September 18th, 2019
Whether you’re heading out for a day with friends or running from classroom to volleyball practice, you don’t always have the luxury of taking care of your braces or aligners in the comfort of your home. But don’t stress! Here are some suggestions for handy items you can take with you to handle most of the dental situations that might come up.
Basic Care Kit
- Travel Toothbrush—the perfect size for quick cleanings after a meal on the go. You might want to bring a travel size tube of toothpaste as well.
- Dental Floss, Threader, and Dental Picks—you don’t want something stuck in your teeth or braces through three hours of play rehearsal.
- Water Bottle—if you don’t have time to brush, a good rinse will help keep teeth and appliances clean.
- Small Mirror—to make sure your smile is picture perfect after eating.
- Our office phone number—just in case. If something happens to your braces or aligners, or if you suffer a dental emergency, call our Aventura, FL office immediately.
- Orthodontic Wax—if one of your brackets is irritating your mouth, you’ll be ready.
- Braces-Friendly Snacks—soft, healthy foods that will help keep your energy up while keeping your braces intact.
For Aligners or a Retainer
- Your case! If you need to take your aligners or retainer out, use your case to protect them and keep them from getting lost. You have better things to do after lunch than sifting through a garbage can full of used napkins. Much better things.
All of these items can fit easily in a case or bag in your glove compartment, locker, or backpack. Want more tips? Talk to Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team on your next visit, and let’s work together to make caring for your orthodontic appliances a quick and convenient addition to your busy schedule!
September 11th, 2019
Teeth erupt crookedly for a number of reasons that range from genetics to mouth deformities and serious oral diseases. When extra teeth or abnormally large teeth create a malocclusion (crookedness or misplacement of teeth), the culprit is usually genetic in nature. Other inherited traits involve jaws that are too small to accommodate a full set of teeth and misaligned jaws that did not form properly in the womb.
Can crooked teeth be prevented?
In most cases, underbites, overbites, and crooked teeth are genetically derived and can’t be avoided. Orthodontic treatment with braces will be necessary to correct the condition once the child is old enough to wear them. However, certain early childhood behaviors may also contribute to the development of crooked teeth that can be avoided. These include:
- Thumb sucking and tongue thrusting
- Losing baby teeth to decay before permanent teeth have naturally pushed them out of their sockets
- Allowing pacifier use to continue after front teeth have erupted
Permanent teeth underneath baby teeth are directly affected by the health of baby teeth. If baby teeth are prematurely lost due to decay or trauma, permanent teeth will shift when they start moving upward. Baby teeth are like anchors for permanent teeth that help guide them as they erupt through the gums.
In addition, excellent care of baby teeth is vital to having healthy permanent teeth free of discoloration or decay. Harmful oral bacteria can spread into the gums and reach permanent teeth still buried in the gums. Once attached to a tooth’s enamel, bacteria will begin eroding the tooth even before it has a chance to take its first bite!
When to Start Orthodontic Treatment for Crooked Teeth
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff suggest that parents bring your child to Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister around age seven to rule out potential issues with permanent teeth eruption. If problems are discovered, it is not unusual to begin orthodontic treatment at that age. In fact, specific conditions such as crowding and gaps between teeth are easier to correct at an early age.
Early treatment also benefits from the growth process of the jaw, which helps move teeth to normal positions.
September 4th, 2019
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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.
August 28th, 2019
Once you get your braces off, you want to make sure your smile remains straight! This is where retainers come in.
Once your braces come off, you’ll be fitted for a retainer provided by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to keep those teeth in place. A retainer is a custom-fit device that sits in the mouth and reinforces the new position of your teeth. Wearing it may be annoying at first, but it’s an essential part of the process of keeping your teeth in place over the long term.
For the first few months after your braces are gone, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will tell you to wear your custom retainers all the time, except when you’re eating, drinking, or brushing. You have the option of having a clear plastic retainer made if you’re concerned about your appearance.
Eventually, we will recommend that you only have to wear the retainer during each night for a full year. After that, you may take a couple nights off from wearing them each week. In order to preserve the position of your teeth for as long as possible, we don’t recommend that you ever fully stop wearing your retainers.
If you’re concerned about forgetting to wear your retainer, and worried that your teeth may shift, a lingual retainer could be a good option for you. This gets placed on the back of your teeth and is not readily visible.
These retainers are permanent, but they could cause issues for you down the road if you don’t maintain good oral hygiene. Plaque and tartar can build up around these lingual bars, which is why we don’t usually recommend this as a primary choice.
Wearing your retainer is extremely vital after your braces come off. Without your retainer to keep them in place, the teeth you’ve taken so long to fix may begin to shift again. Getting braces is quite an investment, which is why you should keep wearing your retainer long after the braces have come off.
If you have questions or concerns regarding your retainers, contact our Aventura, FL office and we can address any problems you may have.
August 21st, 2019
Now that you are working hard to improve your dental health and appearance with your braces, it might seem like a logical time to whiten your teeth as well. But should you go ahead with home kits or a professional whitening? The answer might be yes, but not quite yet!
The easiest way to whiten teeth is regular use of a whitening toothpaste. But these do not make a major difference in tooth color and may also contain abrasives which can damage ceramic brackets and make them more likely to stain. And, whether you have metal or ceramic braces, the brackets used are bonded to your teeth. Any part of your tooth covered by a bracket will not be affected by the whitening paste. Ask our office if you are thinking of using one of these products. We will be happy to recommend the best toothpastes to use while your braces are in place.
Whitening Strips and Trays
Whiteners can be applied at home with strips or tray kits. Strips are coated with a whitening gel and then pressed around your teeth. Tray kits provide a mouthguard-like appliance, which is filled with whitening gel. But neither strips nor tray solutions will whiten any area covered by brackets. When your braces come off, there might be noticeable differences in color on each tooth. Strips are difficult to apply with braces, and trays need to be custom-designed to fit your braces and make sure they don’t disturb your orthodontic work. One size most definitely does not fit all! Finally, these whitening agents can cause tooth and gum sensitivity, especially around the time of adjustments. Many manufacturers do not recommend using their products while you have braces. Please talk to us if you are thinking of using them.
A dental professional can whiten your teeth in office for the best possible results. The most effective treatments for your unique teeth are combined with protective care of your gums and mouth. Whether this treatment is appropriate while you have braces is something we are happy to discuss.
The best way to keep your teeth bright is to keep up your regular dental routine! Brushing and flossing are more important than ever now, because plaque builds up around brackets. Avoid foods that stain teeth and rinse or brush after every meal and snack. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will show you the best way to take care of your teeth while your braces are on—and that includes the best way to keep them white and bright. Talk to us about the perfect time to whiten your beautiful smile during your next visit to our Aventura, FL office. And if you have to wait a few extra days for the smile you’ve been working toward, truly, the wait will be worth it!
August 14th, 2019
Nowadays, many adults are taking advantage of getting straighter teeth with braces. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team love to help patients create the dazzling, confident smile they’ve always wanted.
Our adult patients usually fall into two categories: some had braces in the past but didn’t wear their retainers, while others are brand-new to wearing braces. Either way, both groups want the same thing: straighter teeth and a beautiful smile!
You will have several options for getting braces, depending on your financial situation and how quickly you would like your treatment to finish. Traditional metal braces are a less-expensive option and can help people who have severely crooked teeth. But many adults may not prefer this option because they dislike the appearance of metal brackets.
If you’re concerned about how you’ll look, we offer clear ceramic braces that aren’t as visible. These are more expensive than metal braces, and patients need to be careful with colored drinks that can stain them, such as coffee or red wine.
Another popular option is a clear aligner treatment called Invisalign®. This type is practically invisible; it uses a series of aligners that are customized to fit your teeth. The process of straightening your teeth can last anywhere from three to 18 months. For people who have extreme bite problems or crowded teeth, a different method may work better.
Don’t hesitate to call our Aventura, FL office today to set up a consultation. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will help you choose the best option so you can be on your way to a straighter, more confident smile!
August 7th, 2019
Breakfast is called the most important meal of the day for many reasons. Children need to refuel after a long night’s sleep, and studies suggest that school kids who eat a good breakfast have more energy, better attendance and behavior, and even higher test scores than kids who don’t.
But sometimes, especially with new braces or braces that have just been adjusted, the last thing on your child’s mind is breakfast. Fortunately, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can recommend many early morning options that will be both gentle on braces and healthy for growing bodies!
Soft, creamy, and filled with calcium and vitamin D, yogurt is an easy and nutritious choice. Try different fruit flavors or Greek yogurt for variety.
Packed with protein, scrambled eggs are delicious on their own, or with the addition of cheese or soft veggies. If you’d like to add a bit of flair to the table, a cheese omelet is another great choice. Any egg option is a good one—just remember to skip the crunchy toast on the side.
Not only a great way to start your day, but a great way to get vitamins and minerals in one delicious meal. And with a flavor base of banana, mango, berries, or apple, no one will notice if some spinach or kale make their way into the blender!
Unfortunately for the cereal lover, crunchy cereals and even granola are potentially damaging to wires and brackets. But oatmeal is a healthy alternative that can be made even tastier with the addition of soft fruits such as mangos, berries, and bananas.
- Breads and Pastries
Crunchy and chewy breads and pastries can lead to broken brackets and wires. Soft breads, pancakes, non-crunchy French toast, and soft pastries are much kinder to braces. Because so many of these options are rich in sugar (especially with syrup!), it’s best to go lighter on foods like this and be sure to brush carefully afterward.
Bananas, peaches, nectarines, berries—if it’s soft, it’s good to go! Cut larger fruits into bite-sized pieces. Dried fruits like raisins, dates, and cranberries can be chewy, sticky, and sugary, so best to take them off the shopping list for the time being.
It’s described as the most important meal of the day for many good reasons. With some of these easy-to-prepare breakfasts, you can add delicious, healthy, and braces-friendly to that description! If you stumble on a delicious recipe, don’t forget to share it the next time you visit our Aventura, FL office!
July 17th, 2019
So you’re about to get braces. Congratulations! You are taking a very smart step to improve the health of your teeth as well as get that killer smile in shape. But, as with anything that is good for you, there are a few things you will have to avoid while you “do your time.”
Some foods don’t do so great with braces. The foods listed below should be avoided while you are wearing your braces because they can pop the brackets and bend the wires. In other words, these foods can really ruin your day, and send you back to Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister to get your braces repaired.
So before you hit the chair, hit the grocery and candy store – one last time – for:
- Beef jerky
- Raw carrots
- Pizza crust
- Bagels and other crusty bread
- Hard candy
- Nuts and seeds
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff will give you more information about eating with braces. Some foods, such as apples, are okay as long as you cut them in pieces first. Others, like pudding and pasta, are fine just as they are. But then there is “the list”: the foods that are a big no-no and should be avoided. It won’t be forever, so hang in there.
Your braces time will pass before you know it and you can resume more normal eating. But before the braces go on, enjoy these tasty treats. Go ahead and indulge!
July 10th, 2019
Orthodontists like Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister recommend a first orthodontic visit and evaluation for your child around the age of seven. We will evaluate your child’s jaw and facial development and make sure that there is enough room in the mouth for the permanent teeth when they arrive. One of the recommendations we might make for early treatment is the use of a palatal expander. If you are unfamiliar with this device, let’s take a closer look at why it’s necessary and what exactly it does.
Why do we recommend the palatal expander?
There are two dental arches, composed of the upper and the lower teeth, in your child’s mouth. This arch-shaped design is meant to accommodate all the permanent teeth. Further, when the upper and lower teeth meet, they should result in a healthy occlusion, or bite.
Sometimes, the upper dental arch is simply too small to accommodate all of your child’s permanent teeth, leading to crowding, extractions, and impacted teeth. Also, a too-narrow arch can result in a crossbite, where some of the upper teeth bite inside the lower ones. An improper bite can lead to problems such as TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorder, improper wear and stress on teeth, certain speech difficulties, and other potential complications. The palatal expander was designed to prevent these problems from occurring.
What is a palatal expander and how does it work?
The expander itself is a device that increases the size of the upper dental arch. Before your child’s bones are finished growing, the space between the two bones of the upper palate is filled with cartilage. This tissue is flexible when children are young, but gradually fuses solidly into place by the time they are finished growing (usually in the early to mid-teens). If the arch can be widened to accommodate the emerging permanent teeth, or to reduce malocclusions, this improvement can also affect the need for, and length of, future dental work.
There are several types of expanders available at our Aventura, FL office. These are custom-made appliances, commonly attached between the upper teeth on each side of the jaw. The two halves of the device are connected with a screw-type mechanism that can be adjusted to widen the upper palate and dental arch with gentle pressure. This is a gradual process, with small adjustments usually made once or twice a day to slowly move the bones further apart. As weeks go by, you will notice a successful change in the spacing of the teeth. Your child might even develop a gap in the front teeth, which is normal and will generally close on its own.
If you would like more detailed information, talk to Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister about the palate expander. We can tell you what to expect from this treatment if we think it is best for your child’s unique needs, and how to make it as easy as possible for your child. Our goal is to provide your child with the healthiest teeth and bite possible, always making use of treatments that are both gentle and effective.
July 3rd, 2019
When most patients ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister this question, they're thinking strictly about sugar content — cut out the bacteria-feeding sugar that's present in regular soda by opting for a diet soda and it will be better for your teeth. That seems logical, right? Well, there's a bit more to it than that. Let's take a closer look at how any kind of soda can affect your dental health.
Diet Soda – Why it can also lead to tooth decay
The main culprit in these drinks that leads to decay is the acid content. Diet sodas and other sugar-free drinks are usually highly acidic, which weakens the enamel on your teeth and makes them more susceptible to cavities and dental erosion. The level of phosphoric acid, citric acid, and/or tartaric acid is usually high in sugar-free drinks so it's best to avoid them.
Some patients also enjoy drinking orange juice or other citrus juices. These drinks are high in citric acid and have the same effect on the enamel of your teeth.
So what about regular soda?
We know the acidity of diet sodas and sugar-free drinks contributes to tooth decay, so what about regular soda? Like we alluded to earlier, regular soda is high in sugar — a 12 ounce can contains roughly ten teaspoons of sugar — and sugar feeds the decay-causing bacteria in the mouth. This also includes sports drinks and energy drinks, which are highly acidic and loaded with sugar too. So these drinks are a double-whammy of sugar and acidity your teeth and body simply don't need.
The problems caused by both diet and regular soda is exacerbated when you sip on them throughout the day. If you drink it all in one sitting, you won't be washing sugar and/or acids over your teeth all day long and your saliva will have a chance to neutralize the pH in your mouth.
The best beverages to drink and how to drink them
Drinking beverages that are lower in acid is a good step to take to keep your enamel strong. According to a study conducted by Matthew M. Rodgers and J. Anthony von Fraunhofer at the University of Michigan, your best bets are plain water, black tea or coffee, and if you opt for a soda, root beer. These drinks dissolved the least amount of enamel when measured 14 days after consumption of the beverage.
If you still choose to drink soda, diet soda, sugar-free drinks, or juices here are some other tips to lessen tooth decay:
- Drink your soda or acidic beverages through a straw to minimize contact with teeth
- Rinse with water immediately after consumption of the beverage
- Avoid brushing your teeth between 30 minutes to an hour after drinking the beverage as this has been shown to spread the acids before your saliva can bring your mouth back to a neutral pH
- Avoid drinks that have acids listed on the ingredients label
Still have questions about soda, sugar, and acid? Give our Aventura, FL office a call and we’d be happy to help!
June 26th, 2019
Crooked or crowded teeth aren’t always just a cosmetic issue; they also are more difficult to clean, which can lead to tooth decay and gum disease. Likewise, if your teeth don’t align properly when you bite (known as malocclusion), this can cause chewing, swallowing, and speaking problems.
You can put these risks to rest and look amazing, however, with well-thought-out orthodontic treatment from Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. More and more adults are opting for orthodontic treatment and changing their lives in the process.
Childhood is of course the ideal time to get treatment, since the mouth and jaws are still growing, but many adults still can get beautiful and lasting results which can be achieved discreetly and effectively with modern orthodontic appliances and technologies.
Traditional braces used to be the only thing going, and many adults understandably don’t like the way they look. There are so many other options for braces these days that it’s possible for almost any patient to be treated effectively and efficiently — usually in one to two years.
Here are some of the technologies being implemented in our modern Aventura, FL orthodontic office:
- Clear aligners: Practically invisible clear plastic aligners are great for less severe cases.
- Lingual braces: These are placed on the back of your teeth instead of the front, and can handle anything that traditional braces can.
- Ceramic braces: Translucent ceramic brackets make for effective and more discreet treatment.
- Self-ligating braces: These require less manipulation by the orthodontist, which means fewer appointments and quicker results.
It should also be noted that the goal of orthodontic treatment (especially in adults) isn’t always limited to straightening teeth and/or correcting a bite. Teeth provide support for the lips and cheeks and help define your face.
The relationship between the jaws, teeth, face, soft tissues, and underlying skeleton of the face are important, and an orthodontist takes this into account when designing a smile.
In short, getting orthodontic treatment won’t just give you a good-looking and healthy smile; it can help define and enhance the entire appearance of your face. Knowing just how crucial your teeth are in determining how you look and live will help you age positively and confidently.
June 19th, 2019
Braces can straighten your teeth to give you a more attractive smile for life. The process can take 18 months to two years or more, and this amount of time can seem unending when you first get your braces. Counting down your brace time can help the time pass more quickly and build the excitement for when you finally get your braces removed.
Make a Wall Calendar
Crossing out each day on a calendar is a standard way of counting down time. You can make this more personal by designing your own calendar to help you count down. Use an online customization service to upload photos or designs for each month. Each month’s picture can also display the number of months remaining until you expect your braces to come off.
When you receive regular rewards for continuing to wear your braces, they can seem less burdensome. Plan to buy yourself a reward every month that you wear your braces for the duration of the treatment. The time will pass much faster when you feel you are earning rewards for your patience.
Lengthen a Paper Chain
Use strips of paper to make the links of your chain, and add a new link each week to lengthen the chain. Before sealing each new strip of paper into a circle, write on it a reason why you are getting your teeth straightened, or an event in the future when you will appreciate your straight teeth as you smile.
Use a Wall Hanging
Purchase a large pad of blank white paper. Write a “0” on the bottom sheet and a “1” on the next, and continue until you reach the number of days remaining in your treatment. Rip off the top sheet each day to see how many days are left and remind yourself of the progress you are making.
Find a Buddy
If any of your friends get braces around the same time as you, share the experience. Make a pact to celebrate each trip to Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister when one of you receives news about your progress.
June 12th, 2019
If your pre-teen or teenager is home for the summer, it’s easy to provide braces-friendly lunch options. The school lunchroom, though, presents another challenge altogether. What menu selections are most compatible with braces? And what can you put in that lunch box or brown bag to provide a tempting, healthy lunch during school hours? Let’s look at some options!
From the Cafeteria
Encourage your student to stick with soft foods that don’t require biting into. Some good choices include:
- Soup, either creamy or with soft vegetables
- Salads without crunchy vegetables or croutons
- Soft, shredded chicken or beef
- Egg or tuna salad
- Macaroni and cheese
- Soft casseroles
- Steamed vegetables
- Mashed potatoes
- Soft breads or tortillas
Bringing a Lunch?
There are many great options for packing a lunch bag! Just remember to keep foods at the proper temperature, with insulated containers for hot foods and two cold sources, such as two frozen gel packs, for cold foods.
- Sandwiches with soft filling (no chunky peanut butter!) on soft bread. Thinly sliced, easy to chew cold cuts will work, but cold cuts like salami are too chewy. Cut the crusts off if necessary. Cutting sandwich wedges into smaller portions will also make them easier to eat.
- Hard boiled eggs
- Hummus and soft pita wedges
- String cheese and soft crackers
- Soft fruits such as berries or bananas
- Jell-O or other gelatin dessert cups
- Pudding cups
When to Say “No, Thank You”
If you have to bite into it, if it’s chewy, or if it’s crunchy, it’s best to choose something else! Here are some common culprits when it comes to broken brackets and wires:
- Hard candy
- Whole carrots
- Whole apples
- Hard rolls
- Corn on the cob
And remember to send your child to school with a brush and floss to clean teeth and braces after lunch. Dental hygiene is very important now, because brackets and wires can both trap food particles and make brushing them away more difficult. This can lead to increased plaque, cavities, and staining around the area of the braces. If it’s impossible to brush, be sure to remind your student to rinse thoroughly with water after eating.
Lunch hour should be a time to relax, get together with friends, and recharge for the rest of the school day. Talk to us about the most (and least) braces-friendly foods and recipes. By learning what foods to avoid and adjusting some old favorites, your school-age child can continue to enjoy healthy, tasty lunches. Most important, visiting Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister at our Aventura, FL office for an emergency repair will not be on anyone’s list of afterschool activities!
June 5th, 2019
The community health awareness group Oral Health America has reported that 82 percent of adults are unaware of the role that infectious bacteria can play in tooth decay or cavities, and almost three out of five children aged 12 to 19 have tooth decay. Since June is National Smile Month, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister thought we’d remind our patients about the importance of good oral hygiene visits between office visits.
To keep your family’s smiles healthy and beautiful for years to come, be sure to:
- Brush at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste
- Floss every day to clean between your teeth
- Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet
- Reduce your intake of sugary foods and drinks
- Visit Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister for scheduled appointments
If you want to know more about healthy home care habits, feel free to ask our team at your next appointment, or ask us on Facebook!
May 29th, 2019
So, you just got your braces on, and you're wondering why you should continue visiting your general dentist since you’re seeing Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
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 Aventura, FL area, please give us a call or let us know at your next adjustment appointment!
May 22nd, 2019
While mouthwash goes a long way in improving your oral care, it is not a substitute for flossing. Mouthwashes and flossing provide different benefits that you should understand.
Mouthwash comes in two categories. Some are considered cosmetic. This type of rinse provides temporary relief from bad breath and has a pleasant taste. These do not actually kill any bacteria.
Therapeutic mouthwashes provide the healthier benefits. These may contain different ingredients including fluoride or antimicrobial agents. This type is used to remove plaque buildup and reduce the potential for calculus formation. Therapeutic rinses can also help prevent cavities, bad breath, and gingivitis. In addition, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can prescribe special rinses to assist patients after periodontal surgery or other procedures.
Flossing is what removes the plaque formation before it can harden and become calculus. While a rinse reduces buildup, only flossing will fully remove plaque, especially between teeth. The bristles on a toothbrush do not get between teeth completely. If plaque is not removed, it hardens into tartar or calculus. When this builds below the gum line, gum disease can start.
Types of Floss
Floss is available in a thin string form or a tape. It can be waxed or unwaxed. If you find flossing difficult, you might want to try a different type of floss. You can buy bulk floss in containers or purchase the disposable type with a plastic handle attached. This style can be easier for many individuals to use. Interdental picks are available for bridgework or other situations where regular floss cannot be used.
If you have questions regarding the best mouthwash or floss, or need tips for easier flossing, please ask our Aventura, FL team for advice. We will be glad to give you solutions to help keep your mouth clean and healthy.
May 15th, 2019
Did you know that more than four million children throughout the US and Canada have braces? At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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!
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
May 8th, 2019
Now that you have braces, it is more important than ever to maintain good oral hygiene during your treatment, as Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will tell you. While we trust you will continue brushing and flossing on a regular basis throughout your treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, you also have to mindful of what you eat. While all those sweet, sour, and sticky candies may taste great, these treats can actually damage your teeth and braces!
Sour candies can be acidic to your teeth, and actually wear down the enamel that protects them, resulting in tooth decay and cavities. If you do indulge in eating these candies at some point during your treatment, be sure to wash your mouth out with water, drink milk or eat a few slices of cheese. These foods will help neutralize the acid in your mouth.
Besides cavities and tooth decay, many people do not realize that good oral health and hygiene are important to your overall health, too; researchers have discovered the connection between periodontal disease and other major health concerns, such as heart disease. Therefore, it is important to maintain a good oral hygiene routine just as you did before your braces. This includes visiting your dentist here in Aventura, FL every six months, brushing and flossing daily, and using an antibacterial mouthwash, as well as visiting Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister for your regular adjustment appointments.
For more questions about foods you should avoid while wearing braces, or if you have any general questions about your treatment, we encourage you to give us a call, ask us at your next adjustment appointment or ask us on Facebook!
May 1st, 2019
A clean mouth is a happy mouth. And when Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff see you have a clean mouth, we are happy too. Of course, all of this should make you happy because you’re the one preventing sneaky little food bits from getting trapped under the wires of your braces.
Still, you need to be thorough with your brushing. When you have braces, you’re playing a game of hide-and-go-seek with everything you eat. Here are five tips to keep your mouth (and us) happy.
- How is brushing with braces like geometry? It’s all about the angles. Brush the tops of your teeth and braces with your brush angled down. Brush the bottom of your teeth with the brush angled up. Pointy brushes, aka interproximal brushes, are good for reaching the tiny spots around braces.
- Brush after every meal. If those sneaky little food bits hide in your mouth for very long, they’ll turn into plaque. And plaque is a sign of a very unhappy mouth.
- Brush one tooth at a time for at least ten seconds, and pay close attention to the spots where your braces touch your teeth.
- Fluoride is your new BFF. Make sure your toothpaste and mouthwash contain this cavity-fighting ingredient.
- Braces are no excuse not to floss. In fact, saying you can’t floss because you have braces is like saying the dog ate your homework. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff, like your geometry teacher, aren’t going to buy it. Be sure to floss after every meal.
April 24th, 2019
Clear aligners like Invisalign® have become increasingly popular over the past several years and rightly so. They’re removable, easier to clean than braces, and hardly anyone knows you're wearing them. They are great in treating many cases, but they aren't for everyone.
Below, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team cover some of the instances where clear aligners just aren't the answer:
- If drastic tooth movement is required – Fixed appliances deliver much more significant tooth movement. So if your case is a drastic one, clear aligners may not be the best choice.
- If you need to move molars – Molars have much stronger roots than your other teeth and would require significantly longer to move with clear aligners. A fixed appliance is the best choice in this instance, especially if you have a substantial overbite or underbite that needs to be dealt with.
- If you're the type who often forgets or loses things –If you would forget to wear your aligners for the prescribed amount of time (usually at least 22 hours per day), clear aligners are probably not the best choice for you. Forgetting to wear them can delay treatment and even make it so you need to regress to the previous set of aligners to be able to move forward with treatment. And let's face it, if you're not careful, removable aligners are easy to lose. Losing aligners delays treatment and is expensive since you need to buy replacements to stay on course. Replacing a lost set of aligners usually takes between seven and ten days—a definite setback in treatment.
- If you're looking for the fastest treatment possible – Clear aligners usually can't move teeth as quickly as fixed appliances. So if you're looking for the fastest way to achieve your desired result, clear aligners may not be the best bet.
Feel free to talk with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister about your options regarding braces and clear aligners. We know there are pros and cons to both, so let’s find the option that works best in your life and for your specific needs in terms of treatment. Schedule an appointment at our Aventura, FL office today!
April 17th, 2019
You’ve selected the Invisalign system because of the many benefits Invisalign offers: comfort, convenience, appearance, and even potentially shorter treatment time! And to add to the good news, caring for your Invisalign aligners is easy and uncomplicated. Follow these simple tips to keep your aligners in the best possible shape as you move through the stages of your treatment.
- Always brush and floss your teeth before using your aligners so that bacteria and food particles will not have a chance to collect around your teeth while you wear them.
- When you brush your teeth, be sure to brush your aligners with a separate soft toothbrush and lukewarm water as well.
