you’re confined to an office most days of the year, national parks can provide a relaxing and scenic escape, whether you’re by yourself, traveling with a group of friends, or bringing the whole family along. Depending on how close you live to the nearest park, you can stay for an afternoon or for longer than a week. With 58 parks located in 27 states, there are plenty of beautiful areas to choose from.

Chow Down in a BBQ Haven

Barbecuing is a popular Labor Day activity, but instead of sweating over your own grill or oven, try visiting one of the country’s BBQ capitals. U.S. News and World Report names Memphis as the top BBQ destination, with more than 80 BBQ restaurants in the city, most notably Corky’s BBQ and Central BBQ. Kansas City is also known for the sweet taste of its sauces, while central Texas is said to have perfected the technique of smoking tender and flavorful brisket.

Relax on the Beach

Many people think of Labor Day as the unofficial start of fall, which brings cooler temperatures, more rain, and for many people, an end to lazy days at the beach. End your beach days with a bang by taking a trip to one of the coasts or to a lakeside beach. For an added dose of festivity, find a city or town that celebrates the occasion with a fireworks display over the water.

Whether you’re looking to turn your getaway into a full week affair or you simply want to experience a quick escape, make the most of your holiday by changing your surrounding scenery. Happy Labor Day from the orthodontic practice of Dr. Robert Studebaker!

How to Avoid Delays During Your Orthodontic Treatment

August 22nd, 2014

Our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics hate the thought of delaying their treatments and often ask us what they can do in between their adjustment visits to help. Today, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team thought we would provide some tips on how you can stay on track in regards to your treatment plan time.

The first thing we want you to do is keep your adjustment appointments. Each visit with Dr. Robert Studebaker is carefully planned to move your teeth a specific way in a certain time frame. It’s important to note that missing an appointment can add weeks or months to your treatment time.

Next, we want you to let Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team know right away if your experience any problems with your braces or appliances. A missing wire, rubber band, or broken bracket can delay treatment time, so we ask that you please give us a call right away to report any issues rather than waiting until your next visit.

Make sure you wear your rubber bands as prescribed by Dr. Robert Studebaker. Most, if not all, of our patients will need to wear elastics or rubber bands at some point during their treatment. Not wearing the bands or elastics, or not wearing them enough, can slow down your treatment time. Rubber bands are critical in aligning your bite and are important for the bite-fixing phase of your treatment.

Finally, we want you to maintain good oral hygiene, just as you did before your treatment began. In addition to flossing regularly, we encourage you to brush your teeth several times a day. Not brushing will allow sugar to wear away the cement on the braces, making them less effective in moving your teeth, as well as elevate your risk of developing cavities or tooth decay, which will inevitably delay treatment time.

If you have any questions about any of these tips, or if you have any general questions about your treatment, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office, or ask Dr. Robert Studebaker during your next adjustment visit!

Proper Diet while Undergoing Orthodontics

August 15th, 2014

Many people undergo orthodontic treatment during childhood, adolescence, and even into adulthood. Wearing orthodontic appliances like braces is sure to produce a beautiful smile. Though orthodontic treatments at Studebaker Orthodontics are designed to accommodate your lifestyle, chances are you will need to make some dietary modifications to prevent damage to your braces and prolong orthodontic treatment.

The First Few Days with Braces

The first few days wearing braces may be the most restrictive. During this time, the adhesive is still curing, which means you will need to consume only soft foods. This probably will not be a problem, however, as your teeth may be tender or sensitive while adjusting to the appliances.

Orthodontic Dietary Restrictions

You can eat most foods normally the way you did without braces. However, some foods can damage orthodontic appliances or cause them to come loose. Examples of foods you will need to avoid include:

  • Chewy foods like taffy, chewing gum, beef jerky, and bagels
  • Hard foods like peanuts, ice chips, and hard candy
  • Crunchy foods like chips, apples, and carrots

How to Continue to Eat the Foods You Love Most

Keep in mind that you may still be able to enjoy some of the foods you love by making certain modifications to the way you eat them. For example, steaming or roasting carrots makes them softer and easier to consume with braces. Similarly, you can remove corn from the cob, or cut up produce like apples and pears to avoid biting into them. Other tips include grinding nuts into your yogurt or dipping hard cookies into milk to soften them. If you must eat hard candies, simply suck on them instead of biting into them.

If you have any question whether a food is safe to eat during your treatment with Studebaker Orthodontics, we encourage you to err on the side of caution. Of course, you can always contact our Spring, TX office with any questions you have about your diet and the foods that should be avoided during treatment. By following our dietary instructions and protecting your orthodontic appliances from damage, you will be back to chewing gum in no time.

Tips to Avoid Common Problems Associated with Braces

August 8th, 2014

While braces play an important part in helping to create a healthy mouth and teeth, you might experience a few side effects while wearing them that are common and can be easily treated.

Even with the best of care, braces can cause soreness to your mouth. As your teeth begin to move, it is natural for your teeth to feel aches and your jaw to develop soreness.

If there are broken wires or loose bands on your braces, a sore tongue, mouth, or canker sore will occur. Canker sores are a common occurrence when braces rub inside the mouth. There are ointments available to reduce the pain and irritation associated with mouth sores. We urge those who experience a sore mouth or any of the following problems to call our office to schedule an appointment.

  • Loose brackets: Apply a small amount of orthodontic wax to the bracket temporarily. You might also apply a little between the braces and the soft tissue of your mouth.
  • Loose bands: These must be secured in place by your orthodontist. Try to save the band for repair.
  • Protruding or broken wires: The eraser end of a pencil can be used to move the wire carefully to a less painful spot. If you are unable to move it, apply orthodontic wax to the tip. If a mouth sore develops, rinse with warm salt water or antiseptic rinse.
  • Loose spacers: These will need to be repositioned and sometimes replaced.

Foods to Avoid

Some foods can also help or hurt you while you’re wearing braces. Remember to cut your food into small pieces that can be easily chewed. You will want to avoid hard and chewy foods that can break your hardware. Foods such as corn on the cob, nuts, carrots, apples, ice, and bubble gum should be avoided.

Braces, rubber bands, springs, and other mouth appliances associated with braces will normally attract food particles and plaque. Without the proper care, this could cause staining of your teeth.

Our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics recommends brushing after every meal or snack and carefully removing any food that might be lodged in the braces. A fluoride mouthwash might be helpful as well as flossing. At your next appointment, Dr. Robert Studebaker can advise you how to floss with a brush specially designed for braces!

Do I really need to wear my rubber bands with my braces?

August 1st, 2014

Most of our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics will need to wear rubber bands at some point during their orthodontic treatment. The main reason our patients are instructed to wear rubber bands is to correct their bite. If your teeth do not fit together properly, Dr. Robert Studebaker will recommend that rubber bands be used. Dr. Robert Studebaker may also recommend using rubber bands to close or open spaces.

Rubber bands are a critical part of your treatment, and wearing them as Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team recommend will help move your teeth into the desired position. Dr. Robert Studebaker may ask you to wear your rubber bands full time, meaning that they should only be taken out when you brush and floss your teeth three times a day. Other times, you may be asked to only wear them part-time, like only during the day or only during sleep.

If you still have any questions about orthodontic rubber bands, we invite you to give us a call or ask us during your next adjustment appointment. Remember, wearing rubber bands as prescribed by Dr. Robert Studebaker is an important step during your treatment, and can reduce the time you have your braces. If you lose your rubber bands or run out, stop by our Spring, TX office and pick up more!

Is Invisalign Teen® right for my child?

July 25th, 2014

Straightening your teeth with traditional braces used to be something of a public affair. While traditional teeth-straightening methods yielded high-quality results, it was also essentially impossible to wear them undetected as you went about your day. The visibility of braces could be especially troubling to teens in the high-stress environment of high school and even during the early years of college.

With Invisalign Teen, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics will tell you that many of those concerns are no longer as relevant as they once were. Because Invisalign Teen aligners are constructed out of a plastic that is both smooth and clear, in all likelihood friends and family members won’t even realize the teen is wearing them. The smooth and clear plastic also makes the aligners much more comfortable than traditional braces, which means the teenaged user won’t have to deal with something large and obstructive in his or her mouth.

Additionally, the Invisalign Teen aligners are specifically made to be removable when the need arises. Your son or daughter won’t have to worry about getting food stuck in the alignment trays because they can be pulled out before a meal and popped back in afterwards. Invisalign Teen wearers can remove the aligners before brushing, which allows them to make sure their teeth are free and clear of all obstructions.

Invisalign Teen aligners also allow wearers to keep doing all the activities they have previously enjoyed. If your teen plays sports, for example, he or she won't have to worry about a mouth filled with metal brackets getting injured during play. If your teen plays an instrument, he or she won’t have to worry about traditional braces affecting normal playing techniques. The aligners will remain both comfortable and convenient during all of those activities and more.

If your teen is concerned about physical appearance and worried that braces will adversely affect his or her life for a year or more, Invisalign Teen treatment with Dr. Robert Studebaker is definitely the right choice. Teens don’t have to be shy about their smile, won’t have to change any of the activities they normally do, and will still get all the benefits of straight teeth when the process is completed.

For more information about Invisalign Teen, or to schedule an initial consultation with Dr. Robert Studebaker, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office today!

How does wisdom tooth removal affect orthodontic care?

July 18th, 2014

The purpose of braces and other forms of orthodontic treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics is to correct malocclusion, also known as crooked or crowded teeth, or “bad bites.” Past orthodontic practice dictated that wisdom teeth be removed, especially in cases of crowding.

The wisdom teeth are the last teeth to come in, and are officially known as the third molars. The teeth typically erupt, or break the surface of the skin, in young people between the ages of 13 and 20.

Sometimes, wisdom teeth are impacted. That means they cannot break through the gum tissue. This typically happens when the mouth or jaw is too small to accommodate the teeth. Impacted wisdom teeth can become infected, and some dentists and orthodontists may want to remove them as prophylaxis to prevent possible future infection.

Justification for removing wisdom teeth

Dr. Robert Studebaker will tell you that in some cases, wisdom teeth attempt to come in the wrong way, either tilting in the jaw, or sideways. If the mouth is too small to accommodate these additional teeth, they inevitably become impacted. Swelling or infection of the gum flap above an impacted wisdom tooth may cause pain. The greatest danger is pericoronitis, a potentially dangerous infection that can occur in the gum area around an impacted wisdom tooth, or around a wisdom tooth that has erupted.

Orthodontists base their decision to remove wisdom teeth on each patient's individual circumstances. To learn more about the impact wisdom teeth have on orthodontic treatment, or to schedule a visit with Dr. Robert Studebaker, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office!

Orthodontics and Whole Body Health

July 11th, 2014

In recent years, many links have been established between orthodontic treatments and whole body health. According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, researchers have observed that people with gum disease are more likely to develop heart disease or experience difficulty controlling blood sugar than people without gum disease. While researchers continue to find associations between oral health and the overall health of the body, as of yet it hasn’t been determined whether gum disease is the sole cause of these health conditions. What can be determined, however, is that good oral health isn't just about maintaining a healthy smile; it has an impact on the health of your entire body.

The associations between gum disease and whole body health

The links between the health of your mouth and the health of your body are too many to ignore. Is it a coincidence that gum disease and other health problems occur together? Researchers don’t think so, despite the lack of definitive proof.

Here are four possible connections between the health of your mouth and the health of your body.

  • Excessive oral inflammation has been linked to a greater incidence of clogged arteries.
  • The American Society of Microbiology has revealed that certain types of oral bacteria can infect the arterial cells and weaken the wall of the heart.
  • Loose teeth are often believed to be a warning sign for osteoporosis, a disease that causes the bones to become less dense.
  • Some studies suggest women with gum disease are more likely than those without gum disease to deliver preterm, low-weight babies.

Orthodontics and gum disease

So what does undergoing orthodontic treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics have to do with gum disease? Braces do so much more than give you a nice-looking smile. Quite simply, straight teeth are easier to keep clean than crooked teeth. Your toothbrush is able to remove more plaque-causing bacteria, and your floss is more effective at ridding tiny particles between your teeth.

Despite the lack of hard facts in these findings, the message is clear: If you improve your oral health, you will also have a greater chance of maintaining the health of your entire body. And that’s a chance Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics believe is worth taking. For more information about this topic, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office or ask Dr. Robert Studebaker during your next visit!

Fun Facts for the Fourth

July 4th, 2014

The Fourth of July is a great time to get together with friends and family members for BBQ, games, fireworks, and other celebrations in honor of our country’s independence. While your fellow revelers eat hot dogs and wave flags, you can impress them by sharing these fascinating facts and historical tidbits about some of our country’s traditions and symbols from the team at Studebaker Orthodontics.

The Statue of Liberty

With a torch in one hand and a tablet in the other, the Statue of Liberty is one of the most iconic and recognizable symbols of our country. However, as recognizable as certain parts of the statue are, not many people know that broken shackles, which represent oppression and tyranny, are lying at Lady Liberty’s feet. According to the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, the copper-plated lady weighs in at a whopping 450,000 tons and has been holding her torch up for more than 125 years, which must make for some impressive arm muscles.

Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest

Since 1916, people have been flocking to Coney Island on the Fourth of July to witness what some people call the “superbowl of competitive eating.” Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating contest challenges competitors to devour as many hot dogs as they can in just ten minutes, with the current record holder swallowing a whopping 68 hot dogs! If you’d like to witness this bizarre and frenzied eating competition but you won’t be anywhere near Coney Island on the fourth, don’t worry. ESPN has been broadcasting this popular event for several years, so you can watch from the comfort of your couch while you eat a reasonably portioned meal.

The History Behind Fireworks

Viewing the nighttime fireworks display is exciting way to finish off the fourth. Many people know that these brilliant displays probably originated with the Chinese. However, many historians also believe that fireworks were stumbled upon when the Chinese roasted bamboo sticks over fires and watched them explode. After many years of roasting the sticks, a group of alchemists created an early form of gunpowder, which they stuffed into the bamboo sticks to create an even more powerful explosion, paving the way for the today’s modern fireworks.

Whether you’re planning on visiting the Statue of Liberty, watching fireworks in Spring, TX, or even participating in a hot dog eating contest, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team hope you have a safe and fun-filled holiday. Happy Fourth of July!

What are the benefits of Invisalign®?

June 27th, 2014

A popular option for straightening teeth at Studebaker Orthodontics, Invisalign can be a great method for improving your smile, and can help patients with crowded teeth, crossbites, overbites, underbites, and more.

Invisalign, which is different from traditional braces, works by applying a series of clear, retainer-like aligners in order to eventually move your teeth into their ideal positions. Patients typically swap aligners approximately every couple of weeks.

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we have lots of experience using this technology to give our patients the beautiful and healthy smile they’ve always wanted. During your initial visit at our Spring, TX office, the first thing we do is take an impression of your teeth as they are now and digitize it. Using special software, we look at the current positioning of your teeth and compare it to the way your teeth should look.

Not only are the aligners invisible, they are also removable, so you can eat and drink what you want, and brushing and flossing are easier. Invisalign’s aligners are also comfortable, with no metal to cause mouth abrasions during your treatment. And, no metal and wires usually means you spend less time at our office getting adjustments. With Invisalign, you can view your own virtual treatment plan when you start, so you can see how your straight teeth will look when your treatment is complete!

Depending on the severity of the problem, Invisalign treatment may take anywhere from three to 18 months to complete. You should be aware that Invisalign is not as effective as traditional braces in treating bite problems, teeth that are lower or higher than others, or severely overcrowded teeth. Both teens and adults are now great candidates for Invisalign, so we invite you to contact our Spring, TX office to set up an initial consultation and learn more on how Invisalign can give you the smile you’ve always wanted!

What is dentofacial orthopedics?

June 20th, 2014

You may have noticed that we specialize in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics. And while most people we talk to have heard of orthodontics, many are confused by the dentofacial orthopedics part of the title. Today, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team thought we would explain the difference.

While orthodontics entails the management of tooth movement, dentofacial orthopedics involves the guidance of facial growth and facial development, which occurs for the most part during childhood, and is a reason why kids are often the best candidates for receiving dentofacial orthopedic therapy. Dr. Robert Studebaker will examine and monitor your child’s growth to determine when starting treatment will be most effective. If your child begins orthodontic treatment before his or her adult teeth have erupted, it is known as Phase-One treatment. During this phase, Dr. Robert Studebaker will use treatments designed to correct your child’s jaw growth and make sure that the jaw bone is properly aligned before beginning the next phase of treatment, which usually involves placing braces to straighten your child's teeth.

Dentofacial orthopedics is also used to treat adult patients at Studebaker Orthodontics, however, this process may involve surgery. With our younger patients, we know the jaw bones are still forming, making it easier for our team at Studebaker Orthodontics to control bone growth and tooth movement. Adults, however, are a different story; their bones are no longer growing, and their jaw bones have hardened, so it is more difficult to adjust the bite and move teeth into proper alignment. Dr. Robert Studebaker may recommend surgery to adjust the jaw bone and establish the proper bite alignment before beginning treatment.

Because our team at Studebaker Orthodontics is skilled in both areas, we are able to diagnose any misalignments in the teeth and jaw as well as the facial structure, and can devise a treatment plan that integrates both orthodontic and dentofacial orthopedic treatments.

We hope that helps! To learn more about dentofacial orthopedics, and to find out if this type of treatment is right for you, please contact our Spring, TX office and schedule an initial consultation for you or your child. It’s never too late to get a great smile, and we can’t wait to help you or your child get started.

We proudly offer Invisalign Teen®!

June 13th, 2014

Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team are excited to offer Invisalign Teen, a clear alternative to braces that’s just for teens! With Invisalign Teen, we are able to straighten your teen’s teeth without the hassle, discomfort, and embarrassment of traditional braces.

Invisalign Teen’s clear aligners are virtually invisible. What's more, they are removable, which means your child is free to eat anything they choose, as well as brush and floss with ease! And best of all, Invisalign Teen uses no wires or metal to straighten your teen's teeth.

Invisalign Teen aligners are made from a lightweight plastic material and fit precisely on the teeth. Invisalign Teen has become a popular treatment here at Studebaker Orthodontics because it helps our younger patients achieve a straight, beautiful smile without their friends noticing.

Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics is aware that most teens today have a busy lifestyle, and sometimes, they tend to lose things, including their retainers or aligners. But with Invisalign Teen, if your child happens to lose an aligner, let Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team know as soon as possible and we will have the aligner replaced.

For more information on Invisalign Teen, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office today!

What if I miss an appointment over the summer?

June 6th, 2014

If you are planning on taking a vacation this summer, we ask that you let us know ahead of time so that we may schedule your summer appointments more efficiently. We also encourage patients and their parents to be proactive in determining when they make their summer appointments.

If you will be gone for an extended period (more than six weeks), we recommend you visit Studebaker Orthodontics prior to leaving and schedule another visit shortly after your return. Lastly, please remember not to indulge in hard, sticky, and chewy treats while enjoying your vacation. We look forward to seeing you soon and hearing about your adventures!

I got my braces. Now what?

May 30th, 2014

You’ve taken the first step toward a healthier and more beautiful appearance by getting braces at Studebaker Orthodontics, and you’re probably wondering what comes next. The first week is the period of biggest adjustment, and there’s a lot to learn in this short time. Don’t worry; in a few short days your braces will feel completely natural.

The first week

On the first day, your braces will probably feel very odd in your mouth; it will take time to get used to them. By the second day, you may feel some soreness or pain. If you are going to experience any pain, the second and third days are when it will happen. Most pain can be dealt with by taking an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as Tylenol.

What about sore spots?

Your cheeks and tongue are getting used to your new braces, just like your teeth are. You may develop sore spots where this soft tissue rubs against the harsh metal of your braces. The best way to avoid this and allow your mouth to heal is by covering the metal spot with orthodontic wax. Break off a small piece and roll it into a ball in your hands. Dry the metal of the braces with a cotton swab, then wrap the wax around the sharp spot to create a cushion.

What if they break?

Braces are held onto your teeth with special orthodontic glue. Once in a great while, part of your appliance may come loose from the surface of a tooth. This won’t harm anything; it will just be slightly inconvenient. Call our office right away and we will be able to glue the bracket back on.

Make sure you avoid hard items such as ice, brittle, and other hard candies, and don’t open packages with your teeth. These habits can contribute to braces popping off. Even fairly innocent-sounding items like popcorn or French bread can be a culprit, so avoid eating any hard foods, or cut them up into small pieces before consuming.

If you have questions about which foods to eat and avoid, or if your braces are more sore than expected, feel free to contact our Spring, TX office and ask Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team. We’re more than happy to help!

Memorial Day

May 23rd, 2014

Memorial Day is not only a federal holiday in the United States, but it is a day of observance and remembrance of those who died in service. Originally known as Decoration Day, this solemn day has been marked on calendars since the end of the American Civil War as a day to commemorate both the Confederate and Union soldiers who fought and died in the war.

Marking the graves of fallen soldiers with flowers, wreaths, or other tokens has been practiced throughout history, but it wasn't until the mark of the end of the Civil War that a special day was decided upon as the one to spend in remembrance. By 1890, every state in the country was observing Decoration Day. It wasn't until 1967 when the name formally changed from Decoration Day to Memorial Day, in order to encompass all fallen American soldiers in all wars and conflicts. In June of 1968, Congress moved the official date of Memorial Day to the last Monday in May in order to create a three day weekend.

Today, while there is certainly an air of remembrance on Memorial Day, it has become more a day of spending time with family, friends, and other loved ones. This day is also heralded as the start of summer, with many schools finishing for the year around this time. Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics remembers it as a day to take solace and remembered those lost.

Traditional observances of Memorial Day are still held, and they often involve raising the American Flag then lowering it to a half-staff position until noon, and then raising it once again to its full height afterwards. The flag is lowered to remember those who've lost their lives while in service to their country, and then it is raised to signify our willingness to not let their sacrifice be in vain.

From community parades in the Spring, TX area, backyard cook-outs, and fireworks to formal ceremonies, Memorial Day is commemorated in many different ways. No matter how you choose to spend this day, take a moment to remember those who've lost their lives in an effort to preserve our freedom.

What is hyperdontia?

May 16th, 2014

When a child is born, he or she will have 20 primary teeth and 32 permanent teeth. But sometimes kids are born with additional teeth, and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics calls this oral condition "hyperdontia." Primary teeth are the first set of teeth that erupt in your child's mouth, typically by the time they are 36 months old, and are shed by the time your child reaches the age of 12. Permanent teeth then take the place of the primary teeth and are usually fully-erupted by the time your son or daughter reaches 21 years of age. Anyone who develops more than 20 primary teeth or more than 32 permanent teeth has hyperdontia, and the additional teeth are referred to as supernumerary teeth.

While the cause of hyperdontia is not entirely clear, it is believed that there may be a genetic factor. Oral professionals have found that patients with extra teeth often have syndromes like cleidocranial dysplasia, Ehler-Danlos syndrome, Gardner syndrome, or cleft lip and palate. The prevalence of hyperdontia affects between one and four percent of the population in the United States, and the majority of cases are limited to a single tooth.

So, what is the best way to deal with hyperdontia? It really depends on the case. The treatment plan your doctor suggests varies according to the potential problem posed by the supernumerary teeth, as well as their type. Orthodontic treatment may certainly may help, but extraction can also be a good option. We recommend that children receive an oral evaluation or checkup no later than the age of seven. In addition to hygiene evaluation, this helps ensure your child does not experience hyperdontia problems.

If you suspect you or your child may be suffering from hyperdontia, please give us a call to schedule an appointment at our convenient Spring, TX office to be evaluated.

Wishing all our moms a happy Mother’s Day!

May 9th, 2014

"Motherhood: All love begins and ends there." - Robert Browning

We would like to take this moment to thank all the great moms out there for being so great during their child’s visits to Studebaker Orthodontics. Whether it’s driving their kids to regularly scheduled appointments or for “being there” while their child is treatment, the moms who come to our office are all stellar individuals, so Dr. Robert Studebaker and our entire staff would like you to know that we appreciate you all!

Happy Mother’s Day and enjoy your special day!

Summer is Almost Here: Tips for a bright, white smile!

May 2nd, 2014

Summer is almost here, which means a season full of vacations, adventures and great memories is just around the corner for our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics.

Everyone wants a glowing and radiant white smile when the sun comes around and we have a few reminders to keep your pearly whites healthy and beautiful over the summer! Try to stay away from drinks that will stain your teeth like coffee, soft drinks, or dark colored juices. Not only will drinks like this weaken your enamel but they will also darken that fabulous smile you're working on! Another tip is to try and focus on brushing your teeth; everyone knows that when busy schedules start picking up, getting a good brushing session in tends to take the backseat! A good tip for keeping your mouth safe from staining and other possible pitfalls is to rinse your mouth with water after any meal you can’t fully brush your teeth after. Your teeth, inside and out, will benefit!

And remember, whether you are headed to a barbecue, a camping trip, or just having fun in the backyard this summer, we want to hear all about it! Make sure to let us know what you’re up to below or on our Facebook page! We also encourage you to post any photos from your adventures!

What is early intervention?

April 25th, 2014

Many developing orthodontic problems can be intercepted and corrected if diagnosed and treated at an early age. Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics recommend children have their first orthodontic evaluation no later than age seven, or younger if the front four permanent teeth have replaced the baby teeth. Early treatment, also known as interceptive treatment or Phase I treatment, provides both timely detection of problems and greater opportunity for more effective treatment. Early intervention guides growth and development, preventing serious problems later.

If your child is showing these signs, it may be time to think about early orthodontic treatment:

  • Early or late loss of baby teeth (your child should typically start losing teeth around age five or six, and will have all their permanent teeth in around age 12 to 13)
  • Difficulty chewing and/or biting
  • Mouth breathing
  • Sucking his or her thumb
  • Speech impediment
  • Protruding teeth (the top teeth and the bottom teeth extend away from each other)
  • Crowded front teeth
  • Teeth that don't come together in a normal manner or even at all

Early intervention will greatly reduce the severity of your child’s case, and therefore reduce the length of treatment time and cost for a second phase of treatment when all of his or her permanent teeth have erupted. An evaluation at our Spring, TX office will determine if your child’s dental and skeletal growth is proceeding properly or if interceptive treatment is needed. Many times, a more severe problem can be corrected using sophisticated removable appliances instead of traditional orthodontic treatment.

To schedule a consultation for your child to visit with Dr. Robert Studebaker, please give us a call! We will provide your child with an initial exam, and discuss with you the best steps to take toward caring for your child's smile.

Every Day is Earth Day

April 18th, 2014

During the early days of the environmental awareness movement, those who demonstrated against pollution, toxic chemicals, and the general public health were known as hippies. The early 1970s were a time of change, and assertions that we needed to pay more attention to the Earth's atmosphere were generally dismissed. But within a couple decades, it had become clear that the previous generation was right; the citizens of the world needed to become more environmentally conscious.

Many people feel that they can't make a difference if they don't do something big. But caring for the environment doesn't have to be an all-or-nothing concept. In fact, the little things you do can add up to make a great impact, especially in our community. Here are a few ways you can help the environment on Earth Day, April 22nd and all year around.

Four Small Ways to be Environmentally Friendly

  • Recycle Your Textiles. Nearly 21 million tons of textiles are added to American landfills each year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Donating your unwanted clothing to a secondhand store or an organization that repurposes fabric helps cut down on solid waste and conserves natural resources.
  • Reduce Usage of Disposables. Plastic bottles and bags, disposable diapers and other things we can use and toss out are convenient, but they're not necessary. Simply choosing to replace one of type of disposable with a reusable product can help you cut down on waste that has a large negative impact on our environment.
  • Conserve Water. If everyone in the United States turned off the water while brushing their teeth, more than 1.5 million gallons of water could be conserved. Turn the water on long enough to wet your toothbrush for brushing and rinsing, and then immediately turn the water off again.
  • Turn Off the Lights. Flip the light switch to "Off" if you're going to leave a particular room for 15 minutes or more. This will conserve energy on incandescent light bulbs and cut down on cooling costs.

It's not necessary to be an activist or install solar panels all over your home to help the environment. Although you can do these things, the little everyday measures make a big difference in helping to conserve energy and the environment, while reducing your carbon footprint. Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics wants to remind you to celebrate Earth Day and help the environment, knowing that it will benefit your and your children's generation.

When You Need Immediate Care, We are Here for You

April 11th, 2014

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know orthodontic emergencies are neither convenient nor timely. If you are a patient of record, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team are more than willing to see you after hours or over the weekend. As a general rule, you should call our Spring, TX office when you experience severe pain or when you have a painful appliance problem that you can’t take care of yourself. We’ll be able to schedule an appointment to resolve the problem. If you have an orthodontic emergency after regular office hours, please give us a call and follow the emergency prompts to contact one of our doctors.

Play it Safe this Spring

April 4th, 2014

It's springtime and it's again time to remind our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics to protect their faces and pearly whites while out on the field playing sports. According to the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation, children, high-school athletes and adults have more than 5,000,000 teeth knocked out in sporting events annually.

If you are planning on participating in spring sports, it’s imperative to have a proper-fitting mouthguard. Mouthguards can prevent chipped or broken teeth, lip and cheek injuries, jaw fractures, mouth lacerations and even concussions.

Having a mouthguard can make the difference between losing your teeth or not, and because many of our patients who play high school sports have jaws that are still growing, last year’s mouthguard may no longer fit as it should. Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics can fit you for a new guard.

To learn more about mouthguards or for general questions about your treatment at our Spring, TX office, please give us a call!

What role do elastics (rubber bands) play in orthodontics?

March 28th, 2014

Wearing orthodontic braces may be the best choice for correcting your teeth and improving your smile, and that's why you've come to see Dr. Robert Studebaker at Studebaker Orthodontics. Braces, which consist of brackets and wires, work by gently applying pressure to the teeth, and that pressure causes them to move into the correct position. In some cases elastics, or rubber bands, are used to apply additional pressure needed to move your teeth.

The Purpose of Elastics

Customized for each patient, the rubber bands typically stretch over tiny loops on the top and bottom brackets. If worn consistently, and every day, these tiny elastics will apply the steady pressure needed to guide your teeth into the correct position.

These elastics are crafted from medical-grade latex, which is safe to be in contact with your mouth. It's common to remove the elastics during meals if opening your mouth wide enough to eat is difficult. Our staff will demonstrate how to affix the elastics so it will soon become second nature to replace them.

The Do’s and the Don'ts

DO - Get in the habit of carrying around extra rubber bands and replace them as soon as one breaks. By consistently wearing the elastics, you may shorten the overall time needed to wear braces.

DON'T - Double up on elastics as this will cause too much pressure on the tooth or teeth and can actually harm the root of the tooth.

DO - Always wash your hands before removing or replacing the rubber bands.

DON'T - Overstretch the rubber band or it will lose its strength and it will be ineffective.

DO - Call us if you run out of rubber bands.

DO - Have fun with your braces and elastics. There are many different colors available that can let you show off your soon-to-be perfect smile.

Rubber bands are a key part of your orthodontic treatment, and learning how to remove and replace them is an important part to maintaining your braces. Before we set you on your journey to a perfect smile, we'll make sure you understand all there is to know about how to take care of your braces. Of course, if you have any questions about your orthodontic treatment, or orthodontics in general, be sure to contact our Spring, TX office, and our staff will be happy to assist you!

