Our Blog

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

March 20th, 2019

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 Drs. Richard Williams and Nathan Hamman at Williams and Hamman 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 Southaven, Hernando, Olive Branch office, and our staff will be happy to assist you!

Ready for Spring

March 15th, 2019

With spring rapidly approaching, we’re excited to continue to look for ways to improve our patients’ experience at Williams & Hamman Orthodontics. We’ve delivered the highest quality of orthodontic care for years and it’s all made possible by the effort we put in as a team.

We’re currently in the process of renovating our Olive Branch office (excuse the clutter if you come visit us!) and we can’t wait for it to be finalized. Our new colors bring so much brightness into our space. We’re also happy to be getting a little extra sunshine at the end of our work days with the time change. Especially on days when we wrap up at 6:00 p.m.!

This spring, we’re looking forward to productivity, rest, and relaxation. If we had it our way, our ideal spring vacation would include water activities, beautiful landscapes, and the perfect temperature to enjoy being outside. What are you looking forward to this spring?

Don’t forget that we’ve started a new drawing you can participate in. All you have to do to be entered into the drawing is keep your teeth clean, wear your elastics well, and have no broken brackets this month. And if you’re looking to be extra good, we recommend avoiding excessive soda intake. The increased acidity can erode your enamel, and we certainly don’t want that.

We’re looking forward to seeing you in our office and hope your March is off to a great start!

St. Patrick's Day

March 13th, 2019

On March 17, everyone has a little Irish in them. St. Patrick’s Day is a joyous celebration of Irish heritage. The holiday originated as a commemoration of Saint Patrick, who brought Christianity to Ireland. The saint arrived in Ireland in 432 and earned the reputation of a champion of Irish Christianity. March 17th, the day of St. Patrick’s death, has been commemorated by the Irish for over 1,000 years. St. Patrick’s Day is still observed as a religious feast day by several Christian denominations, but it is better known in the public imagination as a rich celebration of Irish culture.

St. Patrick’s Day has been an official public holiday in Ireland since 1903. Each year, the Irish celebrate with a several-day festival that includes theater performances, music, fireworks, and festive parades. The celebration is also a public holiday in Northern Ireland, Montserrat, and Newfoundland and Labrador. In other parts of the world with heavy Irish populations, it is an unofficial celebration of Irish heritage. Parts of Great Britain, Canada, Argentina, South Korea, Switzerland, New Zealand, the United States, and Australia commemorate the holiday each year. Typical celebrations in these countries include drinking green beer, wearing green, eating traditional Irish foods, parades, and shamrock decorations.

Many people, Irish and non-Irish alike, take part in the “wearing of the green” on St. Patrick’s Day. In fact, the color originally associated with Saint Patrick was blue. His use of shamrocks to explain the Holy Trinity to the Irish made the green clover emblematic of the holiday, leading to the traditional green attire worn by thousands on St. Patrick’s Day. Other little-known facts about St. Patrick’s Day include the following:

  • Each year, the United States and Ireland face off in a rugby competition called the “St. Patrick’s Day Test.”
  • Montreal celebrates the holiday with an annual parade, which has been held each year since 1824. The Montreal city flag even features a shamrock in its corner, as a nod to its Irish heritage.
  • The Guinness World Records named St. Patrick’s Day the “Friendliest Day of the Year.”
  • Along with Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day is one of the most widely celebrated saint’s day in the world.

No matter your cultural heritage, St. Patrick’s Day is a great time to let loose and celebrate your inner Irish-ness! Don your greenest attire and exclaim “Erin go Bragh!” (Ireland forever!) to everyone you meet. From Drs. Richard Williams and Nathan Hamman - have a great St. Paddy’s day!

Helpful Hygiene Tips for Patients Who Wear Braces

March 6th, 2019

Today, Drs. Richard Williams and Nathan Hamman and our team thought we would offer a few tips for our patients currently undergoing orthodontic treatment. For those of you wearing braces, it’s important to be even more dedicated to good oral hygiene than those not currently in treatment.

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.

Braces are known to trap food, which contributes to plaque formation. If it is not carefully removed from the teeth and gums, plaque will develop into decay or gum disease, leading to costly delays during your treatment. It is important to practice good oral hygiene by following instructions from Drs. Richard Williams and Nathan Hamman during your treatment.

We are proud to offer supplies to help fight plaque, such as a proxabrush, dental floss, and floss threaders. The use of an electric toothbrush and or a water pick can also be helpful in combating cavities and decay. And, of course, our team at Williams and Hamman Orthodontics suggests brushing at least twice a day.

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