- Rinse your aligners whenever you remove them during the day.
- Soak your aligners as recommended. Use the Invisalign Cleaning System or ask our Aventura, FL team for other suggestions to keep your aligners free from odor and bacteria.
One of the reasons you chose Invisalign is for an almost invisible appearance. Why take a chance on discoloration or scratches that will make the appliance more noticeable? Here are some common mistakes that can affect the color of your aligners:
- If your aligner has white spots, that might mean plaque build-up. Always rinse your aligner after you remove it and clean it thoroughly night and morning.
- Brushing with anything other than a soft brush and brushing too hard can cause scratches in the material which might be noticeable. A gentle touch will work to clean and protect your aligners.
- Eating with Invisalign aligners can cause staining. More important, it can cause the retention of food particles in the appliance, which can lead to dental problems. Finally, aligners are not meant for chewing—they might be damaged or lose their ideal shape even with soft foods. If you are going to be eating or drinking, take your aligners out, give them a rinse, and brush before you replace them. Or stick with water! Water will have no ill effects on teeth or aligners.
- Only soak aligners in an appropriate solution. Harsh chemicals, colored mouthwashes, and even some toothpastes can dim or discolor the clear plastic.
Talk to Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister about the best products to use and the best methods for taking care of your aligners. After all, making the process of improving your smile as easy and effective as possible is yet another benefit of choosing Invisalign!
April 10th, 2019
We all want to live our healthiest lives. We know that part of keeping ourselves healthy is regular visits to our Aventura, FL office for checkups and necessary dental work. And that dental work might require an X-ray. Should the amount of radiation in an X-ray concern us?
First, it is helpful to know that the radiation you are exposed to from a dental X-ray is very small. A set of most bitewing X-rays, for example, produces an amount of exposure about equal to the amount of background radiation we get from our normal surroundings in a typical day. We also take care to minimize your exposure even further by using specially designed equipment and protective shielding, and taking only necessary X-rays. If your child is very young, if you are pregnant, or if you have other health concerns, talk to us about the advisability of X-rays and whether they are essential to treatment.
Second, much of our careful general examination will be done visually. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can check for cavities and other problems and assess tooth and gum health. But sometimes, there are conditions which can’t be detected without an X-ray.
- Decay that isn’t visible in an oral exam—if a small cavity develops between teeth, or is hidden underneath a filling, an X-ray will catch it before more damage can take place.
- Infection—An X-ray will reveal infections such as abscesses that can damage both bone and tooth, and gum disease that has harmed bone and connective tissue.
- Orthodontic and periodontal issues—We might need an X-ray to determine the spacing and development of your child’s incoming teeth and maturing jaw structure, to properly create braces for adults or children, or to place an implant within the jawbone.
- If you are a new patient, it is helpful to have complete X-rays taken as a baseline of your current dental health and previous dental work. This baseline allows us to track tooth and jaw development, if necessary, and to evaluate any future changes that might be a concern. (If you have had X-rays taken in another office, we can help you have them transferred so we have a background of your dental history.)
Even though the radiation from a dental X-ray is minimal, be assured that we will never request any unnecessary procedure. When we recommend an X-ray, we do so to make sure there is no decay or infection threatening the health of your gums and teeth, and that we have the essential knowledge we need to treat any dental, periodontal, or orthodontic condition. Because we all want to live our healthiest lives—and part of that healthy life is both active and proactive dental care.
April 3rd, 2019
Nobody likes bad breath, and although it can sometimes be difficult to tell if you have it, it is always better to practice good oral health than risk having a smelly mouth. There are many ways to reduce or eliminate bad breath, some are definitely more effective and longer lasting than others. Check out ways to do so below.
As difficult as it can be to remember to floss regularly, when it comes to bad breath, flossing is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to freshen your mouth. See, flossing reduces the plaque and bacteria found in areas of your mouth that a toothbrush simply can't reach, and in turn, it rids your mouth of the smell associated with that bacteria. While flossing may not eliminate bad breath on its own, if you do it along with other health oral hygiene habits like brushing, then you may just develop a fresher smelling mouth.
Using some sort of mouthwash can really freshen up your breath, especially if you find it still smells after brushing and flossing. There is a wide variety of mouthwash products on the market, however, you can also create your own by simply using baking soda mixed with water.
Always Brush after You Sleep
Whether after taking a nap, or having a full night of sleep, you will want to brush your teeth in order to reduce bad breath. The truth is, bacteria accumulates in your mouth while you are sleeping (even during a short nap) and that is ultimately the source of bad breath. So next time you wake from a good slumber, give your mouth some brushing and you will find it makes a big difference in the freshness of your breath.
There are many ways to freshen your breath beyond just using gum or mints, the above mentioned are just a few for you to try. Test them out and you will likely find your bad breath problem is solved, or at least considerably reduced. Of course, you can always ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister at your next visit to our Aventura, FL office.
March 27th, 2019
Well, of course, they already are working for you—as an essential part of the alignment process. Rubber bands, also known as elastic ligatures, are used to secure the wires inside your brackets. But bands can be more than functional. Since the ligatures around each bracket are replaced when you visit our office, why not use that opportunity to choose a new color scheme as well?
- Make a Statement
Bands offer a chance to coordinate your braces to an interest, team, or event. Are you a swimmer? Maybe cool blues and turquoises appeal to you. Batman forever? Black and yellow. (That will work for beekeepers, too.) Have a favorite sports team? Choosing team colors will support your team with every smile. Love your school? Show your spirit by wearing bands in your school colors. Favorite time of year? Celebrate by selecting festive bands in holiday colors.
- Suit Your Mood
Fiery reds and oranges, tranquil blues and greens, millennial purples and pinks, or exuberant neon—you know that there are just some colors that suit your personality. Showcase that personality with your choice of band color. And if your mood changes, choose shades that express a completely different side of you.
- Coordinate Your Colors
Match your bands to your eye color, your makeup, or the clothing colors you choose most often. If there’s a color profile that works for you, make your bands a part of it. If you don’t want everything matching, complement your coloring or clothing with a different but coordinating shade for a cohesive effect.
- Keep a Low Profile
Most adults will stick with a monochromatic set of bands, and this might be a look that appeals to you as well. Grey and silver bands will blend nicely with silver braces. If you have clear or white brackets, you might want to test out which bands will be least noticeable. Clear bands can become discolored, and white bands can make teeth look darker. If there’s a band which mimics your own tooth color, this will be the choice for you.
- Make Color Theory Work for You
Certain colors and tints bring out the best in your tooth color and work with your skin tones. White and yellow bands might make teeth appear duller, and any shade combination that resembles food particles (greens, browns, and black) is probably not a look you’re going for. Have fun with a color wheel and decide which colors you find most flattering.
Make your bands more than a tool—make them an accessory. There are so many colorful options available that you are bound to happen on a color scheme that just suits you. And if you change your mind? Change it up during your next visit to our Aventura, FL office!
March 20th, 2019
X-rays have been a function of dental healthcare for a long time. That in and of itself should be good news, because it means we've had plenty of time to improve them. While there is always some risk in exposure to radiation, dental X-ray exposure has decreased significantly due to all the advances in technology. So there’s risk, but X-rays are quite safe.
Think of X-rays as you would about a car. Automobiles these days have all kinds of technology to make them as safe as possible. There's still a chance that you’ll suffer an accident. Would you stop using a car because of that risk? When it comes to dental X-rays, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team believe the positives clearly outweigh the negatives.
X-rays can be done digitally or with film. For film, X-rays require different exposures at different speeds to produce the image. Digital X-rays have software that automatically adjusts the exposure and produces the X-ray in a digital file. Since they substantially reduce your exposure to radiation, digital X-rays are the current standard in dental offices.
In addition to digital X-rays, lead aprons are an essential piece of X-ray safety. They help protect internal organs from X-rays by acting as a shield. They usually come with a thyroid collar as well, since that is one of the most vulnerable areas to X-rays in the body. Lead aprons can absorb up to 95% of any scatter rays that result from an X-ray. Not bad, right?
Although dental X-rays involve some radiation exposure (not all of it can be eliminated), so does everyday life. Getting too much sun, for example, can be dangerous. The truth is, we accumulate radiation in our bodies over a lifetime, so it’s worthwhile to be aware and avoid as much unnecessary exposure as possible. When it comes to your dental health, though, getting an X-ray — especially when your doctor says you need it — offers more benefits than risks.
Ask us about the type of dental X-rays we use during your next visit to our Aventura, FL office!
March 13th, 2019
You might be surprised to learn that Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team recommend an orthodontic appointment even before your child has had that last visit from the Tooth Fairy. In fact, orthodontic assessments at our Aventura, FL office can be beneficial at many stages of your child’s life. Let’s look at some of the reasons why.
The Right Spaces
There’s a reason why we recommend that every child see an orthodontist by the age of seven. If there’s room enough in your child’s mouth to accommodate all the permanent teeth that will be arriving soon, you’re good to go. But if it looks like there won’t be enough space for those adult teeth, there are solutions we can offer to make the transition from baby teeth to adult teeth a smoother one.
- If your child’s mouth is small, the permanent teeth might have too little room to fit in when they arrive. We may recommend gently enlarging the upper dental arch with the use of a palatal expander. This device will provide room for the adult teeth, and could potentially shorten second phase treatment time.
- Too much space can also be a problem. If a child loses a baby tooth too soon, too much space between the remaining teeth can cause them to shift out of position, leaving the wrong spot open for the adult tooth to come in. We might recommend a space maintainer so that there is no shifting of the teeth, and there is room for the adult tooth to erupt in its proper spot.
- If there is a bite problem, early treatment can prevent more serious problems down the road.
If no treatment is necessary immediately, we can monitor the development of your child’s teeth and bite during periodic visits.
(Stay in) The Right Places
Once your child has achieved that perfect smile, it’s time to maintain it. Teeth actually move and shift throughout our lives, whether we have had orthodontic treatment or not. But with orthodontic treatment, the bone tissue and ligaments around the teeth remodel over time to hold the teeth in their new and improved positions. That’s why it’s often important to wear a retainer constantly for several months after the braces come off, as bone and ligament become a firm, strong anchor for the newly aligned teeth and bite.
But there’s no one expiration date on retainers! Worn nightly as needed, they help teeth stay securely in their new positions for a lifetime of beautiful smiles.
Healthy Smiles Mean Happy Faces
If you think your child is ready for any phase of orthodontic work, give us a call. We will be happy to make sure there is ample room for permanent teeth to erupt in their proper spots even during the baby teeth years. If braces are indicated at a later date, we will analyze any potential alignment and bite problems and present all of your treatment options. Finally, after the orthodontic work is completed, we want to make sure your child knows the best way to maintain that beautiful smile with conscientious retainer wear.
If you have any concerns about your child’s teeth or bite, even before the permanent teeth arrive, give our Aventura, FL office a call. Early treatment can often prevent future problems and might even lead to faster orthodontic results. At each stage of your child’s growth, we are here to provide your best options for healthy, happy smiles.
March 6th, 2019
As we all know, or should by now, the key to maintaining great oral health is keeping up with a daily plan of flossing, brushing, and using mouthwash. These three practices in combination will help you avoid tooth decay and keep bacterial infections at bay.
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, we’ve noticed that it’s usually not the toothbrush or floss that people have trouble picking, but the mouthwash.
Depending on the ingredients, different mouthwashes will have different effects on your oral health. Here are some ideas to take under consideration when you’re trying to decide which type of mouthwash will best fit your needs.
- If gum health is your concern, antiseptic mouthwashes are designed to reduce bacteria near the gum line.
- If you drink a lot of bottled water, you may want to consider a fluoride rinse to make sure your teeth develop the level of strength they need.
- Generally, any mouthwash will combat bad breath, but some are especially designed to do so.
- Opt for products that are ADA approved, to ensure you aren’t exposing your teeth to harmful chemicals.
- If you experience an uncomfortable, burning sensation when you use a wash, stop it and try another!
Still have questions about mouthwash? Feel free to ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister during your next visit to our Aventura, FL office! We’re always happy to answer your questions. Happy rinsing!
February 27th, 2019
Everyone wants a naturally aligned and beautiful smile, and it is no secret that orthodontic braces from Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 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.
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.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and staff will be happy to answer any of your questions about your orthodontic treatment. Visit us in Aventura, FL today!
February 20th, 2019
You may have a talent for home repairs. You may be able to rebuild your computer. You may even be able to put together a whole room of furniture armed only with flat-box kits and an Allen wrench. But, please—don’t try do-it-yourself orthodontics!
Now that generic clear aligners are available, you might consider giving them a try to save some money. But is straightening your own teeth really a good idea? Before you are tempted, let’s look more closely at the products and the dental science involved.
- Invisalign clear aligners are used by orthodontists and dentists with experience in custom treatment for your smile. A 3D image of your teeth will be captured by the iTero Element® scanner. Using special software, your doctor can map out each projected shift in your teeth, and even show you a projection of your finished smile!
- Your Invisalign aligners will be tailored to fit your teeth precisely using the 3D scan and 3D printing. They are made from SmartTrack® material, a product specifically engineered for a perfect, comfortable fit. Invisalign aligners are even trimmed to fit your individual gumline to prevent irritation.
- When your first sets of Invisalign aligners arrive at our Aventura, FL office, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will check for fit, answer any questions you might have about use and care, and let you know what to look for and what to expect. Your progress will be monitored with visits every six to eight weeks. (And for parents of teens, Invisalign aligners can offer blue “compliance indicators” to let you know they are being worn the 20-22 hours a day necessary for the best and fastest results.)
- You might be required to make a putty mold of your own upper and lower teeth, which is not the easiest thing to do well, and to take selfies of your teeth.
- The aligners will be sent to you in the mail. They are generally made of hard plastic with generic gumlines. There will be no one to tell you if the aligners fit properly.
- They are sometimes less expensive because there is no in-person medical supervision. A dental professional working for the company will look at the model created from molds you submit, and recommend a series of aligners to correct the problems he detects by looking at the model and your selfies. This supervisor will not be able to assess the overall dental health of each patient to make sure teeth and gums are healthy and ready to start treatment, and will not be able to tell if the teeth are moving properly or improperly once the aligners are in use.
Finally, while generic aligners may potentially have some success in minor tooth straightening, they are not created to deal with complex bite issues or malocclusions. In fact, using generic aligners with no supervision can cause more serious dental problems than a patient started with.
Sure, sometimes a do-it-yourself project turns out well. But your teeth and bones are too important for home improvement. When it comes to creating a beautiful, even smile and balanced, comfortable bite while making sure of your dental health, it’s always best to trust a professional like Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to provide you with gentle, tested, and successful care!
February 13th, 2019
Valentine’s Day is the holiday to celebrate all the treasured relationships in your life. It’s a time to honor love in all shapes and forms with cards, social gatherings, and sometimes even binge eating of sweets.
It's hard to look the other way when grocery stores and pharmacies are invaded with goodies connected to the Valentine’s Day theme, and especially if you’re on the receiving end of some of these sweets. We get it. In fact, we’re all for it!
However, we also support a cavity-free smile. So in the interest of your dental and general health, and because we think it’s genuinely tasty, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister recommends an alternative to the Valentine treats you may be accustomed to: dark chocolate.
Yes, Healthy Chocolate Exists
Studies have shown that dark chocolate is high in flavonoids, an ingredient found in the cocoa beans used to make chocolate. Flavonoids can help protect the body against toxins, reduce blood pressure, and improve blood flow to the heart and brain.
By opting for dark chocolate rather than milk chocolate, you get to reap these benefits! Pretty sweet, right? Just make sure to stick to high-quality dark chocolates that have undergone minimal processing.
Dark Chocolate, AKA Protector of Teeth
Not only does dark chocolate provide some nice benefits for your overall health, it also helps protect your teeth against cavities! According to the Texas A&M Health Science Center, dark chocolate contains high amounts of tannins, another ingredient present in cocoa beans.
Tannins can actually help prevent cavities by interfering with the bacteria that causes them. Think of them as scarecrows for bacteria. They don’t always prevail, but isn’t it nice to have them there?
Smooth Never Sticky
Unlike many popular candies, dark chocolate is less likely to stick in the crevices of your teeth. Chewy, gooey sweets are more likely to hang around in your mouth for longer periods of time, which means they raise the odds of your harboring cavity-creating bacteria.
While some dark chocolates have additives like caramel or marshmallow, it’s best to opt for the plain varieties, which are just as delicious. If you’re feeling festive, though, a dark chocolate with caramel is still better than a milk chocolate with caramel, so that’s the way to go!
While dark chocolate has some pretty sweet benefits, the most important thing to remember (whether you go the dark chocolate route or not), is that moderation is key. That being said, we hope you have fun satisfying your sweet tooth and shopping for treats for your friends and loved ones. Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister!
February 6th, 2019
Perhaps you are already planning for the years when your teenager will need orthodontic work. But hearing that your seven-year-old would benefit from orthodontic treatment? That might come as a complete surprise! It’s a recommendation with real benefits, though—early intervention can save children from tooth and bite problems now, and even simplify their future orthodontic care.
Treating young children for orthodontic problems is called “interceptive orthodontics.” When the permanent teeth start arriving, there might be problems with spacing, bite or protruding teeth. Often, treatment while the bones are still growing is the best way to prevent more serious problems later.
We recommend that your child have an orthodontic consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister around the age of seven. This exam is especially important for children who may have been thumb suckers or used a pacifier after the age of three, or if you notice obvious teeth, speech or bite issues.
- Crowding and Spacing Issues
Teeth are arranged in two crescent shapes called arches. When the arch of your child’s mouth is small, the permanent teeth can become very crowded as they erupt. Formerly, teeth were removed to make more room. Now, early use of a palatal expander can enlarge the upper dental arch in order to help the permanent teeth come in without crowding. The need for future tooth extraction is reduced, and there is a better chance for correct spacing and alignment with early treatment.
On the other hand, when a child loses a tooth too soon, too much space left between baby teeth can also be a problem. The remaining teeth can shift, leaving the wrong place open for the adult tooth to come in. We might recommend a space maintainer so that there is no shifting of the teeth and there is room for the proper adult tooth to erupt in its proper spot.
- Malocclusions (Bite Problems)
Some malocclusions, like a crossbite, can be caused by problems with jaw and facial structure. Again, we might recommend a palatal expander to help the upper arch of the teeth to fit properly with the lower jaw. Problems with overbite, open bite and other bite issues can also be addressed at this age if necessary. Early care can discourage TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders, reduce speech problems, and improve facial symmetry.
- Protruding Front Teeth
Teeth that protrude are much more likely to be damaged when playing or after a fall. Methods such as braces or appliances can reposition them and protect them from breaking or fracturing.
Many children will not need early intervention, and many can wait until they are older for orthodontic work. But if your young child has orthodontic problems that should be addressed, early intervention can do more than set the stage for successful orthodontics in the teen years. Talk to our Aventura, FL team about what we can do for your child. Interceptive orthodontics can protect teeth, guide jaw and speech development, modify harmful oral habits and help to adjust bite problems before they become serious—when it comes to your child’s dental health, the best solutions are early ones!
January 30th, 2019
Birthdays. Valentine’s Day. Halloween. A trip to the movies. There are just some occasions where a sweet treat is on the menu. Now that you are getting braces, does that mean you have to give up desserts completely? Not at all! The trick to finding the right treat is to know which foods are safe for your braces and which should wait until your treatment is complete.
There are some foods which should always be avoided. They fall into three main categories:
- Hard and Crunchy
Hard candies, peanut brittle, popcorn balls, nutty candy bars—anything that is hard to bite into is hard on your braces, and can damage brackets or even break them.
Caramels, taffy, chewy squares and rolls, licorice and other super-chewy candies can break brackets and bend wires. Not to mention, they are really difficult to clean from the surface of teeth and braces.
Soft foods are generally fine, but soft and sticky candies are another thing entirely. Gumdrops, jelly beans, most gum and other sticky treats stick to your braces, making it hard to clean all that sugar from around your brackets. And even soft sticky candies can bend wires or damage your brackets.
As you have probably noticed, almost all candy falls into one of these categories. Of course, while sugary treats shouldn’t be a major part of anyone’s diet, and careful brushing and flossing are always on the menu if you do indulge, wearing braces does not mean giving up on treats entirely. A better alternative when you are craving something sweet is to choose something that avoids crunchy, chewy and sticky hazards, such as soft puddings, cupcakes or cookies. There are even some candy brands that are safe for your braces.
Talk to Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister the next time you visit our Aventura, FL office about the dos and don’ts of desserts—we have tasty suggestions that will make those special occasions both sweet for you and safe for your orthodontic work!
January 23rd, 2019
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, 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. 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.
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 Aventura, FL office know if you have questions about your oral health while in braces - our entire team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister is here to make sure your teeth are as beautifully straight as they are healthy!
January 16th, 2019
Dental floss is similar to a lot of products that depend mainly on the consumer’s preference. Fact is, floss comes in a wide variety of flavors, coatings, and other variations, but all types of floss essentially do the same thing. After all, that is what is most important: that the dental floss you buy is functional—cleaning the areas in between your teeth. If you want to know what the best dental floss is, the answer is the kind that enables you to successfully and regularly clean those areas. So to help you find the right type of floss for you, here are some options.
Flavored Dental Floss
Many people that floss prefer a flavored dental floss because it freshens their breath even more than unscented floss. The latter can also take on the smells associated with bacteria in your mouth. And we all know how bad that can be. So, if flavored dental floss is what you prefer, and it allows you to floss your teeth regularly, then it is automatically best for your mouth.
There are also products on the market called flossers, which usually consist of a plastic instrument with strung floss and a pick on the opposite end. This option can be both effective at cleaning the areas in between your teeth and scraping off plaque. These flossers also come flavored in mint and various other varieties.
Gentle Dental Floss
Some people find that typical dental floss is too harsh on their gums. For that reason some companies make floss with soft coatings that are less abrasive on the gums. For the most part these types of floss are just as effective as regular floss, and for those people that require a more sensitive approach to flossing, especially when just starting out, this is the best option.
Of the aforementioned options, it is difficult to name an absolute best type of floss. However, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team say that the type of floss that works best for you, giving you the greatest chance of succeeding at regular flossing, is the best. For more information on floss, contact our Aventura, FL office.
January 9th, 2019
It’s true that orthodontic braces can give you a beautiful smile. But did you know there are other benefits of having braces than just getting perfectly straight teeth? Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team want you to understand the other positives that can come out of having braces and relate to your oral health.
When teeth are crooked or crowded, it’s hard to brush and floss effectively. When there isn’t enough space in your mouth, bacteria and plaque can build up between these teeth. This can lead to serious issues like tooth decay and gum disease. When braces correct the spacing between teeth, and get rid of the tight spaces, patients are able to brush and floss more effectively and not miss essential areas of the mouth.
Surprisingly, braces can also address speech problems. They can shift problem teeth that may be causing embarrassing speech impediments. When an overbite or underbite gets adjusted, patients can pronounce certain words more clearly.
Spaces between teeth may also cause whistling, which braces can fix by closing off the gaps. Word slurring can also be improved with the help of braces by realignment of the jaw or teeth, which opens room for your tongue to move with greater ease.
Braces can also be helpful in supporting the bones and tissues in your mouth. Braces move periodontal ligaments by stretching the connective tissues and nerves. The bones naturally rebuild once they’re settled in their new spot.
Without support from poorly aligned teeth, gum tissue can erode. Braces help prevent erosion of the gums, and will alleviate pressure from the jawbone by fixing a bad bite over time.
If teeth are misplaced, they may not break down food effectively before it enters your stomach. Teeth aid with digestion when you can thoroughly chew your food. If your teeth are badly placed, braces can straighten them for optimal alignment. Once you can chew properly with the help of braces, your food will be more easily and fully digested.
If you have questions regarding braces and how they can help you, contact our Aventura, FL office and set up a consultation appointment. Braces can help with many oral health problems, and may save you a lot of money and time in the future.
If you’re not sure whether braces would be worth your time or money, consider the benefits above, and how they add to the value of this treatment. You’ll be getting more than just a beautiful smile!
January 2nd, 2019
If you participate in sports or other physical activities, it’s wise to consider getting a mouthguard. Also known as mouth protectors, mouthguards are a device worn over the teeth to lessen the impact of a blow to the face.
This reduces the chance that you might lose teeth or sustain other serious oral injuries. We recommend that all patients involved in a contact sport such as wrestling, football, or hockey wear a mouthguard because of the high risk of such injuries.
However, anyone involved in a physically demanding sport or activity should wear a mouthguard as well.
Can you imagine what it would be like to lose a few of your front teeth? The way you talk, eat, and smile would all change. Potential injuries when you don’t wear a mouthguard include chipped and broken teeth, fractured jaws, root damage, damage to crowns and bridgework, concussions, and/or injury to the lips, cheeks, or gums.
Types of Mouthguards
There are three different types of mouthguards — typically made of a soft plastic material or laminate. You can decide which works best for you in terms of budget, fit, and comfort.
- Stock mouthguards are prefabricated to a standard size. They offer adequate protection, but you need to make sure you find one that fits properly and comfortably. Stock mouthguards are readily available at department stores, sporting goods stores, and online.
- Boil-and-bite mouthguards are placed in boiling water to soften them, then into the mouth so they can conform to the shape of the teeth. Boil-and-bite mouthguards are more expensive, but offer a more customized fit than stock ones. You can find these in department stores, pharmacies, sporting goods stores, and online.
- Custom-made mouthguards are created just for you by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. These offer the best fit and comfort of all the options, but they are also the most expensive. Ask a member of our Aventura, FL team for more information.
The American Dental Association says a good mouthguard should be easy to clean, fit properly, be comfortable, and resist tearing or damage. It shouldn’t restrict speech or breathing.
Still not sure if you need a mouthguard or which kind is right for you? Ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister or one of our staff members for more information.
December 26th, 2018
We’ve been celebrating the new year for a really, really long time. It goes way back, but it started formally in 1582, when Pope George XIII made January 1st the official holiday for ushering in the new year. The idea was to yell, cheer, and blow horns to scare away all the evil spirits of the previous year with the hope that the new one would be filled with happiness and opportunity.
While scaring away evil spirits isn’t what’s on our mind these days, we still ring in the New Year by cheering and hollering with friends and family. It’s a time to set new goals, refocus on old ones, and look forward to all the surprises the coming year will bring.
Whether you’re saying hello to the New Year snuggled up at home on your couch in the Aventura, FL area or by gathering your friends for a social celebration, here are some tips to help ensure you welcome this new chapter with a smile.
Tips for a great New Year’s Eve celebration from Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister
- Stay safe. This one’s vital, because nothing puts a damper on your party like an emergency trip to the hospital. Stay responsible and try to plan ahead, whether that means taking a taxi, staying with a friend, or recruiting a designated driver. Do what you have to do to keep yourself and everyone around you safe.
- Spend time with the people you love most. The way we see it, the whole point of the holiday season is to cherish your family and friends. Regardless of what you’re doing, make sure there’s something for everyone. It’s essential to do something the whole group will enjoy!
- Smile! Whether you get all dressed to go out or have a quiet gathering with family and friends, make sure you accessorize with a smile. There’s always something to smile about!
We can all agree that change can be scary sometimes, but ringing in the New Year is an observance we all welcome with open arms. We hope you’ll enjoy this transitional holiday in a fun, healthy, and safe way. You have endless possibilities ahead of you!
From Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, have a fantastic New Year!
December 19th, 2018
When patients ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister about who benefits from Invisalign clear aligners, the simple answer is this: almost everyone. Unlike conventional braces, they are removable, which makes eating and cleaning your teeth much easier.