Kristin Cavallari and Palatal Expanders

March 21st, 2014

It’s no easy feat to have one of the best smiles in Hollywood. The reality TV starlet Kristin Cavallari attributes her gorgeous smile to routine oral hygiene, the removal of two impacted wisdom teeth, and having undergone orthodontic treatment. Kristin’s treatment began in sixth grade when she was fitted with a device Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team call a palatal expander, which is used to guide upper jaw growth in our younger patients.

What is a palatal expander?

A palatal expander “expands” (or widens) your upper jaw by applying gentle pressure on your upper molars, and is used to make the bottom and upper teeth fit together better. In addition, palatal expanders work to create more room for teeth, as well as promote a broader, more appealing smile.

Do palatal expanders hurt?

Palatal expanders are usually not painful, however you may experience difficulty speaking and swallowing for the first few days. Adjusting your palatal expander as instructed by Dr. Robert Studebaker will ensure there are no delays in regards to your treatment plan.

Typically, it takes a few weeks to achieve the desired amount of expansion, after which you will keep wearing your expander for about six months, giving time for the new bone to form and stabilize. Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics will give you detailed instructions about how to adjust your appliance and can answer any questions you may have about your palatal expander.

If you have any questions about your palatal expander or your treatment plan with Dr. Robert Studebaker, please give us a call at our Spring, TX office!

Go Green for St. Patrick’s Day

March 14th, 2014

Millions of people, around Spring, TX and beyond, wear green on St. Patrick’s Day so they can show their spirit for the holiday and avoid getting pinched. While it may be easy for you to throw on a green shirt, sport a St. Patrick’s Day button, or wear a pair of emerald-hued shoes, if you’re an avid St. Patty’s Day enthusiast you may want to try something different this year. Dr. Robert Studebaker thought of a few ideas that will help you take your holiday spirit to the next level:

Visit Chicago’s Green River

If you happen to be near the Windy City during St. Patrick’s Day or you’re thinking of planning a trip, don’t miss out on going downtown to watch the large-scale celebration that kicks off when the city dyes the river bright green. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago has been celebrating the holiday with this tradition for more than 50 years, with tens of thousands of people gathering annually to witness the mysterious dying process and the stunning result.

Don Green Face Paint

Just like an avid sports fan on game day, you can use green face paints to showcase your enthusiasm for this holiday. Avoid breakouts or allergic reactions by only using paints that are specifically meant to be applied to the skin. A little bit of face paint can cover a large area, so feel free to get creative and decorate the whole family on St. Patrick’s Day.

Eat Green All Day

Not a fan of green eggs and ham? With the increasing popularity of green smoothies, there’s no better time to get in on this health craze. To create a green smoothie without the aid of food coloring, you can simply blend a generous amount of a leafy green vegetable, such as spinach or kale, with the ingredients that you would typically use to make a smoothie, like fruit, ice, milk, or juice. Keep the trend going throughout the day by using those same vegetables to create a green soup, egg salad, or a batch of bright green pastries. As an added bonus, you’ll get a healthy dose of vitamins without changing the taste of most of these foods.

If your old holiday routine has gotten stale, leave your green T-shirt in the drawer and try one or all of these tips. Don’t be surprised if you have so much fun that you decide to start a new, annual St. Patrick’s Day tradition! Have a happy St. Paddy’s day from Studebaker Orthodontics!

What's the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist?

March 7th, 2014

Orthodontists and dentists both help patients improve their oral health, but in different ways. Dentistry is a broad medical specialty that deals with the teeth, gum, nerves, and jaw, while orthodontics is a specialty within dentistry that focuses on correcting bites, occlusion, and the straightness of teeth. One important difference is that all orthodontists like Dr. Robert Studebaker are dentists, but not all dentists are licensed orthodontists.

How are they similar?

The main similarity between a dentist and orthodontist is that they both focus on oral care. An orthodontist can work in a dental office and provide the same care as a dentist. So in this respect, they are quite similar. They are both considered doctors, and deal with the teeth and gums.

How are they different?

There are more differences than similarities. An orthodontist requires additional schooling as a dental specialty; the situation is similar to a doctor who obtains additional schooling to become a surgeon. Another difference is that orthodontists specialize in helping patients with the alignment of their teeth, improving their bite, or fitting them for corrective braces and devices. If a patient has an overbite, a dentist will refer him or her to an orthodontist.

Dentists typically encourage good oral hygiene and provide services related to:

  • Tooth decay
  • Root canals
  • Gum disease
  • Crowns
  • Bridges
  • Veneers
  • Teeth whitening

Orthodontists are dentists that specialize in the alignment of teeth, and provide services related to:

  • Misaligned teeth
  • Crowded teeth
  • Overbite
  • Underbite

What an orthodontist can help with

Orthodontists help with crooked teeth, but they assist patients with other issues as well. These include overbites and underbites, crossbites, spaces between teeth, overcrowding of teeth, and the treatment of temporomandibular disorders (TMD). Additional problems with the jaw also need to be treated by an orthodontist.

While a dentist may be trained to provide orthodontic care in addition to extractions, TMJ treatments, and fillings, trusting your smile to an orthodontist can better balance the different procedures you require.

To learn more about the difference between dentists and orthodontists, or to schedule an initial consultation with Dr. Robert Studebaker, please give our team at Studebaker Orthodontics a call at our convenient Spring, TX office.

How do braces move my teeth?

February 28th, 2014

Great question! Tooth movement is your body’s natural response to light pressure applied by braces over a period of time (usually two years). Braces work by using brackets that are glued onto your teeth; these brackets have small slots, and that is where Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team insert orthodontic wires. These wires are held in place by small elastic ties that fit around the brackets. As time passes during your treatment, these wires apply pressure on your teeth, which sets in motion the movement of your teeth into their desired positions. Each of your teeth has a different size and shape to them, as do the brackets. Each bracket is custom-made for the particular tooth on which it’s supposed to fit.

Not long ago, orthodontists had stainless steel wires and that was about it. Today, however, we have a number of different high-tech wires at our disposal to move your teeth faster and more comfortably.

When you first get your braces on, the first wire or two will typically be very flexible, but still strong enough to apply a constant force on your teeth. As your teeth straighten out over time, however, Dr. Robert Studebaker will use progressively thicker and firmer wires to help move your teeth in place for an ideal bite.

Every time you visit our office for an adjustment, we will swap out the wires in order to keep putting pressure on your teeth, which is why it’s so important for you to keep your adjustment visits during your treatment. Most adjustment appointments are scheduled four to eight weeks apart to give your teeth time to move.

As for rubber bands and elastics, most of our patients will need to wear elastics or rubber bands at some point during their treatments. These elastics typically go from one or more of the upper braces to one or more of the lower braces, and pull on your teeth to move them in the direction they need to move in order to achieve an optimal bite.

If you have any questions about wires, brackets, or elastics, or have any general questions about your treatment, please give us a call at our Spring, TX office.

How much do braces cost?

February 21st, 2014

This is one of the most common questions that is asked at Studebaker Orthodontics and, unfortunately, it does not have a simple answer. Just as every patient we see is unique, so is their treatment plan. Some patients have very simple problems which require less appliances and time, while other cases are much more complicated and may require multiple appliances and phases.

The treatment fee usually reflects the amount of orthodontic work required to complete the treatment plan. The only way to find out how much braces will cost is to schedule a consultation with Dr. Robert Studebaker. During your consultation, we will perform a complete oral examination, listen to your concerns, and explain how we will address your needs.

Our findings will include the cost of orthodontics and how long the treatment will take to complete. Give us a call today at our convenient location in Spring, TX for a consultation and discover how quickly we can make you smile!

Valentine's Day History

February 14th, 2014

Valentine’s Day is best known as a celebration of love in all its forms. Pink hearts, red roses, and cute greeting cards adorn every surface you see. What many people don’t realize is that the modern Valentine’s Day celebration arose from a religious holiday.

St. Valentine’s Day was originally celebrated as a religious feast day in honor of early Christian martyrs. Three martyrs named Valentine were honored: a priest in Rome, the persecuted bishop of Interamna (a town in central Italy), and a saint martyred in Africa. This saint’s day was celebrated throughout Christendom, although it was removed from the Roman Catholic Calendar of Saints in 1969.

The origin of Valentine’s Day as a holiday for lovers began with Geoffrey Chaucer in his 1382 poem “Parlement of Foules.” Chaucer wrote, “For this was on Saint Valentine’s Day, when every bird cometh there to choose his mate,” and the modern romantic holiday was born. William Shakespeare and other writers mentioned Valentine’s Day as a day of love.

Valentine’s Day as we know it came about in the early 19th century. In Victorian England, printers began manufacturing small numbers of cards with romantic verses, lace, ribbons, and other frills. Anonymous Valentine’s Day card were a popular way for young lovers to exchange romantic sentiments in an otherwise prudish time. As the 19th century progressed, printers began mass manufacturing Valentine’s Day cards. People in the United States give an estimated 190 million valentines every year, and up to one billion if you count children exchanging cards at school! With the rise of the Internet, Valentine’s Day e-cards have become a popular mode of communication, with millions of e-cards sent each year.

The other items associated with Valentine’s Day include chocolate and flowers. The tradition of giving chocolates has been around for decades, and Richard Cadbury created the first box of Valentine’s Day chocolates nearly 150 years ago. Today, purchases of chocolate total over $1 billion in the United States alone, with 35 million heart-shaped boxes sold each year. Loved ones also exchange flowers, with red roses being associated with Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love. On Valentine’s Day itself, florists sell nearly 200 stems of roses.

Although many people dismiss Valentine’s Day as a commercialized “Hallmark holiday,” it is beloved to couples and romantics across the United States and other countries. The team at Studebaker Orthodontics wants to remind all patients that no matter what your celebratory plans, February 14th can be a wonderful day to celebrate the loved ones in your life. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Smile with Invisalign Teen®!

February 7th, 2014

Invisalign Teen is designed with today’s youth in mind. These clear, removable orthodontic aligners can straighten your teeth without the need for metal wires and brackets. Unlike traditional braces, Invisalign Teen aligners are comfortable, nearly invisible, and removable, which allows you to remove them as you eat your favorite foods and brush and floss your teeth. Invisalign Teen motivates teenagers to enjoy life without restrictions while promoting better overall dental care.

Key features of Invisalign Teen

Teenagers are constantly on the move and require special options when it comes to their braces. Invisalign Teen utilizes the same technology as Invisalign for adults; they consist of a series of clear plastic aligners that gradually move the teeth. Extra features designed especially for teens include:

  • Blue wear-indicators on the aligners that gradually fade from blue to clear to help you, and our team, gauge wear time
  • Aligners designed to compensate for the growth of molars and new teeth
  • Customization to fit your mouth correctly and comfortably
  • Removable and nearly transparent to ensure you can eat with freedom and smile with confidence
  • Six free individual replacement aligners in the event that your aligners become misplaced or lost

Conditions improved by Invisalign Teen

Between 70 and 80 percent of adolescents in the United States require braces, according to the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO). Invisalign Teen uses advanced technology to treat a broad range of orthodontic conditions. These include overbite, underbite, crossbite, widely-spaced teeth, and overly crowded teeth. Injuries and tooth and jaw problems may also require the use of braces to correct jaw and teeth alignment problems.

How does Invisalign Teen work?

Like any orthodontic treatment, Invisalign Teen requires a customized treatment plan created by Dr. Robert Studebaker. Generally, each set of aligners is worn for approximately two weeks and removed when you brush, floss, eat, and drink. Your teeth will gradually move with the series of aligners, which typically ranges from 18 to 30 aligners in total. You’ll visit our Spring, TX office every eight to ten weeks to check your progress and make any needed adjustments.

Invisalign Teen introduces a whole new way to make your smile straight without the unappealing look and hassle of traditional metal braces. This revolutionary method of correcting smiles is being used by teens everywhere, including right here at Studebaker Orthodontics, to straighten their teeth with confidence.

Foods that are Safe for Braces

January 31st, 2014

Orthodontic braces are used to straighten the teeth, which not only creates a more pleasing appearance, but also helps prevent tooth decay and other oral health problems. Braces are only effective when they are properly cared for, however. Certain foods, for example, are better suited for individuals who have braces, as opposed to hard and sticky foods that can cause damage. So, what types of foods should you or your kids eat to protect dental appliances?

The best foods to eat with braces are those that are not high in sugar and do not require excessive chewing. For breakfast, try eggs, yogurt, bacon, wheat toast, or oatmeal. Lunch may steer toward a banana rather than an apple, a salad without nuts, and a glass of water. If you are looking for some after-school snacks for your kids, consider baked tortilla chips with salsa and guacamole, or try string cheese with fruit.

A healthy dinner can include most types of vegetables, so long as they are cooked to an appropriate softness. Pair that with a lean protein, such as fish or chicken, and follow up with dessert. Just be sure to brush afterward!

Post-Tightening Foods

As braces begin to adjust the alignment of the teeth, our team at Studebaker Orthodontics will periodically tighten them to continue the alignment process. After tightening occurs, the teeth may be sore and sensitive to certain foods. During this time, it is best to eat soft foods. Examples include:

  • Pudding
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Soup
  • Ice cream
  • Cottage cheese
  • Peas
  • Pancakes
  • Pasta

Foods to Avoid

Anyone who wears braces – whether fixed or removable – should avoid excessive snacking and should aim to eat a healthy and balanced diet. It is also important to avoid foods that could cause damage to the braces, such as:

  • Hard candies
  • Gum
  • Nuts
  • Popcorn
  • Certain raw vegetables (for example, carrots)

Considerations

Regardless of what types of foods you eat with braces, it is important to keep the crevices between the teeth and around the braces very clean. That means brushing and flossing after meals to prevent the build-up of plaque and decay. Not only can failing to do so damage the teeth, but it can also cause discoloration.

Have more questions about orthodontic treatment? The Studebaker Orthodontics staff is always ready to answer all of your questions and help you get the most out of the treatment plan prescribed for you by Dr. Robert Studebaker!

Tips for Using Invisalign®

January 24th, 2014

More than one patient has come into our office and asked, “What can I do to help my teeth when wearing Invisalign?”

While everyone’s teeth and dental needs are different, there are certain things everyone can do to make wearing their Invisalign aligners a more rewarding experience. Always follow the list of instructions and tips from Dr. Robert Studebaker, and add the following advice to your daily routine.

Always ask us about teeth whitening. Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics knows how important it is for you to keep your teeth white and stain-free from the foods and drinks you consume daily. If you have attachments to your teeth, they will not whiten properly. Ask our office about teeth whitening when wearing your aligners; it might be best to wait until your treatment is complete.

Continue flossing every day. You should be flossing in any case. But it can be easy to assume that Invisalign will protect your teeth from bacteria. This is not true. Bacteria can get behind the aligners and affect the health of your teeth and gums, so keep up with your flossing schedule.

Follow the 48-hour rule when wearing your aligners. When you insert every new set of aligners, you should leave them in as much as possible during the first 48 hours. Your teeth will move more during this timeframe, and the aligners do the most good during this time.

You may experience slight discomfort while wearing your Invisalign aligners. You can take a pain reliever to help with the discomfort, but if you experience too much pain, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office to schedule an appointment!

Why should I visit the dentist during my treatment?

January 17th, 2014

So, you just got your braces on, and you're wondering why you should continue visiting your general dentist since you’re seeing Dr. Robert Studebaker every other month. Patients always ask us if they should continue to see their dentist while in orthodontic treatment. In short, the answer is yes.

Today, we thought we would share a few reasons why it’s crucial to keep up with your regular visits with your dentist in addition to coming in for your regular adjustments at Studebaker Orthodontics.

One of the best reasons to visit your dentist while you undergo orthodontic treatment is to remove plaque and tartar. Having braces provides additional nooks and crannies in which food particles and bacteria can hide. Eventually, plaque and tartar can form around your brackets, bands or other appliances which can lead to cavities. Having your teeth professionally cleaned can help ensure most, if not all, plaque and tartar is removed. Even if you are undergoing clear aligner treatment, dental checkups and cleanings are equally as important.

The next reason to visit a dentist is to help protect your teeth from decalcification, or the loss of calcium in your teeth. A potentially serious condition in which white spots on your tooth surfaces, decalcification is irreversible and if left untreated, can lead to cavities. Decalcification is preventable; patients who cut down on sugary sweets and acidic foods, practice good oral hygiene, and visit their dentist regularly can help prevent decalcification.

The final reason we recommend visiting your dentist while you have braces is this: cavities can prolong your treatment. If you are interested in completing your orthodontic treatment on time and without any delays, visiting your dentist every six months or as recommended can go a long way toward making that a realistic goal. Your dentist can provide fluoride treatments or other treatments that strengthen your teeth and protect them from cavities.

Making sure to visit your dentist will help ensure your teeth look their best once your braces come off. If you do not have a general dentist and would like a recommendation on finding one in the Spring, TX area, please give us a call or let us know at your next adjustment appointment!

What’s the advantage of Invisalign®?

January 10th, 2014

Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team know it is natural for you to feel some concern when you need to wear any type of dental device to correct a problem with your teeth. Both braces and Invisalign can produce good results in giving you the smile you’ve always wanted. Both methods can straighten your teeth and alleviate such issues as crowding, spacing, cross bite, overbite, and underbite. Both methods of treatment have a similar cost.

You can take a cross-country road trip in a ten-year-old economy car or you can make the trip in a brand-new luxury sedan. Both will get you to your destination, but you will be far more comfortable traveling in the luxury sedan. Similarly, your journey to a great smile is much more comfortable and convenient with Invisalign as opposed to braces.

Comfort

Some of the discomfort you may experience with braces is greatly reduced with Invisalign. Because Invisalign is custom-fit to your mouth and made of plastic, you will feel less pain, irritation, and soreness. Unlike braces, there are no food restrictions; you can eat anything that is on your diet.

Brushing and flossing

Of course you will want to brush and floss your teeth to prevent plaque buildup, tooth discoloration, and dental decay. If you wear braces, these simple tasks can become quite a challenge. Invisalign aligners are very easy to remove and replace, so you can brush or floss like normal without having to work your way around any metallic framework covering your teeth.

Appearance

You do not have to be embarrassed to show your teeth when you are using the Invisalign system. Since the aligners are practically invisible, no one will even notice you are wearing them! Whether you are a teenager or an older adult, you can live your life normally.

If you want to learn more about Invisalign, or are wondering what your treatment options are at Studebaker Orthodontics, feel free to give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office!

What is orthognathic surgery?

January 3rd, 2014

Orthognathic surgery is surgery to correct a wide variety of abnormalities of our patients' jaw and teeth. The surgery is often done in conjunction with orthodontic treatment. While the patient’s appearance may be significantly improved as a result, the primary purpose of the surgery is to correct functional problems including but not limited to:

  • Unbalanced facial appearance
  • Protruding jaw
  • Open bite (upper and lower teeth don’t overlap properly
  • Excessive wearing down of the teeth
  • Difficulty with chewing or biting
  • Chronic mouth breathing
  • Sleeping problems such as sleep apnea
  • TMJ pain (jaw joint pain)
  • Restoring facial injuries

Knowing when to start the orthodontic treatment in preparation for orthognathic surgery can also be tricky if our team at Studebaker Orthodontics is treating a teenager. It is important to know when to get started. If orthodontic treatment is initiated too soon and the teenager is still growing, the patient will either need to hold in braces until his or her growth is complete and they are ready for surgery or the braces will have to be removed and then placed again when growth is complete. Neither of these options is attractive since it requires longer time in treatment, which is something all our patients want to avoid. Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics strives to get all patients finished with treatment as quickly as possible because it is healthier for the teeth and gums and gives them a beautiful smile to enjoy for a lifetime.

If you are considering orthognathic surgery or you have been told that you need jaw surgery, give us a call to schedule your initial consultation today. Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics will explain our treatment plan in a way you will understand and we will keep you informed every step of the way.

New Year's Eve

December 30th, 2013

Watching the clock tick down the final seconds until midnight, many of us- Studebaker Orthodontics included- feel nostalgic about the passing year and hopeful about the new one to come. New Year’s Eve is one of the most widely celebrated holidays in the world, with over-the-top celebrations taking place in dozens of countries. The Gregorian calendar, which is widely used in Western nations and around the world, was implemented in 1582. Since that time, December 31st has marked the final day of the year, with midnight heralding the beginning of a brand new year. In the United States, New Year’s Day is a public holiday; government offices, schools, public organizations, and many businesses are closed for the day. Ponder the following fun facts as you think about your plans for the holiday:

  • Approximately one billion people watch the New Year’s Eve ball drop in Times Square, New York City. This televised event is one of the most iconic New Year’s celebrations in the world. For many years, watching the ball drop meant tuning in to Dick Clark’s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve, an iconic television special dear to the hearts of many viewers.
  • The idea for the New Year’s Eve ball came about because of a citywide ban on fireworks. Before 1907, when fireworks became illegal in New York City, celebrations included an elaborate fireworks show. The large, glittering, illuminated ball was developed as an alternative. Although the first ball was heavy at 700 pounds, the modern New Year’s Eve ball is made of Waterford crystal and tips the scale at six tons!
  • The top five New Year’s resolutions are: to lose weight, quit smoking, get a new job, return to school, or increase personal savings. However, approximately 88% of New Year’s resolutions fail. But don’t let that discourage you! Resolutions are most likely to succeed when they are clear, achievable goals. Setting out a concrete plan to achieve your resolution also boosts your chances of success.
  • Eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day is said to bring good fortune in the new year. Collard greens, cabbage, and ham hocks are also considered lucky foods to enjoy. Just steer clear of the chicken or turkey dinners; eating poultry is a bad omen for the year to come.

Whether you plan to stay in Spring, TX, or head out into the crowds to watch the ball drop in Times Square, New Year’s Eve is a time to enjoy friends and family. Send your loved ones well wishes for the New Year, and look for that special someone to share a midnight kiss with for good luck!

Is adult orthodontic treatment for you?

December 20th, 2013

Adult patients who seek orthodontic treatment usually fall into one of two camps: those who did not undergo orthodontic treatment as a child or those who had braces at one point but stopped wearing retainers for one reason or another.

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we are happy to offer a variety of treatment options to straighten our patients’ teeth. Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team believe you’re never too old to straighten your teeth. And we have many adult patients who are currently undergoing treatment. In fact, did you know that roughly 30 percent of all orthodontic patients these days are adults?

Invisalign® is a great treatment option for adults. The Invisalign aligners are easy to wear and are not visible to most people. Plus, Invisalign's clear aligners are removable, so there are no restrictions on what you can eat during treatment. When considering Invisalign, we tell adults to determine if they can be diligent about wearing the aligners at all times and make them part of their lifestyle for the duration of treatment.

If you have been thinking about obtaining a beautiful smile, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office for an initial consultation. Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team welcome children, teens, and adults alike. Call us today for an appointment!

Do we have your current contact info?

December 13th, 2013

As you probably know, you can always connect with Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team by calling our Spring, TX office, or going to our Facebook page. However, if you’ve recently moved or gotten a new phone number, we’ll need to update our records so we can easily connect with you!

If any of your contact information has changed, please let our team at Studebaker Orthodontics know, just in case we need to reach you. While you’re at it, you can also schedule your next appointment! We look forward to hearing from you!

Invisalign® Q&A

December 6th, 2013

It’s estimated that up to four million people at any one time are wearing braces in the United States and Canada. But Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics know that braces have come a long way from the early days of orthodontics, so much so that these days, options are available that are not visible to onlookers. The most popular of these “invisible” braces is Invisalign. Here’s a list of FAQs regarding Invisalign:

Are they really invisible?

Yes, the clear liners are virtually invisible, so they enable patients to feel good about themselves and their appearance, while getting the orthodontic treatment they need.

Are there wires, rubber bands, and brackets with Invisalign?

Nope. Invisalign is truly an alternative to conventional braces. The treatment consists of clear liners that can easily be removed and cleaned throughout the day. There are no wires, so there’s less poking and mouth irritation compared to braces. There’s also no wire tightening at adjustment appointments, so patients don’t have to worry about a sore mouth in the days that follow in-office visits.

I’ve heard that if I get braces, I won’t be able to eat certain foods like popcorn and hard candy. Is this true with Invisalign too?

No. With Invisalign, there are no food restrictions. You simply remove your aligners when you’re eating, and replace them after you’ve finished and brushed any leftover food particles away.

Does Invisalign cost more than braces?

While overall cost varies on a patient-by-patient basis and is based largely on the level of treatment, Invisalign costs about the same as traditional braces, which makes this treatment option a truly affordable alternative.

How does brushing compare with conventional braces?

Brushing your teeth while wearing conventional braces takes some getting used to. Patients have to brush around the metal brackets and floss with a specialty tool to get into the hard-to-reach areas of the mouth. By contrast, Invisalign can be removed at any time to permit regular brushing and flossing.

Every patient is different and Invisalign might not be the best course of orthodontic treatment for everyone, but it's an option that's gaining more and more popularity, and it's an orthodontic alternative that doesn't sacrifice comfort and convenience for results. For more information, or to schedule a consultation, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office!

Sugar and Your Orthodontic Treatment

November 29th, 2013

One word no one likes to hear is “cavity!”

For those patients of ours wearing braces, hearing that word is especially problematic, considering that delaying any dental work may result in delaying treatment time.

We often blame candy as the culprit behind tooth decay, but other foods and drinks that kids consume can be just as harmful to their teeth, and can lead to cavities and tooth decay. Keeping your teeth or your child’s teeth from decay during treatment starts with a proper diet, and today, our team at Studebaker Orthodontics will explain the negative effects that candy and other treats, including peanut butter, raisins, fruit juice, and chewy fruit snacks, have on your child’s teeth as he or she undergoes orthodontic treatment. Keep in mind that half of your child’s sugar intake may be coming from beverages that he or she drinks. A major offender is soda, but be mindful of fruit juices as well.

While sugar is known to sit in your child’s teeth and in between and under brackets and wires after consumption, it is important to know sugar is not the only cavity-causing culprit. Carbohydrates, starches, acids, and any food that is chewy or sticks break down into sugars, and can promote tooth decay.

So, what are the alternatives?

Candy such as dark chocolate, sugar-free gum, or anything that contains xylitol, a sugar substitute, is not as harmful for your teeth as hard, chewy, or sticky sweets. Sugar-free gum or gum that contains xylitol are known to reduce levels of bacteria on teeth.

And if you’re still looking for something to snack on, we recommend cutting up easy-to-eat fruits and vegetables. You would also be surprised how much eating a banana or sipping on a glass of water helps you curb snack cravings.

If you’re one of those folks who just can’t stay away from sweets, we encourage you to brush your teeth immediately afterward and swish water in your mouth.

Whatever you eat, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team want you to remember to brush often, floss regularly, and visit your general dentist as your treatment progresses. If you have any questions about sugary foods or drinks, please give us a call or ask us during your next adjustment visit!

Thanksgiving Trivia

November 22nd, 2013

At Studebaker Orthodontics we love learning trivia and interesting facts about Thanksgiving! This year, Dr. Robert Studebaker wanted to share some trivia that might help you feel a bit smarter at the holiday dinner table and help create some great conversation with friends and family.

The Turkey

There is no historical evidence that turkey was eaten at the first Thanksgiving dinner. It was a three-day party shared by the Wamponoag Indians and the pilgrims in 1621. Historians say they likely ate venison and seafood.

According to National Geographic, the dinner at the Plymouth colony was in October and included about 50 English colonists and 90 American Indian men. The first Thanksgiving dinner could have included corn, geese, and pumpkin.

Today, turkey is the meat of choice. According to the National Turkey Association, about 690 million pounds of turkey are consumed during Thanksgiving, or about 46 million turkeys.

The Side Dishes

The green bean casserole became popular about 50 years ago. Created by the Campbell Soup Company, it remains a popular side dish. According to Campbell’s, it was developed when the company was creating an annual holiday cookbook. The company now sells about $20 million worth of cream of mushroom soup each year, which is a major part of the recipe.

While there were likely plenty of cranberries for the pilgrims and Indians to enjoy, sugar was a luxury. What we know today as cranberry sauce was not around in those early Thanksgiving days. About 750 million pounds of cranberries are produced each year in the US, with about 30 percent consumed on Thanksgiving.

The Parade

Since Thanksgiving did not become a national holiday until Lincoln declared it in 1863, the annual parades were not yearly events until much later. The biggest parade that continues to draw crowds is the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Beginning in 1924 with about 400 employees, they marched from Convent Avenue to 145th Street in New York City. Famous for the huge hot-air balloons today, it was actually live animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo that were the stars of the show then.

However you choose to spend your Thanksgiving holiday, we wish you a safe, happy and healthy holiday with those you love.

Braces-Friendly Recipe: Dinner

November 15th, 2013

Wearing braces during your treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics presents some unique challenges in the types of food you can safely eat. The wrong items can be difficult to remove from between your teeth and the appliance. Other foods may even break or loosen your braces.

Dinner recipe ideas

Lasagna is a great dinner choice because it provides you with several food groups in one easy dish.

  • 1 ½ pounds ground hamburger
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tsp. basil
  • 1 pound diced tomatoes — canned is fine
  • 12 oz. tomato paste
  • 1 package of dry spaghetti sauce mix for seasoning
  • 10 oz. box dry lasagna
  • 3 cups ricotta or cottage cheese or 1 ½ cups each mixed
  • ½-cup Parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 pound sliced or shredded Mozzarella cheese

Brown and drain your hamburger meat. Dice the garlic and simmer the hamburger, garlic, basil, diced tomatoes, tomato paste and powdered sauce mix for ½ hour.

Cook the lasagna noodles as directed on the package and drain.

Beat the eggs and combine them with your ricotta or cottage cheese.

Layer ½ of the noodles in a 13 x 9 pan. Spread ½ of your cottage cheese mix on top of the noodles, then layer ½ of the mozzarella on top. Finish this layer with ½ of your hamburger mix. Repeat the layering with the other half of your ingredients. Bake at 350 F for 30 minutes.

Meats

You can enjoy ribs and chicken wings as long as you cut the meat from the bone before you eat. The same rule applies to turkey legs; do not gnaw on bones, because this can damage your braces.

Vegetables and fruits

You still need to include fruits and vegetables in your daily meals. Skip corn on the bob, whole apples, and raw carrots. Broccoli is soft but particles can become stuck in your braces, so be sure to brush and floss after your meal.

Desserts

Avoid caramel, taffy, and hard candies for dessert. Pudding and ice cream are fine, but low-sugar versions are best.

Remember that your mouth will be sore after adjustments with Dr. Robert Studebaker. Stick to softer foods until the sensitivity is reduced. Please do not hesitate to ask our team for recipe and meal ideas. We will be happy to take the time to explain which foods items are the best choices and why.

If you have any questions about these recipes, or if you have any questions about eating with braces, please give us a call at our Spring, TX office!

What is a water pick and do I need one?

November 8th, 2013

Water picks, sometimes called “oral irrigators,” make an excellent addition to your regular home care regimen of brushing and flossing. Especially helpful to those who suffer from periodontal disease and those patients of ours undergoing orthodontic treatment with full-bracketed braces, water picks use powerful tiny bursts of water to dislodge food scraps, bacteria, and other debris nestled in the crevices of your mouth. Children undergoing orthodontic treatment may find using a water pick is beneficial if their toothbrush bristles tend to get caught on their wires or brackets.