They are molded to fit each patient’s mouth and are practically invisible. Because aligners apply less force in straightening teeth than metal braces, the risk of harm to your teeth is reduced.
Benefits to adults
Traditional braces are associated with children and teenagers. Many adults want to have their teeth straightened but hesitate to wear metal braces. They also worry about having to change their diet and not be able to eat the foods they normally enjoy.
If you are an adult who’s considering braces, our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister will tell you Invisalign aligners is a great option for discreet teeth straightening. Your teeth will be straightened with virtually invisible braces.
The aligners are easily removable when you eat, so you can enjoy any food you normally would consume. You simply clean your teeth normally after eating and you won’t have to worry about getting food stuck in your braces.
If there is a special occasion during which you do not want to have any braces in your mouth at all, you can remove the aligners for up to four hours without causing any damage.
Benefits to teenagers
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team know that teenagers are often involved in sports and other after-school activities, and generally lead pretty busy lives. If your teen plays a musical instrument, you may be concerned that having metal in his or her mouth will interfere with ability to play. Invisalign aligners avoid the damage that can happen with traditional metal braces.
For sports that require players to wear mouthguards, the expense of specially constructed mouthguards to fit over braces is also eliminated. The aligners can be removed during sports activities and teens can easily wear a mouthguard. Teenagers who play musical instruments simply remove the aligners while practicing or playing in the band or orchestra.
Teenagers routinely have trouble flossing teeth between the wires and brackets of traditional braces, but Invisalign allows for easy dental cleaning. Since Invisalign aligners are removable, brushing and flossing are simpler and more likely to be performed.
For more information about Invisalign or Invisalign Teen® treatment, or to schedule an initial consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
December 12th, 2018
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, there are a few things we want to remind you of when you're on vacation, so that a day with friends and family won’t be spent dealing with an orthodontic emergency. Firstly, we are here for you whether you are in town or out of town on vacation. Give us a call and we may be able to address the problem over the phone. Second, if we are unable to help you fix the problem over the phone, we will help you find an orthodontic practice in your vacation area that can help you.
If you experience problems reaching our office, we suggest going online and searching for orthodontic practices in your area. Most orthodontists will lend a helping hand to another orthodontic patient and get them out of pain or discomfort.
If you have braces, whether they are metal, ceramic, or lingual, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team suggest steering clear of the following foods to avoid broken brackets and/or wire distortion while you are on vacation:
- Chewy, sticky, or gummy food
- Apples, pears and other whole fruits (cut fruit into thin wedges before consuming)
- Bagels and hard rolls
- Bubble gum
- Corn on the cob
- Hard candies
- Hard cookies
- All varieties of nuts, including peanuts, almonds, and cashews
Finally, if you have clear aligners and you lose your tray, don’t worry! Simply put in either the previous tray or the next tray and contact us as soon as you get home!
Follow these tips and you can have a worry-free vacation!
December 5th, 2018
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister. 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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.
November 28th, 2018
Braces aren’t just for kids. Many grownups are taking advantage of orthodontic treatment and having their teeth straightened at a later age.
Sometimes, patients include adults who already had braces in the past, but their teeth shifted over time once they stopped wearing their retainers. In other cases, adults who have never had braces are tired of having crooked teeth and ready to invest in a beautiful smile.
Whatever the case may be, if you’re looking to straighten your teeth with braces, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister would love to help you with this process. Having a dazzling smile can increase your confidence in all areas of your life!
Depending on what you’re willing to spend and how quickly you would like to complete the process, you have various options for getting braces. We all know what traditional metal braces look like. This is a less-expensive route for individuals who have severely crooked or displaced teeth. However, many adults avoid option because the braces are noticeable or distracting in a professional atmosphere.
For people concerned about aesthetics, clear ceramic braces may be a preferable option. This type can still fix extremely crooked teeth or jaw alignment issues. It may be slightly more expensive than traditional metal braces. Patients who choose this treatment route need to be careful not to stain the clear adhesives by drinking too much coffee, red wine, soda, or other beverages that can discolor teeth.
Another great option for adults who don’t want to have visible braces is a clear aligner treatment known as Invisalign®. This popular option differs from traditional braces by featuring a series of clear aligners that are each custom-made for your teeth.
The entire process can take anywhere from three to 18 months to straighten your teeth completely. This may not be the best choice for patients who have an overcrowded mouth or extreme bite issues. Invisalign is often the most expensive option, but it’s great if you’re concerned about your appearance while your teeth are being straightened.
If you’ve been thinking about straightening your teeth with the help of braces, don’t hesitate to contact our Aventura, FL office to set up a consultation. From there, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can figure out the best course of treatment, depending on your budget and overall needs.
Adult braces can be a great way to boost your confidence and finally give you the smile you’ve always wanted.
November 21st, 2018
Today, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister suggests brushing at least twice a day.
We hope that helps! If you have any questions, please give us a call at our Aventura, FL office or ask us during your next adjustment appointment!
November 14th, 2018
It’s not unusual for a patient to be unaware of the range of services that orthodontists can provide for their patients. Knowing which services Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team perform can help you better understand your options and why we might select a particular method of treatment.
Both orthodontists and dentists care about good oral health, but they approach treatment in differing ways. You know that dentists clean teeth and treat gum disease, tooth decay, toothaches, and other oral health problems.
But what does your orthodontist do besides help straighten teeth with the help of braces? Orthodontists are commonly known to help fix or realign crooked teeth. Many of the patients at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister come in for appointments that relate to their braces.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team recommend that children be seen around the age of seven to evaluate their potential orthodontic needs. Common problems may include overcrowding of teeth, large gaps or spaces, and overbites or underbites, among other things.
In order to address these common problems, we offer several methods of treatment besides standard braces and retainers:
- Space maintainers can be used to fill the spaces left by missing baby teeth so other teeth don’t shift and occupy the adult tooth’s location.
- Jaw repositioning appliances, sometimes known as splints, are used to reposition the upper and lower jaw bones correctly.
- Lip and cheek bumpers can also be used to avoid having to pull teeth. These bumpers are placed in the mouth so the patient’s lips or cheeks don’t put pressure on specific teeth.
- A more common appliance that orthodontists use is expanders. If your mouth is crowded, expanders will be placed on the curve of the upper and/or lower jaw(s) in order to make room for teeth to be properly aligned.
- As a last resort, an orthodontist may turn to headgear. This is normally provided to slow down the growth of the jaw. It must be worn a number of hours each day.
When you visit our Aventura, FL office, we will go over these options with you and pick the best course of treatment, depending on the current state of your oral health.
No matter which oral appliances you end up with, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team will go over all the available options with you to give you a beautiful smile. If you have questions regarding your treatment method, don’t hesitate to call our office and we can provide you with some insight.
Understanding the different options your orthodontist can provide should make matters less confusing if you should need to select a method of treatment.
November 7th, 2018
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL office to be evaluated.
October 31st, 2018
Having teeth encased in braces can be discouraging during Halloween. If you or your child has braces, there are certain candies to avoid this holiday season—and in general—while you have braces. Candy can be tempting, especially for children.
But don’t worry; other sweet treat options can readily take their place. Take a look at the American Association of Orthodontists’ tips on how to keep your braces safe.
Treats to avoid because they can cause damage to your braces include:
- Hard candies
- Chewy candies
- Jelly beans
- Hard pretzels
These goodies should be avoided because they have the potential to bend or break your braces. Broken brackets and loose wires can waste time and money.
Switch out hard, chewy, and sticky candies for these options in the mean time:
- Soft chocolate
- Peanut butter cups
- Gelatin treats
- Ice cream
- Root beer floats
- Apple cider
Encouraging your child to stay with alternative, braces-friendly treats may prevent her from trying to eat candies that could break or damage braces. Halloween can still be fun, especially if your youngster (or you) don’t have to visit our Aventura, FL office get braces fixed.
Make sure to remind your child to avoid harmful candies, and encourage him to exchange treats with friends to make it more fun. Only passing out candies that children can eat safely, such as soft chocolates, can make them feel included.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team hope you enjoy your Halloween season, regardless of whether you are wearing braces.
October 24th, 2018
How You Can Start Preparing Now
When you first start thinking about going to the orthodontist, it is normal to feel apprehensive. What will your orthodontic experience bring? Whether you have been advised by a dentist or chosen to seek out orthodontic care from Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister on your own, there are a few things you can do to prepare for your initial consultation at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
One of the best ways to prepare for an orthodontic consultation is to understand your options. With so many choices available today, orthodontic care is a lot more versatile than in the past. You can start preparing now by seeking out and understanding those options. With a few specific things in mind, you can be totally confident and prepared for your consultation.
Questions to Ask During the Consultation
As you consider orthodontic care, it is likely that a few questions may naturally arise. Don’t be afraid to ask any questions you might have. Our orthodontic team is here to help. Here are just a few examples of questions you may want to ask at your consultation.
- Is there an estimated length of time that I will likely require braces?
- How much should I expect to pay for my treatment? What are the payment options?
- Does getting braces hurt? Is there anything I can do to prevent or minimize pain?
- Is it likely that I will be wearing extra appliances in addition to braces to correct my overbite or other problems?
- Are there specific foods I will need to avoid when I get braces?
- Will braces prevent me from playing my favorite sport or musical instrument?
- How can I keep my teeth clean with braces?
- How often will I be expected to come in for checkups and other appointments?
Once your consultation is over, you don’t have to feel like your options are exhausted. If questions arise after the consultation, don’t be afraid to ask. Our orthodontic team will be here to help throughout the entire process.
Confidence throughout the Process
With answers to your questions, and an orthodontic team on your side, you can be confident about any necessary orthodontic treatments. From the initial consultation to the day your braces come off, your orthodontic treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister can be a smooth and simple process. The moment you see that beautiful smile, you’ll know it was all worth it.
We love bringing nothing but the most amazing smiles to our patients!
October 17th, 2018
Wearing braces limits some of the snacks you can eat. However, you still have plenty of choices for fun and healthy foods that will not harm your braces. You can even enjoy a few crunchy treats as long as you choose them carefully.
Puddings provide a sweet and safe snack while you are wearing braces. You can even select flavored puddings such as caramel to satisfy the urge for items you should not eat. They can be purchased already made or whipped up at home. You can even select low-sugar varieties that still taste good. Ice cream and yogurt are also choices; just avoid products with nuts.
Fruits are excellent for a healthy snack. You just need to avoid biting into hard fruits such as whole apples. You can avoid the problem with fruit cocktails packed in water. Cocktails still have the nutritional benefits and flavor, but contain softer pieces. Avoid fruits packed in heavy syrup, though; these tend to have too much sugar.
Crunchy or Salty Snacks
Not all crunchy foods are bad; you just need to limit the crunch. Walnuts are a softer nut that can normally be eaten safely. Small cheese crackers satisfy the need for crunchy and salty. You can also allow pieces to dissolve slightly in your mouth before chewing, to reduce any risk.
Soft granola bars are also an option. Check the granola ingredients to ensure there are no large nut pieces, and brush your teeth afterwards. Otherwise pieces can become stuck in your dental work.
If you have any questions about safe snacks, do not hesitate to ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff.
October 10th, 2018
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
October 3rd, 2018
How better to spend the fall months than inside by the fireplace with a warm cup of cider and a book in hand? Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL 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!
September 26th, 2018
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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!
September 19th, 2018
According to the American Association of Orthodontists, orthodontic treatment for children should start at around age seven. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can evaluate your child’s orthodontic needs early on to see if orthodontic treatment is recommended for your son or daughter.
Below, we answer common questions parents may have about the benefits of early childhood orthodontics.
What does early orthodontic treatment mean?
Early orthodontic treatment usually begins when a child is eight or nine years old. Typically known as Phase One, the goal here is to correct bite problems such as an underbite, as well as guide the jaw’s growth pattern. This phase also helps make room in the mouth for teeth to grow properly, with the aim of preventing teeth crowding and extractions later on.
Does your child need early orthodontic treatment?
The characteristics and behavior below can help determine whether your little one needs early treatment.
- Early loss of baby teeth (before age five)
- Late loss of baby teeth (after age five or six)
- The child’s teeth do not meet properly or at all
- The child is a mouth breather
- Front teeth are crowded (you won’t see this until the child is about seven or eight)
- Protruding teeth, typically in the front
- Biting or chewing difficulties
- A speech impediment
- The jaw shifts when the child opens or closes the mouth
- The child is older than five years and still sucks a thumb
What are the benefits of seeking orthodontic treatment early?
Jaw bones do not harden until children reach their late teens. Because children’s bones are still pliable, corrective procedures such as braces are easier and often faster than they would be for adults.
Early treatment at our Aventura, FL office can enable your child to avoid lengthy procedures, extraction, and surgery in adulthood. Talk with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister today to see if your child should receive early orthodontic treatment.
September 12th, 2018
These days, it’s become more common to see adults at our office getting their teeth straightened with Invisalign clear aligners . . . that is, if you can see them! Whether they are seeking to overcome the stigma that “braces are just for kids,” or simply want straighter teeth without a mouth full of metal, Invisalign is an effective and easy solution.
According to the American Association of Orthodontists, from 1994 to 2010 the number of adults 18 and older who request braces increased by 58 percent: from 680,000 to 1.1 million a year. Many adults enjoy how discreet the aligners are and that the user doesn’t need to avoid any foods or make dietary changes the way you would with traditional braces. Also, each treatment is unique to the patient.
With an Invisalign treatment, you can expect to enjoy the following benefits over traditional braces:
- The total treatment time is more precise with Invisalign because your treatment is modeled by a computer. Traditional braces depend more on an estimate and aren’t as exact.
- You’ll make fewer trips to our Aventura, FL office, since you’re able to change your trays on your own every few weeks or whatever is prescribed.
- Without brackets to place over your teeth, there’s less risk to the health of your tooth enamel.
- Invisalign aligners are clear and practically invisible, so most people won’t even know you’re wearing them!
If you’re interested in Invisalign as a treatment option, please let Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister know. We’d be happy to help you on your journey to a straighter, healthier smile!
September 5th, 2018
School can present a few issues when it comes to caring for your braces and mouth, since you won't have the luxury of the time and tools you have at your disposal while you're at home. But if you head to school prepared, you shouldn't have any trouble keeping your braces and mouth in great shape. Below is a list of helpful tips to care for your braces throughout the entire school year.
- Bring a kit that includes all of your oral health care items. This is a seriously smart thing to do and probably the most important of all the tips. Pack things like a toothbrush, floss, wax, retainer case (if needed), a mirror, a small cup for rinsing, a small bottle of water (if you don't already have some water with you), and some OTC pain medicine or a natural pain remedy. Keep the kit in your locker or backpack. Having all these items on hand will save you a lot of trouble and discomfort, and also ensure you don't have anything unsightly stuck in your braces or teeth!
- Take advantage of breaks and lunchtime. After eating lunch is a great time to pop into the restroom and give your braces and teeth a once over to make sure you don't have any food debris caught in them and to tend to any sore spots. If you've just had your braces adjusted, you may have soreness on your gums or cheeks. This is where the wax you packed will come in handy.
- Eat the right food for your braces. Avoid all the foods that wreak havoc on your braces like gum, candy, popcorn, hard chips, apples which aren't cut into wedges, nuts, beef jerky, ice, etc. You know the foods we're talking about; you've heard it enough already. Steering clear of these foods will help you prevent any possible mishaps with your braces, like breaking a bracket or wire, which is the last thing you want happening at school.
If you follow these tips and also keep up on your oral health routine at home, you'll be maximizing the effectiveness of your braces and making them as comfortable as possible. Do you have questions about caring for your braces during the school day? Ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister or anyone in our Aventura, FL office and we'll gladly help you out!
August 29th, 2018
You've made an investment on spending money on getting braces, so why not keep your teeth in good health while undergoing orthodontic treatment? Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister please don't hesitate to give us a call or during your next adjustment appointment!
August 22nd, 2018
Some foods are just terrible for your teeth — think cookies and candy bars — but there are certain foods that are beneficial to your oral health. Below, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team have covered five of the top foods to keep your teeth and gums healthy!
1. Crispy, low-acid fruits and vegetables: Fruits like apples and vegetables such as carrots and celery act like “natural toothbrushes,” helping to clear plaque from your teeth and freshen your breath.
2. Kiwis: These little green superstars are packed with vitamin C which is essential for gum health. The collagen in your gums is strengthened when you consume foods that are high in vitamin C, like kiwis, thus helping to prevent periodontal problems.
3. Raw onions: Onions have long been studied for their antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties. Proliferation of bacteria is what leads to tooth decay and cavities. By including raw onions in your diet, you'll be doing your part to wipe out those little microbes before they can multiply!
4. Shiitake Mushrooms: A specific compound in shiitake mushrooms, lentinan, has been shown to have antibacterial properties that target the microbes that cause cavities while leaving other beneficial bacteria alone. It may also help prevent gingivitis, or inflammation of the gums.
5. Green Tea: Often lauded for its high antioxidant content and many health benefits, it turns out green tea also benefits your oral health! A Japanese study found men who drank green tea on a regular basis had a lower occurrence of periodontal disease compared to men who drank green tea infrequently. It's believed this is due to the catechins in green tea, a type of flavonoid that may help protect you from free radical damage, but more research needs to be done. Either way, drink up for your overall health, as well as your teeth!
If you have any questions about your oral health, or are looking for even more oral health tips, contact our Aventura, FL office!
August 15th, 2018
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, we encourage you to err on the side of caution. Of course, you can always contact our Aventura, FL 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.
August 8th, 2018
Many patients underestimate the importance of wearing their retainers after their braces come off, but it is one of the most critical post care practices to keep your teeth in alignment. Why spend all that time, energy, and money to straighten your teeth when you don't plan to keep them straightened after treatment?
What is a retainer?
As the name implies, a retainer keeps teeth from moving back to the positions in which they started before treatment was administered; they "retain" your smile and bite. There are many different types of retainers—some are removable and some are permanent. Some retainers are made of plastic and metal (known as Hawley retainers) and others are all plastic or all metal. Some retainers can even be bonded to the back of your teeth!
How long do I need to wear it?
If you've been given a removable retainer by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, you may be wondering how long you need to wear it. It takes time for the tissues and bones around your teeth to reorganize and set into place after braces treatment.
The amount of time you’ll need to wear your retainer depends on your unique situation, but typically, retainers should be worn at least as long as the time you spent in braces. You might need to wear them full-time for a while, and then transition to wearing them only at night. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will have a treatment plan especially for you, and if you stick to it, you'll always have a straight smile.
Nothing is forever (at least without retainers!)
Research has shown that there is no “permanent” position for your teeth to remain in. In fact, some studies say upward of 70% of patients will see a change to their bite and tooth alignment as they get older. This applies to people who have had orthodontic treatment and those who have not. Of course, some people's teeth never seem to shift—you can consider them the lucky ones, as most people's teeth do.
And this is precisely where retainers come in. The only way to ensure your teeth stay in alignment long-term is by wearing your retainers. If you have any questions about retainers or your treatment plan, please ask any member of our Aventura, FL staff.
August 1st, 2018
Although adolescence is a common time to get braces, there’s no reason for adults of any age to have to deal with crooked teeth, overbite, underbite, or other dental issues. In fact, the American Association of Orthodontists notes that demand for orthodontic treatment in adults continues to grow, with adults representing 20% of new patients.
You’re never too old for braces or other orthodontic appliances, but it’s important to consider the following:
- Braces don’t have to be as noticeable as the metal brackets of the past. Many adults opt for ceramic or plastic braces, which are bone-colored or clear, respectively. Another option is a lingual appliance, which attaches to the back side of your teeth. These so-called “invisible” braces are much less noticeable than traditional options.
- By adulthood, bone growth has stopped. This means that certain structural changes can only be achieved by surgery. Although this typically affects people with significant crowding, bite, or jaw problems, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can provide an individualized treatment plan that addresses your unique issues.
- Treatment may take a bit longer. The length of orthodontic treatment tends to be slightly longer for adults than adolescents. Exact estimates vary by individual, but the average length of time for adult braces wearers is two years, according to the Harvard Medical School.
- Outcomes are just as good for adults! Many adults worry that it’s too late to treat their orthodontic problems. However, treatment satisfaction tends to be very high, which is a testament to how effective braces can be in middle-aged and older adults.
July 25th, 2018
Not everyone is born with a million-dollar smile, not even some celebrities. The following stars have all had their moments as a “brace face,” either as a child, teenager, or adult. You might be surprised to learn about stars who had braces (including Gwen Stefani, who got braces just because she could!).
Take a look at some famous faces who sported braces!
Emma Watson: Emma admits to going through a rather awkward stage that included “terrible skin,” fluctuating weight, and braces. But look at the swan that emerged!
Tom Cruise: Who would have thought that one of the world’s most famous smiles could use an overhaul? Well, Mr. Cruise pulled it off … and most people didn’t even know. He wore “invisible” braces that had ceramic brackets for a few months just after his 40th birthday. And the results were pretty WOW!
Dakota Fanning: This lovely young actress had some troublesome teeth when she was younger. However, braces and dental work gave her that stunning star-quality smile we see now. Props to her, though, for staying real. She sported her headgear during an appearance on The Tonight Show and didn’t bat an eye.
Gwyneth Paltrow: The stunning Ms. Paltrow, who, in 2013 was named the Most Beautiful Woman by People Magazine, wore braces in high school. And she probably carried it off with the poise and grace for which she is so famous today.
Niall Horan: This member of One Direction, the boy band that’s currently tearing it up (and breaking some hearts along the way) wore his braces for several months. He got them removed in April 2013.
Other notable celebs who have had braces include Faye Dunaway, who got hers at the age of 61! Ryan Seacrest, Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, and Drew Barrymore also belonged to the metal mouth club at one time or another.
What is comes down to is this: It isn’t whether you wear braces that are fully hidden, ceramic brackets, or have the traditional metal train tracks running across your teeth. Nope, it’s all about how you work it!
July 18th, 2018
Sometimes food that’s good for your body isn’t necessarily the best for your teeth. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team want you to know which healthy foods can harm your teeth and gums, and what steps you can take to continue enjoying these foods, even when you’re dieting.
When you begin to substitute empty calories with whole foods, make sure you also remember to focus on your dental health. The majority of people tend to switch out sugary foods in favor of fruits and vegetables when they diet.
It’s worth knowing that most fruits are highly acidic and composed of natural sugars. Some of the highly acidic fruits to watch out for include apples, grapes, strawberries, pineapples, blueberries, oranges, and grapefruit. Moderation is key here, as with all other things. Fruits can be a great source of energy to help you through your day, but try not to overdo them.
Often, people also incorporate more leafy greens into their diets, which mean plenty of salads. Salad dressing is another item you’ll want to watch out for. Many dressings are filled with vinegars and sweeteners that include harmful acids, which change the pH of your mouth. When your mouth shifts from alkaline to acidic, your smile also turns to a higher risk for erosion and decay.
Rather than get rid of these foods altogether, simply change what you do after you eat them. Rinse your mouth out with water, brush your teeth, or eat alkalizing foods after consuming these acidic foods. Healthy alkalizing foods include dairy products such as eggs and yogurt, or any type of vegetable.
If you have questions regarding your current diet and its effect on your oral health, please contact our Aventura, FL office and speak with a member of our staff. If you’ve begun to make changes in your diet toward a healthier lifestyle, we hope these tips can help your make positive changes to your oral health. Our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister wants a healthy lifestyle to be a top priority in your life.
July 11th, 2018
You can learn just about anything on the Internet these days. You can also order just about anything on the Internet these days.
But would you order your braces on the Internet? There’s a new trend involving websites that claim to offer a solution for straightening teeth, without your ever seeing a dentist or orthodontist in person.
These companies usually have patients take an impression of their teeth using putty and a tray. Then you mail the impressions back to the company where a dentist reportedly examines them and suggests a course of treatment using 3D modeling software.
A series of clear aligners are made, to be worn by the patient in order to attain the desired result. Although this form of orthodontic treatment may cost less than seeing an orthodontist in person, there are several reasons why you should avoid it:
- Potential health hazards are missed: If your oral health is not up to par (e.g., you have cavities, gingivitis, chipped teeth, etc.), an orthodontist would not suggest orthodontic treatment. Only after these issues are addressed would treatment be considered as an option. Whether this is the case with a person can’t be known when all the doctor sees is a set of impressions.
- Lack of information about the patient: Before you receive any orthodontic treatment, an orthodontist will have X-rays taken to make sure you are a good candidate. If the bones or teeth do not look like they would align properly with treatment, another course of care may be suggested, even necessary. None of this background is available to over-the-net orthodontic providers.
- No regular checkups: The purpose of regular checkups with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister is to ensure that everything is moving properly, on schedule, and most important, safely. This lack of hands-on care with Internet orthodontics could be a hazard for you as a patient and has the potential to do more harm than good.
It’s not worth the risk of getting orthodontic treatment over the net just to save some money. Our Aventura, FL office is committed to working with you, whatever your financial situation may be.
Let’s work together to give you the smile you deserve!
July 4th, 2018
Parents want the best for their teens and often ask us about the perks of Invisalign Teen clear aligners compared to traditional braces. Invisalign treatment is a style of braces that skips the usual metal and wires, and uses a clear, thermoplastic material to create removable aligners instead.
Aligners are custom-made for each patient and replaced every two weeks to attain gradually straighter teeth.
Is Invisalign treatment as effective?
As long as your child wears the aligners as directed, the answer is yes: they are just as effective as traditional braces. A small blue spot on the back of each aligner will fade after two weeks of proper wear. This enables Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to tell whether the child is wearing the aligners.
Can Invisalign aligners be removed?
The recommended amount of time to wear Invisalign aligners is at least 20 hours a day. They can be removed for up to four hours per day to eat, brush teeth, play sports, or play musical instruments. This makes brushing and flossing easier and helps maintain good oral hygiene!
How long does treatment take and what is the cost?
Each patient is different. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can determine how many months your child may expect to wear the series of aligners after a consultation.
Typically, your teen will wear Invisalign clear aligners about as long as traditional braces The cost is also similar to that of other traditional braces; however, there is no set fee. The cost will depend on your child’s unique orthodontic needs.
Invisalign Teen treatment has had remarkable success, and patients love having straighter teeth without the embarrassment of metal braces. As your son or daughter becomes more confident, the patient will actually be more likely to keep up with the treatment and complete it sooner.
Speak with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister today to learn more about the benefits of Invisalign Teen treatment. Give our Aventura, FL office a call!
June 27th, 2018
Do you ever find yourself gnawing at your nails? Nail-biting is a very common and difficult to break habit which usually has its beginnings in childhood. It can leave your fingers and nail beds red and swollen. But if you think that your nails are the only ones getting roughed up by nail-biting you'd be mistaken—so are your teeth!
According to a study by the Academy of General Dentistry, those who bite their nails, clench their teeth, or chew on pencils are at much higher risk to develop bruxism (unintentional grinding of the teeth). Bruxism can lead to tooth sensitivity, tooth loss, receding gums, headaches, and general facial pain.
Those are some nasty sounding side effects from chewing on your nails. Most nail-biting is a sign of stress or anxiety and its something you should deal with. So what steps can you take if you have a nail-biting habit?
There are several things you can do to ease up on nail-biting:
- Trim your nails shorter and/or get regular manicures – Trimming your nails shorter is an effective remedy. In so doing, they'll be less tempting and more difficult to bite on. If you also get regular manicures, you’ll be less likely to ruin the investment you’ve made in your hands and fingernails!
- Find a different kind of stress reduction – Try meditation, deep breathing, practicing qigong or yoga, or doing something that will keep your hands occupied like squeezing a stress ball or playing with a yo-yo.
- Wear a bitter-tasting nail polish – When your nails taste awful, you won't bite them! Clear or colored, it doesn't matter. This is also a helpful technique for helping children get over the habit.
- Figure out what triggers your nail-biting – Sometimes it's triggered by stress or anxiety and other times it can be a physical stressor, like having hang nails. Knowing what situations cause you to bite your nails will help you to avoid them and break the habit.
- Wear gloves or bandages on your fingers – If you've tried the steps above and they aren't working, this technique can prove effective since your fingernails won't be accessible to bite.
If you're still having trouble with nail-biting after trying these self-help steps, it's best to consult your doctor, dermatologist, or Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. For some, it may also be the sign of a deeper psychological or emotional problem.
Whatever the cause, nail-biting is a habit you need to break for your physical and emotional well-being. If you have any questions about the effects it can have on your oral health, please don't hesitate to ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister during your next visit to our Aventura, FL office.
June 20th, 2018
Parents usually have numerous questions about orthodontic treatment for their children. According to the American Association of Orthodontists, orthodontic treatment for children should start at around seven years of age. This allows Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to evaluate the child’s existing and incoming teeth to determine whether or not early treatment might be necessary.
What is early orthodontic treatment?
Early orthodontic treatment, known as Phase One, usually begins when the child is eight or nine years old. The goal is to correct bite problems such as an underbite as well as guide the jaw’s growth pattern. It also helps to make room in the mouth for the permanent teeth to be properly placed as they come in. This will greatly reduce the risk of the child needing extractions later in life due to his or her teeth getting crowded.
Does your child need early orthodontic treatment?
There are several ways that you can determine whether your child needs early treatment. If you observe any of these characteristics or behaviors, you should talk to Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister.
- Early loss of baby teeth (before age five)
- Late loss of baby teeth (after age five or six)
- The child’s teeth do not meet properly or at all
- The child is a mouth breather
- Front teeth are crowded (you won’t see this until the child is about seven or eight)
- Protruding teeth, typically in the front
- Biting or chewing difficulties
- A speech impediment
- The child’s jaw shifts when he or she opens or closes the mouth
- The child is older than five years and still sucks a thumb
What are the benefits of seeking orthodontic treatment early?
Early orthodontic treatment is begun while the child’s jaw bones are still soft. They do not harden until the children reach their late teens. Because the bones are still pliable, corrective procedures such as braces work faster than they do for adults.
In short, early treatment at our Aventura, FL office often allows your child to avoid lengthy procedures, extraction, and surgery in adulthood. Early treatment is an effective preventive measure that lays the foundation for a healthy, stable mouth in adulthood.
June 13th, 2018
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!
As braces begin to adjust the alignment of the teeth, our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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:
- Mashed potatoes
- Ice cream
- Cottage cheese
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
- Certain raw vegetables (for example, carrots)
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister!
June 6th, 2018
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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!
May 30th, 2018
You went through a lot of effort and work to achieve your perfect smile. You wore your Invisalign aligner trays, brushed and flossed diligently, and now your treatment is done! What happens now?
In order to keep your teeth healthy and beautiful, you should keep several practices in play.
Although everyone’s needs are different, many patients require a retainer after Invisalign treatment. If a retainer is recommended by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, use it as directed. Not wearing retainers could result in shifting teeth and potentially ruin your results.
It’s also recommended that you avoid hard, crunchy foods for the first few weeks as your teeth adjust. For younger patients, retainers are normally worn until the wisdom teeth come in or are extracted.
Brushing and Flossing
It should come as no surprise that flossing should still be done every day to remove plaque, which can develop into tartar or calculus. The build-up can lead to gingivitis and gum disease.
Your gums may be more sensitive for a week or two after your orthodontic work is completed. A warm saltwater rinse may relieve discomfort.
Because your teeth have been protected by your Invisalign aligners and are now fully exposed, they may be more sensitive the first few weeks after treatment. If that’s the case, we can recommend a sensitive toothpaste to relieve your discomfort. If your teeth are stained, a professional whitening treatment may be considered.
Regular Dental Checkups
Regular dental exams ensure your teeth stay healthy for life. Professional cleanings, X-rays, and cavity treatment can be addressed by staying on top of your routine checkups.
If you have any questions about how to care for your teeth after your Invisalign program, please ask our Aventura, FL team. We want you to keep your healthy smile and enjoy the results of your Invisalign treatment.
May 23rd, 2018
Despite the common assumption that braces are for kids, more and more adults are choosing to pursue orthodontics to correct their smiles. Just hearing the word “braces” and picturing a mouth full of metal can cause many grownups to hesitate about getting treatment for a straighter smile.
We’re here to give you the information you need to evaluate your treatment options and make the right choice for yourself. Whatever your personal history, wearing braces as an adult is an excellent way to create the straight, confident smile you’ve always desired.
What are my options?
Recent advances in orthodontic medicine have created numerous options for adults who need braces.
These are best for individuals who have severely crooked teeth or a significant bite problem, or who require other major orthodontic changes. The greatest drawback to wearing metal braces as an adult is the visible appearance of metal and wires.
Clear ceramic braces offer a solution to that, though they cost more. They’re are a good alternative for correcting highly crooked teeth or bite issues. Smoking or drinking red wine, soda, and other dark beverages may stain the adhesive that binds the brackets to your teeth, so you have to commit to being mindful and taking good care of them.
Another popular option for adults who need braces is a clear-aligner treatment, such as with Invisalign®. This system works in a different way from traditional braces by using a series of clear, retainer-like aligners.
In general, the Invisalign process lasts anywhere from three to 18 months. Keep in mind, however, that Invisalign is not as effective as traditional braces in treating bite problems or severe overcrowding.
The prospect of getting braces as an adult can be intimidating, but you should not let your fears prevent you from obtaining the smile of your dreams. A consultation at our Aventura, FL office with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will address your concerns and provide more information about the best course of treatment!
May 16th, 2018
We know that being a teen is hard, and we know that adding braces to the mix can often elicit a less-than-enthusiastic response. Luckily, teens can now have straighter teeth without the hassle, discomfort, and embarrassment of metal braces!
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister proudly offer Invisalign Teen clear aligners to our adolescent patients.
One of the main benefits of Invisalign Teen aligners is that they are virtually invisible. They are also removable, which means teen patients are free to eat anything they choose. The aligners are also easily replaceable, should they ever get lost! The best part? They make it easy to keep up with a healthy brushing and flossing routine.
The aligners are made from a lightweight, plastic material that fits precisely on the teeth. Invisalign Teen treatment has become a popular treatment here at Aventura, FL because it helps our younger patients achieve a straight, beautiful smile without undergoing the dreaded metal-mouth.
For more information on Invisalign Teen clear aligners, please feel free to give us a call at our Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister office today!
May 9th, 2018
It’s useful to know some of the common problems that can arise when you get braces. Even if you take great care of your braces and teeth, you might not be able to avoid certain issues or side effects that accompany braces. But don’t worry: These are all common problems that can be taken care of by following some simple advice.
If you just had your braces put on, you may notice some general soreness in your mouth. Your teeth are starting to adjust to having to shift, so they may ache, and your jaw might feel tender at first. This will subside once your mouth becomes used to the new appliance in residence.
You may experience soreness on your tongue or mouth, which may be a sign of a canker sore. Canker sores are common when braces rub against your mouth. You can use ointments to relieve pain and numb the area that’s been irritated. Canker sores are commonly caused by broken wires or loose bands on your braces.
- Loose brackets: Apply a small amount of orthodontic wax to the bracket. 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. Try to save the band for repair.
- Protruding or broken wires: Use the eraser end of a pencil to push 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, clean your mouth with warm salt water or antiseptic rinse.
- Loose spacers: These will need to be repositioned by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and possibly replaced.
You should avoid certain foods that could cause major damage to your braces. No matter what you eat, make the effort to cut your food into small pieces that can be chewed easily. This will prevent chunks of it from getting lodged between brackets.
Avoiding hard and chewy foods is also wise. Some foods can break your hardware: for example, popcorn, nuts, apples, gum, taffy, and hard candies. Avoiding any foods that easily got stuck in your teeth when you didn’t have braces is a good rule to follow.
The appliances in your mouth are bound to attract food particles and make it easier for plaque to build up. By making sure you brush and floss carefully every day, you can prevent stains and cavities from developing over time. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team recommend brushing and making sure that food isn’t lodged between your braces after every meal.
Having braces can be very exciting, but it can also be challenging at first. Watching for these common issues during your first few weeks can prevent problems down the road. If you experience a lot of pain from your braces, contact our Aventura, FL office and we can try to resolve any issues.
Braces can sometimes be a pain, but they’re well worth it once your new smile gets revealed!
May 2nd, 2018
The month of May has the unique distinction of being National Teen Self-Esteem Month. What does that mean?
National Teen Self-Esteem Month was created to raise public awareness about how low self-esteem can negatively affect teens. Especially during May, parents and guardians of teens are asked to be positive role models. If teens can receive positive re-enforcement and their negative images of themselves are improved, then their self-esteem has a better chance of developing in a positive direction.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister know there are a lot of young adults living in America are struggling with depressed self-images. These can affect all aspects of their everyday lives. Some evidence shows learning abilities and increased risk of eating disorders can originate in a teen’s low self-esteem. It can also lead to abuse of drugs and thoughts of suicide. Dating violence among high school teens is now more common than previously thought.
What can be done to help?
So what can adults do specifically to help their teens? The National Teen Self-Esteem Facebook page offers a variety of suggestions and positive messages for teens and parents alike. Of all the pages your teen “likes” on social media, perhaps he or she should include this page. Some of the tips offered include:
- When you stumble, get right back up.
- Don’t compare yourself to anyone else.
- Do things that make you feel good about yourself.
- Open yourself up to compliments.
Another great way to build self-esteem is to have a beautiful, health smile, and that’s where our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister come in! Whether your teen is due for a simple cleaning, could benefit from cosmetic treatments, or needs orthodontic care, we can help bestow a confident smile he or she will be proud to show off.
Overall, a more positive approach to life will help us all. It is a very important trait to instill in our teens. As parents, a big part of our responsibility is to show our children there is always another day and bumps in the road are just that. We need to help guide their self-esteem and reinforce their positive traits. We can help them recognize the value of who they are.
We should make our children’s self esteem a priority — not just in May, but throughout the year. Let National Teen Self-Esteem Month serve as the impetus for new levels of self-esteem.
For more information on this topic, or to schedule an appointment with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
April 25th, 2018
These days, fewer and fewer braces show up in school yearbook photos. Invisalign clear aligners have become a popular choice for our adolescent patients because it enables them to display metal-free smiles while straightening their teeth!
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can help you determine whether Invisalign treatment is right for you, but below are a few reasons why so many teens are choosing it today.
More Free Time
Invisalign Teen aligners require fewer appointments, which is pretty important to teens who value their free time. Invisalign treatment gives you straight teeth without having to miss activities or skip hanging out with your friends. It’s a win-win!
Eat, Brush, and Floss Easily
Traditional braces can make eating, brushing, and flossing both difficult and tedious. Invisalign aligners are easily removable for all these important activities, and give you freedom to live your life as usual.
Possibly the best perk of Invisalign aligners is that you can’t see them! The Invisalign system uses a clear plastic device that fits directly over the teeth. This means no metal parts to mar the appearance of your smile, so your Invisalign aligners will straighten while allowing your pearly whites to shine through. People don’t even have to know you’re straightening your teeth with Invisalign aligners.
To learn more about Invisalign Teen treatment, feel free to reach out to our Aventura, FL office!
April 18th, 2018
When you start wearing braces, it can become a challenge to clean certain areas of your mouth. If these areas are neglected for long periods of time, though, decay and stains can form on your teeth.
Your mouth will require extra attention while you have your braces on. This can include using a special toothbrush to reach those spots, flossing every day, getting fluoride treatments, avoiding certain foods, and making sure to visit your dentist. Let’s take a closer look at what you can do to prevent decay during treatment.
When you get your braces on, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will give you an interdental toothbrush that can be used to get to those hard-to-reach spots in your mouth. The brush has bristles that can easily remove food residue stuck between the wires in your mouth. We may also suggest using a WaterPik, which pulses a pressurized stream of water to remove excess food particles.
Brushing and flossing every day should always be a part of your oral health regimen, but this becomes especially crucial when you have braces. If food gets stuck between braces and sits on your teeth, decay and staining will start to occur. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team recommend flossing at least once a day, and brushing and using mouthwash after every meal as long as you have braces.
If you don’t have the time, make sure at least to swish your mouth really well with water after you eat. It’s especially important to follow these steps after consuming sugary foods or beverages. It’s best to avoid sweets altogether when you have braces.
Making sure to visit your dentist at least twice a year for a routine cleaning can also help to prevent any decay from damaging your teeth while your teeth are encased in braces. Your dentist will remove any plaque or tartar that’s built up since your last cleaning.
Prevention is key when it comes to keeping your mouth healthy during orthodontic care with braces. Follow these tips and you’ll keep your teeth beautiful and healthy for the day your new smile is finally revealed!
April 11th, 2018
Proper mouth protection is recommended by Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister when you participate in any sports activities. If you wear braces, this protection becomes essential. Injuries to your mouth can not only damage your teeth, but your braces could break and cut open your lip.
Full Facial Guards
Full facial guards are often used in football and offer protection to your mouth from most injuries. Even with full facial protection, you may benefit from additional mouth protection. While your face is protected from outside impact, you could still suffer from cuts or damage to your braces from internal impact.
Mouthguards referred to as boil-and-bites can be purchased at many retail stores. As the name implies, these guards are boiled in water to heat and soften the material. While the guard is still warm, you place it in your mouth and bite down gently. This causes the guard to form to the shape of your mouth. Unfortunately, these guards do not necessarily offer the best protection or fit.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can make custom mouthguards specifically for you. The custom fitting ensures you of better protection and a comfortable fit. Custom guards are also built in layers for durability. The American Dental Association recommends custom guards for orthodontic patients. Your mouthguard will be designed to provide proper protection for both your teeth and your braces.
No matter what type of sport you participate in, a mouthguard can protect your braces. Even an activity as seemingly harmless as table tennis can result in a contact injury. The Academy for Sports Dentistry states that a properly fitted mouthguard should not interfere with any athletic activity.
Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister will provide you with properly-fitting mouth protection to ensure the safety of your braces and your teeth. We will be glad to answer any questions you have so you can continue the activities you enjoy with little concern. If you do suffer any injuries to your mouth or braces during sporting activities, please contact us immediately. The sooner we can care for your mouth, the better the results will be.
April 4th, 2018
Many adults and teens in our Aventura, FL office would love to have their teeth straightened but are unwilling to go through the long and often embarrassing process of wearing traditional metal braces. Invisalign® and Invisalign Teen® clear aligners offer the perfect solution: They’re the most advanced clear aligner systems in the world!
If you’re considering getting braces, there are several reasons why you might want to consider Invisalign clear aligners. Here are some of them:
- You can eat whatever food you like, without worrying about it catching in wires or breaking brackets.
- People won’t likely be able to tell you’re wearing them!
- The aligners can be removed at any time.
- You can brush and floss as you normally would, which helps to maintain better overall oral health.
- Invisalign aligners are made of a smooth BPA-free plastic and are more comfortable to wear than traditional braces. You’ll need to visit our Aventura, FL office less often: only once every six weeks or so.
- With Invisalign Teen, you’ll receive up to six replacements for lost or broken aligners.
Before starting treatment, you’ll have a consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to see if Invisalign or Invisalign Teen treatment is right for you. After that, you’ll have X-rays, pictures, and impressions taken of your teeth.
That information will be used to make the 3D models of your teeth that let Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister see how they will move throughout the entire treatment and approximately how long it will take.
You’ll receive your aligners based on the treatment plan we recommend. You’ll get a new set of aligners every two weeks. All you need to do is wear your aligners 22 hours a day and you’ll be on your way to a straighter smile in no time!
Ask a member of our Aventura, FL team for more information about Invisalign clear aligners today!
March 28th, 2018
If you’re thinking about investing in braces, there are a few things you should take into consideration. It’s normal for adult teeth to come in crooked, which is why braces are a common solution for teens and adults who desire a beautiful smile.
Your dentist may recommend orthodontic treatment if crooked teeth begin to affect your or your child’s oral health. But many factors go into whether braces would be right for you or your child, or not.
Modern orthodontic treatments offer numerous options for the typical issues people face, such as crooked teeth or jaw alignment problems. Malocclusion, otherwise known as having a bad bite, is common in patients with crooked teeth.
Braces can be worn for a short period of time to correct uneven jaw alignment, which may be the cause of an underbite or overbite in patients. A retainer is worn afterward to keep the newly straightened teeth in place.
Now that one in five braces wearers is an adult, grownups have a variety of braces options. Braces are typically left on for at least one year to straighten teeth effectively. Options can include regular metal braces, clear braces, or Invisalign® aligners.
If you’re an adult and would prefer a discreet treatment, clear braces or Invisalign retainers are your best options. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will be able to provide you with a recommended best route of treatment depending on what you’re trying to accomplish and what your budget is. Before getting braces, it’s worth learning about all the methods of treatment available at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
Be sure to contact your insurance company before your appointment to see if orthodontic treatments are covered; otherwise, you may want to plan to pay for out-of-pocket costs. If you have questions regarding the types of treatment we provide for our patients, call our Aventura, FL office for more information.
March 21st, 2018
Many teens want straighter teeth but dread a mouth full of metal. Because of that, Invisalign Teen treatment has become a popular choice among teens. It produces great results without the hassle of traditional braces.
If you’re like most teens at our Aventura, FL office, you love hanging out with your friends, and you don’t want to look different or have to watch what you eat. If you’re unsure about the benefits of Invisalign Teen clear aligners, we’re here to explain some of the perks.
You can eat what your friends eat
Invisalign Teen aligners can be removed easily for meals and snacks, so you can eat just like you normally would. You don’t need to worry about food getting stuck in your braces or a bracket popping off. Unlike with braces, you can enjoy the following foods with your friends during Invisalign Teen straightening treatment:
- Popcorn at the movies
- Trail mix with dried fruit ribs and chicken wings
- A peanut butter sandwich, apples, and carrot sticks
You can take care of your teeth more easily
Since Invisalign Teen aligners are removable, you won’t have to worry about finding tooth decay once your braces are removed. You can brush and floss your teeth as you normally would, just by taking the trays out of your mouth.
People won’t know you’re wearing them
We’ve saved the best for last: Invisalign Teen aligners are nearly invisible. Chances are, the only people who will know you’re getting your teeth straightened are the people you tell yourself!
Getting straighter teeth can be a massive confidence-booster in the long run. With Invisalign Teen clear aligners, the treatment isn’t that bad! Learn more at our Aventura, FL office.
March 14th, 2018
Here is some surprising yet worthwhile advice you might be hearing for the first time: Brushing after a meal can be incredibly bad for your teeth if you do it after eating certain foods.
Enamel is an extremely hard mineral on the exterior of each of your teeth. It’s actually the hardest substance in the human body: It’s even stronger than your bones! Its only weakness is that acids in the food we eat can easily destroy enamel.
Healthy teeth thrive in an environment that has the proper pH balance. That ensures your mouth doesn’t start the process of demineralization. That’s what happens when alkaline turns into acid, which attacks and softens the enamel on the surface of your teeth. Pores and fissures form, and that’s when the harmful bacteria go to work.
Our mouth’s pH level fluctuates depending on what we eat throughout the day. Examples of the most common highly acidic foods include citrus fruits, soda, and sugary foods. Highly acidic foods tip the balance of pH in your mouth from a healthy alkaline to a dangerous acid.
Can brushing your teeth immediately after a meal lead to even more damage? The answer is yes!
Eating highly acidic foods causes your teeth to be more susceptible. If you brush your teeth when they have been weakened by acids, even more destruction can happen to your enamel. Your toothbrush’s bristles will actually wear away some of your enamel. So it’s healthier to wait at least an hour after eating or snacking to brush.
Good preventive measures to take instead of brushing after you eat include:
- Rinsing or drinking water
- Chewing sugarless gum
- Consuming dairy or non-acidic foods to conclude your meal
These practices help produce saliva, which in turn restores a healthy pH level in your mouth and coats the teeth with minerals they need.
Once you’ve allowed time for your mouth to be restored to a healthy pH level, you may brush your teeth as you normally would. Keep in mind that acidic foods can weaken the enamel on your teeth and take the right measures to prevent spiking pH levels.
Most important, don’t forget to wait to brush at least one hour after you eat!
Still have questions? Call our Aventura, FL office and schedule an appointment with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister.
March 7th, 2018
The team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister loves to help adults achieve straighter teeth and a beautiful smile. If you are considering getting braces, here are some things you’ll need to know.
Can braces work for adults?
The good news is that braces work for just about anyone. There are several different types of braces, howver, and not all of them may work for you. The different kinds of orthodontic treatments include:
- Ceramic braces
- Metal braces
- Self-ligating brackets
- Lingual brackets (braces behind the teeth)
- Invisible braces
- Rubber bands for bite correction
- Headgear and other appliances
Schedule a consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, and we can help you determine the best option for your needs.
How do I get started?
We understand that braces can be a daunting prospect for many individuals. They may appear expensive and time-consuming; however, the process can be relatively pain-free! Here are the first steps you need to take on the road to straight teeth.
You will probably have a lot of questions and concerns before starting. Here are a few questions you should ask:
- What kind of braces do you recommend for my teeth?
- How long will the treatment take?
- How often will I need to come in for adjustments?
- What is the total cost of the treatment? Do you accept insurance? Will you require the full amount up front, or do you have payment plans?
During your first meeting with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, we’ll take some X-rays and molds of your teeth to help you determine your best treatment plan. To ensure your treatment is as effective as possible, we may include preliminary dental work before your braces are placed.
After you’ve chosen a treatment plan and undergone any necessary prerequisite dental work, you’ll be on your way to a better smile! Call our Aventura, FL location so you can get started today!
February 28th, 2018
If you’ve visited Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, then there’s a good chance you’re looking to perfect your smile by straightening your teeth with braces. At some point during your treatment, you may need to use elastics, otherwise known as rubber bands, for a certain period. These are used to apply additional pressure that will move your teeth in the right direction.
Placement of the elastics is specific to each patient’s teeth. These small rubber bands stretch over the tiny loops on both the top and bottom brackets. At first, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister may recommend you wear the elastics both day and night for an extended time.
You may be told to switch only to nighttime wear once the teeth are set in the correct position. By consistently wearing the elastics, you can shorten the overall time your braces will have to be on.
The elastics are made from medical-grade latex. If you have an allergy to latex, make sure to let Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister know, so you can be given an alternate material. We will show you how to take elastics on and off when they’re given to you at your appointment.
You should remove them when you eat so they don’t become overstretched or break. It’s important not to overstretch the bands, and always to replace them if they break. Eventually it will become a familiar habit to carry the bands around with you for times when this might happen.
The Do’s and the Don’ts
- DO … always wash your hands before removing or replacing the rubber bands.
- DO … call us if you run out of elastics.
- DO … get in the habit of carrying around extra rubber bands as replacements.
- DON’T … double up on elastics because this can exert too much pressure on your teeth and could actually harm the roots.
- DON’T … overstretch the rubber bands or they will lose strength and become ineffective.
If you were recently given elastics as well as your braces, feel free to ask any questions during your appointment, or call our Aventura, FL office any time. Using elastics correctly is one more step in your journey to a perfect smile!
February 21st, 2018
A vital step in your oral health routine is flossing. We hope our patients at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister maintain good oral hygiene, including daily flossing between each visit to our Aventura, FL office. A toothbrush is not always enough to get to the hard-to-reach areas of your mouth. When food remains between your teeth, bacteria starts to grow and will break down your enamel. This is where flossing comes in!
Should you floss before or after brushing?
Whatever your personal preference, you may floss before or after you brush your teeth. When you floss first, you can brush away any leftover dislodged food debris from your teeth. On the other hand, when you brush first, you will loosen the plaque between your teeth, which makes flossing more effective.
The essential aspect is that you floss thoroughly by using a fresh strand of floss and make sure to get between every tooth. Even if your teeth look and feel clean, don’t skip flossing or plaque will begin to build up on your teeth.
When is the best time to floss?
Although you should brush your teeth at least twice a day, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team recommend flossing your teeth thoroughly once a day. Many people prefer to floss before bed, so that plaque doesn’t sit between their teeth all night.
What kind of floss should I use?
You may choose between interdental cleaning picks or flexible floss strands to perform your daily flossing routine. If you have permanent oral appliances or restorations, be sure to follow the flossing instructions provided to you.
Do you need help flossing?
If you’re having trouble flossing or have questions about which floss is best for your teeth, contact our Aventura, FL office and we can provide you with support. Be sure to keep up with your daily flossing routine, and we will see you at your next appointment!
February 14th, 2018
When we think of Valentine’s Day, we think of cards, flowers, and chocolates. We think of girlfriends celebrating being single together and couples celebrating their relationship. We think of all things pink and red taking over every pharmacy and grocery store imaginable. But what Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team would like to think of is when and how this joyous, love-filled day began.
Several martyrs’ stories are associated with the origins of Valentine’s Day. One of the most widely known suggests that Valentine was a Roman priest who went against the law at a time when marriage had been banned for young men. He continued to perform marriage ceremonies for young lovers in secret and when he was discovered, he was sentenced to death.
Another tale claims that Valentine was killed for helping Christians escape from Roman prisons. Yet another says that Valentine himself sent the first valentine when he fell in love with a girl and sent her a letter and signed it, “From your Valentine.”
Other claims suggest that it all began when Geoffrey Chaucer, an Englishman often referred to as the father of English literature, wrote a poem that was the first to connect St. Valentine to romance. From there, it evolved into a day when lovers would express their feelings for each other. Cue the flowers, sweets, and cards!
Regardless of where the holiday came from, these stories all have one thing in common: They celebrate the love we are capable of as human beings. And though that’s largely in a romantic spirit these days, it doesn’t have to be. You could celebrate love for a sister, a friend, a parent, even a pet.
We hope all our patients know how much we love them! Wishing you all a very happy Valentine’s Day from the team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister!
February 7th, 2018
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team recommend always wearing a protective mouthguard to participate in most physical sports. We especially encourage this if you have braces that can potentially cut your mouth or cause damage to your teeth. You have various choices to consider when you’re looking for a protective mouthguard.
One option is a full facial guard, which is often used for contact sports, such as football or hockey. This type offers full protection of the face from external impact. You should also consider an additional mouthguard to protect yourself from cuts inside your mouth, and avoid possible damage to your braces.
Boil-and-bites are another version of mouthguard that can be used for more physical sports. This type is used just the way its name implies: You warm the mouthguard in water to soften the material, then bite down gently once it’s at the correct temperature to form it into the shape of your mouth. These are fine to use temporarily, but they don’t always provide the best protection if they don’t fit properly.
Another option is to have Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister make a custom mouthguard for you. The mouthguard will be designed with built-in layers to protect both your teeth and braces when it’s worn. Having Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister create a custom-fitted mouthguard will ensure optimal protection and a comfortable fit whenever you participate in physical activities.
Protecting your teeth and braces is essential when you compete in sports. Accidents happen, and having a preventive mouthguard can potentially save you from oral pain and damaged braces. Our Aventura, FL office is happy to assist you in creating a custom-made mouthguard for any sports activities you want to pursue.