When you use a water pick, you’re not only dislodging any particles or debris and bacteria you might have missed when brushing, you are also gently massaging the gums, which helps promote blood flow in the gums and keeps them healthy. While water picks are an excellent addition to your daily fight against gingivitis and other periodontal diseases, they are incapable of fully removing plaque, which is why Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics want to remind you to keep brushing and flossing every day.

If you have sensitive teeth or gums and find it uncomfortable to floss daily, water picks are a good alternative to reduce discomfort while effectively cleaning between teeth. Diabetics sometimes prefer water picks to flossing because they don't cause bleeding of the gums, which can be a problem with floss. If you have a permanent bridge, crowns, or other dental restoration, you may find that a water pick helps you keep the area around the restorations clean.

So how do you choose the right water pick?

Water picks are available for home or portable use. The home versions tend to be larger and use standard electrical outlets, while portable models use batteries. Aside from the size difference, they work in the same manner, both using pulsating water streams. A more crucial difference between water picks is the ability to adjust the pressure. Most home models will let you choose from several pressure settings, depending on how sensitive your teeth and gums are. Most portable models have only one pressure setting. If you want to use mouthwash or a dental rinse in your water pick, check the label first; some models suggest using water only.

Please give us a call at our Spring, TX office if you have any questions about water picks, or ask Dr. Robert Studebaker during your next visit!

What should I ask during my orthodontic consultation?

November 7th, 2013

If you have been thinking about undergoing orthodontic treatment to straighten teeth or correct jaw alignment, the first step is scheduling an orthodontic consultation at Studebaker Orthodontics. During the consultation we will actively listen to your concerns and address all of your questions, as well as discuss a treatment options that would best suit you or your child's situation.

Here are the top five questions that most patients want answered during their initial orthodontic consultation:

  • Can I benefit from orthodontic treatment, and if so, how long will it take?
  • How frequently will my appointments be scheduled?
  • Can I expect any pain when getting braces? (Ask Dr. Robert Studebaker about the ways we address pain management).
  • Will I need to have teeth extracted, headgear, expansion appliance, etc.?
  • How much will it cost and what payment options do you offer?

Visit our website for more answers to your questions prior to your initial consultation. Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics are happy to answer all your questions and concerns, and excited to explain all aspects of your treatment plan, as well as the expected outcome. We believe your orthodontic experience should be comfortable, hassle-free, and most importantly, leave you with the smile you've always wanted.

Halloween - Candy, Costumes, and More!

October 31st, 2013

All Hallows' Eve, more commonly known as Halloween, is a yearly event celebrated on October 31, and one that is anticipated by the young and young at heart all over the world. Some scholars claim that Halloween originated from Celtic festivals that honored the dead or that celebrated the harvest, while others doubt that there's any connection at all to Samhain (a Gaelic harvest festival.) Regardless of its origin, our team at the orthodontic office of Dr. Robert Studebaker hope that Halloween is fun and enjoyed by all of our awesome patients!

Trick or Treat?

In North America, Halloween is predominantly celebrated by children who dress up in costumes, which range from scary to cute, who then go around the neighborhood knocking on doors asking "trick or treat", and they are given candy in return. Trick-or-treating is a time honored tradition, and though many parents groan at the pounds and pounds of candy collected by youngsters and fear for the health of their teeth, there are a few things you can do to help their teeth stay in great shape until the candy is gone:

  • Limit the amount of candy they can consume each day
  • Have them brush their teeth after eating candy
  • Avoid hard, chewy candies as they can stick in hard to brush places
  • Keep candy out of sight to reduce temptation
  • Don't buy candy too far in advance to limit pre-Halloween consumption
  • Help or encourage your children to floss

Halloween Fun

Halloween isn't just about gorging on candy; there are other events associated with this festive day including carving jack-o'-lanterns, painting pumpkins, decorating sugar cookies, bobbing for apples, going to haunted houses, or just curling up on the couch with a bowl full of popcorn and watching some classic, scary movies.

Halloween Around the World

Some countries, like Australia, frown upon Halloween, claiming it is an American event and not based in Australian culture, while others like Italy have embraced the fun and celebrate much as Canadians and Americans do. Mexicans have been celebrating this fun day since around 1960, and it marks the beginning of the Day of the Dead festival. Some countries in Europe have come late to the party, but since the 1990s, countries like Sweden, Norway, and Germany have started celebrating Halloween as well, and finding children in costumes or having ghosts hanging in windows has become commonplace.

Halloween is about fun; stepping outside our normal lives and donning a costume or gathering with friends to knock on doors and ask for candy is as much a part of our culture as hot dogs and barbecue on Labor Day. Have a safe and happy Halloween from the team at Studebaker Orthodontics!

When should my child be seen for an orthodontic evaluation?

October 17th, 2013

Thanks for asking! It really depends on the dental age of the patient rather than their chronological age. Usually a good time to have your child evaluated by an orthodontist is after the front permanent teeth have erupted into the mouth or if there appears to be extreme crowding of the teeth.

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children between the ages of seven and nine should be evaluated by an orthodontist. There are times when an early developmental treatment is indicated to correct situations before they become major problems. In these circumstances the patient will most likely benefit from a second phase of orthodontics when all of their permanent teeth have erupted.

Most full orthodontic treatment begins between ages nine and 14, and lasts from one to three years, with two years being the average. It’s important, however, that children be screened at an early age for Dr. Robert Studebaker and our staff to assess if your child can benefit from orthodontic treatment and when treatment should begin.

We hope this helps, and invite you to give us a call if you have any questions about your child’s treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics.

Keep us updated and stay connected with us online!

October 10th, 2013

Have you recently moved, changed your phone number, or changed any of your information that we use to best serve you? If so, be sure to inform us of your changes!

Also, did you know that we have a vibrant social media presence? Have you had a chance to connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube? We’re always looking to stay connected with our patients outside of the office, and our social media networks are an awesome way to see our photos and get some great updates and information!

So, when you have a chance, be sure to visit our website and then connect with us on our social media networks! We can’t wait to hear what you’ve been up to since your last visit with us!

Halloween Guidelines from the American Association of Orthodontists

October 3rd, 2013

Fall can be a really enjoyable time of the year for you and your family. The kids are back in school, the leaves are changing, and Halloween approaches. This holiday is a lot of fun for kids, but Studebaker Orthodontics wants to remind you it can also be risky, especially for your child’s braces. If you have kids with braces, take a look at the following tips from the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) on how to keep your kids and their teeth safe this Halloween season.

Important Safety Tips

Trick-or-treating is a favorite Halloween activity for kids everywhere. While it is a great holiday tradition for children, it comes with some potential risks. To keep your kids safe while trick-or-treating, try following these simple guidelines:

  • If you have young children, make sure they are accompanied by an adult at all times.
  • You or your kids should always carry flashlights.
  • For costumes, try to include a light-colored or reflective element that can be easily seen by oncoming traffic.
  • Avoid costumes that include a mask, especially for younger children. These can pose a safety hazard for both the wearers and the people around them.
  • Tell your kids not to eat any of their candy until they arrive home. Be sure to inspect all treats carefully before letting them dig in.

Following these guidelines can help you keep your kids safe on Halloween.

Halloween Treats to Avoid if Your Child Has Braces

If your kids have braces, you’ll want them to steer clear of certain treats on Halloween. Many candies can cause damage to braces, so it’s wise to avoid them while you’re celebrating this fun holiday. Here is a list of treats to stay away from:

  • Hard candies
  • Chewy candies
  • Nuts
  • Caramel
  • Licorice
  • Jelly beans
  • Taffy
  • Bubblegum
  • Hard pretzels
  • Popcorn

Some of these treats may seem harmless, but all of them have the potential to bend or break your child’s braces. So it’s best to avoid eating them altogether.

Braces-Friendly Halloween Treats

If your children have braces, they may feel like they can’t enjoy any treats on Halloween. However, there are plenty of braces-safe treat options for them to choose from, including the following:

  • Soft chocolate
  • Peanut butter cups
  • Gelatin treats
  • Ice cream
  • Smoothies
  • Root beer floats
  • Apple cider

These are just a few braces-friendly alternatives to traditional Halloween candy. Helping your kids have a fun and safe Halloween—while at the same time protecting their braces—can be easy if you follow these simple tips and guidelines. Help your kids enjoy the holiday without having to visit Dr. Robert Studebaker for repair work on damaged braces!

The Clear Benefits of Invisalign®

September 26th, 2013

Invisalign clear aligners can be a great option for improving your smile. At Studebaker Orthodontics, we have lots of experience using this technology to give our patients the beautiful and healthy smile they’ve always wanted. Plus, because it’s so convenient, Invisalign rarely interferes with your daily life.

  • Invisalign aligners are clear, discrete and effective at moving your teeth into their ideal positions.
  • You don’t need to change your eating habits because your aligners can be easily removed.
  • Invisalign aligners are made of comfortable, smooth plastic, so you don’t have to worry about wires or braces sticking you.
  • Invisalign aligners make daily oral hygiene easier, therefore ensuring you have a beautiful smile without white spots.
  • Like traditional braces, Invisalign treatment is covered by most insurance providers.

A straight smile makes you look great, but it can also keep the rest of your mouth healthy. Properly-aligned teeth and jaws can greatly improve one’s bite, which reduce problems such as speech or chewing difficulties, TMJ or jaw problems as well as protect the integrity of the tooth enamel from excessive wear.

Both teens and adults are now great candidates for Invisalign, so we invite you to contact our Spring, TX office to set up an initial consultation and learn more on how Invisalign can give you the smile you’ve always wanted.

Adults and Braces - Not Just for Kids Anymore

September 19th, 2013

Just hearing the word “braces” can take many of us back to junior high — that painful era when we wore unattractive glasses, endured unflattering haircuts, and carried a mouthful of braces to complete the awkward adolescent look. Despite the common assumption that braces are for kids, more and more adults are choosing to pursue orthodontics to correct their smiles.

Braces for Adults

Perhaps you never had braces as a kid and you are embarrassed by your crooked teeth. Or you went through a round of braces a decade ago and stopped wearing your retainer, which allowed your teeth to shift. Whatever your personal history, wearing braces in adulthood is an excellent way to create the straight, beautiful smile you deserve.

What Are My Options?

With recent advances in orthodontic medicine, there are numerous options for adults who need braces. The basic option is traditional metal braces. These are best for individuals who have severely crooked teeth or a significant bite problem, or require other major orthodontic changes. Metal braces are typically the least expensive option. The greatest drawback to wearing metal braces as an adult is aesthetics. Many people find them unattractive and distracting.

If you are a professional who is worried about your personal appearance, clear ceramic braces may be a better choice. Clear braces are capable of handling very crooked teeth or bite issues, but they cost more than metal braces. You also have to be careful about smoking or drinking red wine, soda, and other dark beverages while wearing clear braces. These items may stain the adhesive that binds the brackets to your teeth.

Another popular option for adults who need braces is a clear aligner treatment, such as Invisalign®. This system works in a different way from traditional braces by applying a series of clear, retainer-like aligners. The series is custom made for your teeth, which makes this option more expensive than either metal or ceramic braces. In general, the Invisalign process takes anywhere from three to 18 months to complete. You should be aware that Invisalign is not as effective as traditional braces in treating bite problems, teeth that are lower or higher than others, or severely overcrowded teeth.

Although you may be nervous about the prospect of getting braces as an adult, you should not let your fears stop you from talking with Dr. Robert Studebaker. A consultation at our Spring, TX office will address your concerns and provide information about the best course of treatment for you. No matter what your personal situation, adult braces can be a great way to boost your confidence and create the smile you’ve always dreamed of.

Five Tips in Caring for Your Braces During Orthodontic Treatment

September 12th, 2013

After getting your braces, it is important to know how to take care of your teeth in order to ensure that your braces stay intact and do their job so that your teeth are in top-notch condition after you complete your orthodontic treatment. Today, our team at Studebaker Orthodontics thought we would provide you with five tips you need to know to ensure you undergo successful treatment at our Spring, TX office.

Flossing
Flossing twice a day or after every meal can help you clean areas between teeth and other places a toothbrush can miss. We also recommend using a floss threader, which can be used to help you navigate safely around your braces and brackets. It is vital to floss twice a day, preferably after lunch and before bedtime to keep gum disease and tooth decay at bay.

Brushing
Teeth and appliances should be brushed after every meal and before bedtime using fluoride toothpaste and gentle, soft strokes. We recommend using an interdental toothbrush, which can help you clean the hard-to-reach areas under wires better than an ordinary toothbrush.

Using Elastics
This phase of orthodontic treatment requires cooperation and consistency on your part. If your orthodontist has prescribed elastics, make sure they are worn at all times, except when eating meals or brushing teeth. It’s important that you wear the correct size elastics and have extras in case they are misplaced. By failing to wear your elastics for even one day, you run the risk your teeth moving back toward their original position.

Addressing Damage to Your Braces
In case your appliances are damaged, we ask that you call our team at Studebaker Orthodontics immediately to set up an appointment.

Eat Friendly Foods
When undergoing treatment, there are certain foods you must avoid. Foods that are hard, sticky, chewy or sour can add months to your treatment time. These includes gum, caramels, taco shells, nuts, ice, chips or hard candies.

We hope that helps! If you have any questions, please give us a call at our Spring, TX office or ask us during your next adjustment appointment!

What was your favorite part of summer?

September 5th, 2013

It's the end of summer, and fall is just around the corner. Soon the temperatures will cool down, the leaves will start to change, and Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics are sure that you’ll soon be thinking about Halloween costumes and Thanksgiving plans in no time. But wait! First, we want to know about your favorite parts of the summer! Did you go on a wonderful family trip? Did you pick up a new hobby? Did you try to spend as much time outside and in the sun as possible?

Share your favorite memories, stories, or photos with us by leaving a comment below or on our Facebook page.

Labor Day: Our Favorite Holiday to Rest!

August 29th, 2013

Labor Day, celebrated on the first Monday each September here in the United States, is a holiday devoted to the American working community. The purpose of the holiday is honoring the country's workers and their contributions to the strength of our country as a whole.

How Labor Day Started

There is actually some debate as to the origins of Labor Day. It is uncertain whether Peter McGuire, a co founder for the American Federation of Labor, or Matthew Maguire, who was the secretary of Central Labor Union of New York, had the great idea. However, the Central Labor Union's plans were what launched the first Labor Day in America.

The First Labor Day

The very first Labor Day was celebrated on September 5th, 1882. The Central Labor Union then held annual celebrations on September 5th for what they called a working man's holiday. By the year 1885, the Labor Day celebration had spread to many different industrial areas, and after that it began spreading to all industries in the United States.

Labor Day Today

Labor Day today is a huge United States holiday during which we honor the country's workers with a day of rest and relaxation or a day of picnics and parades. This holiday is truly one to honor the many people who work hard to contribute to the economic well-being of our great country!

Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics hope all of our patients celebrate Labor Day, and every holiday, safely and happily. Whether you stay in the Spring, TX area, or travel out of town, have fun, and don't forget to brush!

How Long After My Braces Come Off Should I Wear My Retainer?

August 22nd, 2013

Braces are an investment in your smile. When your teeth reach a desired straightness, you’ll have a beautiful smile, but it’s important to keep it that way! You can accomplish this with a retainer provided by Studebaker Orthodontics.

A retainer is a small, custom-fit device that reinforces the new position of your teeth after your braces are removed. But for many patients, especially the youngest ones, wearing a retainer may seem like an annoyance. So exactly how long after your braces come off should you wear your retainer?

Graduation of Wear Time

When we remove your braces, Dr. Robert Studebaker will evaluate the condition of the bone structure surrounding your teeth and determine how well it is adjusting to the new position of your teeth. For the first few months, we may require you to wear your retainer both day and night, except during meal times and for brushing and flossing.

As the bone and gum tissues adjust to your new smile, we may determine that you need to wear your retainer only at night. After about one year of wearing the retainer every night, you may be able to take a couple of nights off each week.

However, we do not recommend ever stopping permanently. To best secure the position of the teeth, especially through future extractions and oral health changes, wearing your retainer a few nights a week will be necessary for many years.

Considerations

If you are concerned about your appearance when you wear a retainer, there are many that can be worn discreetly. You could choose a clear plastic one that is less obvious during the months immediately following removal of your braces. When you change to night wear only, clear wire retainers are available for minimal visibility as well.

Another option is a lingual retainer. It is placed on the back sides of your teeth so no one will ever know it is there! Lingual retainers are also permanent, so there’s no risk of losing them.

Remember, wearing your retainer is an investment in your smile. If you fail to wear it consistently, the tissues that support your teeth will be unsupported, and you may begin to experience noticeable shifting. You’ve worked hard to get that beautiful smile — your retainer will let you keep it! Remember to call our Spring, TX office if you have any questions about your retainer!

Dreaming of a stunning smile without using braces?

August 15th, 2013

Most of us aren’t born with a red carpet smile. And if you’ve thought about straightening your teeth but are apprehensive about doing so with traditional orthodontic treatment, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics want you to know there is another option – Invisalign®!

Invisalign, recently featured the NBC’s Today Show, is an ideal solution for most adults looking for a less noticeable way to achieve a better smile. In fact, Invisalign has increasingly become a very popular choice for adults looking for a more comfortable, convenient and cosmetically-appealing treatment for straightening their teeth.

Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics is proud to offer Invisalign, which uses a series of invisible, removable and comfortable aligners that no one can tell you’re wearing, which allows you to smile more during treatment, as well as after. Not only are the aligners invisible, they are also removable, so you can eat and drink what you want; brushing and flossing is easier with Invisalign than with traditional braces.

Invisalign’s aligners are also comfortable, with no metal to cause mouth abrasions during your treatment. And no metal and wires usually means you spend less time at our office getting adjustments. Invisalign also allows you to view your own virtual treatment plan when you start, so you can see how your straight teeth will look when your treatment is complete!

A consultation with Dr. Robert Studebaker can determine if Invisalign is right for you. We encourage you to watch the above clip and give us a call at our friendly Spring, TX office if you’re interested in learning more about Invisalign or if you are ready to visit us for an initial consultation! We look forward to seeing you!

What helps you relax at our office?

August 8th, 2013

Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team understand not everyone is always thrilled about visiting their orthodontist. But at Studebaker Orthodontics, we strive to bring you the best and most comforting experience at each visit. Today, we’d like to know: What is it about our Spring, TX office that makes you comfortable or puts you or your child at ease? Is it something about our pleasant environment? Our courteous staff? Is it something about Dr. Robert Studebaker?

Let us know by posting below or on our Facebook page! Or tell us at your next adjustment appointment!

It's time to go back to school!

August 1st, 2013

With many of the schools in Spring, TX back in session soon, Dr. Robert Studebaker would like to remind all of our patients about the importance of scheduling appointments in advance. With school, clubs, sports, and family duties to consider, we know that it can be challenging to find time to visit Studebaker Orthodontics this fall. In order to accommodate all of our patients’ busy schedules, it is important that you plan ahead for your appointments so that we are able to provide you with a convenient appointment time.

As always, please remember to give us advanced notice if you’re unable to make your regularly scheduled appointment with Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team. Feel free to give us a call if you have any questions, or if you would like to schedule your fall appointment.

We’ll see you soon and hope summer is winding down nicely for you and your family!

What causes crooked teeth?

July 25th, 2013

There are several reasons why some people’s teeth grow in crooked, overlapping, or twisted. The most common is hereditary, while other causes include irregularly-shaped teeth or jaws, premature loss of baby teeth, and habits such as thumb-sucking or tongue thrusting. It is very important that you schedule an appointment at Studebaker Orthodontics so that we can make an early diagnosis and treatment plan that will best suit your or your child’s needs.

Establishing a proper bite is not just cosmetic but can dramatically improve our patients' dental and overall health.

Crooked teeth can:

  • Interfere with proper chewing
  • Hinder proper oral hygiene, which increases the risk of tooth decay, cavities, and gingivitis
  • Strain the teeth, jaws, and muscles, increasing the risk of breaking a tooth

Orthodontics is easier today than ever before, with treatment options at Studebaker Orthodontics that fit your lifestyle and schedule. We look forward to helping you or your child achieve the bite and smile that will last a lifetime. Give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office to book your initial consultation.

Smile with Invisalign Teen®

July 18th, 2013

There’s good news for teenagers at Studebaker Orthodontics! We are proud to offer Invisalign Teen, a popular choice for straightening teeth without traditional wires and brackets. Much like Invisalign® for adults, Invisalign Teen is an alternative to metal braces and is undetectable when worn. Invisalign Teen aligners move teeth at a pace that is faster than traditional braces and are:

- Clear
- Removable
- Comfortable
- Customized just for your teen

Invisalign aligners are really comfortable and very durable. They fit in with any of your extracurricular activities; whether you’re swimming a big race, out on the field throwing the ball around, or playing the drums in the school band, one thing you don’t have to worry about is your braces getting in the way!

Conveniently located in Spring, TX, our team at Studebaker Orthodontics invites you to give us a call today!

Your Five-Step Guide to Preventing Tooth Decay While Wearing Braces

July 11th, 2013

If you’re wearing braces, then you know they are working hard to straighten your teeth. However, those hard-working braces are also preventing you from easily cleaning your teeth. It is essential that you put some extra attention into preventing tooth decay while wearing your braces. When your braces are finally removed by Dr. Robert Studebaker, you want a beautiful, white smile, not decayed or stained teeth. Here, we’ve listed the five best ways to ensure you have the smile you’ve always dreamed of once your braces are gone.

USE A SPECIAL TOOTHBRUSH

A regular toothbrush just doesn’t cut it when you are wearing braces. You also need to use an interdental toothbrush so that you can effectively clean behind the braces. According to HealthGuidance.org, this type of brush has bristles that are shaped like a Christmas tree that can remove food residue in the braces and on the teeth. We also recommend using a WaterPik, with its highly pressurized pulsating water, to help get all of those hard-to-reach places.

BRUSH AFTER EVERY MEAL

Since braces block food from naturally escaping your teeth after eating, it’s important that you take the time to brush and floss after every meal. The less time food has to sit on your teeth, the less likely it is to cause decay. This may seem like an inconvenience, but trust us, when you get your braces off, you will be very glad you brushed after every meal.

DON’T FORGET THE MOUTH RINSE

Even after properly brushing and flossing, there are probably some food particles in your braces. A fluoride mouth rinse is the best way to ensure that every bit of food is removed after meals. If you do not have a mouth rinse available, we suggest using water — it’s better than nothing.

AVOID SWEETS

Prevention is definitely the best medicine when it comes to avoiding tooth decay. If you can nix decay-causing sugary foods from the outset, we promise you’ll spend less time trying to treat problems in the future.

GET REGULAR CHECKUPS

Visit your dentist regularly while you are wearing braces. Our office recommends a thorough cleaning every three to six months. Let our Spring, TX office know if you have questions about your oral health while in braces - our entire team at Studebaker Orthodontics is here to make sure your teeth are as beautifully straight as they are healthy!

Happy Fourth of July!

July 4th, 2013

Happy Independence Day from Dr. Robert Studebaker and team! The Fourth of July celebrations in America may have changed a lot over the years, but there is no doubt that we Americans love to celebrate the anniversary of our country's independence! Today we're devoting the Studebaker Orthodontics! blog to some fun facts about the Fourth!

  • My, how we have grown! This year the United States Census Bureau estimates that our country has 313.9 million residents celebrating the Fourth of July this year, but back in 1776 there were just 2.5 million members of the country.
  • Our country loves to show how proud that we are of our independence. Did you know that there are 31 United States places with the word “Liberty” in their names? The state of Iowa actually has four towns with the word Liberty in the name: Libertyville, New Liberty, North Liberty, and West Liberty.
  • The United States loves Fourth of July food! It is expected that around 150 million hot dogs are eaten on the Fourth each year. One of the Fourth's most popular sides, potato salad, goes just perfectly with the hotdogs and hamburgers that are standard Fourth of July fare. Some people choose potato chips instead, but we wouldn't have such a plethora of potatoes if not for the prodigious production of the states of Idaho and Washington -- they provide about half of all the potatoes in the United States today!
  • Americans love celebrating the Fourth outdoors: About 74 million Americans fire up their BBQ grill every Fourth of July.
  • The Chinese contribution: Did you know that Americans have spent more than $211 million on fireworks that were imported from China?

No matter how your family chooses to celebrate the Fourth, stay safe, take precautions, and don't forget to brush after your fabulous Fourth feast!

Rubber Band Horoscopes: What Your Color Says About You

June 27th, 2013

One exciting part about wearing braces from Studebaker Orthodontics is getting to choose the colors of your rubber bands. Orthodontists place elastic bands, or ligatures, over each bracket to secure the archwire in place. These rubber bands may be individual or connected, depending on your mouth’s needs. From Dr. Robert Studebaker, you have the option of choosing the color of your elastics, which are changed about once every month at every visit. Our offices keep a color wheel handy to help you choose which ones suit you best!

Children and teens often enjoy picking different colors each month to express their creativity and coordinate their braces with outfits. Decorating your mouth with your favorite colors is fun for kids and takes some of the stress out of wearing braces. Adults who wish for subtlety have color options that blend in with the metal brackets and archwire. Common choices for adults include silver, clear, and gray tones.

Common Color Combinations for Rubber Bands

With individual ligatures for each bracket, you may choose different color combinations for special events. You can have alternating colors or place an entire rainbow over your teeth. Here are a few options to consider:

  • School spirit colors
  • Favorite sports team colors
  • Patriotic colors
  • Holiday themes

Some patients choose only one color to match their mood, personality, or favorite outfits. The palette of choices allows you to make bold statements with your braces or go for subtler tones that blend in with the metal structures. Keep in mind that bright colors make your teeth look whiter, while lighter shades, such as yellow and white, may cause your teeth to appear less bright.

What Your Rubber Band Color Says About You

  • Red tones indicate that you are ready for action and take charge of your life with aggressive, forward-thinking steps.
  • Blue tones are calm and relaxing. You are conservative and exhibit integrity when dealing with situations.
  • Green tones represent growth and balance. You are level-headed and look for opportunities to grow emotionally and spiritually.
  • Purple tones attract creative energies. You like to have fun and use your imagination in every aspect of your life.
  • Orange tones indicate that you are optimistic and thrive in social situations where communication is open.
  • Pink is a romantic color that represents a caring personality. You also enjoy having fun with silly games and endless laughter.

Is orthodontic treatment just for straightening teeth?

June 20th, 2013

A lot of patients ask us why Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics work tirelessly to give our patients straight teeth. Of course it’s nice to have a smile full of evenly-aligned teeth, but did you know that straightening your teeth can keep them healthier as well? Straight teeth lead to better oral hygiene, increasing your chances of keeping your own natural teeth for a lifetime!

Straight teeth are also less prone to decay, because they collect less plaque, that sticky colorless substance that forms on our teeth. When you visit Studebaker Orthodontics for your initial consultation, Dr. Robert Studebaker will examine all aspects of your teeth, face, smile, and jaw.

If you’re wondering whether your teeth might cause problems because they are out of alignment, please give us a call to set up an initial orthodontic consultation at our convenient Spring, TX office. Dr. Robert Studebaker can help you decide whether or not you will benefit from orthodontic treatment.

Questions? Give us a call, ask us below or on our Facebook page!

Thanks to Invisalign®, you can have a perfect smile without metal wires or brackets!

June 13th, 2013

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know that image is everything. For many people, the thought of having metal brackets and wires attached to their teeth for two or more years may be more than enough to reconsider orthodontic treatment.

If you’ve been considering straightening your teeth but are apprehensive about metal wires and brackets getting in the way of your smile, Invisalign treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics may be a great solution.Using special software, we look at the current positioning of your teeth and compare it to the way your teeth should look. Then, as your treatment begins, Invisalign straightens teeth through a series of clear, custom-fit removable aligners, and does so in a way that is discreet and hardly noticeable.

If you have questions about Invisalign, or would like to find out if you are a candidate for Invisalign treatment at our Spring, TX office, please give us a call to schedule an initial consultation with Dr. Robert Studebaker.

Smile! June is National Smile Month!

June 6th, 2013

Can you believe it’s already June? Today, Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics thought we’d tell you June is National Smile Month, and remind all our patients to practice good oral hygiene while you're undergoing orthodontic treatment!

Below are a few simple steps you can take to improve your oral health so that you may celebrate National Smile Month for many, many years to come:

  • Brush at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste
  • Floss every day to clean between your teeth
  • Reduce your intake of sugary foods and drinks

If you have questions about any of these tips, we encourage you to give us a call, ask our team during your next visit, or ask us on Facebook!

Are you ready for orthodontic treatment?

May 31st, 2013

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know having an attractive smile puts a spring in your step, as well as increases your self-confidence, no matter if you’re a teen or an adult. Smiling not only puts people in a good mood, but doing it often can even help you live longer!

If you’ve been hiding your smile because you have crooked teeth or gaps between your teeth, it’s time to consider orthodontic treatment with Dr. Robert Studebaker. You’ll be pleasantly surprised to learn how quickly and efficiently today’s advanced techniques can straighten your smile! And if you are apprehensive about traditional braces, clear aligners can be a great treatment option.

Don’t hide your smile any longer. Give us a call today to schedule your or your child’s orthodontic consultation at our convenient Spring, TX office. See you soon!

Memorial Day: Parades, Remembrance, and the Unofficial Start of Summer

May 23rd, 2013

“The purpose of all war is peace.” - Saint Augustine

Fire truck sirens, baton twirlers, marching bands covering patriotic tunes, colorful floats, costumes, and millions of red, white, and blue American flags being waved in the air on a beautiful day in late May, that is what Memorial Day is all about. It is a federal holiday celebrated with town parades, remembrance, and a sense of unity and community togetherness.

Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics wants to take this time to wish you and your family a happy Memorial Day, as well as pause for a moment to reflect on what this holiday means and how it has changed over time. No, this is not a history lesson, but just a couple of thoughts and observances for you to take with you on your way to the next barbecue.

On the last Monday in May, America observes Memorial Day as a time to remember and celebrate the men and women who have lost their lives while serving our country in the Armed Forces. The holiday originated after the Civil War; at that time it was known as Decoration Day. While holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter remain the same from year to year, Memorial Day has changed over time, and in the 21st century we observe a far different holiday than what Americans did after the Civil War, or even the World Wars.

While many people place flags at cemeteries and visit national memorials in order to honor those who have passed away serving the country, Memorial Day is also a time for family barbecues, pool parties, trips to the beach, blockbuster movies, long weekend getaways, and fireworks. In America, Memorial Day has come to represent the unofficial start of the summer – a long, sunny, warm weekend devoted to family togetherness, outdoor events, and community.

It is time to load up the potato salad and the apple pie and head over to the neighbor’s house for their annual barbecue. And yes, contrary to popular belief, orthodontists do eat sweets, especially homemade apple pie! Everything in moderation, of course.

So whether you’re in the Spring, TX area or beyond- Happy Memorial Day to you and yours from Dr. Robert Studebaker!