If you’ve experienced a mouth injury that has caused damage to your braces, please contact us immediately so we can fix the problem right away. Remember, prevention is key when it comes to your oral health!
January 31st, 2018
For centuries, many have believed in messages written in the stars and constellations. Some people look to their astrological sign to understand their personalities and preferences better, and even to foresee their destiny.
Whether you’re a firm believer in astrology or just read your horoscope for fun now and then, your perfect band color according to the zodiac awaits below.
Aries – Red
You’re passionate, enthusiastic, and full of energy the world needs. You have an ability to light an inspirational flame in yourself and others.
Taurus – Green
You value growth and are filled with earth energy. Close relationships with family and friends are the foundation of your life.
Gemini – Orange
Orange is the color of diversity and inspiration. You have a knack for readily socializing with other people and value a close-knit community.
Cancer – Violet
Cancers have the ability to look deep within themselves for guidance and inspiration. Your thoughts dwell in the realm of dreams and emotion, and fill you with a deep understanding of those around you.
Leo – Yellow
Your humor, intelligence, and courage light up your surroundings like the sun. Use your charisma and positivity to help you achieve great things.
Virgo – Blue
Blue reflects your calm and peaceful personality. People come to you when they need guidance and your caring instinct for others runs strong.
Libra – Green
Your personality is both enchanting and delightful. Your ability to find a solution and heal is uplifting to those around you.
Scorpio – Red
You are full of passion and knowledge. You know your true value, and feeling accepted is important to keep your flame ignited.
Sagittarius – Violet
Violet reflects your electric enthusiasm for life. With your wisdom and passion for truth, you are always striving to reach your next goal.
Capricorn – Blue
Your perception is unmatched, and you’re able to see through the confusion to identify what truly matters. Your confidence and clarity will help you accomplish what you need to do.
Aquarius – Violet
Aquarians are sensitive, creative, and love to share their understanding with the world. You find joy in art, music, and writing to show others your special view of things.
Pisces – Indigo
You have powerful perception and your instincts are often correct. Your ability to understand emotions helps those around you to stay connected and present in the moment.
Next time you visit our Aventura, FL office, ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister for the band color that goes with your sign!
January 24th, 2018
Sticky, hard, and gooey: these candies fill your dopamine receptors with spasms of sugar-filled joy, but if you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team recommend leaving on the candy aisle and not put in your mouth, no matter how tempting they may be.
- 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.
- 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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 Aventura, FL office to learn more, or ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister during your next adjustment visit!
January 17th, 2018
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. Preparing for treatment is an important part of getting the smile you want.
The first step of preparation is the examination. An oral exam and X-rays taken at our office are necessary to identify potential problems and ensure the right steps are taken to prepare for orthodontic treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will first examine your teeth and take X-rays to determine if it is necessary to extract any teeth or additional work is necessary before braces are possible. You will be prepared for the next step of treatment after your exam is complete and potential problems are identified.
Model for bite
The next step in preparing for orthodontic is taking a plaster model of the mouth. With the model, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will be able to determine how the jaw is aligned so that appropriate adjustments can be made to the mouth and jaw with braces.
Depending on the situation, the model may be used to help evaluate your jaw and make decisions about appropriate treatment for your specific needs. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can create a model of your mouth with the bite indentation that is taken during preparation.
If it is determined that a tooth extraction is necessary, then the final step of preparing for orthodontic treatment is the removal of teeth. Only Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can determine if it is necessary to remove any teeth before moving forward with the procedure to put on braces.
When your teeth are crooked, have a gap, or otherwise make you unhappy, orthodontic treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister may be an appropriate solution. Although it may take time to prepare for the actual procedure, making the decision to seek treatment can provide the opportunity to show the world a beautiful smile.
For more information about orthodontic treatment and its benefits, or to schedule a consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
January 10th, 2018
A solid oral health routine begins with daily brushing, flossing, and rinsing. Without a consistent oral health regimen, you may begin to experience tooth decay and bacterial infections. Few patients ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister about different mouthwash options, so we’ve put together a list of the conditions that mouthwashes can treat. This should help you decide which oral rinse would be best for you.
Antiseptic mouthwashes reduce large amounts of bacteria on and near the gum line and generally help to decrease your chances of developing gingivitis. The key ingredients of antiseptic mouthwashes are antibacterial and antimicrobial items. Antiseptic mouthwash is a preferable option if you are concerned about the general gum health of your mouth.
Fluoride is a great tool for preventive tooth decay treatment. It prevents tooth decay and is great for oral health in general because it kills germs that can live in your mouth. Fluoride also builds stronger teeth. If you’re a bottled water drinker, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister may recommend that you purchase a simple fluoride rinse to use after brushing.
Fluoride mouthwash can be used to fight any bad breath issues you may be facing. It’s designed to combat any bacteria that might be building up in your mouth. Most mouthwashes will help eliminate bad breath, but some are specifically designed to address this difficult problem. If you feel as though this might be turning into a chronic problem, please contact Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to discuss other options that would be effective for treating your symptoms.
American Dental Association (ADA Approval)
The ADA reviews all mouth rinses for safety measures and to prove effectiveness. Any mouthwash approved by the ADA has met strict guidelines according to whether the manufacturer’s claims are supported with scientific evidence. If you’re looking for a quality mouthwash, look for one that has the ADA seal of approval to ensure you have a great rinse for your mouth.
When you’re trying to decide which mouthwash to pick, contact our Aventura, FL or ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister during your next appointment. If you experience a burning sensation in the soft tissues of your mouth, be sure to discontinue use immediately. Avoid letting children under age six use a mouth rinse, and be sure to keep all mouthwashes out of the reach of children, because they contain alcohol and other substances that could be harmful.
January 4th, 2018
The Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister team knows that oral hygiene is important, whether you have braces on your teeth or not. But if you are a person who wears braces, caring for your teeth and gums can become somewhat challenging. Without daily oral hygiene practices, you may become prone to cavities and tooth decay during your time in braces.
Naturally, you know that brushing your teeth each morning and night, as well as after you eat, will help keep your mouth healthy and clean during the months you wear braces. But flossing is also an important part of your hygiene routine. Flossing with braces can be tricky, but it’s not impossible. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, your general dentist, or your dental hygienist can help you become more comfortable and adept at flossing your teeth during the months you wear braces.
Flossing Tips for Those with Braces
- Use Tools Provided by Our Office. A floss threader is a small, plastic needle that will help you floss between the wires and your teeth. Thread a 12-to-18-inch piece of floss onto the needle, and use the needle to get the floss easily behind the wires.
- Flossing Under the Wires. Once the floss is behind the wires, use your hands to manipulate the floss. Move it up and down along the wires to remove food particles.
- Flossing Between Your Teeth. Floss between your teeth as you normally would without braces. Move the floss up and down between your teeth, using a clean section of floss for each tooth.
- After You Finish Flossing. Your orthodontist may have suggested that you use a water pik or proxy brush after you finish brushing. Either of these tools will help remove any loosened food particles to ensure that your teeth and braces are clean.
Continue Good Oral Hygiene Habits
Good oral hygiene habits you use while wearing braces will help you achieve the beautiful smile you and the Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister team have been working toward. Once your braces are off, it may be tempting to slack off on the brushing and flossing. Don’t let yourself fall into any habits that will have a negative impact on your oral health or the attractive smile you waited for throughout the months you wore braces. See your general dentist for regular cleanings, and continue to brush and floss your teeth each day.
December 27th, 2017
It’s no secret that New Year’s Eve is one of the most widely celebrated holidays in the world. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team love it too. It’s a fresh start, another year of surviving the crazy world we live in, a time to refocus on the things we want for ourselves, a celebration with those we love … the list goes on.
Dozens of countries welcome the New Year with over-the-top parties and celebrations. Because it’s a public holiday, many offices, businesses, and schools close for the day. As you think about your plans for this holiday, here are some fun facts about New Year’s that might surprise you!
Can you guess what the most common New Year’s resolutions are? You may already have one or two of these on your own personal list. The top five New Year’s resolutions are: to quit smoking, get a new job, lose weight, increase personal savings, and return to school. Just remember that coming up with a concrete plan to reach your goals is the surest way to achieve your resolutions!
About one million people brave the cold to watch the New Year’s Eve ball drop in New York City’s Times Square in person. Yes, that’s one million! This event is one of the most iconic celebrations in the world. People travel from all over just to experience it, but you can watch from the warmth and comfort of your living room.
If you’re not a fan of cabbage, collard greens, black-eyed peas, or ham hocks, you might want to revise your tastes. All these foods are all regarded as lucky fare on New Year’s Day. Unless you’re allergic, of course!
For many people in Mexico and Latin America, eating 12 grapes at midnight is a tradition that brings good luck in the 12 coming months. Most people even make a wish per grape!
Whether you’re celebrating in Aventura, FL or traveling elsewhere to observe the holiday, New Year’s Eve is a time to enjoy the company of your friends and family. Don’t forget to send warm wishes to your loved ones, and snag a midnight kiss with that special someone if you can!
December 20th, 2017
Sometimes real life is stranger and more interesting that any made-up story. These weird and interesting facts about braces will amuse you … and make you glad you didn’t have to get braces “way back when.”
Mummies with braces: Archaeologists have discovered mummies with crude bands of metal wrapped around their teeth. The metal was wrapped around each individual tooth, and it is believed that ancient dentists used catgut to guide the teeth and close the gaps.
First “official” braces: The first official braces were constructed in 1728 by Pierre Fauchard. They consisted of flat strips of metal. String was used to connect the metal to the teeth.
Early rubber bands: In 1850, Tucker began making rubber bands out of rubber tubing.
Brackets are better: Brackets were invented by Edward Angle in 1915. They were not bonded to the teeth directly, but instead were attached to bands that went around the teeth.
Wiring by NASA: As braces have become more modern, the technology has improved by leaps and bounds. You may know that some braces wire contains nickel titanium. What you may not know is that this metal was developed by NASA and has special shape memory that is activated by pressure or body heat.
Over 60 with braces: Actress Faye Dunaway got braces at the age of 61, which shows you are never too old to look more fabulous!
Oh, and one more thing that didn’t quite make our list, but is interesting all the same. Did you know that almost 25 percent of patients who get braces have to get them again because they wouldn’t wear their retainers? So suck it up, buttercup, and use that retainer!
December 13th, 2017
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff know that eating with braces can be tricky. You want to avoid damaging the bands, brackets, and wires, since any damage can delay the progress of your treatment. After adjustments, your mouth may also feel sore, which will make eating more of a chore than a pleasure.
The good news is you do not have to avoid all of your favorite foods; there are ways you can still enjoy them. Try some of these ideas and recipes for great snacks that are friendly to your braces.
Fruits and Vegetables
You still need to eat fruits and vegetable for the healthy nutrients. The trick is to cut harder items into small pieces that you can chew easily with your back teeth. Canned fruits are also a great choice, but select fruits packed in water to avoid the heavy, sugary syrups. It’s a good idea to avoid excess sugar with braces, since sugar build-up around your braces can lead to plaque formation.
Single-serving packages are available to make your snack portable and convenient. Enjoy vegetables with a small amount of a healthy dip. Hummus or yogurt can be used for flavor without adding unnecessary fat or calories.
Banana and Honey Smoothie
Smoothies are a healthy treat, and you can create these drinks with your favorite ingredients. You can use a variety of yogurt types for your smoothie: regular, low or non-fat, and Greek are all great choices. Here’s one of our favorite smoothie recipes:
- 6 ounces of your choice of yogurt
- 1 or 2 teaspoons of honey
- 1 ripe banana
- 6 ounces milk
Chop the banana into smaller pieces and put all your ingredients into a blender. Blend on low until everything is mixed and then blend on high for about 20 seconds to make your smoothie fluffy.
The great thing about this recipe is that you can substitute just about any small or cut-up fruit for the banana. Try blackberries, raspberries, or peaches for variety. Try to avoid fruits with small seeds; strawberries can leave bits stuck in your braces. You can even make a smoothie with peanut butter and jelly!
Please ask our team if you have any concerns regarding the foods you can safely eat while wearing braces.
December 6th, 2017
Patients have so many choices for straightening their teeth nowadays — clear aligners, ceramic braces, lingual braces, self-ligating braces — but who is best suited to guide them through orthodontic treatment? Well, an orthodontist like Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister in Aventura, FL of course!
This may seem obvious, but there’s misinformation circulating with regard to the roles dentists and orthodontists play in treating patients’ oral health.
Dentists are trained to clean teeth, fill cavities, perform certain dental surgeries, and examine overall oral health. Many dentists now offer braces to their patients, but according to the American Association of Orthodontists, it’s better to consult an orthodontist if you need to straighten teeth or fix a bite.
Why an orthodontist? Because they are...
- Specialists in straightening teeth and aligning jaws, even advanced cases
- Required to study an additional two to three years after dental school
- Trained to choose the correct treatment option because they have worked with all the available options
- Trained to recognize the potential pitfalls with certain treatments and cases, which means there’s less chance of problems after treatment has started or been completed
- Familiar with emerging treatments and technologies so they can make the best choice for a patient’s case
Some dentists claim to have taken enough continuing education or additional training to offer braces to their patients. But this can't compare to the advanced training an orthodontist receives during his or her education.
Ideally, dentists and orthodontists work hand in hand to make sure oral health and the alignment of teeth and jaws are the best they can be. Think of a dentist as the one who is there for a lifetime, to make sure teeth and gums are healthy.
In contrast, an orthodontist is the highly skilled teammate who helps the dentist by straightening teeth and aligning the jaws over the course of a few years. Instead of one replacing the other, they work together for the health and benefit of their patients.
November 29th, 2017
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, we aren’t just concerned with straightening your teeth and giving you the beautiful smile you’ve always wanted. We are also committed improving the oral health and the well-being of all our patients. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team strive to serve our patients by educating them about their treatments, as well as making them feel as comfortable as possible during their initial consultations up until the day they complete their treatments.
Making our patients more comfortable with taking care of their braces in between visits increases the likelihood that they will complete their treatments successfully. We want you to know that if you should ever have any questions about your orthodontic treatment, whether it’s during your adjustment appointment or after hours, we are always here for you and your family.
Please do not hesitate to give us a call at our Aventura, FL office or ask us any questions you may have on our Facebook page! We can’t wait to hear from you!
November 22nd, 2017
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister we love learning trivia and interesting facts about Thanksgiving! This year, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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.
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.
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.
November 15th, 2017
Bad breath, or halitosis, is probably not a matter of life or death. But it can make you feel self-conscious and have a negative impact on your life. The majority of people suffering from bad breath are dealing with oral bacterial. However, there are other causes of this embarrassing problem. Learning more can help you fight this solvable problem.
Five Causes of Embarrassingly Bad Breath
- Dry Mouth. A decrease in saliva flow can be caused by several things. Most often, medication or mouth breathing are the culprits. As saliva helps wash away food particles from your mouth, it prevents bad breath. Dry mouth can be dealt with by stimulating salivation.
- Gum Disease and Poor Oral Hygiene. Not brushing and flossing well enough or with enough frequency can lead to gum disease, which leads to bad breath. Halitosis can be a sign that plaque is present on your teeth.
- Food-Related Bad Breath. Food particles that aren't brushed or flossed away attract bacteria that leads to bad breath. It's especially important to brush after eating strong-smelling foods, such as garlic or onions.
- Smoking and Tobacco. Tobacco is bad for your health, and that includes your oral health. Smoking or chewing tobacco can contribute toward the development of gum disease, as well as oral cancer.
- Mouth Infections and Other Medical Problems. A mouth infection, sinus infection or even the common cold can cause you to temporarily have bad breath. Even conditions such as diabetes and reflux can cause halitosis. It's always wise to see Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to help determine the cause.
We are Your Ally
Even if you maintain good oral hygiene, it's important to see Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister at our Aventura, FL office to deal with or avoid problems with bad breath. We can help you uncover the cause of halitosis, while also providing solutions that allow you to enjoy fresh breath without relying on mints and breath fresheners. As is the case with all things related to oral health, we are your number-one ally when it comes to eliminating the problem of bad breath.
November 8th, 2017
You may have noticed that kids seem to be getting braces and other orthodontic care a lot earlier these days. There was a time, only a decade or two ago, when braces were mainly seen on teenagers, but that is beginning to change. If you’re wondering when to bring your child to our Aventura, FL office for an orthodontic evaluation, the answer actually has several parts.
The Telltale Signs
If your child has a very crowded set of adult teeth coming in, or if the permanent front teeth came in very early, these are signs that your child should see Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, regardless of age.
The Dental Age
Barring signs of trouble or early adult teeth as mentioned above, the time that your child needs to be seen for initial orthodontic evaluation depends not so much upon your child’s actual age, but on what is known as a “dental age.”
The dental age of the patient might be entirely different from his or her actual chronological age; for example, an eight-year-old could have a dental age of 13. It is part of Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff’s job to determine the dental age and then make appropriate recommendations for the resolution of orthodontic issues if they are emerging.
The Official Recommended Age
The American Association of Orthodontists officially recommends that kids should see an orthodontist for the first time between the ages of seven and nine. Even if the child does not have all his or her permanent teeth, the teeth growth pattern can usually be predicted quite effectively by an orthodontist.
This allows for a proactive response to emerging problems, and this is the reason that some younger children are now getting orthodontic devices earlier in life. If a young child has serious orthodontic issues emerging, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can usually address the problems immediately and then follow up with another round of treatment when the child has all the adult teeth.
November 1st, 2017
The purpose of braces and other forms of orthodontic treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
October 25th, 2017
Halloween is fast approaching, and Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister wanted to be sure to wish our patients a happy day, no matter how you might celebrate this holiday. The Halloween that is familiar to most people today bears little resemblance to the original Halloween; back in the "old days" it wasn't even called Halloween!
Festival of the Dead
Halloween started out as a Celtic festival of the dead that honored departed loved ones and signified a change in the cycle of the seasons. The Celtic people viewed Halloween, then called "Samhain," as a very special day – almost like our New Years day in fact, as their new calendar year began on November 1st. Samhain was the last day of autumn, so it was the time to harvest the last of the season's crops, store food away for winter, and situate livestock comfortably for the upcoming cold weather. The Celts believed that during this day, the last day of winter, the veil between this world and the spirit world is the thinnest, and that the living could communicate with departed loved ones most effectively on Samhain due to this.
Halloween as we know it today started because Christian missionaries were working to convert the Celtic people to Christianity. The Celts believed in religious concepts that were not supported by the Christian church, and these practices, which stemmed from Druidism, were perceived by the Christian church as being "devil worship" and dangerous.
When Pope Gregory the First instructed his missionaries to work at converting the Pagan people, he told them to try to incorporate some of the Pagan practices into Christian practices in a limited way. This meant that November 1st became "All Saints Day," which allowed Pagan people to still celebrate a beloved holiday without violating Christian beliefs.
Today, Halloween has evolved into a day devoted purely to fun, candy, and kids. What a change from its origins! We encourage all of our patients to have fun during the holiday, but be safe with the treats. Consider giving apples or fruit roll-ups to the kids instead of candy that is potentially damaging to the teeth and gums.
Remind kids to limit their candy and brush after eating it! Sweets can cause major tooth decay and aggrivate gum disease, so to avoid extra visits to our Aventura, FL office, make your Halloween a safe one!
October 18th, 2017
It's a habit many people have and not only can it be annoying to the people around you, it can be detrimental to your dental health. Chewing ice is so common that it even has its own name, pagophagia. We're not talking about a slushy or shaved ice (although those artificially sugary treats should be avoided too!) but more like the hunks of ice rattling around in the bottom of your glass.
Ice chewing can be a sign of emotional problems like stress or obsessive-compulsive disorder, but it can also be a marker for iron deficiency anemia and other physical problems. Then again, some people just like to have something to chew on. For whatever reason you find yourself chewing on it, it's a habit you need to break.
Chewing on ice can cause:
- Chipped and cracked teeth
- Damaged enamel
- Sore jaw muscles
- Damage to dental work such as crowns, fillings, or other appliances
If chewing on ice is becoming a problem in your life, don’t hesitate to speak with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister about it. But if you find yourself still wanting to chew on something, here are a few alternatives to ice:
- Baby carrots
- Celery sticks
- Sugar-free (xylitol) gum
We know you need to chill sometimes, but chomping down your entire glass of ice is not the way to do it. If you have any other questions on the topic, feel free to talk with a member of our Aventura, FL team. It may be beneficial in solving the issue and helping to remediate any damage to your teeth.
October 11th, 2017
If you’re like most adults, you aren't enthused about the idea of having to get traditional metal braces. The look, feel, and cost keep many people from getting the smile they want.
However, many options are available at our Aventura, FL office if you’re looking for a cost-effective and more discreet way to straighten your teeth.
Choosing the right kind of cosmetic braces depends on the severity of your situation. Some cosmetic braces, such as clear aligners, are best suited for mild to moderate spacing or crowding of the teeth, and minimal bite alignment issues. But there are options for people who need more intense treatment.
Below is a list of some of the most popular options available today.
Invisalign® involves multiple clear aligner trays that you wear in a predetermined order to achieve the desired treatment result. Most people won’t even know you’re wearing them, and they offer solid results. Clear aligners might not be suitable for all cases; they are mainly for those with mild to moderate spacing or crowding of the teeth and minimal bite alignment issues.
Ceramic braces are similar to traditional braces, but less visible due to translucent ceramic brackets and/or wires. They are not quite as discreet as clear aligners such as Invisalign, but they are more subtle than traditional braces and can be used for most cases.
Lingual braces are attached to the back of your teeth instead of the front. They are highly discreet but effective at moving teeth and correcting bite issues. Their cost is higher due to the materials involved, and the additional time and effort required to place them accurately.
Self-ligating braces are similar to traditional metal braces, but no elastics (ligatures) are required on the bracket because they have built-in clips to hold the wire against your teeth. People will perceive you’re wearing them, but they don’t need as many adjustments from Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, so you’ll require fewer appointments and undergo a shorter treatment time.
It’s only natural to have questions before you embark on a course of braces treatment. Speak with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister or any of our staff members at our Aventura, FL office about your goals, budget, and timeframe, and we’ll help you find the right fit!
October 4th, 2017
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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
- Jelly beans
- Hard pretzels
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
- 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister for repair work on damaged braces!
September 27th, 2017
As you are undergoing orthodontic treatment, our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister would like to point you to a helpful website. Our friends at the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) have lots of important information about everything relating to braces, including myths and facts of orthodontics, tips for a better orthodontic experience, and cool webisodes about orthodontics.
Check out AAO today and feel free to contact us at our Aventura, FL office if you have any questions.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister hope this information helps you!
September 20th, 2017
There's something special about customizing the elastics on your braces to fit your unique personality. Once you embrace your braces (no pun intended) you'll realize how many color options and combinations there are to choose from. Although you'll have a fantastic smile afterward, you won't have this level of customizability once your braces come off, that's for sure!
Adding flair to your braces isn't what all patients are looking to do (like those opting for clear aligners or ceramic braces), but it's part of the fun of traditional metal braces! Many of our patients ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to have their elastics match the colors of their favorite sports teams or their school, but how about changing your elastics to match holiday colors?
Here are some options to consider:
- Valentine’s Day – Red and pink
- Easter – Pink, blue, and violet
- Halloween – Orange and black
- Christmas – Red, green, and white
- Saint Patrick’s Day – Green and white
There are a few colors that some people choose to avoid. But if you’re trying to make your teeth stand out in a crowd, the following suggestions need not apply!
- Brown or Green – can be mistaken for food being stuck in your teeth
- Black – might look like a rotten tooth if someone isn't looking hard enough
- White – Some patients think it will make their teeth look whiter, but in fact it can make your teeth appear yellower than they actually are. White elastics can also stain easily.
- Yellow – accentuates the yellowness of your enamel
Since changing the color of your elastics has no effect on the actual orthodontic treatment process, the idea is to have fun and add a personal touch. So, next time you get your elastics changed at our Aventura, FL office, why not wear your braces boldly and opt for something festive?
September 13th, 2017
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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.
September 6th, 2017
Going back to school is already an exciting (and sometimes nerve-racking) time so we don't want your braces adding to that. Our Aventura, FL team has compiled some helpful tips to make the process as easy and fun as possible.
1. Make sure you pack or purchase braces-friendly lunches
Try to avoid overly crunchy foods (think carrots, celery, hard crackers) especially if your teeth are sore from having your braces tightened. But you shouldn't stop eating healthful foods that fall in this category. For instance apples can be sliced into wedges or carrots can be cut into coins.
You should also avoid sticky foods like candy or gum that can and will stick in your braces like glue! Softer foods are easier on your teeth and braces, so aim to make a good portion of your lunch on the softer side.
2. Have a braces kit in your backpack or locker
Having some useful items on hand at school when you need them is one of the most helpful things you can do. Pack some wax for sores or tenderness, floss and/or flossing tools made for braces, a toothbrush and toothpaste, a small cup for rinsing, a small mirror to check for trapped food, and some lip balm if your lips tend to chap. With these tools on hand, you'll avoid most if not all braces-related nuisances!
3. Know that you're not alone
If you're feeling self-conscious about your braces, don't. Be proud of them! There are many other people your age who have braces, and if they don't have them now, they probably will in the future. Relax and know that you're on the path to a straighter and healthier smile.
If you have any questions about making your transition into "braceshood," just ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister or any member of our Aventura, FL team! We're here to help make your braces experience (and your smile) the best it can be.
August 30th, 2017
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 cofounder 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister hopes all of our patients celebrate Labor Day, and every holiday, safely and happily. Whether you stay in the Aventura, FL area, or travel out of town, have fun, and don't forget to brush!
August 23rd, 2017
Your teeth are precious. Once your permanent teeth come in, they need to last you a lifetime. Extensive tooth decay can lead to dental caries and the need for fillings, crowns, bridges, and dentures.
While these fixes can go a long way toward maintaining your quality of life, they cannot compare to your natural teeth. Getting braces is no excuse to let up on your thorough oral health routine: You need to take good care of your teeth before, during, and after braces to benefit completely from the gains you get from newly straightened teeth.
Why You Should Maintain Good Oral Health for Life
Begin a complete oral health regimen as early as possible in life, and maintain this routine throughout your life. Keeping your (or your child’s baby) teeth clean establishes a routine. It preserves healthy baby teeth whose function is to save space for the permanent teeth when they are ready to come in. Care of your permanent teeth helps preserve the enamel and prevent decay.
Take Special Care with Braces
It is important to pay attention to oral health when you have braces. If you do not take special care of your teeth during the months or years that you have braces, you risk irreversible damage to your teeth. Care is more difficult with braces because food can easily get stuck. In addition to brushing twice daily and flossing each day, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff suggest avoiding sticky foods.
August 16th, 2017
Crooked teeth, more correctly called malocclusions, have reached epidemic proportions in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. According to the American Association of Orthodontists, approximately 80 percent of American teenagers are currently undergoing orthodontic treatment. Although advances in orthodontic devices and increased availability of such devices explain part of this increase, it still means there are a lot of crooked teeth in the world.
The theories about what is causing so many crooked teeth range from the ridiculous to the scientific. For years, oral health professionals believed that crooked teeth were an evolutionary result of the change in Western diets from raw, wild foods to soft, processed foods. That theory has since been debunked.