Orthodontic Emergency Care

May 16th, 2013

Although major orthodontic emergencies are relatively rare, when they do happen it is important to seek immediate attention. By comparison, a minor orthodontic issue is something you can usually take care of yourself, or wait until your next scheduled appointment for care. Here are some guidelines to help you understand the difference between an orthodontic emergency and a minor issue.

ORTHODONTIC EMERGENCIES

Acute, Direct Injury to the Mouth, Jaw, or TeethWhether undergoing orthodontic care or not, if you injure your mouth, jaw, or teeth, you should see a doctor or dentist immediately. You may need an X-ray to determine the extent of your injury. If the injury affects the orthodontic appliances, they will need adjustment or possibly replacement, depending upon the extent of the injury.

Infected Teeth

It is possible for teeth to become infected following orthodontic treatment. This may or may not be related to your orthodontic appliances. If you experience pain or swelling around a tooth that gets progressively worse, seek professional care as soon as possible.

MINOR ORTHODONTIC ISSUES

While true orthodontic emergencies are rare, minor issues are much more common. Here are some examples of minor orthodontic issues that can be remedied on your own and/or fixed at your next office visit:

  • Poking wire
  • Loose bracket
  • Loose elastic band
  • Loose wire
  • Loose appliance
  • Headgear does not fit
  • Lost or broken elastic band
  • General soreness

Any of the above issues can happen as a result of normal usage, shifting, and wear of your braces. Eating unusually hard or sticky foods can cause or exacerbate these problems. Vigorous brushing of the teeth can also be a factor. None of these issues are emergencies unless they are accompanied by acute or prolonged pain or discomfort.

As for on-the-spot remedies, covering a loose bracket or wire with wax can be a quick fix to alleviate discomfort until your next orthodontist visit. Poking or protruding wires can be moved with a cotton swab or tweezers, or clipped down with nail clippers. Be sure to sterilize the tweezers or clippers in alcohol first. Cover any clipped wire ends with a small ball of wax.

Some soreness or small abrasions in the mouth are normal, especially with recent orthodontic work. Rinse your mouth with a saltwater solution comprised of eight ounces or warm water and one teaspoon of salt.

When in doubt, be sure to contact our Spring, TX office with any questions, or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Robert Studebaker at Studebaker Orthodontics.

Who benefits from Invisalign®?

May 9th, 2013

What’s great about Invisalign is that the treatment is designed to benefit just about anyone, and that’s part of what makes it work. To find out if you are the right candidate for Invisalign treatment, the first thing Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team do is to take an impression of your teeth as they are now and digitize it. Using special software, we look at the current positioning of your teeth and compare it to the way your teeth should look.

Next, our team at Studebaker Orthodontics use special software to map out the exact path your teeth will take from the beginning of your treatment to the end. Based on the results, a set of custom aligners are created just for your teeth. Throughout the course of treatment, you will be required to wear these clear, removable aligners one at a time; each one moving your teeth closer and closer to their final, perfectly-aligned position. And since the aligners are virtually invisible, nobody around you will even know you are in treatment!

If you have questions about Invisalign, or would like to find out if you are a candidate for Invisalign treatment, please give us a call at our Spring, TX office!

May is National Teen Self-Esteem Month!

May 2nd, 2013

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know image is everything, especially for today’s teenagers. At an age when image is so important, the thought of having braces may intensify the already-delicate confidence of today’s teens. Well, May is National Teen Self-Esteem Month, and during this time, parents are encouraged to act as positive role models, help stop negative self-images, and improve confidence and security among teenagers.

Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team will tell you one of the great ways to improve your confidence is to improve your smile. And that begins with a consultation at Studebaker Orthodontics. After all, what better time to avoid having crooked teeth in your adulthood than coming in for a consultation with Dr. Robert Studebaker?

We are happy to treat today’s image-conscious teens, and invite you to give us a call to schedule an initial consultation at our convenient Spring, TX office!

Burning Invisalign® Questions

April 25th, 2013

Are you wondering what Invisalign treatment is really like, and what effect it will have on your day-to-day activities while you undergo treatment? Will it slur your speech? Will people even know you're in treatment? You're not alone in your concerns! Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team thought we’d share this list of questions and answers for anyone pondering Invisalign treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics.

How exactly does Invisalign work?

Using 3-D computer imaging technology, Invisalign creates a series of custom-made, clear aligners exclusively for your teeth, based on the treatment plan that we specify for you. Each aligner moves your teeth incrementally and is worn for about two weeks, then replaced by the next in the series until the final position is achieved.

Will I experience any pain during treatment?

Most people experience temporary discomfort for a few days after a new aligner is placed. This feeling of pressure is normal and is a sign that Invisalign is working by moving your teeth to their final destination.

Can other people tell that I'm in treatment?

One of the benefits of Invisalign is that the aligners are clear. You can straighten your teeth without friends, family or your coworkers knowing!

Can I smoke during treatment?

Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team discourage smoking while wearing the aligners as they may become discolored.

Are there any foods I shouldn’t eat while in treatment?

You can eat normally during the entire course of treatment. One of the advantages of Invisalign is that the aligners are removable. Simply take the aligners out before each meal, brush when you're finished eating, then reinsert the aligners afterward.

What about chewing gum?

We recommend removing your aligners for all meals and snacks, as gum and other chewy substances can stick to the aligners.

How often should I wear my aligners?

Aligners should be worn all day, except when eating, brushing and flossing.

Will my speech be affected by the aligners?

As with any orthodontic treatment, aligners may temporarily affect your speech. If this does happen, your tongue will adjust within a day or two and your speech should return to normal.

How do I clean my aligners?

The best way to clean your aligners is by brushing and rinsing them in lukewarm water.

How often must I visit the office during treatment?

For most patients, visits to Studebaker Orthodontics every four to six weeks are frequent enough for us to determine that your treatment is progressing properly. We will provide you with a specific schedule that supports your individual treatment plan.

If you have additional questions about the Invisalign treatment, please give us a call at our convenient Spring, TX office.

Earth Day

April 18th, 2013

The idea for Earth Day was the brainchild of Gaylord Nelson, a senator from Wisconsin. He envisioned an Earth Day that would be a kind of environmental teach-in. The first Earth Day celebration took place on April 22, 1970, and a surprising 20 million people participated on that day. Ultimately, it became the largest organized celebration in US history.

Earth Day Over the Years

Over the years, the recognition of the day, and the number of people celebrating it all over the world, turned Earth Day into an international celebration. Because it is celebrated throughout the world, it is not only the largest international environmental observation, but it is also more widely celebrated than any other environmental event in the world. Today, Earth Day is celebrated in 175 countries where over 500 million people participate in celebrations.

The Earth Day Movement

The Earth Day movement is credited with developing the idea that people should “think green”. It encouraged congress to enact laws, including one that resulted in the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency. It also inspired the passage of the Endangered Species Act.

The Five R's and Their Importance

  • Reduce – Reduce by avoiding unnecessary purchases. Reduce your use of materials that wind up in landfills. Reduce the use of chemicals around your house. Reduce your use of disposable bags, plates, cups, eating utensils, and batteries.
  • Reuse – Instead of using plastic bags for your groceries or purchases, bring your own reusable bags. When you go to buy coffee at Starbucks, take a travel mug so you don't have to get your coffee in a disposable paper cup. Instead of storing food in disposable refrigerator containers, buy containers that can be washed and reused. Don't use regular batteries. Whenever possible, opt for rechargeable batteries that you can reuse.
  • Recycle – Most cities offer a recycling program to collect used bottles, cans, and newspapers. Recycling includes collecting recyclable materials that would otherwise be considered waste, sorting and processing recyclables into raw materials such as fibers and manufacturing raw materials into new products.
  • Re-buy – Make an effort to purchase things that are made through recycling. When purchasing furniture, look for items that are made from reclaimed wood. When buying paper for kids school work, computer printer paper, holiday cards, or anything else, make a point of purchasing recycled paper products. Instead of buying clothing at full retail price, shop for second hand clothing. You will save a lot of money by doing so!
  • Rethink – Rethink the way you do things so that you do them in an eco-conscious way at all times. Instead of driving to work alone, consider taking the bus or going in a carpool. Walk or ride your bike when you're only going a short distance. Plan your shopping trips and errand runs so that you can do everything on one day, and do it in a way where you can save time and gas.

Other ways to "think green" include growing your own food, composting yard waste and food scraps, or by participating in local recycling programs. Join a group like Freecycle so you can share your unneeded and unwanted possessions with people who can use them. Likewise, you'll be able to get things you need or want for free.

Earth Day teaches people that the planet belongs to everyone, so everyone is equally responsible for protecting it. Although Earth Day is an environmental celebration, our team at Studebaker Orthodontics wants to remind you that you don't have to wait until then to make changes that will allow you and your family to live a greener life.

Happy Earth Day from the team at Studebaker Orthodontics.

The Advantage of Invisalign Teen®

April 11th, 2013

Here at Studebaker Orthodontics, we know that image is everything. At an age when image is so important, the thought of having metal brackets and wires constantly attached to the teeth may intensify the already-delicate confidence of today's teens. But not to worry! There is a clear alternative to traditional braces! The team at Studebaker Orthodontics thought we'd remind you that Invisalign Teen gives you a whole new way to wear braces for a "clearly" amazing smile!

So how does Invisalign Teen work, you ask? Much in the same fashion as Invisalign, but with a few added characteristics tailored specifically to teenagers’ lifestyles. For instance, Invisalign Teen is designed with “compliance indicators” that fade from dark to light during the two-week period during which that particular tray is used. Once the indicator has faded, teens know to change trays. Each aligner comes with up to six free individual replacement aligners in case the original aligner ends up lost or broken, which is another big benefit for the patient!

The treatment period for Invisalign Teen varies from nine to 18 months, but can vary depending on each case. If your teen is considering orthodontic treatment, please contact us at our Spring, TX office and we’ll answer any questions you may have about Invisalign Teen.

April Marks National Facial Protection Month

April 5th, 2013

April, also known as National Facial Protection Month, is upon us, and for Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics, that only means one thing: it’s once again time to remind our patients to protect their faces and pearly whites.

According to the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation, children, high-school athletes and adults have more than 5,000,000 teeth knocked out in sporting events annually. To us, that’s simply unacceptable. By simply wearing a properly fitted mouthguard or other form of protection, kids and adults alike can greatly reduce their chances of traumatic facial injuries.

Here are five ways to ensure you and your child’s can protect your mouth this spring:

1. Make sure you or your child wears a mouthguard for contact sports such as baseball, softball, soccer and lacrosse.

2. Remind him or her to wear a helmet

3. …and protective eyewear

4. Wearing a face shield to avoid scratched or bruised skin will help

5. Make sure your child is alert, even as a spectator

We hope these tips are helpful. Dr. Robert Studebaker will tell you protective gear is vital for anyone engaging in contact sports or activities. If you have any further questions about any of these tips, please contact us at our Spring, TX office.

Stay safe and have fun this spring!

What Role do Elastics (Rubber Bands) Play in Orthodontics?

March 21st, 2013

Wearing orthodontic braces may be the best choice for correcting your teeth and improving your smile, and that's why you've come to see Dr. Robert Studebaker at Studebaker Orthodontics. Braces, which consist of brackets and wires, work by gently applying pressure to the teeth, and that pressure causes them to move into the correct position. In some cases elastics, or rubber bands, are used to apply additional pressure needed to move your teeth.

The Purpose of Elastics
Customized for each patient, the rubber bands typically stretch over tiny loops on the top and bottom brackets. If worn consistently, and every day, these tiny elastics will apply the steady pressure needed to guide your teeth into the correct position.

These elastics are crafted from medical-grade latex, which is safe to be in contact with your mouth. It's common to remove the elastics during meals if opening your mouth wide enough to eat is difficult. Our staff will demonstrate how to affix the elastics so it will soon become second nature to replace them.

The Do’s and the Don'ts

DO - Get in the habit of carrying around extra rubber bands and replace them as soon as one breaks. By consistently wearing the elastics, you may shorten the overall time needed to wear braces.

DON'T - Double up on elastics as this will cause too much pressure on the tooth or teeth and can actually harm the root of the tooth.

DO - Always wash your hands before removing or replacing the rubber bands.

DON'T - Overstretch the rubber band or it will lose its strength and it will be ineffective.

DO - Call us if you run out of rubber bands.

DO - Have fun with your braces and elastics. There are many different colors available that can let you show off your soon-to-be perfect smile.

Rubber bands are a key part of your orthodontic treatment, and learning how to remove and replace them is an important part to maintaining your braces. Before we set you on your journey to a perfect smile, we'll make sure you understand all there is to know about how to take care of your braces. Of course, if you have any questions about your orthodontic treatment, or orthodontics in general, be sure to contact our Spring, TX office, and our staff will be happy to assist you!

Go Green for St. Patrick’s Day

March 15th, 2013

Millions of people wear green on St. Patrick’s Day so they can show their spirit for the holiday and avoid getting pinched. While it may be easy for you to throw on a green shirt, sport a St. Patrick’s Day button, or wear a pair of emerald-hued shoes, if you’re an avid St. Patty’s Day enthusiast you may want to try something different this year. Our office thought of a few ideas that will help you take your holiday spirit to the next level:

Visit Chicago’s Green River

If you happen to be near the Windy City during St. Patrick’s Day or you’re thinking of planning a trip, don’t miss out on going downtown to watch the large-scale celebration that kicks off when the city dyes the river bright green. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago has been celebrating the holiday with this tradition for more than 50 years, with tens of thousands of people gathering annually to witness the mysterious dying process and the stunning result.

Don Green Face Paint

Just like an avid sports fan on game day, you can use green face paints to showcase your enthusiasm for this holiday. Avoid breakouts or allergic reactions by only using paints that are specifically meant to be applied to the skin. A little bit of face paint can cover a large area, so feel free to get creative and decorate the whole family on St. Patrick’s Day.

Eat Green All Day

Not a fan of green eggs and ham? With the increasing popularity of green smoothies, there’s no better time to get in on this health craze. To create a green smoothie without the aid of food coloring, you can simply blend a generous amount of a leafy green vegetable, such as spinach or kale, with the ingredients that you would typically use to make a smoothie, like fruit, ice, milk, or juice. Keep the trend going throughout the day by using those same vegetables to create a green soup, egg salad, or a batch of bright green pastries. As an added bonus, you’ll get a healthy dose of vitamins without changing the taste of most of these foods.

If your old holiday routine has gotten stale, leave your green T-shirt in the drawer and try one or all of these tips. Don’t be surprised if you have so much fun that you decide to start a new, annual St. Patrick’s Day tradition! Have a happy St. Paddy’s day!

Patient question: "What is malocclusion?"

March 8th, 2013


This is a question we hear all the time. Malocclusion, or what we call having a “bad bite,” is the improper alignment of teeth and/or jaws. When your teeth and jaws are not properly aligned, it may impact your bite, the ability to properly care for your teeth, your gum tissue health and even your appearance. Most people will experience some degree of malocclusion, but it generally is not severe enough to require orthodontic treatment. If your malocclusion is serious enough, however, treatment may be necessary to correct the issue.

Untreated malocclusion can lead undesirable mouth problems, including tooth decay, gum disease, or chipped and cracked teeth. The most common solution for malocclusion, of course, is orthodontic treatment. The actual course of treatment, including the length of time you will require braces, will be determined by severity of your malocclusion. The goal of your treatment is to move your teeth into the proper position and correct any misalignment in the jaw.

We use the most advanced technology in the field in order to ensure that you receive the best possible results. If you have any questions about malocclusion or about starting your orthodontic treatment, please give us a call!

I'm 28 - are orthodontics right for me?

February 28th, 2013

Thank you for the question. In an age—and society—where looks matter as much as anything, and at a time when evenly-aligned teeth might be the difference between getting a job or a promotion, adults are choosing—wisely, we think—to invest in orthodontics. Orthodontic treatment can be successful at any age, and we know that adults especially appreciate the benefits of a beautiful and healthy smile.

If you are still apprehensive about getting braces as an adult, there is another straightening teeth option called Invisalign, which uses a series of invisible, removable and comfortable aligners that no one can tell you’re wearing. If you’ve been thinking about getting that perfect smile, we would love to have you visit for an initial consultation! Please give us a call to set one up!

What's on your mind?

February 17th, 2013


By now, you’re probably familiar with our blog-writing process: Each week, we write about important orthodontic topics and your well-being, including the treatments we proudly offer.

This week, though, we thought we’d step back and ask you, our amazing patients: what’s on your mind? What would you like to know about the always-changing and exciting field of orthodontics? What would you like us to focus on our blog? Perhaps there’s something you’ve wanted to ask us for a while now? Here’s your chance! Let us know by posting here or on our Facebook page! Give us your best shot, and we’ll try to answer any question you may have!

February is also Heart Month!

February 10th, 2013

You may remember our post from last week, when we discussed February being “National Children’s Dental Health Month.” But did you know February also marks American Heart Month?

It’s a great time to take notice of the health of your heart as cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of death in the world, according to the American Heart Association. Studies have shown a correlation between gum disease and heart disease, underscoring the importance of good oral health care, especially while you are undergoing orthodontic treatment.

Visiting your dentist on a regular basis during your orthodontic treatment not only ensures a successful outcome, but can also help prevent gum disease or at least catch it in its early stages. In observance of Heart Month, it’s also important to know your numbers: blood pressure (less than 120/80), cholesterol (less than 200) and BMI (less than 25).

If you have any questions about heart health, about the importance of visiting your dentist or about your treatment at our office, please give us a call today!

February is National Children’s Dental Health Month!

February 4th, 2013

Each February for the past 63 years, our friends at the American Dental Association have sponsored National Children’s Dental Health Month to raise awareness about the importance of oral health at a young age, and especially during your orthodontic treatment. Developing good habits at an early age and scheduling regular visits with your dentist—even while you’re wearing braces—helps our young patients get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.

For kids wearing braces, brushing and flossing can become more difficult, requiring extra time and effort to remove food particles that accrue on and between your teeth and braces. If you ignore your oral health during your treatment, the results can be significantly compromised. We are happy to explain why effective brushing and flossing is so critical during orthodontic treatment. If you have any questions, please feel free to give us a call, ask us on Facebook or ask us at your next adjustment appointment!

The myths and facts about braces

January 27th, 2013

Some folks believe your chances of being struck by lightning increases when you have braces, while other folks believe having braces interferes with romance, and even metal detectors as you try to make your way through the airport for a much-needed vacation. Trust us when we say we know there are quite a few myths about braces out there these days. But before you buy into those myths, we think you should get the facts first! To help set the record straight, here is some great information on the myths and facts of orthodontics. We encourage you to check them out today!

If you have any questions about braces or your orthodontic treatment, please feel free to give us a call or ask us on Facebook! Smile bright!

Patient question: What can I eat with braces?

January 20th, 2013

We love when patients ask us this question! Now that you’re wearing braces, it’s just as important to maintain a good oral hygiene regimen as you did before your orthodontic treatment began. The first few days in braces are going to be more difficult to eat than normal. There will be a slight discomfort when you first get your braces on, so the act of chewing will make it slightly more painful.

Here are a few soft foods that do not require you to do much chewing and are easy to chew on when your teeth are sore:

Ice cream, yogurt, pudding, cool soups, Jell-O, scrambled eggs, cream of wheat, baked potatoes, soft cooked pasta, soup, bananas, cottage cheese, smoothies, macaroni and cheese, pancakes, soft cheeses, and milk are all foods you can eat safely without having to worry about pain or breaking your brackets.

Be sure to always check with us if you have questions about a particular food item by either giving us a call or asking us on Facebook!

Six oral hygiene tips for our patients

January 15th, 2013

If you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment, brushing and flossing after every meal and snack is the only way to prevent plaque build-up, tooth decay and gum disease. Your teeth will need extra care, especially during treatment at our office. Our goal is for you to have a beautiful healthy smile, and in order for us to achieve this good hygiene on your end is very important. Food and particles are known to get trapped by brackets, wires, bands and appliances, and this can make it difficult to keep your teeth clean. Using a Waterpik is another great way to clean teeth and gums. Here are a few tips to help with keeping your teeth clean and healthy during your orthodontic treatment:

1. Brush after every meal or snack

2. Floss daily to remove trapped food and particles

3. Rinse after eating with mouthwash to kill any bacteria

4. Brush with a fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled tooth brush

5. Clean teeth with a proxabrush

6. Maintain regular check-ups with your general dentist throughout your treatment

We hope these tips help. For more information, we encourage you to give us a call, ask us on Facebook or ask us during your next adjustment visit!

Do germs really live on my toothbrush?

January 7th, 2013

The dreaded cold and flu season is here again! After recovering from your cold, one of the most important steps you can take to avoid becoming reinfected is replacing your toothbrush!

Germs can linger on the bristles, and you risk prolonging your sickness by continuing to use the same toothbrush. Be smart - keep a spare, just in case! To protect your toothbrush from bacteria all year long, consider the following tips:

• Wash your hands before and after brushing
• Allow the brush to air dry after each use, harmful bacteria dies after being exposed to oxygen
• Store the toothbrush in an upright position to allow water to drain and dry faster
• Replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months. Worn bristles are less effective in properly cleaning your teeth, and can actually be damaging to teeth if used too long!

We hope these tips help! Feel free to give us a call or ask us on Facebook if you have any questions!

Happy New Year!

December 30th, 2012

With the year almost over, we thought we would ask you, our dear patients: what was memorable about 2012 for you, and what are you looking forward to in 2013? Do you have a new year's resolution, or any exciting plans for the coming year?

We want to wish all our patients, friends, family and all our dental and medical colleagues a happy and healthy New Year!

When you have an orthodontic emergency, we are here for you

December 23rd, 2012

Millions of patients undergoing orthodontic treatment will not be smiling this holiday season, and not because they didn't get the gift they wanted. These are people whose teeth and/or braces fall victim to the hard, chewy, gummy or sticky holiday treats.

We know orthodontic emergencies are never convenient nor timely. If you are a patient of record, we are committed to your oral health and are available to you. As a general rule, you should call our office when you experience severe pain or when you have a painful appliance problem that you can't take care of yourself. You might be surprised to learn that you may be able to temporarily solve many problems yourself until you schedule an appointment. When working with your appliances, you need to know the names of the parts of your appliances so you are able to identify what part is broken or out of place. After alleviating your discomfort, it is very important that you still call our office as soon as possible to schedule a time to repair the problem. Allowing your appliance to remain damaged for an extended period of time may result in disruptions in your treatment plan. If you have a orthodontic emergency after regular office hours, please give us a call and follow the emergency prompts to contact our team! We hope you're having a great holiday season!

Season's greetings!

December 18th, 2012

In this season given to tidings of comfort and joy, and as we reflect on the year that was, we’d like to ask you, our wonderful patients: What do you love about the holidays this year? Being with your loved ones? Hitting the slopes? A clean slate for 2013? Opening presents by the fireplace? All the delicious food?

Also, what gift are you most looking forward to getting this year? We’d love if you shared with us all the things you love about the holidays. Stay warm, and don’t forget to stay away from those sweets!

Need a New Year’s Resolution? How about a healthier, more beautiful smile?

December 10th, 2012

2013 is almost here, and it's a great time of year to get started on a lifetime of straight, dazzling and confident smiles. We are proud to offer some of today's most innovative orthodontic technologies that can straighten your smile in less time than you ever imagined. Not only do today’s braces and other orthodontic treatments straighten your teeth quicker, they also offer greater comfort for you, and require fewer visits to our office.

So if obtaining a healthy, beautiful smile is one of your New Year’s resolutions, we invite you to give us a call to schedule an initial orthodontic consultation. Happy holidays!

Where is YOUR bite? The differences between crossbites, overbites, and underbites

December 7th, 2012

Did you know there is a direct correlation between your bite and your overall health? When your teeth and jaws are not properly-aligned, it may affect your breathing, speech, and, in extreme cases, even affect the appearance of your face. As a result of malocclusion, also commonly referred to as “bad bite,” your teeth may become crooked, worn or protruded over time. Most people experience some degree of malocclusion, but it is generally not severe enough to require corrective measures. If your malocclusion is serious enough, however, orthodontic treatment may be necessary to correct the issue.

Malocclusion may also be referred to as an underbite, crossbite or overbite. So, what, exactly, is the difference between the three?

· Crossbites, which can involve a single tooth or a group of teeth, occur when your upper and lower jaws are both misaligned, and usually causes one or more upper teeth to bite on the inside of the lower teeth. Crossbites can happen on both the front and/or the sides of the mouth, and are known to cause wear of the teeth, gum disease and bone loss.

· Overbites, also known as “overjet,” occurs when your upper teeth overlap considerably with the lower teeth. Overbites can lead to gum issues or irritation and even wear on the lower teeth, and are known to cause painful jaw and joint problems. Overbites can usually be traced to genetics, bad oral habits, or overdevelopment of the bone that supports the teeth.

· Underbites, which occur when the lower teeth protrude past the front teeth, are caused by undergrowth of the upper jaw, overgrowth of the lower jaw, or both. Underbites can also be caused by missing upper teeth, which can prevent the normal function of front teeth ( molars). This in turn leads to tooth wear and pain in your joints and jaw.

Fortunately, we are able to treat bite problems. If you suspect you or your child has a bite misalignment, we encourage you to be examined at our office as early as possible. By starting early, you can make sure you or your child avoid years of pain and self-consciousness.

Make 2013 the year to improve your oral health!

December 1st, 2012

Many of our patients consider the beginning of a new year a time to not only reflect on the year that was, but also to set personal goals for the upcoming year. How are you planning to improve your health and happiness in 2013? Because it's never too early to start thinking about New Year's resolutions, we recommend that you make a New Year’s resolution to benefit your oral health!

It’s important that New Year’s resolutions are reasonable and attainable, and that they improve your overall quality of life—for example, did you know that flossing every day is the very best way to prevent periodontal, or gum disease during your orthodontic treatment? Using a straw when drinking sugary beverages can also help prevent cavities while you’re wearing braces. There are many small steps that you can take to prevent cavities, oral infections and bad breath.

Be sure to give us a call if you need a few suggestions on ways to improve your oral health. After all, oral health is about more than just a beautiful smile.

If your resolution is to attain a great-looking smile, we’d love to help! Please give us a call and schedule your initial consultation. We look forward to working with you and your family!

Happy holidays!

Happy Thanksgiving!

November 21st, 2012

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, we would like to wish you a safe and happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy a day filled of friends, family, and great food.

We are very thankful for all of our patients and their families. We’d like to know, what are you most thankful for this year? Leave us a comment, or if you have any stories, photos or recipes to share with us, we encourage you to share them below or on our Facebook page!

How Long After My Braces Come Off Should I Wear My Retainer?

November 16th, 2012


Braces are an investment in your smile. When your teeth reach a desired straightness, you’ll have a beautiful smile, but it’s important to keep it that way! You can accomplish this with a retainer.

A retainer is a small, custom-fit device that reinforces the new position of your teeth after your braces are removed. But for many patients, especially the youngest ones, wearing a retainer may seem like an annoyance. So exactly how long after your braces come off should you wear your retainer?

Graduation of Wear Time

When we remove your braces, we will evaluate the condition of the bone structure surrounding your teeth and determine how well it is adjusting to the new position of your teeth. For the first few months, we may require you to wear your retainer both day and night, except during meal times and for brushing and flossing.

As the bone and gum tissues adjust to your new smile, we may determine that you need to wear your retainer only at night. After about one year of wearing the retainer every night, you may be able to take a couple of nights off each week.
However, we do not recommend ever stopping permanently. To best secure the position of the teeth, especially through future extractions and oral health changes, wearing your retainer a few nights a week will be necessary for many years.

Considerations

If you are concerned about your appearance when you wear a retainer, there are many that can be worn discreetly. You could choose a clear plastic one that is less obvious during the months immediately following removal of your braces. When you change to night wear only, clear wire retainers are available for minimal visibility as well.

Remember, wearing your retainer is an investment in your smile. If you fail to wear it consistently, the tissues that support your teeth will be unsupported, and you may begin to experience noticeable shifting. You've worked hard to get that beautiful smile — your retainer will let you keep it!

Permanent or Removable Retainers: Which is Right for You?

November 9th, 2012

When the time to remove your braces finally arrives, it is very exciting. Unfortunately, it can be somewhat confusing, too, because you are faced with choosing between two kinds of retainers. Should you go with permanent, removable, or a combination of the two? It is always wise to follow your orthodontist’s recommendations, but knowing more about the two types of retainer beforehand can be helpful.

Removable Retainers
Removable retainers offer the advantage of easy use: you will generally put a removable retainer in at night and take it out in the morning. Regardless of your retainer schedule, you'll be able to enjoy some time with no retainer. However, a removable retainer can easily be forgotten at times, and this means you won't be taking full advantage of teeth retention.

Another potential advantage of a removable retainer is that you can take it out and brush and floss your teeth with ease, which is more of a challenge with a permanent retainer. Although removable retainers can be very effective, they don't tend to be as effective as permanent retainers, especially if they are not used as directed.

Permanent Retainers
Permanent retainers are the clear choice for patients who want to “get it and forget it.” Once your permanent retainer is placed in your mouth, you won’t need to worry about daily retainer schedules, since it is permanently affixed to your teeth.

Because teeth begin to shift naturally as we age, a permanent retainer typically offers better long-term results for teeth straightening than a removable one. You can't forget to put it in — it's already there! Temporary retainers get lost or are forgotten on trips, and often fail to get used as often as they should be.

One drawback to permanent retainers is flossing. Some patients find it more difficult to floss with a permanent retainer, but we can show you effective ways to floss fairly quickly with your permanent retainer.

Some orthodontists may recommend a combination of the two; for example, a removable retainer for the top teeth and a permanent one for the lower ones because the lower teeth are smaller and tend to shift more.

Ultimately, the most important thing to remember is that wearing your retainer as directed is extremely important. As long as you follow our orthodontist’s advice, you will get the best results from your retainer, regardless of its type.

Avoiding Common Problems Associated With Braces

November 2nd, 2012

While braces play an important part in helping to create a healthy mouth and teeth, you might experience a few side effects while wearing them that are common and can be easily treated.

Even with the best of care, braces can cause soreness to your mouth. As your teeth begin to move, it is natural for your teeth to feel aches and your jaw to develop soreness.

If there are broken wires or loose bands on your braces, a sore tongue, mouth, or canker sore will occur. Canker sores are a common occurrence when braces rub inside the mouth. There are ointments available to reduce the pain and irritation associated with mouth sores. If you experience a sore mouth or any of the following problems, call our office to schedule an appointment.

• Loose brackets: Apply a small amount of orthodontic wax to the bracket temporarily. You might also apply a little between the braces and the soft tissue of your mouth.
• Loose bands: These must be secured in place by our office. Try to save the band for repair.
• Protruding or broken wires: The eraser end of a pencil can be used to move the wire carefully to a less painful spot. If you are unable to move it, apply orthodontic wax to the tip. If a mouth sore develops, rinse with warm salt water or antiseptic rinse.
• Loose spacers: These will need to be repositioned and sometimes replaced.

Foods to Avoid
Some foods can also help or hurt you while you’re wearing braces. Remember to cut your food into small pieces that can be easily chewed. You will want to avoid hard and chewy foods that can break your hardware. Foods such as corn on the cob, nuts, carrots, apples, ice, and bubble gum should be avoided.

Braces, rubber bands, springs, and other mouth appliances associated with braces will normally attract food particles and plaque. Without the proper care, this could cause staining of your teeth.

We recommend brushing after every meal or snack and carefully removing any food that might be lodged in the braces. A fluoride mouthwash might be helpful as well as flossing. At your next appointment, we can advise you how to floss with a brush specially designed for braces!

Rubber Band Horoscopes: What Your Color Says About You

October 26th, 2012

One exciting part about wearing braces is getting to choose the colors of your rubber bands. Orthodontists place elastic bands, or ligatures, over each bracket to secure the archwire in place. These rubber bands may be individual or connected, depending on your mouth’s needs. You have the option of choosing the color of your elastics, which are changed about once every month at every visit. Our offices keep a color wheel handy to help you choose which ones suit you best!

Children and teens often enjoy picking different colors each month to express their creativity and coordinate their braces with outfits. Decorating your mouth with your favorite colors is fun for kids and takes some of the stress out of wearing braces. Adults who wish for subtlety have color options that blend in with the metal brackets and archwire. Common choices for adults include silver, clear, and gray tones.

Common Color Combinations for Rubber Bands
With individual ligatures for each bracket, you may choose different color combinations for special events. You can have alternating colors or place an entire rainbow over your teeth. Here are a few options to consider:
• School spirit colors
• Favorite sports team colors
• Patriotic colors
• Holiday themes

Some patients choose only one color to match their mood, personality, or favorite outfits. The palette of choices allows you to make bold statements with your braces or go for subtler tones that blend in with the metal structures. Keep in mind that bright colors make your teeth look whiter, while lighter shades, such as yellow and white, may cause your teeth to appear less bright.

What Your Rubber Band Color Says About You
• Red tones indicate that you are ready for action and take charge of your life with aggressive, forward-thinking steps.
• Blue tones are calm and relaxing. You are conservative and exhibit integrity when dealing with situations.
• Green tones represent growth and balance. You are level-headed and look for opportunities to grow emotionally and spiritually.
• Purple tones attract creative energies. You like to have fun and use your imagination in every aspect of your life.
• Orange tones indicate that you are optimistic and thrive in social situations where communication is open.
• Pink is a romantic color that represents a caring personality. You also enjoy having fun with silly games and endless laughter.

The Evolution of Braces

October 18th, 2012

Did you know that even in ancient times, people wanted to improve the look and function of their smiles? We think of modern orthodontic appliances as sleek, efficient technology, but this was not always the case! Take a look at the highlights in the evolution of braces.

Ancient Times: From Greece to Rome
• According to The Angle Orthodontist, Aristotle and Hippocrates first thought about methods for straightening teeth between 400 and 300 BC.
• The Etruscans, in what we now know as Italy, buried their dead with appliances that maintained spaces and prevented collapse of their teeth and jaws during life. Archaeologists have discovered mummified remains in various locations that have metal bands wrapped around the teeth.
• A Roman tomb has also been discovered in which the teeth were bound with gold wire, including documentation on the wire’s use as a dental device.

18th Century: A French Development
• The French dentist Pierre Fauchard is acknowledged as the father of modern dentistry. In 1728 he published a book that described various methods for straightening teeth. Fauchard also used a device known as a “blandeau” to widen the upper palate.
• Louis Bourdet was another French dentist who published a book in 1754 that discussed tooth alignment. Bourdet further refined the blandeau and was the first dentist to extract bicuspids, or the premolar teeth between canines and molars, for the purpose of reducing tooth crowding.

19th Century: Orthodontics Defined
• Orthodontics started to become a separate dental specialty during the early 19th century. The first wire crib was used in 1819, marking the beginning of modern orthodontics.
• During this period, gold, platinum, silver, steel, gum rubber, vulcanite, and occasionally wood, ivory, zinc, and copper were used — as was brass in the form of loops, hooks, spurs, and ligatures.
• Edward Maynard first used gum elastics in 1843 and E. J. Tucker began making rubber bands for braces in 1850.
• Norman W. Kingsley published the first paper on modern orthodontics in 1858 and J. N. Farrar was the first dentist to recommend the use of force over timed intervals to straighten teeth.

20th Century: New Materials Abound
• Edward Angle developed the first classification systems for malocclusions (misaligned teeth) during the early 20th century in the United States, and it is still in use today. Angle founded the American Society of Orthodontia in 1901, which was renamed the American Association of Orthodontists in the 1930s.
• By the 1960s, gold was universally abandoned in favor of stainless steel.
• Lingual braces were the “invisible” braces of choice until the early 1980s, when tooth-colored aesthetic brackets made from single-crystal sapphire and ceramics became popular.

Today
As we arrive in the present, you need only look at your own braces to see how far we’ve come. Your treatment plan was probably created with a 3D digital model, and we’ve likely used a computerized process to customize your archwires. Perhaps you have clear aligners, self-ligating brackets, or highly resilient ceramic brackets with heat-activated wires.

Orthodontics has come a long way from the days of Aristotle, and even the bulky wrap-around braces of just 60 years ago. Regardless of your specific treatment plan, the development of high-tech materials and methods has made it possible for your orthodontic experience to be as effective, efficient, and comfortable as possible.

Besides Straight Teeth, What are the Benefits of Braces?

October 12th, 2012

Everyone wants a naturally aligned and beautiful smile, and it is no secret that orthodontic braces can help deliver one. However, there are greater benefits to wearing braces than just having straight teeth. You’ll gain many oral health benefits in addition to the cosmetic ones.

Tooth Decay and Gum Disease
Crooked or crowded teeth may overlap each other and create tight spaces in between. These can make it very difficult to brush and floss effectively, allowing bacteria and plaque to build up, and eventually leading to tooth decay and gum disease. With orthodontic treatment, your teeth will become properly aligned and spaced, which allows for more effective brushing.

Difficulties with Speech
Your teeth play an essential role in speech. When they are out of line or lean too far forward or backward, this can affect your speaking patterns, and possibly cause embarrassment and frustration. Braces can readjust the positioning of the teeth to allow for clearer, more professional speech.

Bone Erosion
Bone and gum tissues begin to erode when there are no teeth to support. This is also true for poorly aligned teeth that leave gaps and spaces or place too much pressure on the jawbone due to a bad bite. With braces, the bones and tissues are less likely to erode and can continue to support the teeth in their new alignment.

Digestion
Your teeth play an important role in digestion. Before food ever enters your stomach, it has been partially digested by the teeth. If teeth are severely out of line, however, they may not play their role in breaking down food as effectively as they should. With braces, your teeth will be straightened into optimal alignment for eating and chewing.

National Orthodontic Health Month is Here!

October 4th, 2012

We love October, and not just for the changing weather and Halloween excitement! It’s National Orthodontic Health Month.

Every year, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recognizes October as a time to raise awareness of the benefits of orthodontic treatment. The AAO is the largest, oldest professional association for orthodontists in North America, and is comprised of more than 16,000 members.

In a month full of hard, sticky, crunchy, and chewy treats, it’s more important than ever to encourage patients to be kind to their teeth during treatment. If you have braces, try to avoid caramel, taffy, bubblegum, and candy with nuts. If you can’t keep yourself away from the sugar, opt for softer candy such as peanut butter cups or other melt-in-your-mouth treats.

As always, remember to brush and floss after consuming sugary foods. Exposing your teeth to sweets increases your risk of cavities, and allowing the sugar to sit there can lead to decalcification, the loss of calcium from the teeth.

If you have any questions about what foods are best and worst during orthodontic treatment, feel free to ask during your next visit!

How much do you know about your toothbrush?

September 28th, 2012

Taking care of your smile is nothing new! People have been brushing their teeth for thousands of years. In fact, the first “toothbrush” was created around 3000BC! Ancient civilizations used a thin twig with a frayed edge to rub against their teeth for cleaning.

The first toothbrush with bristles – similar to today’s toothbrushes – was invented in 1498 in China. Brushes were made out of bone or bamboo with bristles made from the hairs on the back of a hog’s neck.

It wasn’t until 1938 that the first nylon bristle toothbrush was introduced and people quickly became aware of practicing good oral hygiene.

Here are some other interesting facts about your toothbrush (and toothpaste):
• Most people are said to use blue toothbrushes over any other color
• The first toothpaste was used in 500 BC in China and India
• On average, children smile about 400 times per day
• Your toothbrush should be replaced every two months
• The first known toothpaste was used in 1780, Crest was introduced in 1955 and Colgate in 1873

You're Never Too Old to Treat Yourself to a New Smile!

September 21st, 2012

Did you know one in every five orthodontic patients is an adult? We’re living longer and technology is improving, making orthodontic treatment an appealing and safe option for patients of all ages. As the trend toward treatment later in life grows, we’re seeing braces on parents as well as children – and even adult celebrities such as Tom Cruise, Gwen Stefani and Nicholas Cage have shown off their braces. It’s never too late to look and feel your best!

Can Braces Work for Adults?

People of all ages can benefit from orthodontic treatment. The physical process for moving teeth is the same, young or old, which means it’s never too late to address issues such as an overbite or underbite, crooked or crowded teeth, or jaw disorders.

How Do I Get Started?

If you’re considering orthodontic treatment, we’ll make a consultation appointment with you. During this meeting we will perform a general assessment of your oral health, discuss options for treatment, and answer any questions you may have. We will also discuss matters of cost and insurance. The next step is an orthodontic records appointment in which we take x-rays, photos, and an impression of your teeth. This information drives your unique treatment plan.

What Are the Benefits?

Straightening your teeth can improve your smile, your self-esteem, and your dental health. Technologically advanced new treatments make it easier to identify the option that best fits your lifestyle. Modern techniques and materials have made braces and aligners more effective, comfortable and unobtrusive than ever.

If you think you might benefit from orthodontic treatment, give our team a call so we may set up a consultation to determine what type of treatment best meets your needs!

Playing fall sports? Don't forget your mouth guard!

September 13th, 2012

Now that school is back in session, fall sports are, too! Fall brings an increase in outdoor activities and a greater chance of damaging your beautiful smile. Our team also knows sports-related injuries are common among children and teens. It's been found that 70 percent of parents said their biggest worry is that their child will get hurt while playing sports. Another 67 percent admitted their child doesn't wear a mouth guard when playing sports such as football, volleyball, baseball and soccer.

That’s why we think it’s a good time to remind you that many facial sports injuries can be avoided by wearing mouth guards. Whether you’re in the middle of orthodontic treatment or enjoying a stunning new smile, we’re happy to recommend a mouth guard to suit your needs.

In addition, the following tips can help athletes of all ages stay safe on the field:

  • Wear mouth guards during contact sports
  • Wear a helmet
  • Stretch before and after a game or practice
  • Wear protective eye wear
  • Wear a face shield to avoid scratched or bruised skin
  • Be observant—even as a spectator

All of these can reduce injuries. Only by using a mouth guard and other forms of facial protection can kids with and without braces avoid serious sports injuries. If you have any questions about mouth guards, feel free to call or ask the next time you you’re in the office!

Understanding Orthodontic Appliances for Jaw Growth Correction

September 7th, 2012

Children and adults often feel confused and a little frightened because of the various metal tools and appliances used for orthodontic treatment. Knowing the applications of such devices can help ease a patient's mind when undergoing treatment. Dentofacial orthopedics is a specialty that uses appliances to adjust the jaws for ideal compatibility. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends these treatment options for children between the ages of eight and 12 to make adjustments during developmental stages. Adults also experience dental changes throughout their lives and can benefit from dentofacial orthopedic appliances. Some common problems with jaw alignment or development include:

  • Underdeveloped lower jaw
  • Protrusion of upper teeth
  • Malocclusions
  • Crossbite
  • Overbite

Orthodontic Appliances for Correcting Jaw Growth Problems

Jaw-correcting appliances are either fixed or removable. Fixed appliances are applied to the teeth with the use of cement. Removable appliances require dedication from the patient to wear the devices as instructed. You will receive better results by wearing your orthodontic gear and following the treatment plan designed for your specific needs. Understanding the potential results will help you stay motivated, and parents can help their children to follow recommendations. Some appliances can cause slight discomfort during adjustment periods, but wearing them regularly will help shorten the time frame for treatment. Here are some of the most common appliances for correcting jaw growth problems.

  • Headgear: This appliance is removable and consists of a stainless steel facebow and fabric safety strap. The orthodontist fixes metal bands to your upper-back teeth where you attach the facebow. The safety strap wraps around your head and secures the facebow. Headgear affects jaw growth and tooth movement by applying pressure to the upper teeth and maxilla.
  • Herbst® Appliance: Typically permanent, these appliances attach to the upper and lower molars to hold the mandible forward. The purpose of this type of treatment is to eliminate an overbite. With expansion screws, the Herbst can also widen the jaw.
  • Mara: This appliance pushes the mandible forward to reduce overbite. Crowns are placed on your top and bottom molars, and a metal elbow connects the crowns.
  • Bite Corrector: This appliance is combined with braces to correct different malocclusions. Metal bars with enclosed springs apply pressure to both the upper and lower jaws. The placement of such bars will depend on the bite type.
  • Bionator: This removable appliance guides the lower jaw so that it grows in proportion to the upper jaw. Children can develop aligned bites by wearing bionators.
  • Palatal Expansion: There are two options for placement, fixed, or removable palatal expansions, to fix crossbites. The appliance attaches to the upper-back teeth and widens the jaw.

You will get used to the feeling of most appliances within one month, and the adjustment period is easier if you follow the treatment plan that our staff designs. The average time it takes to correct jaw problems is 12 months, so you can expect to see a more beautiful smile in about one year.

What questions should I ask during an orthodontic consultation?

August 31st, 2012

Are you thinking about orthodontic treatment to straighten teeth or correct jaw alignment?  Consider making your first step an orthodontic consultation. During the consultation we will address your questions, concerns, and talk about a treatment plan that would best suit your situation.

We want you to feel prepared and in charge of your orthodontic treatment decisions, so keep these questions in mind when you come in for your appointment.

  • If I do need some adjustments to my teeth, what options will I have besides braces?
    (This will help you determine what approaches we use to straighten your teeth.)
  • What kind of preparation is needed to get braces? How many visits will it take?
    (It’s important to know how many appointments may be needed and what you will need to do between appointments to be ready for braces.)
  • Can I expect any pain when getting braces?
    (Ask about the ways we address pain management.)
  • What determines how long I have to wear braces?
    (The length of treatment will vary from patient to patient.  During your consultation we can evaluate your teeth and jaw alignment to determine the correct course and length of treatment.)
  • How will braces affect my lifestyle? Foods I can eat? Activities I can do?
    (You may find that little needs to change in your daily routine to have a successful orthodontic outcome. We can discuss and address any changes so you can be prepared before you get your braces.)
  • Who will be involved in the orthodontic work?  Whom can I expect to see during my adjustment visits?
  • What will my orthodontic work cost? What is the ”average” cost and what could be the maximum?
    (Make sure you are clear about what your insurance covers, who contacts the insurance company for pre-authorization, who files the insurance forms, and what flexibility there is to pay the remaining amount not covered.)

Your initial orthodontic consultation may just be the first step in relieving a lot of pain and discomfort in your life. Going in with the right questions will help you to understand the entire process and prepare you to do your part for your own dental health. Be sure to bring a list of your questions!

When Should My Child See an Orthodontist?

August 24th, 2012

Orthodontic treatments vary from dental treatment, in that they primarily address malocclusions, jaw spacing and tooth alignment, rather than the actual health of the teeth. That is why it is often more difficult for parents to determine when a child needs orthodontic treatment rather than dental treatment. So how can you know it is time to take your child to the orthodontist?
Bad Bite - As the adult teeth begin to replace primary teeth, bite occlusions can develop. These often become visible to parents between middle childhood and the pre-teen years, although an orthodontist can identify a bad bite with early evaluation.
Visible Tooth Crowding - If your child's newly emerging teeth are already crowded, you should make an appointment with our office to discuss braces.
Tooth Grinding (Bruxism) - Children who grind their teeth at night may do so unconsciously, but the condition requires treatment to prevent the development of headaches, TMJ, and tooth damage. Oral appliances are available to correct nighttime tooth grinding.
Difficulty Chewing, Biting, or Speaking - If your child is displaying difficulty speaking or eating, or if he or she often experiences cheek biting, schedule an orthodontic consultation.
Asymmetry - If your child's face is asymmetrical, or if his or her teeth do not meet together in a natural way, orthodontic treatment may be necessary.
Evaluation and Preventive Care
Even if your child has no visible tooth or jaw alignment problems, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that every child visit the orthodontist for an initial examination no later than age seven. The reason for early evaluation is because orthodontists are capable of finding subtle problems with the jaw and teeth growth and spacing before they become more pronounced and also more difficult to treat.

By bringing your child in for an evaluation, you may be able to treat orthodontic conditions with shorter and more simplified treatments that are also more affordable than treatment during the teenage and adult years.

How long does orthodontic treatment take?

August 17th, 2012

Orthodontic treatments are used to correct malocclusion, a condition more commonly known as a bad bite. The length of treatment time varies depending on the severity of the bite problem.

What is a "bad bite"?
A bad bite occurs when spacing or alignment problems are present. This often includes teeth that are protruding, crowded, or crooked. Sometimes teeth appear straight, but have an uneven bite because the upper and lower jaws do not align properly. Teeth that are irregularly spaced - either too far apart or too close together - can also cause bite problems.

Frequent causes of bite problems:

  • Heredity
  • Thumb-sucking
  • Premature tooth loss
  • Accidents

Benefits of orthodontic treatment:

Appearance -
Correcting a bad bite often creates a more attractive smile, which frequently raises the patient's self esteem.

Preventing Decay -
It also results in a healthier mouth. It is much more difficult to thoroughly clean teeth that are crooked, protruding, overlapped, or crowed. This may allow plaque to build up, which can lead to gum disease, tooth decay and even tooth loss. Orthodontic treatment corrects these conditions, so cleaning can be more efficient.

Avoiding Alignment Issues -
An uneven bite can interfere with the motions of chewing and speaking. This can cause abnormal wear to tooth enamel, which may require pricey cosmetic restorative treatments, such as crowns or veneers, to correct. It can also lead to problems with the jaws. Orthodontic treatment lessens the likelihood of those issues, as well.

Types of orthodontic treatment:

- Braces: Metal or ceramic brackets are bonded to the front of teeth. Wires and elastics are attached to the brackets to straighten teeth.

- Invisalign®: Advanced 3D computer images of the patients' mouth are used to create clear, custom aligners that slowly move teeth. They are nearly invisible and are more comfortable than traditional braces. They are also removable, which makes it possible to continue with normal brushing and flossing.

- Retainers: A retainer is a removable piece worn inside the mouth that uses pressure to force teeth to move into proper alignment. They are used after braces are removed.

Length of orthodontic treatment:
Treatment typically ranges from 12 to 36 months. Factors include the age, cooperation level, and growth occurrence of the patient. The complexity of the case also impacts the treatment time.

What are the Early Signs of Orthodontic Problems?

August 10th, 2012


Visibly crooked teeth are not the only reason to take your child into the orthodontist. There are some subtle things to look for as well, which may indicate the onset of more serious orthodontic issues. Many orthodontic issues are much easier to address if treated and corrected during a child's development.

Waiting until facial development is complete or until the permanent teeth have come in can make correction of many orthodontic issues more challenging. Both children and adults can benefit from orthodontic care at any age, but addressing issues early is almost always the ideal choice.

If you're wondering if you or your child might have need for orthodontic care, there are some things you can be on the lookout for. Here are some of the most common warning signs of orthodontic issues:

• Difficulty when chewing or biting
• Chronic mouth-breathing
• Sucking the thumb, the fingers, or any other oral sucking habits that continue after the age of six
• Overbite - when the upper teeth overlap the lower teeth by more than 5mm
• Top front teeth that cover more than 25% of the bottom teeth while biting
• Underbite - when the top front teeth go behind the bottom row of teeth when biting
• Crowded, crooked, overlapped, misshapen, misplaced teeth or extra teeth of any size
• Crossbite - when one or more teeth tilt toward the cheek or toward the tongue causing excessive stress on the jawbone
• The center of the top and bottom teeth don't line up
• Uneven teeth-wearing
• Baby teeth coming out too early for the child's age
• Pain in jaws
• Clicking in the jaw joints
• The jaw shifts off-center while chewing or biting
• A jaw that protrudes, or recedes, too much
• Difficulty speaking or enunciating clearly
• Chronic biting of the inner cheek or roof of the mouth
• Asymmetrical facial structure
• Grinding or clenching of the teeth

If you notice that either you or your child has one or more of these conditions, they could be signs that there is a risk of orthodontic or health problems. The sooner these problems are addressed, the wider and brighter you will be able to smile going forward!

Braces without Embarrassment

August 2nd, 2012

Adults who need orthodontic care often share the misconception that they are too old for braces and would rather not deal with the embarrassment. You are probably familiar with horror stories about rubber bands snapping, mishaps with kissing, and unsightly food sticking in metal braces. Many adults believe that braces are just for children, but they are neglecting all the benefits of correcting misaligned teeth. Braces may cause you to feel self-conscious, but they are temporary. Along with straightening your teeth, braces also provide the following benefits:

  • Better oral hygiene
  • Easier to clean aligned teeth
  • Less complicated dental procedures
  • Eliminate the embarrassment of crooked teeth

One common reason for not correcting misaligned teeth is the appearance of metal braces. Adults do not want to face co-workers and friends with colored rubber bands and metal laced throughout their mouths. The expert healthcare professionals at SingHealth suggest several alternatives that are just as effective as metal braces. You have three options for correcting your misaligned teeth without the embarrassment, and they include:

  • Ceramic braces
  • Lingual braces
  • Invisalign®

Ceramic braces are like metal ones except that they match the natural color of your teeth. This option is less noticeable and will usually not show up in photographs. Lingual braces are attached to your back teeth only, so no one will know that you have a corrective device. Invisalign consists of clear plastic coverings that you can remove for eating and teeth brushing. All of these options lead to a more attractive smile that you do not have to feel embarrassed about.

If you do choose metal braces to correct your teeth, you should consider the following suggestions for limiting embarrassing moments. The rubber bands holding the brackets in place come in silver, which will draw less attention to your mouth. Changing the removable rubber bands on a regular basis will help prevent the material from wearing down and snapping. If you chew with your back molars and cut your food into manageable bites, you are less likely to get particles stuck in your braces. Following our treatment advice and instructions will limit the time you have to wear corrective devices. Focus on the end result of straighter teeth whenever you feel particularly self-conscious about your braces.

Preventing Decay While Wearing Braces

July 25th, 2012

Having braces can present some new challenges when it comes to oral hygiene. Preventing tooth decay can be a big challenge simply because of the tendency for braces to trap food under the wires and between the teeth and the brackets. Here are a few tips to keep your teeth healthy while wearing your braces:

1. Eat Braces-Safe Foods.

Keeping your teeth from decay starts with a proper diet. Foods that are high in sugar or starch can cause more plaque which is difficult to remove during your brushing. There are certain foods that should be avoided while wearing your braces. First, sticky foods like caramel or gum can get stuck in your braces and be difficult to remove during brushing. Next, hard foods such as nuts and candy could bend wires or even break a bracket. Foods that are firm or hard to bite into like apples, carrots, or corn on the cob should be avoided. As much as we like to snack on them, those crunchy treats can harm your braces. Things like chips, ice, popcorn can also bend or break your braces. On the other hand, bananas, mangoes, milk, water, poultry, and pasta all tend to be low in enamel-busting acids.

2. Proper Brushing.

You want to place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against the gums in order to clean the whole tooth, and brush gently in the area between the wiring and the teeth. Use a softer toothbrush with fluoride paste for best results. Rinsing every day will help, too. Rinsing is important regardless, but especially important when you have braces as you need to disinfect the entire mouth, including those spots under the braces where your brush can't always reach.

3. Ask About Special Cleaning Tools.

There are also special brushes, or other tools, to get under and clean your braces. You can also find many of these items at your local pharmacy.

4. Regular Teeth Cleaning.

It's important to keep your routine appointments with your dentist and dental hygienist for a thorough cleaning twice a year or as directed. The exact frequency of these visits will be up to your dentist as some types of braces are more demanding of a regular cleaning than others.

As long as you practice good oral hygiene and follow these basic tips, you should have no problem keeping your teeth from decaying while you wear braces.

What's a palatal expander and why would I need one?

July 20th, 2012

A palatal expander "expands" (or widens) your upper jaw by putting gentle pressure on your upper molars and is used to make the bottom and upper teeth fit together better. It also makes more room for teeth and helps to promote a broader, more aesthetic smile.

Palatal expansion is usually not painful, but you may feel some minor discomfort. It’ll take a little time for you to get used to your appliance, so you may experience difficulty speaking and swallowing for the first day or two.

Adjusting your appliance as directed will ensure you keep on schedule with the rest of your orthodontic treatment plan. It takes about a few weeks to achieve the desired amount of expansion, after which you’ll keep wearing your expander for about six months, giving time for the new bone to form and stabilize. Our team will give you detailed instructions about how to adjust your appliance and can answer any questions you may have about your palatal expander.

Top ten tips for keeping your BRACES sparklin’ clean!

July 11th, 2012




Keeping your teeth clean is more important than ever when you have braces! Food bits have more spots than usual to hide in your mouth, so you must be diligent in order to avoid bad breath, swollen gums, discolored teeth and cavities. If you remove plaque regularly during treatment, you'll experience better results and shorter treatment time. Keep plaque at bay with these top ten tips:

1. One tooth at a time. When you brush, take time with each individual tooth – at least 10 seconds each – and pay careful attention to the spots where your teeth touch your braces.

2. It’s all about the angles. Brush the tops of your teeth and braces with your brush angled down toward where they meet. Brush the bottoms of your teeth and braces with your brush angled up.

3. The tooth, the whole tooth, nothing but the tooth. While the front surface of your teeth may seem like the most logical to clean, it’s equally important to clean the inner surface of your teeth (tongue side) as well as the chewing surface. And be sure to clean along your gum line – a key spot for plaque buildup.

4. Step 1: eat, step 2: clean. While you’re in treatment, it’s important to brush after every meal. Bits of food can easily get caught between braces and teeth, and these food bits interact with bacteria in your mouth to cause decay. The longer food is in contact with your teeth, the greater opportunity for plaque to form. If you are eating somewhere that you can’t brush, thoroughly rinse your mouth with water.

5. Like a Boy Scout, always be prepared. The easiest way to be sure you can brush after every meal is to get in the habit of taking a toothbrush, toothpaste and floss with you wherever you go. Designate a special container just for your teeth-cleaning tools and keep it in your purse, backpack, or laptop case.

6. Remove the moving parts. If you have elastic bands or headgear, remove these parts before you brush or floss.

7. Fluoride is your friend. Fluoride helps prevent cavities. Be sure to brush with fluoride toothpaste, and rinse with fluoride mouthwash.

8. Pointy brushes reach tiny places. Interproximal brushes (sometimes called proxa brushes or interdental brushes) are cone-shaped and come in very handy for reaching spots around your braces that standard brushes can’t.

9. Find the floss for you. Regular floss works for some patients, but others find it easier to work with a floss threader, which helps you get the floss into tight places. Other patients like an all-in-one product called Superfloss, which comes with a stiff end for easy threading, a spongy section for cleaning wide spaces, and regular floss for narrow spaces.

10. Make time for the pros. It’s your job to take care of the everyday cleaning. But make sure to visit your dentist regularly while in treatment, to get the deep, thorough cleaning that only a professional can provide. If you need help finding the right Dentist for you, feel free to contact our office - we’d love to help!

We hope this helps, and remember to give our team a call if you ever have any questions!

How did you celebrate your 4th of July?

July 5th, 2012



In Honor of America's birthday, we'd like to hear about how you spent The 4th of July. We'd love to see your fun photos and how you spent the day. Our team thought it would be fun to share some facts about the history of our Independence Day.

Fun Facts:
• Betsy Ross, according to legend, sewed the first American flag in May or June 1776, as commissioned by the Congressional Committee.
• The major objection to being ruled by Britain was taxation without representation. The colonists had no say in the decisions of English Parliament.
• The word ‘patriotism’ comes from the Latin patria, which means ‘homeland’ or ‘fatherland.’
• The first public Fourth of July event at the White House occurred in 1804.


Mouth guards and you

June 25th, 2012


A lot of our patients play sports, and now is a great time to remind all of you to take care of both your mouth and appliances while participating in sports – especially contact sports such as soccer, football, baseball and basketball.

One of the most important pieces of sports equipment you can wear on the field this summer is a mouth guard. A well-fitted mouth guard allows you to breathe and speak more clearly, in addition to protecting your mouth and appliances. Only by using a mouth guard can athletes avoid serious mouth and jaw injuries. The next time you’re in for an adjustment appointment, we encourage you to let us know if you’re playing or planning to play any sports. We can recommend a mouth guard that will work best for you. Also, here are five quick tips for keeping yourself safe during sport activities this summer:

• Wear a helmet
• Stretch before and after a game or practice
• Wear protective eyewear
• Wear a face shield to avoid scratched or bruised skin
• Be observant, even as a spectator

We hope this helps! You can always contact us if you have any questions! Good luck on the field!

Making Your Life Better with Orthodontics

June 15th, 2012

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The number one goal of orthodontic treatment is to give you or your child a good bite, meaning straight teeth that work well with the teeth in the opposite jaw. A good bite makes it easier for you to eat, chew and speak. It can enhance your dental health and your overall health, and may well improve your self-esteem. As a part of your comprehensive dental health care plan, orthodontic treatment can help you retain your teeth—and your smile—for a lifetime.

Let your smile express yourself! Nothing can show the world how happy you are quite like a beautiful smile. In fact, it’s one of the first things others notice about you, too. With orthodontics, you can be proud to flash your smile, because you’ll know that your smile truly represents your positive attitude.

Make your mouth healthy! Straight teeth aren’t just pretty, they’re healthy as well. Teeth that are properly aligned are easier to clean, reducing the amount of plaque buildup and risk for gingivitis. The cleaner you keep your teeth, the longer they’ll last!

Feel free to live your life! Orthodontics is easier today than ever before, with treatment options that fit your lifestyle and schedule. We can personalize your treatment to suit all of your needs!

June marks National Dairy Month!

June 12th, 2012

In honor of June Dairy Month, our team would like to thank all of our hard working families in the Dairy Industry.
In fact, dairy is important to your overall health! Regular consumption of dairy products, such as milk, cheese and yogurt, have been found to lower your chances of contracting periodontal disease (also known as gum disease).
Results of the study show that adults who consume at least 55 grams of lactic acid a day are less at risk for gum disease. Eating dairy is not just healthy for building strong bones, but is essential for maintaining a strong, healthy mouth.
Questions about which foods you should steer clear of and which you should enjoy during orthodontic treatment? Give us a call or ask us on Facebook!

Getting social with Dr. Studebaker

May 31st, 2012


We embrace technology, whether it’s through the innovative treatments we offer, our high-tech web site or our Facebook fan page. As you can probably tell, we love connecting with our patients online, whether it’s by sharing news on our blog or communicating ideas on our fan page. For social media to work, we understand that conversation is vital, and that’s why we invite you to join in and tell us what’s on your mind. Although social networks are hugely popular these days, we know they’re unpredictable and ever-changing.