The truth is that crooked teeth can be caused by a number of things. Crooked teeth can be an inherited trait. Parents with crooked teeth and malformed jaws are more likely to have children with malocclusions. Ill-fitting or poorly-executed dental restorations, such as fillings and crowns, can also cause teeth to become crooked. Baby teeth that fall out early, gingivitis, and even a jaw that is too small to accommodate all of a person’s adult teeth are additional causes of crooked teeth. In addition, thumb sucking and the use of a pacifier for too long can contribute to crooked teeth.
What to do about crooked teeth
Fortunately, modern orthodontics offers a number of solutions for crooked teeth. Traditional metal braces are the most popular, though our Aventura, FL office provides a number of clear, aesthetic options as well. If you’re tired of hiding your smile because of crooked teeth, contact Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister and set up an appointment. We’ll have you showing off your straight pearly whites in no time!
August 9th, 2017
You’ve taken the first step toward a healthier and more beautiful appearance by getting braces at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, 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 Aventura, FL office and ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team. We’re more than happy to help!
August 2nd, 2017
There are so many adults and teens in our Aventura, FL office who would love to have their teeth straightened but that are unwilling to go through the long and unsightly process of traditional metal braces. Well, that's where Invisalign® and Invisalign Teen® come to the rescue; the most advanced clear aligner systems in the world!
There are several reasons why, if you're considering getting braces, you should consider Invisalign too. Here are some of them:
- You can eat whatever food you'd like, without worrying about it getting caught in wires or breaking brackets.
- Most people won't even know you're wearing them!
- If you need to, you can remove your aligners at any time.
- The removable aligners let you brush and floss as you normally would, making for better overall oral health.
- Since they are made of a smooth BPA-free plastic, Invisalign aligners are simply more comfortable to wear than traditional braces. No metal means no more roughed up gums or irritated tongue!
- You'll need to visit our Aventura, FL office less often — only once every six weeks or so.
- With Invisalign Teen, you’ll receive up to six replacements for lost or broken aligners.
Before you get started with treatment, you’ll have a consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to see if Invisalign or Invisalign Teen is right for you. If your case is a good fit, then you’ll have X-rays, pictures, and impressions of your teeth taken. That information will be used to make the 3D models of your teeth that let Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister see how they will move throughout the entire treatment and approximately how long it will take.
After that, you’ll receive your aligners based on the treatment plan we recommend. You’ll get a new set of aligners every two weeks. Then all you need to do is wear your aligners 22 hours a day and you’ll be on your way to a straighter healthier smile. Don’t hesitate to a member of our Aventura, FL team for more information about Invisalign!
July 26th, 2017
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our Aventura, FL office!
July 19th, 2017
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister will explain our treatment plan in a way you will understand and we will keep you informed every step of the way.
July 12th, 2017
While everyone understands that a dentist takes care of teeth, not everyone is aware of what an orthodontist does. This confusion sometimes leads to misunderstandings about what Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister does for our patients and how exactly Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can help them. Let’s take a closer look at a couple of the myths and misconceptions about orthodontists.
Perhaps the biggest misconception about the orthodontist is that they’re just like your family dentist. The truth is, they’re actually very different. While it’s true that both orthodontists and dentists care about helping you enjoy a lifetime of good dental and oral health, orthodontists go about achieving this goal in different ways. For instance, if you need to have a cavity filled, you probably won’t make an appointment to see an orthodontist. Dentists are the health professionals to see if you’re concerned about a cavity or need a filling. A dentist can also treat gum disease, tooth decay, toothaches, and other common oral health problems.
People see an orthodontist for very particular services. Most of the patients we see on a daily basis are here because they have braces, or they need to be fitted with braces or another form of tooth-straightening device. In other words, they consult an orthodontist when they are concerned about the alignment of their teeth. As a child grows up, his or her teeth may come in crooked. This can happen for a number of reasons, so it’s important for an orthodontist to take a look at a child’s teeth at about seven years of age. At that age, it’s possible to detect any problems that have not become too advanced to treat easily. Your family dentist may also refer your child to an orthodontist once the adult teeth have fully grown in.
Another common misconception about orthodontists is that they only treat children. It’s true that when you visit an orthodontic clinic you’re apt to see a lot of young kids, but you’ll also see teenagers, college students, and adults. Because crooked teeth can be caused by a number of different factors, it’s entirely possible for someone to require orthodontic treatment at any age.
If you want to know more about the practice of orthodontics or what your orthodontist can do for you, then simply ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. It’s best to get answers to your specific questions directly from the person who will be treating you. While you’re sure to find Internet resources helpful, there really is no substitute for the personal attention you’ll get during your appointment at our Aventura, FL office.
July 5th, 2017
The dog days of summer are upon us, and what better time for Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team to ask our patients about their summer!
Whether you visited our nation’s capital, went on a camping trip, or just stayed in Aventura, FL and relaxed, 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 summer rolls on!
June 28th, 2017
Every year, Americans all over the world celebrate the birth of the country and its independence on the Fourth of July. There are countless ways that people celebrate and they range from community parades and large scale gatherings to concerts, fireworks displays, and smaller scale celebrations among family and friends. For some people, July 4th is synonymous with baseball, while for others it is all about the beach of barbecues. However you celebrate, you can be sure that red, white, and blue is visible everywhere throughout the area.
The Beginnings of Fourth of July Celebrations
Although it wasn't officially designated as a federal holiday until 1941, the actual tradition of celebrating Independence Day goes back to the time of the American Revolution (1775 – 1783). At the time of the American Revolution, representatives from the 13 colonies penned the resolution that ultimately declared their independence from Great Britain. The continental congress voted to adopt the Declaration of Independence on July 2nd of 1776. Two days later, Thomas Jefferson's famous document that is now known as the Declaration of Independence, was adopted by delegates representing the 13 colonies.
First States to Recognize the Fourth of July
In 1781, Massachusetts became the first state (or commonwealth) whose legislature resolved to designate July 4th as the date on which to celebrate the country's independence. Two years later, Boston became the first city to make an official designation to honor the country's birth with a holiday on July 4th. In that same year, North Carolina's governor, Alexander Martin, became the first governor to issue an official state order stipulating that July 4th was the day on which North Carolinians would celebrate the country's independence.
Fun Facts About the Fourth of July
- The reason the stars on the original flag were arranged in a circle is because it was believed that would indicate that all of the colonies were equal.
- Americans eat over 150 million hot dogs on July 4th.
- Imports of fireworks each year totals over $211 million.
- The first “official” Fourth of July party took place at the White House in 1801.
- Benjamin Franklin didn't want the national bird to be the bald eagle. He believed that the turkey was better suited to the coveted distinction. John Adams and Thomas Jefferson disagreed with him, and he was outvoted, so the bald eagle became the official bird of the United States.
For many, the tradition is something entirely different. Along the coastal areas of the United States, people may haul out huge pots to have lobster or other types of seafood boils. Others may spend the day in the bleachers at a baseball game, or at a park, cooking a great traditional meal over an open fire. No matter how or where you celebrate, one thing is certain: all Americans celebrate July 4th as the birth and independence of our country.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister wish you a safe and happy Fourth of July!
June 21st, 2017
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can advise you how to floss with a brush specially designed for braces!
June 14th, 2017
Temporomandibular dysfunction (TMD) refers to a diverse range of disorders that relate to muscular function in the jaw and face — the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). That could mean difficulty opening your mouth, pain in the jaw or face, or any sort of problem with the jaw joint.
TMD can be difficult to diagnose because of the varied causes. Whatever the case, an accurate diagnosis from Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister helps make treatment as successful as possible.
Most often, jaw problems will resolve themselves within several weeks or months. Surgeries like arthrocentesis, arthroscopy, and open-joint surgery should be a last resort. More conservative and reversible treatments should come first and are in fact the most critical step in the treatment of TMD.
Less invasive treatments like acupuncture and splints can be helpful, but that will depend on your particular case. It’s worth your while to speak with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister at our Aventura, FL office to learn about solutions that could work for you.
A combination of treatments will most often produce the greatest relief for TMJ patients. It’s a good idea to avoid activities that overuse the jaws, such as chewing gum or clenching your jaws.
You can be proactive in finding relief for TMD by trying the following remedies at home:
- Eat soft food: When you eat soft and/or blended food, your jaw gets an opportunity to rest. Avoid chewy and crunchy food, and food that requires you to open your mouth wide, like apples or corn on the cob.
- Apply moist heat: A hot water bottle wrapped in a moist towel can help reduce symptoms.
- Apply ice: Applying an ice pack wrapped in a cloth or towel for no longer than 15 minutes may also reduce pain and promote healing.
- Do jaw exercises: A physical therapist can help identify the exercises that will work for you. Jaw exercises have been shown to be an effective treatment method that can be performed at home.
- Relaxation: Actively try to relax the muscles of the face and lips, and let your teeth come apart. Many find meditation, yoga, and slow, deep breathing to be helpful for reducing stress and tension.
- Avoid wide yawns: Keep your fist under your jaw when you feel a yawn coming on, to keep your jaw from opening too widely.
June 7th, 2017
As we start our summer, our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister wants to remind our patients who have completed treatment that it is very important to wear your retainer as prescribed even while away for vacations and summer camps.
If you are away from home and only wearing your retainer at night, here is a helpful tip: after removing and brushing your retainer in the morning, place it back in the case and then put it with your PJ’s or on your pillow. That way you have a reminder to put your retainer back in at night.
Remember, retainers should be worn every night, not just some nights.
We wish you safe travels and adventures this summer!
May 31st, 2017
Our office strives to bring you the latest and greatest in orthodontic techniques and technologies. Being on the cutting edge of the industry is important—it ensures you, as our patient, are getting the best orthodontic treatment you possibly can while keeping costs down!
The goal of a high-tech office is three fold: to have effective treatment, to have efficient treatment, and to make the whole process easy, painless, and cost-effective for you.
Here are some of the technologies being implemented by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to do just that:
3D oral scanners: If you've ever experienced getting impressions the traditional way, it isn't very fun! Having a gag reflex is common and it takes several minutes on both the top and bottom of the mouth to get a successful impression.
With 3D oral scanners, we create a perfect digital scan of your teeth without radiation. We then use the results of the scan to create accurate braces, retainers, and other appliances for your unique teeth and mouth.
Digital Imaging: New digital imaging provides us with accurate, panoramic, and cephalometric views of your teeth and their supporting structures. This lets us plan and implement treatment with the utmost precision.
Not only does this kind of imaging expose patients to far less radiation than traditional X-rays but it also gives us immediate access to the images, whereas X-rays had to be developed. This expedites treatment time and means fewer trips to our Aventura, FL office for you.
New, high-tech braces options: There are so many more choices when it comes to braces these days! Advances in the industry like Invisalign®, self-ligating braces, and lingual braces, allow patients to not only get highly accurate and precise treatment, but do so discreetly without anyone else even knowing.
Digital scanning and imaging takes the guesswork out of braces. Instead of the orthodontist estimating tooth movement and treatment progression, these days it's all computer modeled with exacting detail. The result? Your braces do exactly what they're intended to do in less time with a picture-perfect outcome.
These are just some of the advances in the orthodontic industry. Needless to say, they all make the entire process that much easier and effective for you. If you have any questions or are interested in treatment, please don't hesitate to contact our Aventura, FL office!
May 24th, 2017
Memorial Day didn't become an official holiday until 1971, but Americans started gathering annually in the spring to remember those who lost their lives in war during the 1860s, right after the Civil War. Celebrated on the last Monday in May, people still decorate the grave sites of war veterans and hold memorial services, but Memorial Day has also evolved into a day that signifies the beginning of summer.
During the summer months, many people take road trips to visit family members. Some head off to the airport to enjoy a long-awaited vacation far away, while others look forward to spending time with friends and family at home. However you spend Memorial Day and the subsequent summer months, there are a few things you can take care of to ensure your summertime is enjoyable.
Checklist for an Enjoyable Summer
- Have the AC Checked. During the hottest days of summer, many families find themselves sweating it out due to a broken air conditioning system. Be proactive so you can avoid waiting for hours or days because the HVAC repair person is booked solid. Have your air conditioning system checked before or around Memorial Day each year.
- Ensure Security While You're Away. When you leave for vacation, the last thing you should have to worry about is the security of your home. Install a home security system, if possible, and put a timer on your lights so they go on and off at normal hours. You can also alert your local police department that you'll be gone, and ask them to drive by your house once in a while to make sure everything is okay.
- Visit Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister Before Vacation. Many people put off exams until after summer vacation. Avoid the crowds and make sure your physical and oral health are in top shape prior to vacation time so there are no unpleasant surprises.
Our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister wants you to look forward to Memorial Day and the days of summer by preparing to spend the time safely and comfortably. As you plan ahead, take care of your health and secure your home, you can place your focus on creating memories with family members and friends while enjoying your favorite Memorial Day traditions.
May 24th, 2017
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.
Acute, Direct Injury to the Mouth, Jaw, or Teeth
Whether 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.
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 Aventura, FL office with any questions, or to schedule an appointment with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
May 10th, 2017
Most people think braces are all about their teeth. While it is true orthodontics is meant to move your teeth into proper position, there's more to it than that. To safely move your teeth with braces, you're going to need healthy and stable gums (or periodontium—the tissues that support your teeth).
For this reason it's critical to have your periodontal health evaluated prior to getting braces. This applies particularly to adults, since a 2013 study by the Center For Disease Control found that an estimated 47.2% of adults 30 years of age and older had periodontitis (gum disease). If you do have periodontitis, moving your teeth with braces will only make things worse.
Conversely, there is also risk for periodontal disease if you don't get orthodontic treatment. Malocclusion, as well as crooked and spaced teeth, can all contribute to periodontal disease. In these situations your teeth and gums are more difficult to clean and become breeding grounds for disease causing bacteria. Bad oral hygiene combined with these traits can greatly contribute to the development of periodontitis.
So, periodontics and braces have a tricky relationship. On one hand, you shouldn't get braces if you show signs of developing or have periodontitis, while on the other hand, braces can help prevent the possibility of developing periodontitis by correcting the bite and straightening the teeth.
If you are 30 years of age or older and are considering getting braces, it would be wise to first:
- Let Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister know about your desire to get braces
- Get an exam to make sure you're in good periodontal health and a good candidate for braces
- If you are a good candidate, keep an eye on your teeth and gums and get regular dental checkups throughout your entire course of treatment.
If you are in any doubt about the status of your teeth and gums, it's always best to get them checked before embarking with braces treatment. For more information or to have your periodontal health assessed for braces treatment, please contact our Aventura, FL office.
May 3rd, 2017
Summer is almost here, which means a season full of vacations, adventures and great memories is just around the corner for our patients at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
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!
April 26th, 2017
A lot of patients ask us why Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister for your initial consultation, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Aventura, FL office. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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!
April 19th, 2017
/* Style Definitions */
mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt;
Proper oral hygiene techniques are always worthwhile, but they are especially crucial when you’re wearing orthodontic appliances such as braces. When you don’t maintain an effective oral hygiene routine, you can be more susceptible to gum disease as well as tooth decay, cavities, decalcification, discoloration, and/or staining of the teeth.
Braces themselves don’t cause these issues, but since they create spaces that are difficult to clean, they provide extra sources of food (dental plaque and food debris) for the bacteria that do. Bacteria create a biofilm on the surface of a tooth that can spread if not addressed. That bacteria food can only be removed by a mechanical action: brushing and flossing your teeth!
Here’s a list of smart hygiene steps to follow for the duration of your braces treatment:
Proper tooth brushing technique: Make sure to brush your teeth thoroughly (for a total of about two minutes), but not too hard. Point the head of the toothbrush at the gum line and brush just hard enough so that you feel slight pressure against the gums. Use a soft, small-headed toothbrush or an electric toothbrush if you’d like. Try your best always to clean on and around every tooth, bracket, and wire in your mouth!
Flossing: Braces can make flossing a chore, but it’s an essential adjunct to proper tooth brushing. Make sure to floss between all your teeth and brackets. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can provide you with braces floss threaders and interproximal toothbrushes (small brushes used to clean areas under wires and between brackets) to make the task easier. You might also consider purchasing an oral irrigator that uses a stream of water to blast food particles and debris from between teeth and gums.
Rinse with water: This may sound slight, but it’s a good idea, especially if you aren’t able to brush. Rinsing your mouth with water throughout the day helps to dislodge the decay-causing food particles that become lodged in braces.
Hygiene away from home: It’s a good idea to have a kit with a toothbrush, floss, floss threaders, mirror, and small water cup on hand at school or work. That way, you’ll be sure to have all the tools you need to keep your mouth clean.
Regular professional cleanings: As always, it’s best to visit your dentist regularly to verify everything in your mouth is in order and your oral hygiene routine is effective. Twice a year is sufficient, unless the dentist recommends more frequent visits.
It's vital to keep your teeth and gums clean during your braces treatment, and that requires your care and attention. If feel like you need help with any of the techniques above, a member of our Aventura, FL team can demonstrate them for you!
April 12th, 2017
By no stretch is it rare for your gums to hurt during and after flossing. Even some bleeding is to be expected. This is especially true if you have not flossed in a long time. However, if your gums do indeed hurt when you floss, and unbearably so, there are some things you can do.
Perhaps the most obvious way to combat gum soreness and bleeding is to be gentle. One of the most common occurrences of these gum problems is over-aggressive flossing. In other words, if you are too rough on your gums while flossing, either because you are out of practice or because you are in a hurry, soreness and hurting is to be expected. Instead, try taking your time and be gentle. Also, if you are just starting out, be patient and consistent, your gums will become more conditioned over time.
Use an Alternative Method
If being consistent and gentle does not work, there are other alternative methods of flossing that you can try. You can also try a water floss machine, or what is sometimes called a water pick. The device essentially shoots water into the crevasses between your teeth, and in other areas of your mouth, in order to dislodge food and plaque. These oral instruments also come with different attachments that allow you to reach many of the hard to see and reach areas of your mouth. And lastly, you can always buy floss that is not as abrasive to your gums. There is floss that comes with soft and gentle coatings that will do less harm to your gums while they are adjusting to the good oral hygiene habit you are creating.
Flossing is one of the easiest parts of oral hygiene to overlook. When you first start out, it is common that you may want to stop because of the pain it can initially cause. However, if you try one, or all, of the above mentioned methods, you will give yourself the best chance of being success with your flossing, and it won't hurt as much.
For more flossing tips, schedule an appointment at our Aventura, FL office and askDrs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister or a member of our team!
April 5th, 2017
Many smokers believe that chewing tobacco is a safer alternative to smoking cigarettes. This simply isn't the case! In fact, smokeless tobacco can cause serious health concerns.
Smokeless tobacco comes in many forms and goes by many names: dip, snuff, snus, or simply chewing tobacco. Use of these products usually involves sucking or chewing on shredded or loose tobacco leaves, sometimes flavored, for a prolonged period. There are even products that emulate a dissolvable candy-like consistency which are made of compressed tobacco powder.
What are risks and smokeless tobacco?
Whichever form a tobacco product takes, the dangers of using or consuming them is very real. According to a 2007 study by the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer, there are upwards of 28 cancer-causing chemicals in smokeless tobacco that are known to cause cancer. And these products are habit-forming just like any other tobacco product that contains nicotine. Using them will increase your risk for many serious diseases including but not limited to: cancer (especially oral and esophageal), gum and heart disease, cavities, and pre-cancerous mouth lesions.
At the end of the day, long-term use of smokeless tobacco can cause serious health issues. These products really take a toll on both your oral and overall health. They put a strain on your immune system and make it less capable of warding off infection and disease.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team strongly advise you to stop using smokeless tobacco—or any kind of tobacco product—and not to pick up the habit if you aren't. There is no safe level of tobacco use, smokeless or otherwise.
Need to quit smoking or using smokeless tobacco products?
You can and should always talk to your doctor, healthcare practitioner, or Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister for help quitting. But there are many other resources available today for those who'd like to quit. The National Cancer Institute offers information, support (local and online), and tools to help smokers and smokeless tobacco users quit. They offer live online chat with cessation counselors Monday through Friday and even have a smartphone application available to help people who are serious about quitting.
You can take a look at their website at smokefree.gov or call them toll-free at 1–877–44U–QUIT (1-877-448-7848). There is also help available from your state's quit line at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669).
Make the best choice for your health and well-being; avoid the bad habit of tobacco products. If you have any questions about how tobacco related products affect your oral health and hygiene, please don't hesitate to ask one of our Aventura, FL staff members.
March 29th, 2017
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister know that for some of our patients wearing braces, it can be difficult to weave through those wires and brackets as you brush and floss during your treatment.
Some of our patients use a water pick to flush out food and other particles and bacteria stuck between their teeth as the water can reach behind the metal wires and hit spots where your floss simply cannot reach. People suffering from gum disease also find water picks quite effective because of their ability to flush out bacteria from inside the deep pockets.
Water picks are friendly to braces and are also gentle on the gums. They are less likely to cause bleeding for people with sensitive teeth or gums. But as many benefits as they may have, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team want you to know that water picks should never be used as a substitute for flossing. Though they are great tools for helping improve oral health while you are in treatment, they are just not a good enough tool on their own to keep your mouth and gums gingivitis- and decay-free. Water picks are also incapable of removing plaque from teeth as effectively as floss can. While water picks rinse the sticky bacteria off your teeth, flossing is actually more effective as it actually scrapes the bacteria off of your pearly whites.
If you have any questions about water picks or any general questions or concerns about your orthodontic treatment, we encourage you to please ask us below or give us a call!
March 22nd, 2017
All over the Internet you'll find videos and articles showing how you can close the gap between teeth or space them out. There is a plethora of DIY orthodontic techniques out there — you can even mail order your own impressions to get clear aligners, without even seeing a dentist or orthodontist. Following the instructions laid out in these videos and articles (by people who have zero training in orthodontics) is about the worst decision you can make for your overall oral health.
Performing DIY or at-home orthodontia can lead to or cause:
- Loss of teeth
- Cavities or infections that are missed or undiagnosed
- Gum damage
Dr. Christina Carter, president of the Northeastern Society of Orthodontists, says that DIY orthodontics can have terrible consequences. She spoke to TODAY about closing gaps between teeth using rubber bands or elastics:
"The teeth are connected to the gums and the blood supply and there is a risk of infection, of tearing the gums which might not heal properly, and a risk of damaging the attachment between the tooth and gums so the tooth no longer gets the support it needs." She also noted, "A simple rubber band can actually slide up the tooth and cut all the attachments to it and you can actually lose a tooth."
One of the worst parts about DIY orthodontics is that you never consult with a trained orthodontist, so you're really operating on a dangerous lack of information. It's best not to risk damage to your teeth or infection. Let Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister know what you want to accomplish with your teeth and we will help you find the safest and most cost-effective way to achieve it.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister want you to be informed and practical about your oral health. Should you have any questions about orthodontic treatment options, please do not hesitate to give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office.
March 15th, 2017
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. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister - have a great St. Paddy’s day!
March 8th, 2017
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister.
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
March 1st, 2017
These days it's becoming more and more common to see adults at our Aventura, FL office getting their teeth straightened with Invisalign clear aligners — that is, if you can see them! Treatment with Invisalign is effective and aesthetically pleasing for all ages, but adults have certainly taken to them.
For some it may be to overcome the stigma that "braces are just for kids," but for others it may be the displeasing appearance and discomfort of traditional braces. According to the American Association of Orthodontics, from 1994 to 2010 the number of adults 18 and older getting braces increased by 58 percent, from 680,000 to 1.1 million annually. Many of these adults opt for Invisalign because of how discreet they are and since they don't need to avoid any foods or make dietary changes like you do with traditional braces.
The benefits of getting your teeth into proper alignment are many, and so are the advantages of Invisalign. By following your individual course of Invisalign treatment, you can expect to enjoy the following benefits over traditional braces:
- The total treatment time is more precise with Invisalign since your treatment is modeled by a computer, as compared to traditional braces where it is really just an estimate.
- You'll need to make fewer trips to our Aventura, FL office since you can change your trays on your own every few weeks or as prescribed.
- There's less risk to the health of your tooth enamel since there is no need to place brackets on your teeth.
- Invisalign aligners are clear and practically invisible, so most people won't even know you're wearing them!
If you're interested in Invisalign treatment, please let Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister know. We'd be happy to help you on your journey to a straighter, healthier smile!
February 22nd, 2017
If your teeth don't line up like they used to any more, you may be suffering from temporomandibular joint disorder, often called TMD. This is a term that can actually be applied to any condition that occurs because the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is inflamed.
The temporomandibular joint is essentially the hinge that holds your lower jaw to your skull, and when it is inflamed or damaged in any way, it can be extremely painful. You have two temporomandibular joint, one on each side of your jaw, and it is typical to experience TMD in both sides at the same time.
Shifting of the Teeth
The reason that your teeth may not line up as they once did is that the ball and socket joints are often out of alignment and, as mentioned above, often very inflamed as a result. In order to correct the problem, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister may prescribe dental orthotics such as a lower jaw splint.
Sometimes, the wisdom teeth can play a role in the shifting of the teeth as well. If shifting wisdom teeth is combined with TMD, it may be necessary to have your wisdom teeth removed. Dental splints may follow if your teeth don't shift back to their proper positions on their own.
TMD is certainly a difficult thing to deal with, so if you experience your teeth shifting, scheduling an appointment at our Aventura, FL office is the smartest course. We want to help you get your smile back, so give us a call anytime.
February 15th, 2017
While it’s normal to feel self-conscious, there is no reason to avoid photos just because you wear braces. Many people wear braces and you do not need to be embarrassed about them. There are also ways you can enjoy your photos without hiding your smile.
Make it Fun
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff offer rubber bands for braces in a wide range of colors. Choose your favorite color and wear it with pride. You can mix and match your colors too. For Valentine’s Day, try alternating red and pink bands. For the Fourth of July, use red, white, and blue!
Bands are also available in neon colors and glow-in-the-dark designs. Your imagination is the only thing holding you back. You might want to avoid using dark green bands, though. It makes it look as though you have broccoli stuck in your teeth. Gross!
Make them Disappear
If your braces still really bother you in photos, technology can quickly solve the problem. A photo-editing program, or even a simple paint program, can easily erase your braces. Zoom in on your teeth, pick your natural tooth color with the dropper, and paint your braces away.
If you have a significant amount of metal in your braces, try to avoid close-ups with flash. The flash can reflect off the metal. The important thing to remember is how good your teeth will look and feel once your orthodontic work is complete. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff can also show you options for braces that are not as visible as the traditional style.
February 8th, 2017
The term malocclusion refers to misalignment of teeth. You may have been born with malocclusion, so your teeth simply grew in crooked, or the misalignment and crowding of your teeth occurred over a period of time. Either way, not only can malocclusion pose cosmetic issues, but it can have a negative effect on your speaking and eating abilities as well.
Types of Malocclusion
Malocclusion encompasses multiple types and classifications of misalignment issues, including twisting or rotation of the teeth and molars that do not meet when you bite down. In some cases, the top front teeth are pushed outward in an upper protrusion.
In other cases, a misplaced midline results when the front top teeth don’t meet with the front bottom teeth. Transposition occurs when teeth protrude through the gums in a position where another tooth is supposed to be.
Practically any type of crowding or spacing issues, rotation or twisting of the teeth, or bite problem – including overbite, underbite, open bite, or crossbite – is included under the umbrella of malocclusion.
There are three classifications of bite or misalignment problem.
- Class 1 malocclusion: While the bite may be normal, the upper teeth overlap the lower teeth slightly. This is the most common type.
- Class 2 malocclusion: Known as overbite or retrognathism, class 2 involves a severe overlap of the upper teeth and jaw over the bottom teeth and jaw.