While Dr. Studebaker and our staff takes time to research how to best use social media, we thought we’d ask you, our loyal patients: How would you like us to use our social networks? What would you like us to share on our blog? Please post your thoughts or give us a call!

The benefits of a beautiful smile

May 25th, 2012

We know that having an attractive smile puts a spring in your step—or two—as well as increases your self-confidence, no matter if you’re 14 or in your late forties. Smiling not only makes people happy and puts them in a good mood, doing it often can even help you live longer, according to previous studies!

If you’ve been hiding your smile because you have crooked teeth or gaps between your teeth, it’s time to consider orthodontic treatment at our practice. You’ll be pleasantly surprised to learn how quickly and efficiently today’s most advanced correction techniques can straighten your smile!

Don’t hide your smile any longer — give us a call today to schedule yours or your child’s orthodontic consultation.

“Am I Too Old for Braces?”

May 15th, 2012

Absolutely not! Orthodontic treatment for adults is becoming more and more common. In fact, the number of adults getting braces has actually climbed 24 percent since 1996! More adults than ever are realizing that orthodontic treatment is not just for kids, and can help improve the aesthetics and health of a smile of any age! In a society where appearance matters and can help make the difference between getting a job or a promotion, adults are choosing wisely to invest in orthodontic treatment.

Some of the most common reasons our adult patients come to us considering orthodontic treatment include:
• Teeth that are crowded or spaced apart, sometimes as a result of tooth decay or gum disease
• Pain or pressure from crooked teeth or a misaligned jaw
• A bad bite or malocclusion, causing teeth to fit together incorrectly

Most of all though, adult patients come to our office seeking a healthier mouth and a more confident smile! Orthodontic treatment at our office can be successful at any age, and adults especially can appreciate the benefits of a beautiful smile.

As an adult patient, we recognize that you have different needs than our younger patients, and we will work with you to ensure you receive the most appropriate treatment and that your needs are met with understanding and respect from us.

If you’ve been thinking about getting that perfect smile, we would love to have you visit for a consultation. We understand you have a busy schedule, and will work with you to find a time that is convenient for you. Please visit our website or give our office a call to schedule your appointment today!

What are your summer plans?

May 14th, 2012


The dog days of summer are almost upon us, and what better time for us to ask our patients' summer plans!

Whether you're going camping, hitting America's great open roads, visiting our nation’s capitol, or just staying in town and hanging out, we want to know how you’re all going to spending your summer! Please feel free to share your summer plans and experiences with us below or on our Facebook page!

We look forward to reading all about your summer adventures!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: "What should I expect during my initial consultation?"

May 7th, 2012

Great question! Your initial consultation with Dr. Studebaker will give you the opportunity to meet our team, learn more about orthodontics, receive a complete initial exam, and find out which treatment options will best meet your needs. During your initial consultation, we will:

Review your dental and medical history forms
Provide a complete oral exam, with X-rays, to determine whether treatment is necessary
Help you create a customized treatment plan
Discuss all financial information, insurance options, and payment plans

During your consultation, you’ll probably also have a lot of questions. Dr. Studebaker wants you to be prepared for your appointment and feel in charge of your orthodontic treatment decisions. Dr. Studebaker will be glad to answer any questions you may have, and we will provide all of the information that you need to determine which treatment is right for you.

We invite you to schedule your initial visit and let us help you find your most perfect smile!

May is National Teen Self-Esteem Month, from Dr. Studebaker

May 1st, 2012

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know image is everything. At an age when image is so important, the thought of having braces may intensify the already-delicate confidence of today's teens. Well, May is National Teen Self-Esteem Month, and during this time, parents are encouraged to act as positive role models, help stop negative self-images, and improve confidence and security among teenagers.

One of the great ways to improve your confidence is to improve your smile. And that begins with a free consultation at Studebaker Orthodontics. After all, what better time to avoid having crooked teeth in your adulthood than coming in for a consultation with Dr. Robert Studebaker?

We proudly provide traditional braces, as well as Invisalign Teen for today’s image-conscious teens.

Dr. Studebaker and team invite you to give us a call to schedule a complimentary consultation or ask us on Facebook!

Dr. Studebaker and team want to know: What should we blog about?

April 23rd, 2012


As the summer rapidly approaches, we strive to continue writing about important topics related to orthodontics and your treatment at our office.

To help us continue doing that through the course of the spring and summer, we would like to ask you, our readers: what’s on your mind? What would you like to know about the always-changing and exciting field of orthodontics? What would you like us to focus on our blog in the spring and summer months? Perhaps there’s something you’ve wanted to ask us for a while? Let us know by posting here, on our Facebook page, or during your next adjustment appointment.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Dr. Studebaker and team want to know: What should we blog about?

April 23rd, 2012


As the summer rapidly approaches, we strive to continue writing about important topics related to orthodontics and your treatment at our office.

To help us continue doing that through the course of the spring and summer, we would like to ask you, our readers: what’s on your mind? What would you like to know about the always-changing and exciting field of orthodontics? What would you like us to focus on our blog in the spring and summer months? Perhaps there’s something you’ve wanted to ask us for a while? Let us know by posting here, on our Facebook page, or during your next adjustment appointment.

We look forward to hearing from you!

"When should my child visit for an orthodontic consultation?"

April 19th, 2012

/AAAAAAAAAEM/nQw0lrSMoIg/s1600/Mom_daughter_mixed.jpg">Great question! Many parents ask us that question, actually. Many parents in Spring, Klein, Tomball and The Woodlands also assume they must wait until their child has all of his or her permanent teeth to visit Dr. Robert Studebaker for a complimentary consultation, only to discover treatment would have been much easier if started earlier. Did you know the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that every child have an orthodontic check-up no later than age seven?

Yes - seven.

At that point, enough permanent teeth have arrived for Dr. Studebaker to make a determination about whether any problems are present. Also, by age seven, the first molars have come in, providing an opportunity for the Doctor to check for malocclusion, or what we call “bad bite.” Also, the incisors have begun to come in, and problems such as crowding, deep bites and open bites can be detected.

Orthodontic evaluation at an early age provides one of two positive outcomes: For some, early identification or problems will lead to easier or shorter orthodontic treatment in the future. For others, a healthy prognosis will provide immediate peace of mind.

Early evaluation, of course, may signal a need for early treatment. For some children, early treatment can prevent physical and emotional trauma. Aside from spurring on years of harmful teasing, misaligned teeth are also prone to injury and are detrimental to good oral hygiene. So, if your child is nearing his or her seventh birthday, give us a call at 281-251-9229 to schedule an appointment that is free of charge.

Have a great rest of the week!

Spring is here! Do we have your current contact info?

April 12th, 2012

Spring is in the air! As you probably know, you can always connect with us on our Facebook page, but we invite you to please contact our office with any updates to phone numbers and addresses, so that we may be able to reach you.

We also encourage you to call us and let us know if you have any new phone numbers or if your contact information has changed!

Thank you! Have a great week!

April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month

April 5th, 2012


Visiting your dentist during your orthodontic treatment will not only help keep your teeth and mouth healthy while you have braces, but will also help keep the rest of your body healthy. The fact is, every hour of every day in the U.S., someone dies of oral cancer, which is the sixth-most common diagnosed form of the disease. The five-year survival rate is only 50 percent, and oral cancer is one of the few cancers whose survival rate has not improved. Since April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month, we would like to take this opportunity to remind all of our patients about the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene while you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment.

 

Your dentist is specifically trained to diagnose, treat, and prevent oral health problems. Please let us now if you have any questions about your oral health during your next adjustment appointment. Take care of your teeth!

Why do I need a braces adjustment so often?

March 29th, 2012

When you have braces, your wires will need to be replaced with new ones regularly. It is the slow, steady pressure placed on your teeth that move them into their desired positions, so these adjustments are a vital aspect of your treatment. We have set out a specific treatment plan to achieve your optimal results, and keeping up with your appointments will allow your treatment to be completed in the predicted amount of time.

Scheduling your adjustments sooner than planned may result in more pain and discomfort, because your teeth haven’t been allowed to settle into their new positions properly. Skipping appointments or scheduling them farther apart will result in a much longer treatment time. Visiting our office regularly will also allow us to answer any questions you may have, check for damaged appliances, and monitor your progress.

Are you wearing a mouthguard?

March 19th, 2012


Wouldn’t you believe it, it’s already springtime! The spring months, however, bring an increase in outdoor activities and a greater chance of kids damaging their precious mouths and pearly whites. If you play sports, it’s important that you consult Dr. Studebaker for special precautions, such as wearing a mouth guard. A protective mouth guard is advised for playing spring sports such as baseball, soccer, lacrosse and others. Be sure, however, to avoid mouth guards that custom form to your teeth as these will resist any tooth movements we are trying to achieve.

In case of any accident involving the face, check your mouth and the appliances immediately. If teeth are loosened or the appliances damaged, please schedule an appointment with Dr. Studebaker. And don’t forget to ask us—Dr. Studebaker will provide a mouth guard for any patient in active treatment.

Only by using a mouth guard and other forms of facial protection can kids with and without braces avoid serious sports injuries. Please give us a call if you have any questions about mouth guards or your treatment with Dr. Studebaker.

See you soon!

St. Patrick’s Day Fun Facts!

March 14th, 2012

Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics wants to know: Will you be wearing your green this Saturday?  Whether Irish or not, millions of people around the world celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with toasts, parades and “the wearing of the green.” Here are some fun facts about St. Patty’s Day we know you will enjoy:

• St. Patrick’s Day is observed on March 17th because that is the feast day of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. It is also a worldwide celebration of Irish culture and history.

• The name “lephrechaun” has several origins. It could be from the Irish Gaelic word “leipreachan,” which means “a kind of aqueous sprite.” Or, it could be from “leath bhrogan,” which simply means “shoemaker.”

• Some American towns have Irish names. They include: Shamrock Lakes, Indiana; Shamrock, Oklahoma; Shamrock, Texas; Dublin, California and Dublin, Ohio and Mount Gay-Shamrock, West Virginia

• Despite what you may have heard, St. Patrick never banished snakes from Ireland. In fact, no snakes exist or ever existed in Ireland. Ireland is surrounded by icy ocean waters, much too cold to allow snakes to migrate from Britain or anywhere else.

• St. Patrick’s Day was first celebrated in America in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1737. Approximately 34 million Americans claim Irish ancestry. That’s almost nine times the population of Ireland, which has 4.1 million people.

If you have something special planned for St. Patrick’s Day, let us know by posting a comment on our Facebook page.

Connect with us on Facebook!

March 9th, 2012

We will be rolling out our new Facebook Timeline page soon and would love for you to check it out! You’ll find all the useful information that was there before, but now in a fun, new layout. When you Like us on Facebook, you’ll be able to check out photos of our office, find out about new events and contests, or you can even leave a note about how much you enjoyed your visit at our office. We love hearing your feedback to make our practice serve you and your family even better. To make life even easier, if you “Like” us on Facebook, you’ll automatically receive updates from our office right on your own news feed!

See you on Facebook!

How do I prevent tooth decay during my treatment?

February 29th, 2012

Great question!
If you are brushing and flossing daily during your orthodontic treatment with, we think that’s great! But, don’t forget that it’s also important for you to visit your general dentist every 3-to-6 months in addition to brushing your teeth and flossing (and visiting our office, of course). Regular dental checkups are important for maintaining good oral health, especially during orthodontic treatment.
Tooth decay, which is caused by sugars left in your mouth, can turn into an acid, which in turn can break down your teeth. Children are at high risk for tooth decay because adolescents tend to be lax in their oral hygiene habits. Proper brushing and flossing routines, combined with regular dental visits, help keep tooth decay away.
If you have any questions, please be sure to ask our team during your next adjustment appointment, or ask us on Facebook!

Presidents’ Day Fun Facts with Studebaker Orthodontics!

February 20th, 2012


Today marks Presidents’ Day, a day known for celebrating of both George Washington’s and Abraham Lincoln’s combined Birthdays. Presidents’ Day was created in 1971, when President Richard Nixon combined the birthdays of two of our most well-known presidents into one single federal holiday. Presidents’ Day also marks a hard-earned day off from work and school for a lot of our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics.

Here are a few fun facts about our nation’s presidents:

*Abraham Lincoln, our 16th president, carried letters, bills and notes in his tall stovepipe hat.

*George Washington is the first president to be featured on a postage stamp.

*Ronald Reagan, our 40th president, broke the so-called “20-year curse,” in which every president elected in a year ending in 0 died in office.

*Harry S. Truman was the first president to have his Inauguration and speeches televised.

*Abraham Lincoln was the tallest of the U.S. presidents measuring 6’ 4” tall.

*Virginia is the birthplace of more United States presidents than any other state, followed by Ohio and Massachusetts.

Valentine’s Day and your teeth, from Studebaker Orthodontics

February 13th, 2012


With Valentine’s Day almost here, and all that candy making its rounds this week, it’s once again time to remind all our patients to be extra careful when choosing those candies and treats!

All those sweet, sour and sticky candies may taste great, but these treats are known to damage teeth, as well as braces! Did you know sour candies can be acidic to your teeth, and actually wear down the enamel that protects them? This can cause tooth decay and cavities! Sour and fruity candy, such as Starburst and Skittles, are the worst for your teeth since these candies have a low pH value, which is known to ruin enamel.

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends softer treats, such as soft chocolate or peanut butter cups, or melt-in-your-mouth foods. Those who indulge should make sure they brush and floss between teeth, around brackets and at the gum line. If damage occurs, please call us as soon as possible.

Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at Studebaker Orthodontics!

Welcome to Our Blog

February 9th, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to visit our blog. Please check back often for weekly updates on fun and exciting events happening at our office, important and interesting information about orthodontics industry, and the latest news about our practice.

Feel free to leave a comment or question for our doctor and staff – we hope this will be a valuable resource for our patients, their families, and friends!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: How long does orthodontic treatment take?

February 6th, 2012


Your smile is totally unique, so the time you’ll need to spend undergoing orthodontic treatment will also be unique. Generally, orthodontic treatment will take about two years, and this is for good reason. During this time, your teeth will slowly move into their desired positions, leaving you with a great smile with as little discomfort as possible. Rushing treatment can result in a less than perfect smile with a greater chance of tooth movement after your treatment is complete. At Studebaker Orthodontics, we don’t want to waste your time with treatment that won’t retain your smile for the rest of your life.

Of course, treatment time will vary depending on your specific situation. Very minor tooth movement may only take a few months to correct, while serious malocclusion (poor bite) may need more than two years to correct. Only Dr. Studebaker will be able to accurately estimate the time your treatment will take. But trust us—it’ll all be worth it in the end!

Has your child or teen visited Studebaker Orthodontics for a complimentary consultation? If not, please give us a call and let us help him or her begin the journey to a gorgeous smile!

Studebaker Orthodontics, celebrating National Children’s Dental Health Month

February 1st, 2012

Each February, the American Dental Association (ADA) sponsors National Children's Dental Health Month to raise awareness about the importance of oral health. Developing good habits at an early age and scheduling regular dental visits helps children get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.

For kids wearing braces, brushing and flossing can become more difficult, requiring extra time and vigilance to remove food particles that accumulate on and between the teeth and in braces. If the health of your teeth is ignored during treatment with braces, the results can be significantly compromised. Dr. Studebaker is available and happy to explain why effective brushing and flossing is one of the most critical actions needed from patients during orthodontic treatment. Have you visited our Spring, TX office lately? Give us a call and schedule an appointment or your complimentary consultation!

We also invite you to connect with us on Facebook!

Dreaming of a dazzling smile? Dr. Studebaker & team can help!

January 27th, 2012


The fact is, most of us aren’t born with a red carpet smile. And that’s where Dr. Studebaker and our team can help. Of course, orthodontic treatment help make your teeth stay strong, healthy and become perfectly-aligned. But did you know you can get the beautiful straight teeth you’ve always wanted — without braces?

Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics are proud to offer an adult-friendly option for straightening teeth called Invisalign, which uses a series of invisible, removable and comfortable aligners that no one can tell you’re wearing. So, you can smile more during treatment as well as after. Not only are the aligners invisible, they are removable, so you can eat and drink what you want while in treatment. Plus, brushing and flossing are no problem. They are also comfortable, with no metal to cause mouth abrasions during treatment. And no metal and wires usually means you spend less time at our office getting adjustments. Invisalign also allows you to view your own virtual treatment plan when you start so you can see how your straight teeth will look when your treatment is complete.

If you’ve been thinking about getting that perfect smile, we would love to have you in for a visit. Please give us a call to set one up! A complimentary consultation with Dr. Studebaker can determine if Invisalign is right for you. See you soon!

Dr. Studebaker & team want to know: How did you spend MLK Day?

January 16th, 2012


In the 1950s and ’60s, civil rights champion Martin Luther King, Jr. recognized the need to bring about social justice, strengthen America’s communities and move the nation forward. Today, thousands of people of all ages and races across Texas spent their day building, giving and renovating our communities to help celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Did you have the day off? If so, what did you do to help your local community?

We’d love to know about your activities and events this MLK Jr. Day. If you have any video or pictures you’d like to share, please share them on our Facebook page!

Dr. Studebaker and our entire team are proud of your work in our community! Happy MLK Day!

The benefits of a beautiful smile, from Dr. Studebaker

January 11th, 2012


At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know having an attractive smile puts a spring in your step—or two—as well as increases your self-confidence, no matter if you’re 14 or in your late forties.

Smiling not only makes people happy and puts them in a good mood, doing it often can even help you live longer, according to previous studies!

If you’ve been hiding your smile because you have crooked teeth or gaps between your teeth, it’s time to consider orthodontic treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics. You’ll be pleasantly surprised to learn how quickly and efficiently today’s most advanced correction techniques can straighten your smile!

Don’t hide your smile any longer—give us a call today to schedule yours or your child’s orthodontic consultation. See you soon!

2012!

January 2nd, 2012

At Studebaker Orthodontics, the New Year is a time to look back to the past, and more importantly, forward to the coming year. Our wish is that our patients continue to keep their teeth healthy, as well as wear their rubber bands, headgear and appliances as prescribed during their treatment.

We look forward to meeting those patients who are planning to begin their orthodontic treatment this year - we think it's a great resolution!

Happy New Year from all of us at Studebaker Orthodontics!

Happy New Year from Studebaker Orthodontics

December 30th, 2011

The year is almost over, so we wanted to ask what was memorable about 2011 for you, and what are you looking forward to in 2012? Do you have a new year's resolution, or any exciting plans for the coming year?

Have a safe and happy New Year, from Studebaker Orthodontics!

Season’s greetings from Studebaker Orthodontics!

December 19th, 2011


In this season given to tidings of comfort and joy, and as our team at Studebaker Orthodontics reflect on the year that was, we’d like to ask you, our wonderful patients and readers: What do you love about the holidays this year? Being with your loved ones? A clean slate for 2012? Opening presents by the fireplace? All the delicious food? Also, what gift are you most looking forward to getting this year?

We’d love if you shared with us here, or on our Facebook page, all the things you love about the holidays. Stay warm, and don’t forget to stay away from those sweets!

Happy Holidays!

- Dr. Studebaker & team

Beware of those Christmas goodies!

December 15th, 2011

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know maintaining a healthy diet over the holiday season can prove a difficult task. After all, who can resist the tasty treats of Christmas? With grandma and everybody else offering you candy, chocolate logs or Christmas pudding, you just can’t say “I’ll pass” each time. But trouble lurks: every time you chow down on that chocolate or candy, the bacteria in your mouth have a feast on the sugar—at your expense.  The sugar turns into acid, and the acid eats away at the enamel on your teeth and between your braces. Then, you start getting cavities.

Instead, try pumpkin pie, marvelous molasses cookies, wonderful waffles or other braces-friendly recipes, courtesy of the American Association of Orthodontics, or AAO, and “The Braces Cookbook” by Pamela Waterman.

If you must indulge in chocolaty goodness this Christmas or holiday season, remember to brush your teeth after eating sugary treats. Hope this helps! Give us a call if you have any questions!

Happy Holidays!

Share your winter break plans with us!

December 8th, 2011

Dr. Robert Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics want to know: what do your winter plans look like? Do you have any plans for an exciting family vacation? Are you hanging out around town? Catching up on sleep? Spending time with friends? Let us know!

Please feel free to share your exciting winter plans and experiences with us here or on our Facebook page! We would like to wish all of our patients and their families a safe and fun holiday season!

How important is your smile? From Studebaker Orthodontics

November 28th, 2011


At Studebaker Orthodontics we know what it takes to achieve a great smile! And speaking of smiling, in a poll conducted by Glamour Magazine earlier this year, people were asked, “If you had to pick between having perfect teeth, eyesight or hair, which would you choose?”

Well, 44 percent of folks out there chose teeth! In addition, the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, or AACD, conducted a study and found that 99.7 percent of those polled believed a smile is an important social asset. Respondents said straightness, whiteness, cleanliness, as well as the sincerity and sparkle of one’s smile were all important factors not only socially, but career-wise as well.

If you are considering getting the beautiful straight teeth you've always wanted, we invite you to schedule a complimentary consultation. Come discover what makes Studebaker Orthodontics unique!

Happy Thanksgiving from Studebaker Orthodontics!

November 20th, 2011


With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season knocking at our door, Dr. Studebaker and our entire staff at Studebaker Orthodontics wanted to stop for a moment and extend our best wishes to you, our patients, referring doctors and families, for a wonderful Thanksgiving.

As always, if you know anyone we can help, just let us know. We promise to give them the same quality orthodontic care that we have given you.

We hope that this Thanksgiving and holiday season brings fond memories. Thank you for being part of our family.

Ask Dr. Studebaker: “I got my braces. Now what?”

November 13th, 2011


We love when patients ask us that question! Now that you’re wearing braces, it’s just as important to maintain a good oral hygiene regimen as you did before before orthodontic treatment began.

Braces are known to trap food particles and make it difficult to brush or remove plaque, which is why Dr. Studebaker and our team recommend that you brush and floss after every meal. We also encourage you to use a proxabrush to help with the smaller areas where your toothbrush doesn’t reach. We encourage the use of fluoride rinse as well; ask us for a recommendation.

When your braces are initially placed, your teeth are likely to be very sensitive. You may experience discomfort for up to 3 or 5 days, which is why we encourage you to eat soft foods during that time. Remember, the less pressure you put on your teeth, the less discomfort you will have.

You may also be thinking, “Okay, so what can I eat?” We would encourage you to avoid eating sticky, hard, crunchy or chewy snacks that can stick to your teeth.

Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics will tell you it’s crucial to regularly check your braces for bent or loose wires and brackets. In the event of a loose/broken wire or bracket, please call our office immediately to schedule an appointment for repair.

Lastly, in addition to visiting Studebaker Orthodontics during your orthodontic treatment for adjustments, you should visit your dentist for professional check-ups and teeth cleaning appointments about every six months, or as recommended by your dentist.

Help Us Donate to Operation Gratitude this Holiday Season!

November 7th, 2011

Ask Dr. Studebaker: What's the deal with Halloween candy?

October 31st, 2011

With Halloween here, and all that candy making its rounds, it's important to remember that it's still National Orthodontic Health Month! And that means a time to once again remind all our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics to be extra careful when choosing those candies and treats!

All those sweet, sour and sticky candies may taste great, but these treats are known to damage teeth, as well as braces! Did you know sour candies can be acidic to your teeth, and actually wear down the enamel that protects them? This can cause tooth decay and cavities! Sour and fruity candy, such as Starburst and Skittles, are the worst for your child’s teeth since these candies have a low pH value, which is known to ruin enamel.

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends softer treats, such as soft chocolate or peanut butter cups, or melt-in-your-mouth foods. Trick-or-treaters who indulge should make sure they brush and floss between teeth, around brackets and at the gum line. If damage occurs, please call Dr. Studebaker and team as soon as possible.

We hope everyone has a safe and scary Halloween!

Emergency care with Studebaker Orthodontics

October 27th, 2011

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know true orthodontic emergencies are very rare, but when they do occur we are available to you. As a general rule, you should call our office when you experience severe pain or when you have a painful appliance problem that you can't take care of yourself. We'll be able to schedule an appointment to resolve the problem.

You might be surprised to learn that you may be able to temporarily solve many problems yourself until you schedule an appointment with Dr. Robert Studebaker. When working with your appliances, you need to know the names of the parts of your appliances so you are able to identify what part is broken or out of place. After alleviating your discomfort, it is very important that you still call our Spring, Texas orthodontic office as soon as possible to schedule a time to repair the problem. Allowing your appliance to remain damaged for an extended period of time may result in disruptions in your treatment plan. Click here for instructions or give us a call to learn more! We hope you're off to a great Halloween season!

"Dentists, Orthodontists ... What's the Difference?"

October 16th, 2011

“Dentists, Orthodontists, they’re all the same right?” We hear our patients asking this question as they wonder about the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist. Before becoming an orthodontist Dr. Robert Studebaker started out in dental school and earned a dental degree, just like your dentist. After dental school however, Dr. Studebaker decided he wanted to learn more about orthodontics, which is one of nine specialties within the dental field. So he stayed in school for a few more years and became an expert in orthodontics, which focuses on tooth and jaw alignment and bite problems like overbites and under bites.

Other dental specialties you may have heard of include endodontic (focusing on the soft tissue inside your teeth), periodontic (focusing on the gums and other tissues surrounding your teeth) and prosthodontic (focusing on restoring and replacing damaged teeth).

Isn’t it nice to know there’s a dental expert here at Studebaker Orthodontics to help you through any type of treatment your teeth, jaw and gums might need?

Don't skip those regular checkups, especially in October!

October 11th, 2011


Dr. Studebaker wants to know: Are you brushing and flossing daily properly during your treatment? If the answer is yes, that’s great! But, don’t forget that it’s also important for you to visit your general dentist every 3-to-6 months in addition to brushing your teeth and flossing (and visiting Dr. Studebaker's office, of course). Regular dental checkups are important for maintaining good oral health, especially during orthodontic treatment.

It's the perfect time for a visit to the dentist. Why? Because not only is October National Orthodontic Health Month, it's also National Dental Hygiene Month!

Your general dentist can check for problems that might not be seen or felt, detect cavities and early signs of decay, treat oral health problems early and show you how to properly brush and floss your teeth.

During an oral exam your dentist can check the health of your mouth, teeth, gums, cheeks and tongue. Checkups will also include a thorough teeth cleaning and polishing. If you have not been to the dentist in the last six months, let us know during your next visit and we will provide a few great references in Spring, Klein, Tomball The Woodlands or surrounding areas!

At Studebaker Orthodontics, October is National Orthodontic Health Month!

October 3rd, 2011

October is National Orthodontic Health Month, and our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics wanted to remind Dr. Studebaker‘s patients to be careful when they bite into their treats this month. Remember, caramels, taffy, nuts, bubble gum, popcorn kernels and suckers are some of the foods you should be avoiding this Halloween Season! Indulging in these foods can break your braces and lengthen your treatment time!

Also, in honor of “Orthodontic Health Month,” we’d thought we’d ask: What do you love about your braces? Share your story on our Facebook page!

Welcome, Brandi!

September 29th, 2011


Check out our latest office picture! If you look closely, you will probably notice we have a new team member. We are very excited to have Brandi join us as our new Treatment Coordinator. We are sure you'll enjoy meeting her at your future appointments. Welcome to our office, Brandi!

"I'm 31 - am I too old for braces?"

September 21st, 2011

At Studebaker Orthodontics, no one is "too old" for orthodontic treatment. In fact, we recently read a fascinating statistic: the number of adults getting braces has jumped 24 percent from just 14 years ago! Yes, braces help make your pearly whites strong, healthy and perfectly-aligned, but perhaps another reason for the spike in adult braces is this: people want to look and feel great.

In an age—and society—where looks matter as much as anything, and at a time when evenly-aligned teeth might be the difference between getting a job or a promotion, adults are choosing—wisely, we might add—to invest in orthodontics. Orthodontic treatment with Dr. Studebaker can be successful at any age, and adults especially appreciate the benefits of a beautiful smile.

If you’ve been thinking about getting that perfect smile, Dr. Studebaker would love to have you visit for a consultation. Please give us a call to set one up!

Tips for a successful school year, from Dr. Studebaker

September 15th, 2011

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know a new school year brings a lot of stress for many kids. New classes, new teachers, new friends and new academic challenges can be overwhelming! That’s why we thought we’d provide a few steps for our patients to enjoy their time in school and succeed this upcoming school year!

• Get plenty of sleep every night. Eight hours is recommended.
• Eat a healthy breakfast as it’s the most important meal of the day.
• Pack a healthy lunch or make healthy choices when selecting your school lunch. Try to avoid the vending machine and limit your intake of junk food.
• Stay on top of your homework and reading assignments.
• Stay active. Limit the time in front of the TV or playing video games. Instead, try to get outside to get some exercise—go for a walk or ride your bike.
• Ask for help. When you are having a hard time understanding a concept, ask your teacher or your peers for guidance.
• Always have a positive attitude and a smile on your face!

We hope everyone has a productive and fun school year!

September marks National Childhood Injury Prevention Month!

September 6th, 2011

This month, our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics want you to be extra, extra careful with your braces and appliances. After all, September marks the start of fall sports, which means an increased risk to mouth injuries. September also happens to be National Childhood Injury Prevention Month, and Dr. Studebaker and team thought it would be a good idea to share a few sobering facts about sports and facial injuries, courtesy of our friends at the American Association of Orthodontists.

*More than half of the seven million sports and recreation-related injuries that occur each year are sustained by youth between ages 5 and 24. Collision and contact sports have higher injury rates—baseball, soccer, basketball and football account for about 80% of all sports-related emergency room visits, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

*Sixty-seven percent of parents say their child does not wear a mouth guard, yet, 70 percent say their biggest fear when their child plays is that they will get hurt.

*Of the parents whose children do not wear a mouth guard, 84 percent say it’s because the league or coach does not require it, according to the AAO.

*The average high school baseball pitcher can throw a fast ball between 75-to-85 miles per hour. That compares to being hit in the mouth by a speeding car!

We hope this helps you remember to wear a mouth guard and other forms of protective gear when participating in fall sports! We encourage you to give our convenient Spring, TX office a call if you have any questions! We hope you had a wonderful & relaxing Labor Day weekend!

Back to school with Dr. Studebaker

August 31st, 2011


Now that many of the schools are back in session, Dr. Studebaker would like to remind all of our patients about the importance of scheduling appointments in advance. With school, clubs, sports and family duties to consider, we know that it can be challenging to find time to visit Studebaker Orthodontics this fall. In order to accommodate all of our patients’ busy schedules, it is important that you plan ahead for your appointments so that we are able to provide you with an appointment time that is convenient for you.

As always, please remember to give us advanced notice if you’re unable to make your regularly-scheduled appointment. If we receive enough notice, we might be able to schedule another patient for that time. Feel free to give us a call if you have any questions, or if you would like to schedule your fall appointment.

We’ll see you soon and hope summer is winding down nicely for all our patients!

Breaking Bad Habits

August 25th, 2011


At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know good dental health requires only a few minutes a day. We thought we’d provide some practical advice on how to improve your or your child’s smile between your adjustment visits with Dr. Robert Studebaker.

Start by brushing your teeth twice a day. Proper brushing techniques are an essential part of maintaining good oral health during your orthodontic treatment, as well as preventing gum disease. More care and time are needed to adequately brush your teeth when you are wearing braces. Brushing daily helps remove decay-causing plaque from tooth surfaces. Please consult Dr. Studebaker if you would like us to review brushing techniques with you or your child. The use of a mechanical toothbrush such as a Sonicare or Oral B can aid in removing plaque around braces. Flossing daily will also prevent plaque to build up between the teeth and prevent stains between your teeth. Research has shown the bacteria of gum disease has been linked to coronary artery disease, stroke, diabetes and memory loss. Lastly, we encourage you to throw away old toothbrushes and replace them every 2 or 3 months, or after an illness.

We hope this helps! If you have any further questions about any of these tips, please contact Studebaker Orthodontics or ask your general dentist during your next scheduled visit! Or, ask us on Facebook!

Tell Dr. Studebaker about your summer!

August 15th, 2011


The dog days of summer are upon us, and what better time for our team at Studebaker Orthodontics to ask our patients about their summer!

Whether you visited our nation’s capitol, went on a camping trip, visited the state fair or just stayed in town and hung out with friends, we want to know how you’re all spending your summer! Please feel free to share your summer plans and experiences with us below or on our Facebook page as the summer comes to an end soon for a lot of our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics! We invite you to post your photos as well!

We look forward to hearing all about your adventures! Enjoy the rest of your summer!

Smile Week at Studebaker Orthodontics

August 11th, 2011


It’s National Smile Week at Studebaker Orthodontics, and a GREAT time to remind Dr. Studebaker's patients to practice good oral hygiene to keep those teeth shining during your orthodontic treatment!

Here are a few simple steps you can take to improve your oral health so that you may celebrate National Smile Week for many, many years to come:

* Brush at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
* Floss everyday to clean between your teeth and braces.
* Reduce your intake of sugary foods and drinks during your orthodontic treatment
* Visit your dentist regularly (every 6 months or as recommended by your dentist)!

If you have questions about any of these tips, we encourage you to give us a call, ask Dr. Studebaker during your next visit ... or ask us on Facebook!

And remember to smile at people you come across throughout the week, whether you know them or not. Smiles are contagious, and are a good thing to give and to get. We hope you’re all having a relaxing summer!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: What, exactly, are cavities?

August 4th, 2011


We hope you’re having a great summer! Dr. Studebaker and team know one word nobody wants to hear when they visit the dentist – especially during their orthodontic treatment – is Cavity! That’s right, the dreaded cavity; but what exactly are cavities and how do they happen? A cavity is a hole that develops in a tooth when the tooth begins to decay. It’s important to get a cavity filled as soon as it’s detected so that it does not grow bigger.

So, what causes a cavity? A cavity is caused by plaque, a sticky substance that forms on the tooth as a result of germ and bacteria build-up. Plaque is acidic and as it clings to your teeth the acids eat away the outside of the tooth (also called the enamel) and a hole is formed. Yes, cavities can be repaired by your general dentist, but here are a few simple steps you can take to prevent cavities at home:

• Brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste at least twice daily

• Gently brush your gums to keep them healthy (when choosing a toothbrush it is recommended to use soft bristles)

• Floss your teeth at least once a day to remove plaque and food that may be caught between the teeth where your toothbrush can’t reach

• Limit the amount of soda and sugary treats you eat/drink

• Be sure to visit your dentist every six months – or as recommended – for a teeth cleaning and check-up

If you don’t have a general dentist, Dr. Studebaker would be glad to provide a few recommendations in our area!

You’re never too old for a new smile!

July 26th, 2011

At Studebaker Orthodontics, no one is “too old” for orthodontic treatment. In fact, we recently read a fascinating statistic: the number of adults getting braces has jumped 24 percent from just 15 years ago! Yes, braces help make your pearly whites strong, healthy and perfectly-aligned, but perhaps another reason for the spike in adult braces is this: people want to look and feel great.

In an age—and society—where looks matter as much as anything, and at a time when evenly-aligned teeth might be the difference between getting a job or a promotion, adults are choosing—wisely, we might add—to invest in orthodontics. Orthodontic treatment with Dr. Studebaker can be successful at any age, and adults especially appreciate the benefits of a beautiful smile.

If you’ve been thinking about getting that perfect smile, Dr. Studebaker would love to have you visit for a consultation. Please give us a call to set one up!

"Hey, Dr. Studebaker! Are those rumors about braces true?"

July 18th, 2011


Trust us when we tell you that our professional team, as well as Dr. Studebaker know there are a lot of myths and half-truths floating around these days when it comes to orthodontics. But, before you buy into those myths, we think you should definitely get the facts! Our friends at the American Association of Orthodontists have some great information on the myths and facts of orthodontics, and we definitely encourage you to check them out before settling for rumors about braces!

If you have any questions about orthodontics or your treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics, please feel free to give us a call at 281-205-0876!

We hope you had a relaxing weekend!!

Does Dr. Studebaker have your current contact info?

July 13th, 2011

Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics hope you’re having a great week and a great summer so far! If you are planning on traveling with family this summer or think you might not be able to make it to your scheduled appointment with Dr. Studebaker, please let us know ahead of time so that we may be able to accommodate you, as well as schedule another patient during that time.

Also, we ask that you give us a call and and let us know if you have any new phone numbers or if your contact information has changed! Please call us with any updates to phone numbers and addresses, so we may be able to reach you. Thank you! Enjoy the rest of your week!

Patriotic Fun Facts with Studebaker Orthodontics!

July 4th, 2011


America turns 235 years old today, and because we know our patients love fun facts, we thought we’d provide you with some fun facts about Independence Day! Have a great Fourth of July everyone, and we’ll see you soon!

- Independence Day was first celebrated in Philadelphia on July 8, 1776.

- An estimated 2.5 million people lived in America in July 1776. Today, an estimated 309 million people reside in the United States.

- The major objection to being ruled by Britain was taxation without representation, which meant that people didn’t want to be taxed by a government that did not represent them.

- In 1941, Congress declared 4th of July a federal legal holiday. It is one of the few federal holidays that have not been moved to the nearest Friday or Monday.

- The stars on the original American flag were arranged in a circle to ensure that all colonies were equal.

- America’s mascot, the bald eagle, can achieve speeds of up to 200 miles per hour when making a predatory dive. During a normal flight, bald eagles can travel up to 30 miles per hour.

- The American flag patch is backwards on U.S. Army uniforms. The reason? The blue field on the flag (the part with the stars) faces forward to symbolize carrying the American flag into battle.

- Someone who specializes in the history of flags is called a vexillologist.

- The word ‘patriotism’ comes from the Latin patria, which means ‘homeland’ or ‘fatherland.’

- According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, Americans consume over 150 million hot dogs during their Independence Day festivities.

- Speaking of food, there’s a 1-in-6 chance the beef on your backyard this Independence Day weekend grill came from Texas. The Lone Star State is America’s leader in the production of cattle and calves.

We proudly offer complimentary consultations!

June 28th, 2011

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know what it takes to achieve a great smile! We also believe that Orthodontic treatment is much more than just teeth and smiles. It is also about building self-confidence, and about creating relationships throughout the treatment process.

One of our commitments is meeting with you to help you explore all or the options available to you or your child. We offer complimentary consultations for those interested in orthodontic treatment. During this time, you'll have time reserved with Dr. Robert Studebaker, who will assess your particular needs as well as discuss treatment options available and answer any questions you may have. We place a high value on making sure you have complete information before beginning treatment.

If you have been thinking about obtaining the dazzling smile you’ve always wanted, we invite you to give a call at 281-251-9229. We proudly serve the areas of North Houston, including Spring, Klein, Tomball and The Woodlands.

Share your summer adventures with Studebaker Orthodontics!

June 20th, 2011

As the school year comes to an end for a lot of our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics, the days get longer and the hot Texas sun begins to warm up, there’s no better way to beat the heat than jump into a pool or chill under the shade with a cool beverage.

For most of our patients, summer brings a chance to get away from it all and escape everyday life, if only for a week or two. For others, it means a season of relaxation and relief from homework and studying, among other activities.

How about you?

What are your summer plans? Do you have any interesting plans for a summer vacation? Our entire staff (as well as Dr. Studebaker) would be interested in how you are all spending your summer vacations. If you’re headed to an exotic destination, awesome! If you're going camping, we'd like to hear about it! Going to an Astros game? Tell us! Even if you're staying at home and hanging out, let us know!

Please feel free to share your summer plans and adventures on our Facebook page as the summer rolls along!

Father's Day contest at Studebaker Orthodontics!

June 9th, 2011

Be sure to participate in our Father's Day contest at your next visit with Dr. Studebaker!

Smile! June is National Smile Month!

June 2nd, 2011


Now that June is here, our team at Studebaker Orthodontics thought we’d tell you June is National Smile Month, and a good time to remind all our patients to practice good oral hygiene between your visits to our convenient Spring, TX office, as well as your general dentist.

Below are a few simple steps you can take to improve your oral health so that you may celebrate National Smile Month for many, many years to come:

* Brush at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
* Floss everyday to clean between your teeth and braces.
* Reduce your intake of sugary foods and drinks during your orthodontic treatment
* Visit your dentist regularly (every 6 months or as recommended by your dentist)!

If you have questions about any of these tips, we encourage you to give us a call, ask Dr. Studebaker during your next visit or ask us on Facebook!

Studebaker Orthodontics, honoring our veterans and heroes

May 26th, 2011

The unofficial kickoff to summer—Memorial Day weekend—is a time Americans stop and remember those men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom over the course of American history.

Memorial Day also marks the unofficial start of the summer, and for many of our patients, getting out of town for three days after being cooped up in the office or in the classroom is sweet relief. At Studebaker Orthodontics, we also know Memorial Day weekend is ripe for travel. After all, it’s a season of vacations, adventures and great memories.

What about you? What are you and your family up to this Memorial Day weekend? Whether you are headed to a barbecue, a camping trip, or hitting the open roads of Texas with family this weekend, we want to know all about it!

Dr. Studebaker and our entire team wish you a nice and relaxing (and safe) Memorial Day weekend!

"My daughter is seven - when should I bring her in for a consultation?"

May 19th, 2011

Great question! Many parents ask us that question, actually. Many parents in Spring, Klein, Tomball and The Woodlands also assume they must wait until their child has all of his or her permanent teeth to visit Dr. Robert Studebaker for a complimentary consultation, only to discover treatment would have been much easier if started earlier. Did you know the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that every child have an orthodontic check-up no later than age seven?

Yes - seven.

At that point, enough permanent teeth have arrived for Dr. Studebaker to make a determination about whether any problems are present. Also, by age seven, the first molars have come in, providing an opportunity for the Doctor to check for malocclusion, or what we call “bad bite.” Also, the incisors have begun to come in, and problems such as crowding, deep bites and open bites can be detected.

Orthodontic evaluation at an early age provides one of two positive outcomes: For some, early identification or problems will lead to easier or shorter orthodontic treatment in the future. For others, a healthy prognosis will provide immediate peace of mind.

Early evaluation, of course, may signal a need for early treatment. For some children, early treatment can prevent physical and emotional trauma. Aside from spurring on years of harmful teasing, misaligned teeth are also prone to injury and are detrimental to good oral hygiene. So, if your child is nearing his or her seventh birthday, give us a call at 281-251-9229 to schedule an appointment that is free of charge.

Have a great rest of the week!

May is National Teen Self-Esteem Month!

May 10th, 2011

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know image is everything. At an age when image is so important, the thought of having braces may intensify the already-delicate confidence of today's teens. Well, May is National Teen Self-Esteem Month, and during this time, parents are encouraged to act as positive role models, help stop negative self-images, and improve confidence and security among teenagers.

One of the great ways to improve your confidence is to improve your smile. And that begins with a free consultation at Studebaker Orthodontics. After all, what better time to avoid having crooked teeth in your adulthood than coming in for a consultation with Dr. Robert Studebaker?

We proudly provide traditional braces, as well as Invisalign Teen for today’s image-conscious teens.

Dr. Studebaker and team invite you to give us a call to schedule a complimentary consultation or ask us on Facebook!

This spring, what’s on your reading list?

May 1st, 2011

With the school year close to winding down for a lot of our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics, we wanted to remind all of you about the importance of reading. Sure it’s easy to keep putting off reading this time of year, but reading is a vital step in brain development and literacy. And if you needed any more reason to read, May marks “Get Caught Reading Month.”

Today, we thought we’d ask: What’s on YOUR reading list? What are some of your all-time favorites? Out of ideas for great reads? Ask us for suggestions, and Dr. Studebaker & team would be happy to provide a few suggestions. You may also ask a local librarian for some ideas on what to read next!

Happy reading! Be sure to share with us your book picks or your all-time favorites novels or literature on our Facebook page!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: Which foods should I avoid while in braces?

April 25th, 2011

There are a variety of foods Dr. Robert Studebaker wants you to avoid while you're wearing braces. Most foods can damage braces, but certain foods can bend the wires or break the brackets on your braces. If you have braces, you should avoid starch, sugar and gummy foods, as these foods can be difficult to remove during brushing. Foods that are high in sugar and starch causes plaque, cavities and tooth decay.

Avoid tough meats, hard breads and raw vegetables such as carrots and celery. Before long, you'll be able to bite a cucumber again. But you'll need to protect your orthodontic appliances when you eat for as long as you're wearing braces.

Foods to Avoid
• Chewy foods: bagels, hard rolls, licorice
• Crunchy foods: popcorn, ice, chips
• Sticky foods: caramels, gum
• Hard foods: nuts, candy
• Foods you have to bite into: corn on the cob, apples, carrots
• Chewing on hard things (for example, pens, pencils or fingernails) can damage the braces. Damaged braces will cause treatment to take longer.

If you have any questions on which foods you should be avoiding and why, we invite you to give us a call or ask Dr. Studebaker or our staff during your next visit! Happy Monday!

April featured patient reviews for Studebaker Orthodontics!

April 17th, 2011

Our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics loooooove hearing from our patients! Here are just four patient reviews we wanted to feature this month!

I like that he is really nice and he tells me exactly what is going into my mouth. He is awesome! You rock Dr. Studebaker!

The Staff! I have never met a more Wonderful Group of Employees. They are so warm, inviting. It all comes from a Wonderful Orthodontist.

Your office staff is like family. We have enjoyed doing business with you!!!

I love everything about this orthodontist very modern up to date and they are so advance i wouldn’t think of going anywhere else.

Ask Dr. Studebaker: “I’m 28 – am I too old for braces?”

April 9th, 2011


At Studebaker Orthodontics, no one is "too old" for orthodontic treatment. In fact, we recently read a fascinating statistic: the number of adults getting braces has jumped 24 percent from just 14 years ago! Yes, braces help make your pearly whites strong, healthy and perfectly-aligned, but perhaps another reason for the spike in adult braces is this: people want to look and feel great.

In an age—and society—where looks matter as much as anything, and at a time when evenly-aligned teeth might be the difference between getting a job or a promotion, adults are choosing—wisely, we might add—to invest in orthodontics. Orthodontic treatment with Dr. Studebaker can be successful at any age, and adults especially appreciate the benefits of a beautiful smile.

If you’ve been thinking about getting that perfect smile, Dr. Studebaker would love to have you visit for a consultation. Please give us a call to set one up!

Play it safe this spring, from Dr. Studebaker

March 30th, 2011


Wouldn’t you believe it, it’s already springtime! The spring months, however, bring an increase in outdoor activities and a greater chance of kids damaging their precious mouths and pearly whites. If you play sports, it’s important that you consult Dr. Studebaker for special precautions, such as wearing a mouth guard. A protective mouth guard is advised for playing spring sports such as baseball, soccer, lacrosse and others. Be sure, however, to avoid mouth guards that custom form to your teeth as these will resist any tooth movements we are trying to achieve.

In case of any accident involving the face, check your mouth and the appliances immediately. If teeth are loosened or the appliances damaged, please schedule an appointment with Dr. Studebaker. And don’t forget to ask us—Dr. Studebaker will provide a mouth guard for any patient in active treatment.

Only by using a mouth guard and other forms of facial protection can kids with and without braces avoid serious sports injuries. Please give us a call if you have any questions about mouth guards or your treatment with Dr. Studebaker.

See you soon!

How important is your smile? From Studebaker Orthodontics

March 21st, 2011


At Studebaker Orthodontics we know what it takes to achieve a great smile! And speaking of smiling, in a new poll conducted by Glamour Magazine, people were asked, “If you had to pick between having perfect teeth, eyesight or hair, which would you choose?

Well, 44 percent of folks out there are choosing teeth! In addition, the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, or AACD, conducted a study and found that 99.7 percent of those polled believed a smile is an important social asset. Respondents said straightness, whiteness, cleanliness, as well as the sincerity and sparkle of a person’s smile were all important factors not only socially, but career-wise as well.

If you are considering getting the beautiful straight teeth you've always wanted, we invite you to schedule a complimentary consultation. Come discover what makes Studebaker Orthodontics unique!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: Who benefits from braces?

March 8th, 2011


Braces aren’t just for pre-adolescents and teenagers anymore! Dr. Robert Studebaker will tell you that anyone, at any age, can benefit from orthodontic care; whether it’s correcting a problem not treated in your younger years, or catching a problem early.

To ensure the best overall treatment, the American Association of Orthodontists, or AAO, recommends that children receive an orthodontic consultation as early as age seven. If a problem is evident, taking action early can spare a lot of treatment and expense down the road.

If you never received orthodontic treatment when you were young, don’t worry! You’re never too old for a beautiful smile, says Dr. Studebaker. Set up an appointment for a consultation at Studebaker Orthodontics and find out how orthodontics will transform your smile, and your life!

Invisalign patient testimonial [Video]

March 1st, 2011

Dr. Studebaker and our team came across this video last week, and realized that it's just what folks considering Invisalign need to see. Invisalign gets a ton of promotion online (including here on our blog), but people rarely get the see a clear cut, unbiased, point of view from someone who actually has chosen to straighten their teeth with Invisalign.

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we get quite a lot of requests for Invisalign. We always let our patients know about the stages of Invisalign, as well as how one might first react to it. But, to hear it from someone actually wearing these clear aligners is something else.

Check out this video of a patient who has been wearing her aligners for only 10 minutes! Because they’re clear, your teeth will be steadily straightening – and no one will know it but you! Please give us a call to set up a complimentary consultation with Dr. Studebaker, so we can discuss the specifics of your treatment.

Presidents' Day Fun Facts!

February 20th, 2011

Tomorrow marks Presidents’ Day, a day known for celebrating both George Washington’s and Abraham Lincoln’s combined February birthdays. Presidents’ Day was created in 1971, when President Richard Nixon combined the birthdays of two of our most well-known presidents into one single federal holiday. Presidents' Day also marks a hard-earned day off from work and school for a lot of our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics.

Here are a few fun facts about our nation’s presidents we thought you might enjoy:

*Abraham Lincoln, our 16th president, supposedly carried letters, bills and notes in his tall stovepipe hat.

*George Washington is the first president to be featured on a postage stamp.

*Ronald Reagan, our 40th president, broke the so-called "20-year curse," in which every president elected in a year ending in 0 died in office.

*Harry S. Truman was the first president to have his Inauguration and speeches televised.

*Fourteen presidents served as vice presidents: J. Adams, Jefferson, Van Buren, Tyler, Fillmore, A. Johnson, Arthur, T. Roosevelt, Coolidge, Truman, Nixon, L. Johnson, Ford, and George H.W. Bush.

*Abraham Lincoln was the tallest of the U.S. presidents measuring 6’ 4” tall.

*Virginia is the birthplace of more United States presidents than any other state, followed by Ohio and Massachusetts.

Complimentary Consultations at Studebaker Orthodontics

February 14th, 2011

At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know what it takes to achieve a great smile! We also believe that Orthodontic treatment is much more than just teeth and smiles. It is also about building self-confidence, and about creating relationships throughout the treatment process.

One of our commitments is meeting with you to help you explore all or the options available to you or your child. We offer complimentary consultations for those interested in orthodontic treatment. During this time, you'll have time reserved with Dr. Robert Studebaker, who will assess your particular needs as well as discuss treatment options available and answer any questions you may have. We place a high value on making sure you have complete information before beginning treatment.

If you have been thinking about obtaining the dazzling smile you’ve always wanted, we invite you to give a call at 281-251-9229. We proudly serve the areas of North Houston, including Spring, Klein, Tomball and The Woodlands.

See you soon and HAPPY Valentine's Day!!

Studebaker Orthodontics, supporting National Children's Dental Health Month

February 7th, 2011

Each February, the American Dental Association (ADA) sponsors National Children's Dental Health Month to raise awareness about the importance of oral health. Developing good habits at an early age and scheduling regular dental visits helps children get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.

For kids wearing braces, brushing and flossing can become more difficult, requiring extra time and vigilance to remove food particles that accumulate on and between the teeth and in braces. If the health of your teeth is ignored during treatment with braces, the results can be significantly compromised. Dr. Studebaker is available and happy to explain why effective brushing and flossing is one of the most critical actions needed from patients during orthodontic treatment. Have you visited our Spring, TX office lately? Give us a call and schedule an appointment or your complimentary consultation!

We also invite you to connect with us on Facebook!

Do you know where your mouth guard is?

January 31st, 2011


Spring sports are just around the corner, and our staff, including Dr. Studebaker, would like to remind our young athletes in treatment to take care of both your mouth and appliances while participating in contact sports (and non-contact sports) as well this spring. Dr. Studebaker will tell you that only by using a mouth guard can kids with and without braces avoid serious sports injuries. And don't forget to ask us for a mouth guard - we will provide a mouth guard for anyone in active treatment!

If you have further questions or are ready to schedule your consultation, just give us a call at our Spring, TX office.

When Are Two Phases of Treatment Necessary? Dr. Studebaker Explains...

January 22nd, 2011


Great question. Phase I, or early interceptive treatment, is limited orthodontic treatment (i.e. expander or partial braces) before all of the permanent teeth have erupted. Such treatment can occur between the ages of six and ten. This treatment is sometimes recommended to make more space for developing teeth, correction of crossbites, overbites, underbites, or harmful oral habits. Phase II treatment is also called comprehensive treatment, because it involves full braces when all of the permanent teeth have erupted, usually between the ages of eleven and thirteen.

When we at Studebaker Orthodontics have patients with clear developmental problems at an early age, it’s best to start work when they are young, before the problems get bigger and more difficult to treat.

Examples include:
•An upper or lower jaw that is not growing correctly
•A mouth growing in a way that doesn’t leave enough room for all the permanent teeth to come in
•A severe malocclusion, or bad bite, which means the jaw doesn’t fit together correctly

Has your child visited our office for a complimentary consultation? If not, please give us a call and let Dr. Robert Studebaker help your child begin the journey to a gorgeous smile

January featured patient reviews for Studebaker Orthodontics!

January 16th, 2011


Our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics loooooove hearing from our patients! Here are three patient reviews we wanted to feature this month!

The office staff is friendly and helpful. The Orthodontist has nice personality. The office waiting area is comfortable!!” ~ Stephen P.

I love everything about this orthodontist very modern up to date and they are so advance i wouldn't think of going anywhere else.” ~ Malissa G.

"Wonderful Orthdontist: The staff is wonderful and very informative. They make you feel comfortable and explain everything. Very good with younger kids too. Willing to work with you. Fair. I am very pleased." ~ Anonymous

"This doctor/practice is awesome...They are very high tech and they explain everything to you to the T!!! Very clean;/sanitary!!! Dr. Studebaker's staff is excellent!!!
Very attentive...
A+ from me!!!
" ~ LA-BRACEFACE!

Here comes the Braces Brigade!

January 8th, 2011

At Studebaker Orthodontics, our patients want to get as much out of their treatment as possible. That includes asking a lot of questions and making sure they take care of both their appliances and oral health.

Would you like to learn more about what to expect during orthodontic treatment, from someone with firsthand experience? Well, our friends at the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recently developed the Braces Brigade blog, where past, present, as well as future orthodontic patients from coast to coast document their (or their child’s) orthodontic journeys. The blog will serve as a source of guidance for others as the patients undergo orthodontic care.

Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics encourages you to visit the Braces Brigade blog to read these great and informative blogs—who knows, maybe you’ll learn a thing or two! As always, don’t hesitate to give us a call at our Spring, Texas office if you have any questions about the Braces Brigade or your own orthodontic treatment with Dr. Studebaker!

Have a great weekend!

What is your New Year's Resolution?

January 1st, 2011


2011 is here—and what a year 2010 was at Studebaker Orthodontics! Today, we thought we’d ask: what was memorable about 2010 for you, and what are you most looking forward to this year? Do you have a new year's resolution, or any exciting plans for the coming year?

We would love to see what you come up with, share with us by commenting on this post or on our Facebook page. Whatever your New Year’s Resolution, we wish you the very best for 2011!

What helps you relax at Studebaker Orthodontics?

December 27th, 2010

Dr. Studebaker and team understand not everyone is thrilled about visiting their orthodontist. But here at Studebaker Orthodontics, we strive to bring you the best and most comforting experience at each visit. Today, we’d like to know: What is it about Studebaker Orthodontics that makes you comfortable or puts you or your child at ease? Is it something about our pleasant environment? Our courteous staff? Dr. Studebaker himself?

Let us know by posting on Facebook or by giving us a call! Have a safe and happy New Year, to all our patients, friends, family and all our dental and medical colleagues!

See you all in 2011!

When should you call Dr. Studebaker?

December 23rd, 2010

Our friends at the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) have put together a helpful list that outlines when you should call Studebaker Orthodontics. Here are some early warning signs indicating it’s time to check in with Dr. Studebaker and team:

1. Early or late loss of baby teeth
2. Difficulty of chewing or biting
3. Mouth breathing
4. Finger sucking or other oral habits
5. Crowding, misplaced or blocked-out teeth
6. Jaws that shift, make sounds, protrude or retrude
7. Speech difficulty
8. Biting the cheek or biting into the roof of the mouth
9. Protruding teeth
10. Teeth that meet in an abnormal way or don’t meet at all
11. Facial imbalance or asymmetry
12. Grinding or clenching of teeth

Do any of these warning signs fit you? If so, give us a call as soon as possible! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all our patients, friends, family and all our dental and medical colleagues in Spring, Klein, Tomball, The Woodlands and surrounding areas!

Season's greetings from Studebaker Orthodontics!

December 14th, 2010

In this season given to tidings of comfort and joy, and as our team at Studebaker Orthodontics reflect on the year that was, we’d like to ask you, our wonderful patients and readers: What do you love about the holidays this year? Being with your loved ones? A clean slate for 2011? Opening presents by the fireplace? All the delicious food? Also, what gift are you most looking forward to getting this year?

We’d love if you shared with us here, or on our Facebook page, all the things you love about the holidays. Stay warm, and don’t forget to stay away from those sweets!

Happy Holidays!

- Dr. Studebaker & team

Hey Dr. Studebaker! What's Invisalign, and is it right for me? [Video]

December 10th, 2010

We've discussed Invisalign treatment in the past, and thought we'd share with you a helpful video that walks you through the process of Invisalign a bit "clearer."

The Invisalign system at Studebaker Orthodontics is a state-of-the-art system of clear, removable aligners that we proudly offer at our office. Dr. Robert Studebaker is a Certified Invisalign Provider, offering Invisalign for teens and adults.

Here's how it works: You wear each set of aligners for about two weeks, removing them only to eat, drink, brush, and floss. As you replace each aligner with the next in the series, your teeth will move — little by little, week by week — until they have straightened to the final position Dr. Studebaker has prescribed. You'll visit our office about once every 6 weeks (on average) to ensure that your treatment is progressing as planned. Total treatment time averages 9-15 months and the average number of aligners worn during treatment is between 18 and 30, but both will vary from case to case.

If you've been wanting to straighten your teeth but are unsure about going through traditional orthodontic treatment, please give Dr. Studebaker and team a call to learn if Invisalign is the right option for you!

Enjoy your weekend everyone!!

At the movies with Studebaker Orthodontics!

December 1st, 2010


Dr. Studebaker and our entire team look forward to seeing all of you at our Patient Appreciation Movie Day on Saturday, December 4th at 2 p.m. at the Silverado Theater in Tomball.

We will be watching Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows! We will be there at 1 p.m. passing out tickets in a blue van with balloons.

See you all there!

Happy Thanksgiving from Studebaker Orthodontics!

November 24th, 2010


With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season knocking at our door, Dr. Studebaker and our entire staff at Studebaker Orthodontics wanted to stop for a moment and extend our best wishes to you, our patients, referring doctors and families, for a wonderful Thanksgiving.

As always, if you know anyone we can help, just let us know. We promise to give them the same quality orthodontic care that we have given you.

We hope that this Thanksgiving and holiday season brings fond memories. Thank you for being part of our family.

Talking retainers with Studebaker Orthodontics

November 19th, 2010


Have you recently completed your orthodontic treatment with Dr. Robert Studebaker? If so, we’d like to congratulate you again! Now that your braces have been removed, Dr. Studebaker will provide—or has provided you—with retainers. After braces are removed, Dr. Studebaker will tell you that teeth may shift out of position if they are not stabilized. Retainers, however, provide that stabilization, and are designed to hold teeth in their corrected, ideal positions until the bones and gums adapt to the treatment changes. Wearing retainers exactly as instructed by Dr. Studebaker and our staff is the best way to make sure that the treatment improvements at Studebaker Orthodontics last for a lifetime.

To learn more about the advantages of wearing retainers after your orthodontic treatment, please visit our website for retainer instructions and check out this helpful article about retainers from KidsHealth or give us a call at 281-251-9229!

Have a GREAT weekend!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: Do cold germs live on toothbrushes?

November 10th, 2010

Fall is here, and so is the dreaded cold and flu season. After recovering from your cold, our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics will tell you one of the most important steps you can take to avoid becoming reinfected is replacing your toothbrush!

Germs can linger on the bristles, and you risk prolonging your sickness by continuing to use the same toothbrush. Be smart - keep a spare, just in case! To protect your toothbrush from bacteria all year long, consider the following tips:

• Wash your hands before and after brushing
• Allow the brush to air dry after each use, harmful bacteria dies after being exposed to oxygen
• Store the toothbrush in an upright position to allow water to drain and dry faster
• Replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months. Worn bristles are less effective in properly cleaning your teeth, and can actually be damaging to teeth if used too long!

Hope this tip helps! Feel free to give us a call or ask us on Facebook if you have any questions!

Dr. Studebaker & team visit Austin for the 90th annual Southwestern Society of Orthodontists meeting

November 2nd, 2010


Dr. Robert Studebaker and our staff are committed to continuing education and providing the best orthodontic care possible for our patients in Spring, Klein, The Woodlands and nearby neighborhoods. This includes visiting various important orthodontic-related conferences and seminars around the country.

What did we do this past weekend? We got smarter at the Southwestern Society of Orthodontists 90th Annual Session in Austin, TX.