- Class 3 malocclusion: Known as underbite or prognathism, class 3 occurs when the lower teeth and jaw overlap the upper teeth and jaw. Thus, the lower jaw juts forward.
Causes of Malocclusion
The most common cause of malocclusion is genetics. However, there may be other causes, including the development of abnormally-shaped teeth, lost teeth, or impacted teeth; thumb sucking or overuse of a pacifier as a small child; having fillings or crowns that do not fit correctly; a serious injury that causes misalignment of the jaw; or developing a tumor of the mouth or jaw.
Orthodontic care at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister is the main treatment available for malocclusion, which includes getting braces, Invisalign, or other corrective treatments. Treatment is ideal not just to have your smile improved, but because it makes the teeth easier to clean and maintain, lowers the risk of gum disease and tooth decay, and can even take pressure off the jaw and teeth.
Think about orthodontic treatment if you (or your child) display any signs of malocclusion. Early treatment of malocclusion during childhood can lessen expensive treatment later on.
February 1st, 2017
This is one of the most common questions that is asked at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. 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 Aventura, FL for a consultation and discover how quickly we can make you smile!
January 25th, 2017
By now, everyone knows that smoking is bad for you. But the truth is its broad-reaching health effects are not all known by everyone. This is especially true of oral health. Smoking can have serious repercussions in this regard. To give you a better idea of how smoking can affect your oral health, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team have listed some issues that can arise.
Oral cancer can have steep ramifications for anyone that gets it. Surgery can be required to eliminate the cancer before it spreads to more vital parts of your body. Any type of cancer is about the worst health effect you can get, and this especially holds true to the affects that smoking has on your mouth. The type of mouth surgery required with oral cancer can leave your face deconstructed in certain areas, and it is all due to smoking or use of other tobacco products.
Tooth Discoloration and Bad Breath
At the very least, it is fair to say that as a smoker you will often have bad breath, and while you may try to cover it up with gum or mints, tooth discoloration is a whole other story. The chemicals and substances in cigarettes stick to your teeth staining them brown and yellow colors that are increasingly difficult to disguise.
Gum Disease and Loss of Bone
Another effect of smoking is the increased risk of gum disease. Your gums may start to recede, which can eventually lead to the loss of teeth. Smoking can also increase bone loss and density in your jaw which is vital to the health of your mouth. Gum disease and bone loss are two signs that smoking is definitely bad for your mouth.
When it comes to the health of your mouth, the question is not whether smoking affects your health, it's how does it affect your health and to what degree. If for no other reason than because smoking involves your mouth as its entry point, it is safe to say that it can have long-lasting and detrimental consequences on your oral health.
To learn more about smoking and your oral health, contact our Aventura, FL office to schedule an appointment with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister.
January 18th, 2017
Our patients at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister hate the thought of delaying their treatments and often ask us what they can do in between their adjustment visits to help. Today, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. 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 Aventura, FL office, or ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister during your next adjustment visit!
January 11th, 2017
A popular option for straightening teeth at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, 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 Aventura, FL 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 Aventura, FL office to set up an initial consultation and learn more on how Invisalign can give you the smile you’ve always wanted!
January 4th, 2017
Our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister knows that there are many ways you can protect your pearly whites throughout your orthodontic treatment. If you follow the rules and brush your teeth twice a day, floss often, and protect your appliances from damage, you should have a successful treatment.
But did you know there’s another way to keep your teeth sparkling and healthy during your time wearing braces?
Fluoride, the mineral that helps you prevent cavities and tooth decay, can also help keep your teeth strong. Fluoride comes in two varieties: topical and systemic. Depending on your oral health or the recommendation of Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, you may be required to have a fluoride treatment every three, six, or 12 months. We may also prescribe a fluoride product such as a mouthwash, gel, or antibacterial rinse for at-home treatment to keep your teeth happy in between visits.
If you have any other questions about fluoride or your treatment, please don’t hesitate to give us a call!
December 28th, 2016
Watching the clock tick down the final seconds until midnight, many of us- Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL, 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!
December 21st, 2016
Two-phase orthodontic treatment involves two separate and distinct periods that your child receives orthodontic treatment. It allows your son or daughter to begin early treatment of bite and jaw problems, in order to reduce the dental issues he or she experiences later on.
Two-phase orthodontic treatment with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can improve how well the second phase of the treatment works and helps to make room for permanent teeth. Overall, two-phase treatment helps to position the teeth and the jaw for an attractive profile. Our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister recommends that you bring your child to our Aventura, FL office at the age of seven or eight, so that Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can determine if early (Phase-One) treatment is necessary.
Phase-One orthodontic treatment is known as early treatment. It begins shortly after your child’s first orthodontic examination, usually around age eight or nine. The main goal of Phase-One orthodontic treatment is to help make room for permanent teeth, which reduces crooked teeth as a result of overcrowding. It treats the jaw and bite growth, and issues like crossbite or underbite. This can reduce the need for your child to undergo extractions.
Phase-Two orthodontic treatment is when braces are placed on the upper and/or lower teeth. The purpose is not just to correct spaces or misaligned teeth, but also to correct overbite or underbite concerns. Phase-Two usually begins around age 11 or 12, and the braces are worn for an average of two to three years, depending on your child’s unique needs. Some children have fewer issues and wear braces for little more than a year, while others need them for up to four years.
Signs your child needs two-phase orthodontic treatment
If your child exhibits the following signs, he or she may be a good candidate for two-phase orthodontic treatment:
- Losing baby teeth early, before five years of age
- Problems with biting or chewing
- Sucking the thumb after age five
- Evidence of a crossbite, where the teeth don’t come together when opening or closing of the mouth
- Teeth are crowded at age seven or eight
- Protruding teeth on the top or bottom
Not all children need to have early treatment, but if your child shows any of these signs, you should bring him or her to us for an evaluation at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
December 14th, 2016
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team hear this question a lot. Some of the common reasons for crooked teeth include:
- Thumb sucking
- Tongue thrusting or improper use of the tongue during speaking and swallowing
- Premature loss of baby teeth, which causes teeth to drift and shift
- Poor breathing airway caused by enlarged adenoids or tonsils
There are also hereditary factors we get from our parents, like:
- Extra teeth
- Large teeth
- Missing teeth
- Wide spaces between teeth
- Small jaws
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team know that having crooked teeth isn’t just a cosmetic issue; it can lead to serious health problems as well. Crooked teeth can:
- Interfere with proper chewing
- Make keeping teeth clean more of a challenge, increasing the risk of tooth decay, cavities, and gingivitis
- Strain the teeth, jaws, and muscles, increasing the risk of breaking a tooth
There are several treatment options we offer at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister that can help correct crooked teeth. Please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office to learn more or to schedule an initial consultation.
December 7th, 2016
Getting your child excited about braces is a lot like: A) convincing a grumpy toddler that it’s time to take a nap? B) convincing a teenager to stop texting during dinner? C) convincing your husband to eat his peas? The answer, obviously, is all of the above.
And that’s why you may need a few thoughtful ways to get your child on board with braces.
- Throw a pre-braces party. It can’t be just any party, however, but a Willy Wonka celebration of candy, chips, gum, and all the sticky and sweet foods your child won’t be able to indulge in during the time he or she is wearing braces. Promise a post-braces celebration, too, and watch as your child’s eyes widen at the thought of an all-you-can-eat junk food buffet.
- Encouraging phrases like “braces aren’t eternal, but your straight smile will be” can go a long way.
- If your daughter is worried about getting picked on because of braces, then name-drop some A-list celebrities who have worn them. The list includes Cameron Diaz, Kelly Clarkson, Dakota Fanning, and Gwen Stefani.
- Emphasize that braces today aren’t the same as they were in the Stone Age. From clear ceramic braces to different-colored braces, more options are available. Braces can be cool accessories to express a personal style.
- To get your child to embrace braces, you need to sing the praises of beautiful teeth, even if that means pointing out how crooked your teeth are because you never got braces.
November 30th, 2016
When you get your braces, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff will also give you a list of foods you should not eat and things you should not do. Pay particular attention to these items to keep your teeth and braces safe.
Charms belong on bracelets. While you can decorate your braces with colored bands, hanging a charm off them is a bad idea. If you bite down on the charm, you could damage your braces or your teeth. You could also swallow your jewelry.
Never use your teeth as a bottle opener. This is just as important when you are wearing braces. While braces straighten your teeth, your teeth are moving in the process. That makes them weaker, and the metal in the braces does not make them invincible. Invest in a bottle opener; you can buy one for a few dollars, which is much less expensive than having to replace your braces.
Contrary to what you might think, your braces are not designed to work as a radio. There are tales of people who have picked up radio signals from dental fillings or braces. While this is remotely possible, attaching an antenna to your mouth is just not a good idea. You will get better quality music from a radio.
On the other hand, you can still kiss someone while wearing braces. In fact, even if both of you wear braces, the chances of your getting locked together are almost negligible. However, to avoid cutting your partner’s lips, kiss with caution.
If you have any questions about taking care of your braces, please ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff. We want you to get the best results from your treatment without needless delays.
November 23rd, 2016
Thanksgiving marks the start to the holidays; a season filled with feasting, indulging, and spending time with family and friends are always special. Thanksgiving is a holiday meant for giving thanks, and while this may seem like such a natural celebration, the United States is only one of a handful of countries to officially celebrate with a holiday.
Unlike many holidays, Thanksgiving is a secular holiday, and it is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November in the United States. In Canada, it is celebrated on the second Monday of October, which is, oddly enough, much closer to a time when harvests were likely gathered. In addition to the different dates, the origins of the celebration also share different roots.
Thanksgiving in the United States
Giving thanks for a bountiful harvest are not new, but the modern day holiday in the US can be traced to a celebration at Plymouth in Massachusetts in 1621. This feast of thanksgiving was inspired by a good harvest, and the tradition was simply continued on. At first, the colony at Plymouth didn't have enough food to feed everyone present, but the Native Americans helped by providing seeds and teaching them how to fish, and they soon began to be able to hold a feast worthy of the name. The tradition spread, and by the 1660s, most of New England was hosting a Thanksgiving feast in honor of the harvest.
An explorer of early Canada named Martin Frobisher is accredited for the first Canadian Thanksgiving. He survived the arduous journey from England through harsh weather conditions and rough terrain, and after his last voyage from Europe to present-day Nunavut, he held a formal ceremony to give thanks for his survival and good fortune. As time passed and more settlers arrived, a feast was added to what quickly became a yearly tradition. Another explorer, Samuel de Champlain, is linked to the first actual Thanksgiving celebration in honor of a successful harvest; settlers who arrived with him in New France celebrated the harvest with a bountiful feast.
A Modern Thanksgiving
Today, Thanksgiving is traditionally celebrated with the best of Americana. From feasts and football games to getting ready for the start of the Christmas shopping season, Thanksgiving means roasted turkey, pumpkin pie, and green bean casserole. No matter how you celebrate this momentous day, pause for a moment to give thanks for your friends, family, and all the bounties you’ve received. Happy Thanksgiving from Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister!
November 16th, 2016
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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister may recommend surgery to adjust the jaw bone and establish the proper bite alignment before beginning treatment.
Because our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL 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.
November 9th, 2016
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister believe is worth taking. For more information about this topic, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office or ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister during your next visit!
November 2nd, 2016
According to Preferred Consumer, it's estimated that 50 percent of people around the world have teeth that are crooked, not aligned properly, or irregular. Fortunately today, orthodontics has advanced to the point where corrective devices, such as braces and retainers, are less obvious, more comfortable, and can be worn for shorter periods of time.
So, with that being said, how do you know if braces are right for you? Typically your dentist will be able to point out any issues with your teeth at your regular six-month cleanings and recommend you to an orthodontist. But here are some other things to keep in mind when deciding whether or not braces could be in your future:
As children grow, so do their teeth. And more often than not, certain teeth will grow in crooked. This isn't uncommon, as the majority of children will require some sort of teeth correction, whether that’s braces or retainers. Retainers are custom-made devices that either work to hold teeth in place or correct tooth alignment. They're often worn all day, aside from meals, at the start of the treatment period and then eventually are rolled back so they're just worn at night. Braces on the other hand are worn for at least a year and work to help straighten or position teeth.
Overbite or Underbite
The other main oral issue that orthodontics helps correct is uneven alignment, such as an underbite or an overbite. You might hear Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister refer to this as a "malocclusion," which means "bad bite." Braces can help rearrange your alignment so an overbite or underbite is less of a problem. Typically after the braces come off for this sort of treatment, patients need to wear a retainer from Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister to finish the treatment.
While braces are typically associated with dental issues in children, more adults are wearing the devices as well. About one in every five braces wearers are adults; a sign that it's never too late to correct any oral issues. Part of this is due to the technological advancements in orthodontics. For instance, new braces feel much better and come in a variety of styles — including clear — so they're far less obvious. Plus, the wires on braces are now made from advanced metals, which are stronger and lighter, so they get the job done much more efficiently. With so many people wearing braces these days, nicknames like "metal mouth" and "brace face" are almost a thing of the past. What's more, is that insurance plans are increasingly covering orthodontic treatment, making braces a much more feasible option for families on a budget.
When weighing whether or not braces are in your future, it's important to study all of your options about the styles of braces and what treatment option is best for you. Also be sure to contact your insurance provider to see what is covered and what will have to be paid out of pocket. It might take a few years of treatment, but braces can give you that winning smile for the rest of your life. Call our Aventura, FL office with any questions you might have!
October 26th, 2016
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister!
October 19th, 2016
Many developing orthodontic problems can be intercepted and corrected if diagnosed and treated at an early age. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, 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.
October 12th, 2016
A lot of our patients are curious about the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist. In fact, one of the most common questions we hear at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister is, “Dentists and orthodontists are all the same, right?”
A general dentist is your primary dental care provider. Dentists diagnose, treat, and manage your overall oral healthcare needs, including gum care, root canals, fillings, crowns, veneers, and bridges.
Orthodontists, such as Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, are more concerned with diagnosis, prevention, interception, and treatment of malocclusion, or what we call “bad bite,” of the teeth. Orthodontists focus on tooth and jaw alignment and bite problems such as overbites and underbites, and are responsible for straightening teeth via bands, wires, braces, and other fixed or removable corrective treatment options, like braces and clear aligners. Orthodontists treat children as well as adults who wish to improve the function of their bite and appearance of their smile.
Before becoming an orthodontist, doctors such as Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister start out in dental school and earn a dental degree, just like your general dentist. After dental school, those doctors who decide they are interested in the orthodontic field, stay in school for a few more years and become experts in orthodontia, which is one of nine specialties within the dental field.
Isn’t it nice to know we have orthodontic experts here at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister to help you through any type of treatment your teeth and jaw might need? To schedule your initial appointment at our Aventura, FL office, please give us a call today!
October 5th, 2016
Now that October is upon us, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister wanted to send you a friendly reminder to schedule your orthodontic appointment prior to the end of the year to take full advantage of any flex spend, health savings, or insurance benefits that you may have.
The end of the year is always a busy time so make your appointment now so you don’t lose your available benefits! Give us a call today!
September 28th, 2016
When beginning orthodontic treatment, most patients ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team a lot of questions about what to expect, while others choose to just "go with the flow" and leave it to us to build for them a beautiful smile. And for our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, that's understandable.
But for those who do ask questions, two of the ones we frequently hear are "Will my braces hurt?" and "How long will these be on?"
We explain to our patients that despite what they've heard, braces do not hurt when they're initially put on. Yes, you will experience soreness after your braces are placed and when your teeth start to move. Too often, our patients hear horror stories about how much it hurts to get the braces on, so they tend to over-worry. The truth is, after their braces are on, almost all patients say "that's it?" because it's actually easy and painless!
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, we answer most of your other questions during your initial exam. When a patient visits our office for the first time, we give him or her a time estimate of how long it will take to achieve their ideal smile. All other questions are answered at the bonding appointment when the braces are placed. We cover all the topics, everything from eating to brushing with braces, but we also know that after your initial appointment, it's natural for you to have questions about your or your child's treatment. And we are always here for you; we are thorough and always try to answer any questions or concerns you may have. As a patient, that's one thing you never have to worry about. You will always know what's going on throughout your orthodontic experience.
September 21st, 2016
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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 Aventura, FL office!
September 14th, 2016
Getting braces comes with a lot of rules. No sticky candies, watch out for popcorn, and steer clear of chips. These rules leave many braces-wearers wondering what they can still eat without hurting their teeth or their expensive orthodontic appliances. Fortunately, constructing a braces-friendly lunch is straightforward once you know which foods to avoid.
Foods to Avoid When Wearing Braces
There are a few food categories to avoid when you have braces. Sticky foods also stick to the metal in your braces, and can potentially break wires or individual braces. For example: bubblegum, candy bars, caramel, licorice, fruit roll-ups, and Starbursts should be avoided. Many of these foods also contain high levels of sugar, which can cause plaque build-up if not brushed away properly.
Also, be wary of hard foods that can harm your orthodontic appliances. Avoid eating hard taco shells, chips, Rice Crispy treats, hard candy, beef jerky, and popcorn. Some healthy foods, such as carrots, apples, corn on the cob, and nuts, are hard on braces. To eat these foods safely, cut them into smaller pieces before eating.
Remember that certain habits may be harmful to your braces. For example, crunching on ice cubes may be a reflexive response when you’re enjoying a cold beverage, but this can significantly harm your braces and extend treatment time. To stay on the safe side, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister recommend you drink beverages without ice or add crushed ice whenever possible.
Even with braces, it’s easy to enjoy a healthy, nutritious lunch. For example, make a panini on whole wheat bread with slices of turkey deli meat, a piece of Swiss cheese, and tomato slices. Spread 1 tbsp. of mustard or mayonnaise on the bread before toasting the sandwich in a panini grill. Serve the panini with ½ c. low-fat cottage cheese and a sliced pear or apple for a balanced meal. Then grab a pudding cup or some JELLO for dessert. Wash it all down with water containing a lemon wedge or all-natural fruit juice. Make sure to brush your teeth or rinse with mouthwash after lunch to wash away sugars and food residue that can get trapped in braces and cause decay.
If you have any questions about what you can and can’t eat with braces during your treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, be sure to ask our team during your next appointment at our Aventura, FL office!
September 7th, 2016
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister would love to have you visit for an initial consultation. Please give us a call to schedule a visit! See you soon!
August 31st, 2016
Labor Day is upon us, and that means the non-official end to summer. Before the kids head back to school and temperatures start to cool down, this is your last chance to barbeque in the beautiful Aventura, FL community, head to the lake, and wear your favorite pair of white pants.
About Labor Day
Each year, Labor Day is celebrated on the first Monday of September. It is the one day of year Americans celebrate their achievements in work, which the US Department of Labor says has contributed to prosperity and well-being of America as a whole. Americans have been celebrating Labor Day since the 1880s, and today it is an official federal holiday.
Interesting Facts About Labor Day
- Every year, more than 30 million Americans travel over Labor Day weekend.
- Canada was the first to celebrate Labor Day, and the US soon followed.
- President Cleveland made Labor Day and official US holiday in 1894.
- Labor Day marks the beginning of the NFL and NCAA sports seasons for fans.
- Labor Day marks the end of hot dog season, when Americans consume seven billion hot dogs.
Thanks for being a valued patient of our orthodontic office. Our staff would like to wish you a safe and happy Labor Day weekend. Enjoy your time off!
August 24th, 2016
Temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD) describe a set of conditions that involve trouble with your jaw and face muscles. They result from a problem in the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), which is a hinge that connects the temporal bones, in your skull in front of each ear, to your jaw. The joint enables you to talk, yawn, and chew by letting your mouth move.
TMD can be very painful and interfere with functions such as eating and speaking. This what to watch for and how to try to prevent TMD.
Risk Factors for TMD
You are at higher risk for TMD if you are a women than if you are male. The disorder is most common among adults between the ages of 20 and 40 years. Other risk factors for TMJ disorders include the following.
- Arthritis in the area, making movement more difficult
- Excessive tooth grinding, because it increases stress on the joint
- General stress, which can lead you to clench your teeth and strain facial muscles
Symptoms of TMD
Symptoms of TMD can last for just a short while, or for several years. Seeing Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister is important if your symptoms make it impossible for you to eat regularly or if you have unbearable pain or discomfort. The following symptoms can occur on both or one side of your face.
- Aching or very tired facial muscles
- Jaws that are fixed open or shut without you being able to unlock them
- Grating or popping sounds when you chew or close or open your mouth
- Pain in the entire area, including the mouth, jaw, neck, or shoulders, that comes on when you chew or yawn
You can try to prevent TMD by focusing on reducing risk factors. If you grind your teeth at night, ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister about wearing a mouthguard. If you are overly stressed, look into ways to better manage your stress and relax your muscles. Another strategy for trying to prevent the development of TMD is to avoid chewing gum, since that puts stress on your jaw.
If you have questions about TMD, don’t hesitate to contact our Aventura, FL office.
August 17th, 2016
The alarm sounds in the morning, you wake up and realize "I forgot to wear my retainer!"
If this only happened once, don't panic. Missing one night with a retainer is unlikely to cause significant teeth movement. However, if it has happened often, give our Aventura, FL office a call to make sure your teeth haven’t shifted position.
Here are some tips from Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to help you remember your retainer:
1. Write down the instructions we give you for wearing the retainer, whether you should wear it all day or at night, or just a few times a week. Writing things out like this helps set the schedule in your memory.
2. Clean the retainer when you take it out each time. If you don’t you may not have time when you’re rushing to get to work or school to clean it properly and may be tempted not to wear it.
3. Put a note on your mirror or in your purse or wallet reminding you to wear your retainer.
4. Set an alarm on your mobile phone to remind you when it’s time to put the retainer in. If you have email with a calendar you can set up daily reminders, too.
5. Always put the retainer in its case when you take it out to eat or sleep. You’ll reduce your risk for losing it or accidentally throwing it away.
6. If you don’t have to wear the retainer every day, you can use some recurring events to help you remember. With this system for example, watching your favorite weekly TV show, laundry day, or family pizza night can all serve as reminders that you should put in your retainer.
7. Don’t be shy about asking for help if you’re forgetful. Assure your spouse, parents, siblings, or roommates that you won’t consider if nagging if they remind you to wear your retainer.
8. Surf online for examples of how teeth can shift when retainers are not properly used. Those stories can serve as timely warning not to let the same thing happen to you!
Remember, you can always call our Aventura, FL office if you feel your retainer is uncomfortable or painful. We'll work with you to protect your smile!
August 10th, 2016
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team correct the alignment of your teeth and jaws so that you can speak clearly, chew food effectively, and look attractive when you smile. We do this by putting sophisticated gadgets in your mouth. While many of these dental devices look similar, we use a wide variety of orthodontic appliances to straighten your teeth and repair jaw problems.
Orthodontic appliances are devices that move your teeth, change the position of your jaw, or hold your teeth in their finished positions after your braces are removed. These devices may be attached to your teeth or removable.
Braces straighten your teeth. Brackets, bands, and wires characterize traditional braces. Braces are attached to the teeth, so they are not easily removable.
Spacers are small plastic rings fitted between your back teeth before your braces are placed by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. These spacers create space between your teeth to optimize the alignment your braces provide.
Retainers hold teeth in their finished position after your braces come off. A Hawley retainer is the most common type of retainer; it features an acrylic plate that rests against the roof of your mouth and a wire crossing in front of your teeth. Essex retainers are quite popular, as they are durable and nearly invisible.
Bite plates correct a deep bite, where the upper front teeth come down too far over the lower front teeth to cause bite problems.
Holding arches prevent the back teeth from moving forward to crowd the front teeth. A lower lingual holding arch prevents your permanent molars from migrating forward. The Nance holding arch maintains space between teeth after you lose baby teeth and before the permanent teeth come in.
A palatal expander widens your upper jaw by separating the bones of your palate. This appliance helps your top and bottom teeth fit together better. The Quad Helix widens your jaws to create more room for crowded teeth.
Contact our Aventura, FL office today to learn more about the ways we can improve the appeal and function of your smile.
August 3rd, 2016
Most parents know that routine dental care should begin during their child’s toddler years. And many assume they must wait until their child has all of his or her permanent teeth to visit Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister for an initial orthodontic consultation.
The ideal age for an orthodontic evaluation is age seven. At that age, your child will have a mixture of adult and baby teeth for Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister to make a determination about whether any problems are present. Typically the first molars have come in by the time your child turns seven, giving us an opportunity to check for malocclusion, also known as “bad bite.” Also, by the time your child reaches the age of seven, the incisors have begun to come in, and problems such as crowding, deep bites, and open bites can be detected.
When Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team perform an evaluation on your child at an early age, you get one of two positive outcomes. Although treatment usually will not begin until one to five years after the initial evaluation, it’s still helpful in determining whether your child has any problems with the jaw and teeth early when they are still easy to treat. Earlier treatment can also cost less to correct a potential problem than delayed treatment.
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 years of harmful teasing, misaligned teeth are also prone to injury and are detrimental to good oral hygiene.
If your child is approaching age seven, or has already surpassed his or her seventh birthday, it is time to schedule an appointment for an initial examination at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
July 27th, 2016
Are you an adult who is considering getting braces? Perhaps you’ve had them before, but over the years that dental work has been reversed. Or maybe you’ve never had any orthodontic work done, but are considering braces for the first time. In either case, Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister can help you enjoy straighter teeth, an improved bite, and a more beautiful smile. If you are considering getting braces, here is what you need to know about adult orthodontic work from Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister.
Can braces work for adults?
Absolutely! Braces work for just about anyone. However, there are several different types of braces, and not all of them may work for you. Different types of orthodontic treatments include:
- Ceramic braces
- Metal braces
- Self-ligating brackets
- Lingual brackets (braces behind the teeth)
- Invisible braces
- Rubber bands for bite correction
- Headgear and other appliances
By scheduling a consultation, we can determine which treatment or combination of treatments would be best for your specific needs.
How do I get started?
Getting braces can be a little bit daunting. At first glance, the process may appear expensive and time-consuming. However, if you take it step by step, getting braces can be a simple and relatively pain-free experience. Here are the first steps you need to take to get on the road to straight teeth:
First, you need information. If you are nervous about getting braces, or are having trouble getting started, learning more about the process can help ease your mind. Here are a few sample questions to ask:
- What kind of braces do you recommend for my teeth?
- How long will the treatment take?
- How often will I need to come in for adjustments?
- What is the total cost of the treatment? Do you accept insurance? Will you require the full amount up front, or do you have payment plans?
Asking these types of questions will help you understand what to expect during the entire process, which can aid your decision on the proper course of action.
The next step is to complete any prerequisite treatment. During your first meeting with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, we’ll need to take some X-rays and molds of your teeth, and then help you determine an appropriate treatment plan. Recommendations may include some preliminary dental work before you get your braces, which can be an important step in making sure your orthodontic treatments are effective.
Once you have completed these steps, you are ready to get started! After you’ve chosen a treatment plan and undergone any necessary prerequisite dental work, you’ll be able to get your braces. Just like that, you’re on your way to a better smile! If you’d like to get started right away, call our Aventura, FL location today!
July 20th, 2016
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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
- Teeth whitening
Orthodontists are dentists that specialize in the alignment of teeth, and provide services related to:
- Misaligned teeth
- Crowded teeth
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office.
July 13th, 2016
Also known as onchophagia, the habit of nail biting is one of the so-called “nervous habits” that can be triggered by stress, excitement, or boredom. Approximately half of all kids between the ages of ten and 18 have been nail biters at one time or another. Experts say that about 30 percent of children and 15 percent of adults are nail biters, however most people stop chewing their nails by the time they turn 30.