If you've got an appointment scheduled with Dr. Studebaker in the coming weeks, we encourage you to ask him about his perspectives on the Austin session, including what he learned and how continuing education and acquisition of new technology helps us at Studebaker Orthodontics treat you more effectively!

Share your experience at Studebaker Orthodontics with the world!

October 28th, 2010


At Studebaker Orthodontics, we know what it takes to achieve a great smile! We recognize that every patient has different needs, and we pride ourselves on the courteous and professional service we provide to each and every patient. Dr. Studebaker and team believe that orthodontic treatment should be a fun, rewarding experience.

Whether you've visited Studebaker Orthodontics for a week or a year, we'd love to hear your feedback about how our practice is faring! There are lots of ways you can share your thoughts about our practice with the rest of the world, but we encourage you to head to our Google Local page and write a review there. After all, reviews help Dr. Studebaker and team create more beautiful smiles in Spring, Klein, The Woodlands and surrounding communities!

You may write a review here. Thanks in advance and have a great week! We all look forward to reading your reviews!

October featured patient reviews for Studebaker Orthodontics!

October 21st, 2010

"The Staff! I have never met a more Wonderful Group of Employee's. They are so warm, inviting. It all comes from a Wonderful Orthodontist." ~ Loren L.

"Friendly and informative! Love his staff and facility." ~ Jana B.

"His attention to patients, details and overall demeanor when dealing with patients. Dr. Studebaker is a very nice and thorough doctor." ~ Susette M.

"I like that he is really nice and he tells me exactly what is going into my mouth. He is awesome! You rock Dr. Studebaker!" ~ Keith S.

"Your office staff is like family. We have enjoyed doing business with you!!!" ~ Lesley K.

At Studebaker Orthodontics, October is National Orthodontic Health Month!

October 14th, 2010

October is National Orthodontic Health Month, and our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics wanted to remind Dr. Studebaker's patients to be careful when they bite into their treats this month. Remember, caramels, taffy, nuts, bubble gum, popcorn kernels and suckers are some of the foods you should be avoiding this Halloween Season! Indulging in these foods can break your braces and lengthen your treatment time!

Also, in honor of “Orthodontic Health Month,” we’d thought we’d ask: What do you love about your braces? Share your story on our Facebook page!

We have a winner!

October 6th, 2010


Congratulations to Clelia, the winner of the iPod Touch Contest! You did a great job. Thanks to everyone who participated.

PS, did you know October is National Orthodontic Health Month? Remember, caramels, taffy, nuts, bubble gum, popcorn kernels and suckers are some of the foods you should be avoiding this Halloween Season! Indulging in these foods can break your braces and lengthen your treatment time at Studebaker Orthodontics!

Studebaker Orthodontics at the First Houston Angioma Awareness Fun Run/Walk!

September 29th, 2010


Our entire staff at Studebaker Orthodontics was excited to support some of our dear patients by participating in the First Houston Angioma Awareness Fun Run/Walk on September 25th. We had a great time and we look forward to be part of future events.

According to the website, cavernous angioma is a mulberry-shaped abnormal blood vessels in the brain or spine. For information on the Angioma Alliance Organization, please visit www.angioma.org. For more photos from the event, please head over to our Facebook page.

September featured patient reviews for Studebaker Orthodontics!

September 21st, 2010


Our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics loooooove hearing from our patients! Here are three patient reviews we wanted to feature this month!

"I cannot think of a thing better - you all were amazing with us, especially my son." ~ Trey S.

"Everyone is so sweet and nice! I look forward to coming every time because the staff makes me laugh and they care!" ~ Audrey S.

"They are very high tech and they explain everything to you to the T!!! Very clean;/sanitary!!! Dr. Studebaker's staff is excellent!!! Very attentive... A+ from me!!!" ~ Gutie

Foods you should avoid, from Studebaker Orthodontics

September 13th, 2010

There are a variety of foods Dr. Robert Studebaker wants you to avoid while you're wearing braces. Most foods can damage braces, but certain foods can bend the wires or break the brackets on your braces. If you have braces, you should avoid starch, sugar and gummy foods, as these foods can be difficult to remove during brushing. Foods that are high in sugar and starch causes plaque, cavities and tooth decay.

Avoid tough meats, hard breads and raw vegetables such as carrots and celery. Before long, you'll be able to bite a cucumber again. But you'll need to protect your orthodontic appliances when you eat for as long as you're wearing braces.

Foods to Avoid
• Chewy foods: bagels, hard rolls, licorice
• Crunchy foods: popcorn, ice, chips
• Sticky foods: caramels, gum
• Hard foods: nuts, candy
• Foods you have to bite into: corn on the cob, apples, carrots
• Chewing on hard things (for example, pens, pencils or fingernails) can damage the braces. Damaged braces will cause treatment to take longer.

If you have any questions on which foods you should be avoiding and why, we invite you to give us a call or ask Dr. Studebaker or our staff during your next visit! Happy Monday!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: Why are regular checkups so important?

September 7th, 2010


Dr. Robert Studebaker and our staff want to know: Are you brushing and flossing daily properly during your orthodontic treatment? If the answer is yes, that’s wonderful! But, don’t forget that it’s also important for you to visit your general dentist every 3-to-6 months in addition to brushing your teeth and flossing (and visiting our office, of course). Regular dental checkups are important for maintaining good oral health, especially during orthodontic treatment.

Your general dentist can check for problems that might not be seen or felt, detect cavities and early signs of decay, treat oral health problems early and show you how to properly brush and floss your teeth.

During an oral exam your dentist can check the health of your mouth, teeth, gums, cheeks and tongue. Checkups will also include a thorough teeth cleaning and polishing. If you have not been to the dentist in the last six months, let us know during your next visit and Dr. Studebaker will provide a few great references in Spring, Klein, Tomball or The Woodlands! We hope you had a wonderful Labor Day weekend!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: When should my child visit for a consultation?

August 27th, 2010

Many parents ask us that question. Many parents in Spring, Klein, Tomball and The Woodlands also assume they must wait until their child has all of his or her permanent teeth to visit Dr. Robert Studebaker for a complimentary consultation, only to discover treatment would have been much easier if started earlier. Did you know the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that every child have an orthodontic check-up no later than age seven?

Yes - seven.

At that point, enough permanent teeth have arrived for Dr. Studebaker to make a determination about whether any problems are present. Also, by age seven, the first molars have come in, providing an opportunity for the Doctor to check for malocclusion, or what we call “bad bite.” Also, the incisors have begun to come in, and problems such as crowding, deep bites and open bites can be detected.

Orthodontic evaluation at an early age provides one of two positive outcomes: For some, early identification or problems will lead to easier or shorter orthodontic treatment in the future. For others, a healthy prognosis will provide immediate peace of mind.

Early evaluation, of course, may signal a need for early treatment. For some children, early treatment can prevent physical and emotional trauma. Aside from spurring on years of harmful teasing, misaligned teeth are also prone to injury and are detrimental to good oral hygiene. So, if your child is nearing his or her seventh birthday, give us a call at 281-251-9229 to schedule an appointment that is free of charge.

Happy Friday!

Back to school with Studebaker Orthodontics

August 20th, 2010


Now that many of the schools are back in session, Dr. Studebaker and our staff would like to remind all of our patients about the importance of scheduling appointments in advance. With school, clubs and sports to consider, we know that it can be challenging to find time to visit Studebaker Orthodontics. In order to accommodate all of our patients' busy schedules, it is important that you plan ahead for your appointments so that we are able to provide you with an appointment time that is convenient for you.

As always, please remember to give us advanced notice if you're unable to make your regularly-scheduled appointment. If we receive enough notice, we might be able to schedule another patient for that time. Feel free to give us a call at 281-251-9229 if you have any questions, or if you would like to schedule your fall appointment.

Have a fantastic weekend - we look forward to seeing you! :)

National Smile Week at Studebaker Orthodontics!

August 11th, 2010

It’s National Smile Week through Friday, and a good time to remind our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics to practice good oral hygiene and keep those pearly whites shining during your treatment! That includes brushing and flossing regularly, avoiding foods that can stain your teeth such as tea and coffee (and many, many others) and visiting your general dentist here on a regular basis.

And, of course, remember to smile at people you come across, whether you know them or not. We know smiles are contagious, and are always great to both give and receive. In addition, smiling can help you live longer, according to a study conducted earlier this year!

We hope you're having a relaxing and wonderful summer!

Protect your mouth this summer! From Dr. Studebaker

August 4th, 2010

With summer in full swing for another seven weeks, Dr. Studebaker and our staff would like to take this time to remind our young athletes in treatment to take care of both your mouth and appliances while participating in contact sports this summer. Remember, only by using a mouth guard can kids with and without braces avoid serious sports injuries. The next time you're in for a visit at Studebaker Orthodontics, be sure to ask us for a mouth guard, and we will be happy to provide one for you!

We hope you're enjoying your summer! Let us know what you're up to on our Facebook page!

Invisalign and your oral health, from Studebaker Orthodontics

July 27th, 2010

When considering treatment options, Dr. Robert Studebaker's patients often ask us how Invisalign treatment is so different than traditional metallic braces. Well, Invisalign, which is a series of removable aligners that are nearly invisible, not only straighten your teeth, but can improve your oral health as well. Here’s how:

Healthy gums: Straight teeth allow a close fit for gums. This lessens the gum stress that is caused by crowded or widely spaced teeth, thus also reducing red and swollen gums.

Easy cleaning: Invisalign is removable, therefore brushing and flossing is easier and you are able to maintain a healthy mouth. These habits are vital to avoiding tooth decay, plaque and even gum disease.

Improved speech and chewing: Properly-aligned teeth don’t have the discomfort or compound speech impediments that can be caused by crowded teeth or a deteriorating jawbone.

If you have any questions about Invisalign, just ask Dr. Studebaker the next time you’re in for an appointment. Or, you may post your question on our Facebook page! Happy Tuesday!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: What makes orthodontics sooo cool?

July 17th, 2010


Our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics will tell you that braces, are cool, hip and usually pretty “fun” these days. In fact, these were among the findings of a nationwide survey this year of moms whose children are going through or have had orthodontic treatment. New technologies such as Invisalign and low friction braces, advanced computer software, color options, and even popular celebrities—Tom Cruise and Dakota Fanning, to name a couple—sporting stylish braces are making orthodontic treatment more comfortable, fashionable and cool for today’s kids.

The study, conducted on behalf of our friends at the American Association of Orthodontists for February’s National Children’s Dental Health Month, found 86 percent of moms reporting that braces are cooler today than when they were children. Sixty-nine percent of moms also said wearing braces makes their children feel cool, and 81 percent reported their children’s experience with orthodontic treatment as either positive or extremely positive.

Different color options and the ability to change colors, for example, also provide exciting ways for our patients to customize appearances. That enthusiasm helps them to feel good about their orthodontic treatment, and may also contribute to the success of treatment.

Has your child visited Studebaker Orthodontics for a complimentary consultation? If not, please give us a call and let Dr. Robert Studebaker help your child begin the journey to a gorgeous smile this summer!

More happy smiles at Studebaker Orthodontics!

July 6th, 2010


Last week, you may remember, we posted a few patient reviews that we were glad - and touched - to receive. Today, we thought we'd highlight again just how much patients love Dr. Studebaker and team!

"The Staff! I have never met a more Wonderful Group of Employees. They are so warm, inviting. It all comes from a Wonderful Orthodontist." Loren L.

"Friendly and informative! Love his staff and facility." ~ Jana B.

"His attention to patients, details and overall demeanor when dealing with patients. Dr. Studebaker is a very nice and thorough doctor.” ~ Susette M.

"Your office staff is like family. We have enjoyed doing business with you!!!” ~ Lesley K.

I like that he is really nice and he tells me exactly what is going into my mouth. He is awesome! You rock Dr. Studebaker!” ~ Keith S.

The office staff is friendly and helpful. The Orthodontist has nice personality. The office waiting area is comfortable!!” ~ Stephen P.

I love everything about this orthodontist very modern up to date and they are so advance i wouldn't think of going anywhere else.” ~ Malissa G.

Featured patient reviews for Dr. Studebaker!

June 29th, 2010


Our team at Studebaker Orthodontics recently received two testimonials from a few former patients, who reminded us why we do love doing the work we do: creating beautiful smiles for all ages in Spring, Klein, Tomball, The Woodlands and neighboring Houston! Please feel free to contribute your own thoughts about our office!

"His attention to patients, details and overall demeanor when dealing with patients. Dr. Studebaker is a very nice and thorough doctor who spends a lot of face to face time dealing with patients." ~ Susette M.

"This doctor/practice is awesome...They are very high tech and they explain everything to you to the T!!! Very clean;/sanitary!!! Dr. Studebaker's staff is excellent!!! Very attentive...A+ from me!!!" ~ Anonymous

"Wonderful Orthodontist: The staff is wonderful and very informative. They make you feel comfortable and explain everything. Very good with younger kids too. Willing to work with you. Fair. I am very pleased." ~ Becky L.

This summer, what's on your reading list?

June 19th, 2010

With summer only two days away, our staff at Studebaker Orthodontics have been thinking more and more about the importance of summer reading for the teens and young people at our practice. Of course it’s easier for today's teens to go play ball or kick back and watch TV, but our staff will always tell you that reading during the summer is a key step in being prepared for classes in the fall and maintaining your skill level!

Out of ideas for great summer reads? Ask us for suggestions, and our staff (as well as Dr. Studebaker) would be happy to provide a few great titles for you. You may also ask a local librarian here in Spring for some ideas or check out various summer reading lists from Barnes & Noble that we came across on Friday.

Happy reading everyone and happy Father's Day weekend to all the wonderful dads who come to our office week after week!

Dr. Studebaker, helping you save face with mouth guards

June 17th, 2010


Wouldn’t you know it, summer is officially only three days away, and at Studebaker Orthodontics, our team knows that the summer months bring with them an increase in outdoor activities and a greater chance of our athletes damaging their teeth. If you're playing sports this summer, it's important that you consult Spring orthodontist Dr. Robert Studebaker for special precautions, such as wearing a mouth guard. Mouth guards are advised for playing spring sports such as baseball, soccer, lacrosse and many, many others.

We were all reminded about the need to wear mouth guards recently after reading an article about former NHL player Keith Tkachuk needing reconstructive surgery after taking a brutal hit to the mouth by a hockey puck. Tkachuk’s gruesome injury underscores the need for all of our patients to use facial protection at all times when out on the field.

In case of any accident involving your face, Studebaker Orthodontics want you to check your mouth and appliances immediately. If your teeth are loosened or the appliances are damaged, please schedule an appointment to see your dentist. And don’t forget to ask us—Dr. Studebaker will be more than happy to provide a mouth guard for any patient in treatment!

Share your summer plans with Dr. Studebaker and team!

June 7th, 2010


As the school year comes to an end for a lot of Dr. Studebaker's patients, the days get longer and the sun begins to heat up in Texas, there’s no better way to beat the heat than jump into a pool or cool off under the shade with a beverage (non-sugary, of course). For a lot of our patients at Studebaker Orthodontics, summer brings a chance to get away from it all and escape everyday life, if only for a week or two. For others, it means a season of relaxation and relief from homework and other duties.

How about you?

What are your summer plans? Do you have any interesting plans for a summer vacation? Does your family have a reunion planned? Our team would be interested in how you are all spending your summer vacations. If you’re going somewhere exotic, let us know! If you're going camping, we'd like to hear about it! Even if you're staying at home, let us know!

Please feel free to share your summer plans and experiences with us on our Facebook page as summer 2010 rolls right along!

"Hey, Dr. Studebaker! Are those rumors about braces true?"

May 30th, 2010

Trust us when we tell you that our professional team, as well as Dr. Studebaker know there are a lot of myths and half-truths floating around these days when it comes to orthodontics. But, before you buy into those myths, we think you should definitely get the facts! Our friends at the American Association of Orthodontists have some great information on the myths and facts of orthodontics, and we definitely encourage you to check them out before settling for rumors about braces!

If you have any questions about orthodontics or your treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics, please feel free to give us a call at 281-205-0876!

We hope you're having a relaxing and memorable Memorial Day weekend!!

Post a Review of Studebaker Orthodontics!

May 24th, 2010

At Studebaker Orthodontics we know what it takes to achieve a great smile! We recognize that every patient has different needs, and we pride ourselves on the courteous and professional service we provide to each and every patient. Dr. Studebaker and team believe that orthodontic treatment should be a fun, rewarding experience.

Whether you've visited Studebaker Orthodontics for a week or a year, we'd love to hear your feedback about how our practice is faring! There are lots of ways you can share your thoughts about our practice with the rest of the world, but we encourage you to head to our Google Local page and write a review there. Or, you may review us on Yelp or on Facebook if you'd like. After all, reviews help Dr. Studebaker and team create more beautiful smiles in Spring, Klein, The Woodlands and surrounding communities!

You may write a review here. Thanks in advance and have a great week! We all look forward to reading your reviews!

New videos! From Dr. Studebaker

May 20th, 2010

If you've stopped by our YouTube channel recently, you probably noticed that we have four new videos for your viewing pleasure. The videos include information content about RPE (rapid palatal expander), the Quad Helix appliance, as well as the Forsus appliance.

We invite you to head over to our YouTube page and check out the different ways Dr. Studebaker can move your teeth into their final, perfect destination. If you have questions about any of these videos, or about your treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics, we invite you to give us a call at 281-251-9229.

Enjoy the rest of your week!!

How does Studebaker Orthodontics "Go Green"?

May 13th, 2010

Dr. Studebaker and team were recently asked: what steps does Studebaker Orthodontics take to make the office more environmentally-friendly?

Great question!

* We are a paperless office (our charts are digital, which means no paper!)

* We use digital X-rays, no chemical, no developing film - great!

* We recycle magazines, phone books, card boxes, and we even recycle printed paper by printing our reports on the non-printed side. (We only recycle papers that contain nonsensitive information on it, of course).

* Wonder why we ask for patient’s email address? We send appointment reminders via email, communicate as much as possible through email and even send electronic statements if needed. We only send printed statements at our patients' request, and only send them if patients are 30 days past due.

* Dr. Studebaker often conducts meetings online with some of his patient’s professionals, so no printed paper is used for those meetings.

* Lastly, we are always looking for ways to go Green, and are always asking patients for feedback: How do you think our office could be more environmentally friendly?

Dr. Studebaker at the 2010 AAO Annual Session

May 3rd, 2010


If you know Dr. Studebaker, you know he is committed to continuing education and providing the best orthodontic care possible for the communities of Spring, Klein and The Woodlands. This includes visiting various important orthodontic-related conferences and seminars around the country. This includes the AAO Annual Session, which is held in Washington D.C. through tomorrow.

It's a time for Dr. Studebaker to meet and consult with some of the sharpest minds in orthodontics today, which in turn helps us serve you better. In addition to member of the American Association of Orthodontists, Dr. Studebaker is also a Fellow of the Academy of General Dentistry and a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics. He is a member of the American Dental Association, the Texas Dental Association and the Greater Houston Dental Society.

If you've got an appointment scheduled with Dr. Studebaker in the coming weeks, he encourages you to ask him about his perspectives on the AAO Annual Session, including what he learned and how continuing education and acquisition of new technology helps him treat you more effectively.

Head over to our Facebook fan page for all the photos!

Happy Monday!

Summer Scavenger Hunt/Picture Contest at Studebaker Orthodontics!

April 27th, 2010

Are you ready for an exciting contest at Studebaker Ortho this spring and summer? Are you ready for a chance to win an 8GB iPod Touch or an iTunes gift card?

Great! There are two parts to the contest: The online Scavenger Hunt section and The Picture Adventure section.

For complete information on the contests, please click here. Contest ends Tuesday, August 31st.

Questions? Give us a call or stop by .... and GOOD LUCK everyone!!

Fun fact Friday with Studebaker Orthodontics!

April 23rd, 2010

Relax, it's Friday! And you know what that means: Fun fact Friday! Everyone loves fun facts. Fun, fun, fun. The American Association of Orthodontists, or AAO, has come up with some fun facts about orthodontics that Dr. Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics thought you might enjoy. Have a fantastic weekend everybody!

• There are nearly 4 million people in orthodontic treatment throughout the United States. Three out of four are younger than 18.

• The first mechanical treatment for correcting irregular teeth was suggested by Gaius Plinius Secundus (A.D 23-79).The American Association of Orthodontists is comprised of more than 12,000 members in the United States, Canada and abroad.

• The time required to complete orthodontic treatment ranges from 12 to 36 months depending on the nature and severity of the problem.

• Of the 160,000 dentists in the United States and Canada, 8,000 are practicing orthodontists.

• The cement that attaches the braces to the teeth is now made with a special fluoride-releasing substance.

• Wires activated by body heat used in today's braces originally were developed by NASA for use in the space program.

• Famous orthodontic patients include: Dr. Joyce Brothers, Hale Irwin, Cher, Diana Ross, Phyllis Diller, Chelsea Clinton, Whoopi Goldberg, Daisy Fuentes and Brandi.

Tell Studebaker Orthodontics what’s on your mind!

April 16th, 2010

By now, you're probably familiar with our blog process: each week, our creative team at Studebaker Orthodontics blogs about important topics pertinent to orthodontic care and your well-being, including innovative orthodontic techniques Dr. Studebaker offers.

This week, however, we thought we’d step back and ask you, our dear patients and readers: what’s on your mind? What would you like to know about the always-changing field of orthodontics? What would you like us to focus on our blog in the coming months? Perhaps there’s something you’ve wanted to ask us for a while now? Let us know by posting here or on our interactive Facebook fan page!

Have a terrific weekend!!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: Am I too old for orthodontic treatment?

April 7th, 2010

At Studebaker Orthodontics, no one is "too old" for orthodontic treatment. In fact, we recently read a fascinating statistic: the number of adults getting braces has jumped 24 percent from just 14 years ago! Yes, braces help make your pearly whites strong, healthy and perfectly-aligned, but perhaps another reason for the spike in adult braces is this: people want to look and feel great.

In an age—and society—where looks matter as much as anything, and at a time when evenly-aligned teeth might be the difference between getting a job or a promotion, adults are choosing—wisely, we might add—to invest in orthodontics. Orthodontic treatment with Dr. Studebaker can be successful at any age, and adults especially appreciate the benefits of a beautiful smile.

If you’ve been thinking about getting that perfect smile, Dr. Studebaker would love to have you visit for a consultation. Please give us a call to set one up!

April is National Facial Protection Month, from Studebaker Orthodontics

April 1st, 2010

You may remember our team last week blogging about the advantage of wearing a mouth guard when playing sports. Well, this week happens to be a great time for a follow-up. You see, April happens to be National Facial Protection Month, and it’s a good time to remind our young athletes about staying safe on the field this spring. According to the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation, children, high-school athletes and adults will have more than 5,000,000 teeth knocked out in sporting events this year.

For Dr. Studebaker and our staff, that's just simply not acceptable.

The above video contains five ways to ensure the safety of your mouth this spring, courtesy of our friends at the American Association of Orthodontists. If you have any further questions about any of the tips offered in the video, please give us a call at 281-251-9229. Have a great rest of the week and remember to protect your mouth!

Mouth guards and sports injuries, with Dr. Studebaker

March 23rd, 2010

Wouldn’t you believe it, it’s already springtime! Dr. Studebaker is well-aware, however, that spring months bring an increase in outdoor activities and a greater chance of kids damaging their precious pearly whites. If you play sports, it's important that you consult Dr. Studebaker for special precautions, such as wearing a mouth guard. A protective mouth guard is advised for playing spring sports such as baseball, soccer, lacrosse and others. Be sure, however, to avoid mouth guards that custom form to your teeth as these will resist any tooth movements Dr. Studebaker is trying to achieve.

In case of any accident involving the face, check your mouth and the appliances immediately. If teeth are loosened or the appliances damaged, please schedule an appointment with our team. And don’t forget to ask us—Dr. Studebaker will provide a mouth guard for any patient in active treatment. Only by using a mouth guard and other forms of facial protection can kids with and without braces avoid serious sports injuries. Please give us a call if you have any questions about mouth guards or your treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics.

At Studebaker Orthodontics, access to your account any day, any time

March 17th, 2010

Access to your account, 24/7. Sounds nice and convenient, right?

Patients at Studebaker Orthodontics enjoy access to their account 24 hours a day, seven days a week, through our web site. You may look up your appointments and all of your account details at your convenience, all from the comfort of your own home! You can even receive appointment reminders through email or text messages!

Just see what some of Dr. Studebaker's patients are saying about this innovative service:

"It's great when I have to explain to my husband what happened at the office and he can see what I am talking about. It also helps me in showing people how up to date high tech they are for referrals." ~ Loren L.

"I was able to view my pictures and compare what services I going to receive versus another ortho company. It was very helpful, and I didn't have to go in and request the pictures." ~ Richard R.

"I like the fact that I can make my payment and view my balance, check my appointments and basically view anything regarding my son's account." ~ Kim W.

"This service makes me feel like Dr. Studebaker is open to his patients having access to their important information and that his office is more than willing to communicate with us." ~ Susette M.

You, too, can sign up for this convenient service on our web site by clicking on the "Patient Login" button on our homepage. Please give us a call if you have any questions about getting started!

March Leprechauns at Studebaker Orthodontics!

March 12th, 2010

Dr. Studebaker and our team want to know: Can you guess the number of leprechauns in our office? Now until March 31st, come in to Studebaker Orthodontics and go on an exciting leprechaun hunt and enter a chance to win a Pot of Gold worth $75.00!!!

Dr. Studebaker wants to know: What are you up to in March?

March 4th, 2010

Would you believe, it's almost springtime! The daffodils and buttercups are on their way, fresh Rhubarb is ready to be picked, the birds are chirping, the sun is warming up and the smell of freshly-cut grass is wafting from baseball fields nearby. Dr. Studebaker and team thought this would be a good time to ask: What are your plans for March?

Are you ready for spring? Are you participating in school sports? Do you have exciting plans? We’d love to know them all!

You may share your stories or plans with our team here, on our Facebook fan page or by giving us a call!

P.S. While you’re on our Facebook page, become a fan of Studebaker Orthodontics!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: Who benefits from braces?

February 26th, 2010

Braces aren’t just for pre-adolescents and teenagers anymore! Dr. Studebaker will tell you that anyone, at any age, can benefit from orthodontic care; whether it’s correcting a problem not treated in your younger years, or catching a problem early.

To ensure the best overall treatment, the American Association of Orthodontists, or AAO, recommends that children receive an orthodontic consultation as early as age seven. If a problem is evident, taking action early can spare a lot of treatment and expense down the road.

If you never received orthodontic treatment when you were young, don’t worry! You’re never too old for a beautiful smile, says Dr. Studebaker. Set up an appointment for a consultation at Studebaker Orthodontics and find out how adult orthodontics will transform your smile, and your life!

Social media at Studebaker Orthodontics

February 16th, 2010

Isn’t social media great? Dr. Studebaker and our team love connecting with our patients online, whether it’s by sharing news on our blog or communicating ideas on our Facebook fan page. For social media to work, conversation is vital, and that’s why we invite you to join in and tell us what’s on your mind. Although social media is hugely popular these days, it is unpredictable and ever-changing.

While Dr. Studebaker and team are taking a little time to research how to best use social media, we thought we’d ask you, our loyal patients: How would you like Studebaker Orthodontics to use our social networks? What would you like us to share? Send us your thoughts or give us a call!

What are patients saying about Studebaker Orthodontics?

February 11th, 2010

Studebaker Orthodontics, serving The Woodlands, Spring and Klein, and surrounding communities, has been receiving some great patient reviews lately! (It might just have something to do with us asking for your reviews last week). Check out what our current patients are saying about Dr. Studebaker and our team!

"The Staff! I have never met a more Wonderful Group of Employee's. They are so warm, inviting. It all comes from a Wonderful Orthodontist. Dr. Studebaker is SO SO Nice. He answers questions so that you understand. I really appreciate the Kid Friendly Office as well." ~ Loren L.

"I like that he is really nice and he tells me exactly what is going into my mouth. He is awesome! You rock Dr. Studebaker!" ~ Keith S.

"The staff is friendly and will work with you. As an adult with braces, it's important to be treated as an adult and a human being and they do just that." ~ Jennifer G.

What do you love about Studebaker Orthodontics?

February 5th, 2010

From your very first visit to Studebaker Orthodontics our dedicated team and Dr. Studebaker strive to provide superior treatment in a pleasant, friendly atmosphere. At Studebaker Orthodontics we know what it takes to achieve a great smile! Our entire team is trained and experienced in using the most advanced orthodontic techniques. Today, we thought we’d ask you, our wonderful patients: Have you been especially impressed by Dr. Studebaker? Did our amiable team go out of their way to make your day? Are you in love with your new smile?

Whether you’ve just come in for a consultation or your family has been visiting our office for years, we’d love to hear your feedback on our networks. Or, you can tell us by giving us a call! Have a great weekend!

Ask Dr. Studebaker: Why is it so important to have straight teeth?

January 28th, 2010

Some people wonder why Dr. Studebaker and our team at Studebaker Orthodontics work so hard to give our patients straight teeth. Of course it’s nice to have a smile full of evenly aligned teeth, but did you know that straightening your teeth can keep them healthier? Straight teeth lead to better oral hygiene, increasing your chances of keeping your own natural teeth for a lifetime.

Straight teeth are less prone to decay, because they collect less plaque—the sticky colorless substance that forms on our teeth and leads to tooth decay; and they are easier to keep clean!

Orthodontic treatment is a long term, ongoing process. Knowing this, we strive to make your orthodontic treatment in our office a positive experience. We believe that the "customer always comes first"! Getting to know you and meeting your individual orthodontic needs are our foremost concerns.

If you’re wondering whether your teeth might cause problems because they are out of alignment, give us a call to set up a consultation. Dr. Studebaker and our team can help you decide whether or not you will benefit from orthodontic treatment at Studebaker Orthodontics.

Enjoy the rest of your week!

Meet Our Orthodontist

January 19th, 2010

After graduating from Manchester College in North Manchester, Indiana, with a degree in Biology/Chemistry, Dr. Studebaker attended the Ohio State University College of Dentistry in Columbus Ohio. He was awarded a Navy scholarship, and at graduation he received the Ohio Dental Association Outstanding Research Award for his graduate research accomplishments.

Upon graduation, Dr. Studebaker was proud to serve as a Dental Officer in the US Navy. He received outstanding postgraduate training in General and Hospital Dentistry while in Active Duty and served as a General Dentist for six of his eleven years in the Navy. While in the Navy, he had tours of duty at shore dental facilities, aboard naval ships, and overseas locations, and was honored with multiple awards and decorations for his accomplishments. Dr. Studebaker received his Orthodontic Specialty training at Wilford Hall Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas. He was subsequently assigned as the Specialty Advisor and Department Head for Orthodontics at Naval Hospital, Yokosuka, Japan.

Dr. Studebaker has completed many hours of continuing education in both general dentistry and orthodontics. He is a Fellow of the Academy of General Dentistry and a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics. He is a member of the American Association of Orthodontists, the American Dental Association, the Texas Dental Association and the Greater Houston Dental Society.

Dr. Studebaker is married to the former Mybell Adjunta and has four children aged eight, five, two and a newborm. He enjoys sports, reading, and spending time with his family.