Here are four dental and general reasons to stop biting your nails:
1. It’s unsanitary: Your nails harbor bacteria and germs, and are almost twice as dirty as fingers. What’s more, swallowing dirty nails can lead to stomach problems.
2. It wears down your teeth: Gnawing your nails can put added stress on your pearly whites, which can lead to crooked teeth.
3. It can delay your orthodontic treatment: For those of our patients wearing braces, nail biting puts additional pressure on teeth and weakens roots.
4. It can cost you, literally: It has been estimated that up to $4,000 in extra dental bills can build up over a lifetime.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team recommend the following to kick your nail biting habit:
- Keep your nails trimmed short; you’ll have less of a nail to bite.
- Coat your nails with a bitter-tasting nail polish.
- Ask us about obtaining a mouthguard, which can help prevent nail biting.
- Put a rubber band around your wrist and snap it whenever you get the urge to gnaw on your nails.
- Think about when and why you chew your nails. Whether you are nervous or just bored, understanding the triggers can help you find a solution and stop the habit.
- If you can’t stop, behavioral therapy may be an effective option to stop nail biting. Ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team for a recommendation.
July 6th, 2016
We’ve heard all the reasons why folks put off scheduling an orthodontic consultation: not quite ready to begin treatment, vacations, busy schedules, financial concerns, etc.
Here are five reasons why you shouldn’t delay another day to make an appointment for yourself or your child with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister.
1. Growth – there is a window of opportunity during growth when an orthopedic appliance can change the direction of jaw growth and dramatically improve your child’s case. Once this time has passed, the correction becomes harder and may involve extraction of teeth or even worse, a surgical procedure to properly align the jaws.
2. Scheduling – Summertime is the perfect time to begin orthodontic treatment, because your child doesn’t have to miss school, especially for those longer appointments needed at the start of treatment.
3. Early Diagnosis – Many times, early interceptive treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister can dramatically improve the alignment of your child’s teeth and jaws. If baby teeth need to be extracted in order to allow the permanent teeth to erupt, timing is everything. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children receive an orthodontic consultation as early as age seven.
4. Financial Concerns – We offer several flexible payment plans which can be extended over your or your child’s treatment time.
5. A Lifetime of Smiles – Why wait when you can enjoy the many benefits of a beautiful and functional smile now. The sooner you get started the sooner you will be showing everyone your world-class smile.
Give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office to book your initial consulation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister.
June 29th, 2016
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
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 Aventura, FL, or even participating in a hot dog eating contest, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team hope you have a safe and fun-filled holiday. Happy Fourth of July!
June 22nd, 2016
Nobody likes a dry mouth. It is an uncomfortable and sometimes oddly unexplainable sensation that most people like to avoid. It is not a condition that automatically sends you into a panic about your health, however, a dry mouth can be a bother and something you certainly want to change if possible. So, if you find yourself in the unpleasant position of having a dry mouth, here is what you can do.
Chew Sugar-free Gum: Chewing sugar-free gum will stimulate saliva in your mouth. The chewing motion of your jaw and teeth should take care of at least some of your dry mouth problem.
Suck on Sugar-free Candy: Similarly to chewing sugar free gum, if you suck on sugar free candy it should create more saliva in your mouth and moisturize it in the process.
Cut out the Caffeine:Caffeine can contribute to a dry mouth so by limiting, or eliminating your intake all together, you may find that your dry mouth is no more.
Stop Using Tobacco Products: Tobacco is another cause of dry mouth. Whether it is smokeless tobacco products or cigarettes, if you stop using them your dry mouth will likely improve. And not to forget, these products are exceedingly bad for your oral health to begin with, so you will be doing your mouth a favor even more so.
Drink Lots of Water: It may seem obvious, but drinking lots of water will likely improve your dry mouth. This is because dry mouth is usually a sign of dehydration, so plenty of fluids will surely help.
Dry mouth can be unpleasant, but it is often easily solved by either drinking more water, or trying one of the previously mentioned techniques. If the problem still persists you can always visit our Aventura, FL office to see Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. More often than not, doing one of the above will leave your mouth more moisturized than it was previously, and hopefully it will be long-lasting as well.
June 15th, 2016
A bright, beautiful smile is often achieved with braces. The time you spend wearing braces is an investment in the good health and appearance of your smile. However, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff know that having braces on your teeth can pose challenges. Many of these challenges are commonly faced by all who wear braces, such as flossing, getting food stuck in your braces, and bad breath.
Today, let’s address bad breath and what to do about it. There’s no reason you have to shy away from conversation for fear that you’ve got bad breath.
Fresh Breath Tips for Braces Wearers
- Eat a Healthy Diet. Unhealthy foods that are laden with sugar can contribute to bad breath. Stick with healthy produce, protein, grains, and dairy found on the list of foods your orthodontist says are safe to eat with braces.
- Drink Non-Sugary Beverages. Likewise, steer clear of sugary sodas and juices for the same reason. They contribute to bad breath.
- Stay Hydrated. A mouth that’s continually dry can lead to bad breath by inhibiting your production of saliva. Regular production of saliva removes bacteria and excess food from your mouth, both of which cause bad breath.
- Brush Often. Brush your teeth and tongue first thing in the morning, after each meal and snack, and before you go to bed, to remove food particles and bacteria that cause bad breath.
- Don’t Forget to Floss. Flossing with braces might seem tricky, but it is a necessity. Ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to show you the best way to floss effectively with braces.
- Mouthwash Use. Use the mouthwash recommended by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. For the best results, swish the mouthwash around in your mouth for 30 seconds.
- Get Regular Cleanings. Regular dental exams and cleanings are more important when you have braces. Cavities can delay your treatment progress, so be sure to visit your dentist every six months.
Practice Good Hygiene Daily
Good oral hygiene practices are important every day, whether you wear braces or not. But they become even more important during the months you wear braces. In addition to your regular orthodontic checkups, see your general dentist for cleanings and exams.
Together, you and our Aventura, FL team will keep your mouth healthy and fresh during and after your orthodontic treatment.
June 8th, 2016
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister thought we would provide you with five tips you need to know to ensure you undergo successful treatment at our Aventura, FL office.
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.
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.
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL office or ask us during your next adjustment appointment!
June 1st, 2016
The dog days of summer are upon us, and with the temperatures soaring, our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister wants you to be extra careful about sun safety when you’re out and about. Check out this incredibly helpful article on the Ten Summer Safety Tips for Kids, courtesy of Discovery.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team also encourage you to always have a bottle of water handy when heading out into the sun.
We hope you’re having a great summer! Let us know what you're up to below or on our Facebook page!
May 25th, 2016
“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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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, we do eat sweets, especially homemade apple pie! Everything in moderation, of course.
So whether you’re in the Aventura, FL area or beyond, Happy Memorial Day to you and yours from Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister!
May 18th, 2016
The goal of orthodontic treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, which may include the use of braces, retainers, and aligners, is to straighten your teeth. Treatment often starts in the pre-teen or teenage years, but adults may also need orthodontic treatment. The treatment can feel like a chore that lasts for several months or a couple of years, but it can fix important problems. These include:
- Crowded teeth spaced too close together
- Gaps between your teeth
- Crooked teeth
- Overbite or underbite
- Upper and lower teeth that do not meet
Straight Teeth are More Attractive
You are more likely to be proud of your smile when your teeth are straight and evenly spaced. Pride in your appearance can give you more confidence and encourage you to try new things. This can be particularly important for adolescents. In addition, people often judge others based on first impressions. A smile that shows straight teeth is more attractive.
Better Oral Health is Easier
Brushing and flossing your teeth are two basic components of an oral health routine to protect your teeth from conditions such as tooth decay, gingivitis, and plaque build-up. As Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff know, caring for your mouth is easier when your teeth are straight. The American Dental Association says the following conditions are less likely to occur if you have the proper orthodontic treatment.
- Dental caries
- Gum disease or gingivitis
- Tooth loss
- Impaired speech
- Worn tooth enamel
Orthodontic Treatment Improves Nutrition
Poorly aligned teeth can reduce your ability to chew properly or make certain foods more difficult to eat. Many of these more challenging foods are healthy, and avoiding them can cause you to limit your diet to softer, often less-nutritious foods, such as ice cream and canned soup. Straighter teeth and a better ability to chew let you eat crunchy foods, such as apples and carrots; stringy foods, such as asparagus and chicken; and chewy foods, such as raisins.
May 11th, 2016
The best way to avoid orthodontic emergencies is to know how to take care of your braces properly throughout your entire treatment. However, emergencies are … well, emergencies, and sometimes no matter how cautious you are or how well you take care of your braces, the wires loosen, the bands pop, or you experience orthodontic discomfort.
Common orthodontic emergencies include broken braces, poking wires, lost or broken retainers, mouth sores, and mouth injuries sustained playing sports, which often happens when you don’t wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth and appliance.
It’s important to avoid foods that can damage your braces. Most people wear braces for about two years. All chewy, sticky, crunchy, and hard foods should be avoided during that time. While this may seem like a long time to go without popcorn or bubble gum, hard foods can break the brackets of your braces and sticky foods can bend the wires. If you have a loose wire, don’t try to fix it yourself. Call Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister. In the meantime, if a wire is poking into your cheek or lip and causing irritation, put wax or a wet cotton ball over it to dull the sharp edge.
Pain and Discomfort
Some discomfort is a normal part of orthodontic treatment, especially in the hours after the braces are placed on your teeth or after a recent tightening or adjustment. However, if the pain doesn’t subside in three to five days, it’s a good idea to schedule an appointment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister. Until then, try dissolving a teaspoon of salt in an eight-ounce glass of water and gargling with the solution. Over-the-counter pain medication will relieve discomfort, too.
Just because you wear braces doesn’t mean you can’t play sports. You just need to take some extra precautions. Sports-related injuries to the mouth and jaw are common. The best way to protect your mouth and your appliance is to wear a mouthguard. There are several different types of mouthguards available, so be sure to ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister what’s best for you.
Brushing and Flossing
In order to keep your braces in good condition and avoid orthodontic emergencies, it’s important to brush and floss thoroughly after every meal. It’s easy for small particles of food to get trapped in your braces, and if the food isn’t removed, it gets wedged between the teeth and gums and causes plaque.
Need more tips on how to avoid orthodontic emergencies? Just ask any member of our Aventura, FL team.
May 4th, 2016
The merry month of May also happens to be National Fitness and Sports Month, so take advantage of the warmer days to get outside and exercise! Bringing a friend, family member, or coworker with you when you go for a brisk walk during a lunch break can provide an opportunity to socialize as well as health benefits. If you need a little more motivation, here are some good reasons to stay active and fit.
- Improved stamina and energy as well as toned muscles and bone strength and density
- Improved circulation and breathing for a healthier heart and lungs
- Reduced risk for Type 2 diabetes and certain forms of cancer
- For older adults, regular exercise may help improve balance and reduce the risk of falls as well as improved cognitive abilities
Children and Teens
Children and teenagers spend long hours at their desks in school, on the computer, watching television, and involved in other sedentary activities that result in obesity and poor health later in life. Getting them engaged in school or community sports teams can help them form good life-long exercise habits. One important note: If they are participating in contact sports, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister recommend your kids wear an approved mouthguard to protect those valuable teeth from injury! Ask us for a proper fitting of your safety appliance during your next visit!
A gym membership is nice but not necessary to stay fit; try these easy ways to work some exercise into your daily routine.
- Take a friend along for company on a walk through your neighborhood.
- Pursue gardening or other yard work, including mowing or raking.
- Take your kids on a bike ride or have them push a baby stroller around the block.
Couch potatoes take note: simply moving from the sofa to the floor for some sit-ups, leg-lifts, or push-ups while you’re watching television can help you get in better shape in no time.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Take exercise breaks for walks around the building or parking lot.
- Walk or ride a bike to work.
So what are you waiting for? Get moving!
For more information on exercise techniques, or to schedule an appointment with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
April 27th, 2016
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, and add the following advice to your daily routine.
Always ask us about teeth whitening. Our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL office to schedule an appointment!
April 20th, 2016
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
April 13th, 2016
Getting your braces off is exciting. You’ve been working on your new smile for months or years, and it’s time for the trips to our Aventura, FL office to pay off. Can you imagine how bad it would be to discover that your teeth are straight, but that there’s decay?
Caring for your smile while wearing Invisalign goes beyond just waiting for your teeth to get straighter. It involves cleaning your teeth regularly and thoroughly to prevent tooth decay. That way, your smile will be more beautiful than ever when you’re done with your Invisalign treatment.
Take Your Trays Out
The first difference you may notice between Invisalign and traditional metal braces is that Invisalign aligners are invisible, but there’s another important distinction as well. Invisalign braces are removable. You can take the trays out, and you should. Remove the trays while you’re eating so you don’t get food stuck in them. Also, remove them while you’re cleaning your teeth so that you can have full access to all the nooks and crannies in your mouth.
The guidelines for brushing your teeth with Invisalign don’t change compared to braces. Brush your teeth at least twice a day using a soft toothbrush and a fluoride toothpaste, being sure to get all surfaces of your teeth. If possible, brush after each meal.
If you can’t, be sure to drink some water and swish it around in your mouth when you’re done eating to get rid of the extra food on your teeth. Leaving carbohydrates, such as sugar and starch, on your teeth opens the door to tooth decay.
Floss and Wash
Flossing your teeth gets out the bits and pieces stuck between them. It’s a time-consuming task when you need to navigate the wires of traditional metal braces, but thanks to Invisalign’s removable design, flossing is no problem. Rinsing your mouth with a fluoride antibacterial mouthwash also helps clean your teeth because it gets into all of the spaces. Floss and rinse one or two times daily.
Cleaning Your Trays
Cleaning your Invisalign trays keeps them from getting riddled with bacteria, and it helps keep your teeth free from excess food. You can use the Invisalign cleaning system, which involves placing the trays in a tub with cleaning crystals. The plastic trays are clean after 15 minutes. You can also ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister for other ways to clean your trays.
April 6th, 2016
It's springtime and it's again time to remind our patients at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister can fit you for a new guard.
To learn more about mouthguards or for general questions about your treatment at our Aventura, FL office, please give us a call!
March 30th, 2016
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL office if you have any questions about water picks, or ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister during your next visit!
March 23rd, 2016
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister.
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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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.
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 Aventura, FL office if you have any questions about your retainer!
March 16th, 2016
“St. Patrick's Day is an enchanted time -- a day to begin transforming winter's dreams into summer's magic.” Adrienne Cook
Lucky green shamrocks, leprechauns, and pots of gold – it must be St. Patrick’s Day! If you’re not Irish, how do you go about celebrating St. Patrick’s Day? It’s easy: You just put on one of those tall leprechauns hats, dress in green from head to toe, and wear one of those carefree pins that say “Kiss Me, I’m Irish”. On St. Patrick’s Day, everyone is Irish, and that is the universal beauty of the holiday. Celtic pride does not discriminate.
Wondering what our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister is doing to celebrate March 17th? Well, we’ve thought about doing everything from handing out lucky gold coins (you know, the fake ones that are made of chocolate) to shamrock stickers. Maybe we’ll even give away green toothbrushes and floss! You’ll never know unless you come in to see Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister !
All kidding aside, St. Patrick’s Day is an important cultural and religious holiday. There are lavish parades and church services across Ireland on March 17th. Over time, however, the holiday has developed into a day to observe Irish culture in general. In places like England and the United States, where there is a large Irish Diaspora, the holiday has greater significance than other countries. From the streets of Boston to St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York, it is a day of celebration, and many Americans of Irish descent will cook up a traditional meal of corned beef and cabbage.
So, to all of you with Irish ancestry, and to all of you who have decided to be Irish for the day, our office wishes you a Happy St. Patrick’s Day. Good luck looking for a pot of leprechaun gold, which is said to exist at the end of the rainbow. However, keep away from those sugary Lucky Charms; sweet cereals might taste good, but your kids’ teeth might not be feeling too lucky if they eat it for breakfast every day. Have a great St. Paddy’s Day!
March 9th, 2016
Did you know that even in ancient times, people wanted to improve the look and function of their smiles? Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister thinks of modern orthodontic appliances as sleek, efficient technology, but this was not always so! 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
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. Call our office in Aventura, FL to schedule your first orthodontic consultation!
March 8th, 2016
One exciting part about wearing braces from Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, 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.
March 8th, 2016
If you’re brushing your teeth twice a day during your orthodontic treatment, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL area!
February 17th, 2016
Sports are great for children for a variety of reasons. Children can develop their motor skills, learn how to solve conflicts and work together, and develop their work ethics. As a parent, you may recognize the benefits of sports, but also naturally worry about your child’s health and safety. Your job goes beyond providing a water bottle and making sure your child follows the rules of the game.
Although you may not think of your child’s teeth first when you think about sports, accidents can happen that affect your children’s teeth. A stray hockey stick, an errant basketball, or a misguided dive after a volleyball are examples of ways a child could lose a tooth. In fact, studies show that young athletes lose more than three million teeth each year.
Becoming a Better Athlete to Protect Teeth
Becoming a better athlete involves refining skills, learning the rules of the game, and being a good sport. These components are not just about winning. They are also about safety. Young athletes who are better ball-handlers and who are careful to avoid fouls and penalties are less likely to have harmful contact with the ball, teammates, or opponents. Children who are better roller-bladers are less likely to take a face plant into the blacktop, and more likely to save their teeth. Being a good sport and avoiding unnecessary contact is one way to protect teeth.
Proper Protective Equipment for Teeth
If your child is in a sport that poses a high threat to teeth, it is essential for your child to wear a mouthguard. Mouthguards fit your child’s mouth and consist of soft plastic. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can custom fit a mouthguard if generic ones are uncomfortable. While children may resist wearing a mouthguard initially, your persistence in insisting that they wear it should be enough to convince them. A helmet or face mask provides additional protection.
While prevention is best, rapid treatment can improve the situation if your child does happen to lose a tooth during sports. Rapid implantation can work in about ten percent of cases. To learn about ways to save a lost tooth, contact our Aventura, FL office.
February 10th, 2016
Did you know the actions leading to the beginnings of Valentine's Day were actually centered on the avoidance of war? A Catholic priest named Valentine defied the orders of the Emperor Claudius II and secretly married young men and their brides after the emperor had declared it illegal because only single, young men could be sent to war. Rather than lose potential soldiers to fight his war, Claudius attempted to hoard them by proclaiming marriage illegal.
Valentine continued to marry young couples anyway and, eventually, was put to death for it in 270 AD. Before his death, he sent a letter to a secret love and signed it “From your Valentine”. Nearly 1,800 years later, people are still signing letters and cards in this manner. This year, carry on the tradition started long ago, while adding your own twist. Here are a few suggestions.
Simple and Creative Valentine's Day Ideas
- Memorialize it with a Photo. Couples often have photos taken around Christmas, but Valentine's Day photos allow you to capitalize on romance. Famous couple Julia Child and her husband, Paul, had their picture taken together every Valentine's Day and included their sense of humor with silly props.
- Return to Your First Date Location. Even if your first date together was at a local hotdog stand, its sentimental value can make it a fun part of your Valentine's Day agenda. Be creative and make a treasure hunt with clues that lead your partner to the original date location, where you can express your love with flowers or a gift.
- “From Your Valentine” Messages. Deliver your message in a creative way to make this Valentine's Day stand out from the others. Bake your partner's favorite treat and write a message on it with a tube of icing, or draw a note on the steamed up mirror so it shows up when your partner takes a shower.
Although Valentine's Day is a day to celebrate love, it doesn't have to be a special day only for couples. If you're single, use this special day to shower yourself with love, because you're worth it! After all, the priest Valentine believed so strongly in the sanctity of love that he was willing to risk his life for it. Whether you're in a relationship or single, young or old, romantic or not, Valentine's Day is for you. Happy Valentine’s Day from the orthodontic office of Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister.
February 3rd, 2016
You and your braces will become good friends over the coming months or years, so it’s important to get your relationship off to a good start. Consider the following recommendations to prevent rocky times ahead:
- Floss, floss, floss. Yes, it’s a pain to floss around your braces, but it's the best way to prevent gum disease and other oral health problems. Ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff for floss threaders to make the chore easier. Just a few minutes per day will ensure that you don’t face significant dental health issues when the braces come off.
- Avoid sticky or hard foods. It’s tough to forgo toffee, caramel, gum, and other favorite sticky treats, but your braces will thank you. Sticky or hard foods can break a bracket or wire, so it’s best to avoid them altogether.
- Chew with your back teeth. If you’re used to taking large bites with your front teeth, it might be time to switch your eating habits. Taking a large bite of food with your front teeth can leave your braces vulnerable to damage. Instead, cut large foods into pieces and use your back teeth to chew. This is especially important with corn on the cob, which should always be cut from the cob.
- Wear rubber bands and headgear. Rubber bands, headgear, and other orthodontic appliances may seem annoying, but failing to comply with wearing them can increase the length of your treatment by months. Wear them now to avoid problems in the future.
January 27th, 2016
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, we proudly treat adults, teens, and children; no matter what your age, we believe you deserve a great smile. Our warm and welcoming team is known for their for their exceptional orthodontic skills. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our talented team have been creating beautiful smiles for years, and today would like to ask: what do you love about your new smile? How has your smile improved your life?
Whether you’ve just come in for an initial orthodontic consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister or your family has been visiting office for years, we would love to hear your thoughts about your treatment. In fact, we encourage you to leave a few words for us below or on our Facebook page!
We look forward to reading your feedback!
January 20th, 2016
One problem with trying to answer the question as to who benefits from Invisalign is that the simple answer is “almost everyone.” The see-through, almost invisible aligners for straightening teeth are specifically molded to fit each individual’s mouth. Unlike conventional braces, they can be removed when eating and when cleaning the teeth. Because they use less force in straightening teeth than metal braces, the risk of harm to teeth is lessened.
Benefits to adults
Traditional braces are associated with children and teenagers. Many adults want to have their teeth straightened but cannot decide which is worse: having crooked teeth or wearing metal braces. They also worry about having to change their diet by not being able to eat the foods they normally enjoy.
If you are an adult considering braces, our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister will tell you Invisalign aligners will give you the best of all worlds. Your teeth will be straightened with virtually invisible braces. You can remove your aligners when you eat so you can enjoy any food you normally would consume. You do not have to worry about embarrassing yourself by getting food stuck in your braces. You simply clean your teeth normally after eating and replace your aligners. If there is a special occasion during which you do not want to have any braces at all, you can remove the aligners for a few hours without causing any damage.
Benefits to teenagers
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team know that teenagers are often involved in contact sports or gymnastics. Others find that having metal in their mouth interferes with their ability to play a musical instrument. Traditional metal braces contain wires and brackets that can cause damage to the mouth and gums; this is not a risk with Invisalign aligners.
For sports that require players to wear mouthguards, the expense of specially constructed mouthguards to fit over braces is avoided. The aligners can be removed during sports activity, and a normal mouthguard is worn. Teenagers who play musical instruments simply remove the aligners when practicing or playing in the band or orchestra.
Teenagers often feel they are too busy to spend time and trouble flossing teeth between the wires and brackets of traditional braces. Since the Invisalign aligners are removable, brushing and flossing are simpler and more likely to be performed.
For more information about Invisalign or Invisalign Teen, or to schedule an initial consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
January 13th, 2016
The average age of individuals who get braces is between nine and 14, although it is appropriate for younger children to visit Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister for a consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. While parents may be concerned about the efficacy of early orthodontics, research suggests that early intervention can prevent greater dental health problems later in life.
What types of conditions require early intervention?
According to the American Association of Orthodontists, 3.7 million children under the age of 17 receive orthodontic treatment each year. Early intervention may be appropriate for younger children with crooked teeth, jaw misalignment, and other common issues. Early orthodontic treatment may be of use for several types of problems:
- Class I malocclusion. This condition is very common. It features crooked teeth or those that protrude at abnormal angles. In general, early treatment for Class I malocclusion occurs in two phases, each two years long.
- Class III malocclusion. Known as an underbite, in which the lower jaw is too big or the upper jaw too small, Class III malocclusion requires early intervention. Because treatment involves changing growth patterns, starting as early as age seven is a smart choice for this dental problem.
- Crossbite. Crossbite occurs when the upper and lower jaws are not properly aligned. An orthodontic device called a palatal expander widens the upper jaw, allowing teeth to align properly. Research suggests that early treatment may be beneficial in crossbite cases, especially when the jaw must shift laterally to correct the problem.
- Tooth extraction. That mouthful of crooked baby teeth can cause problems when your child’s permanent teeth erupt. For kids with especially full mouths, extracting baby teeth and even permanent premolars can help adult teeth grow in straight.
Considerations when thinking about early intervention
Early intervention isn’t helpful for all conditions. For example, research suggests that there is little benefit to early orthodontics for Class II malocclusion (commonly known as an overbite). Instead, your child should wait until adolescence to begin treatment. Scheduling a visit to our Aventura, FL office when your child is around age seven is a smart way to create an individualized treatment plan that addresses unique orthodontic needs.
January 6th, 2016
One of the greatest advantages to using Invisalign is that it provides maximum results with minimal impact on your everyday life. Invisalign is comfortable, easy to insert, and simple to remove. Because you can remove Invisalign aligners, you can enjoy all your favorite foods and beverages without worries about getting food stuck in the wires and brackets of traditional braces.
Eating and Invisalign
While the aligner is durable and strong, you should remove it before you eat or drink beverages, as the chewing action inside your mouth can break, crack, or distort the aligner. Even minute damage to the Invisalign tray will prevent it from aligning your teeth properly. Furthermore, eating with Invisalign in your mouth can be quite messy.
Beverages and Invisalign
Repeated exposure to hot liquids may also cause the Invisalign aligner to distort. This distortion changes the shape of your aligner in a way that will affect how it straightens your teeth. Contact our Aventura, FL office if your Invisalign aligner has distorted after consuming a hot beverage.
Fluids can settle inside the aligner to “bathe” the teeth. Bathing teeth in acidic fluids can be especially problematic, as the acids can wear away tooth enamel. Exposure to acidic fluids is not normally a problem, as saliva neutralizes and buffers the acid then washes it away. Wearing an aligner, however, prevents the saliva from doing those jobs, increasing your risk for tooth decay.
Colored drinks may also change the color of your teeth. Most discoloration is temporary but stubborn stains may occur.
To prevent discoloration and tooth decay, brush your teeth after every meal or beverage before putting in your Invisalign aligners. If you do not have access to clean water, chew sugar-free gum to remove bacteria, acid, and food particles from your teeth. As a last resort, you may leave your aligners out for an hour or two until you can brush and floss properly. Before inserting Invisalign, rinse the aligner in lukewarm water or use the Invisalign cleaning kit.
Contact our Aventura, FL office for more information about eating and Invisalign.
December 30th, 2015
People have been ushering in the New Year for centuries but it became an official holiday in 1582 when Pope George XIII declared January 1st to be the day on which everyone would celebrate the New Year. At midnight people would yell, holler, and blow horns to scare away the evil spirits of the previous year so the New Year would be joyous and filled with opportunity. Nearly 500 years later, we still greet the New Year by whooping and hollering, but in a celebratory manner instead. Whether you intend to ring in the New Year quietly at home in the Aventura, FL area or have plans to join the countdown at a gala extravaganza, these tips can help you ring out the old and usher in the new with a smile.
Tips for a Happy New Year's Eve Celebration from Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister
- Be Safe. There's no way to predict the behavior of others on New Year's Eve, but you can be responsible for your own behavior to keep yourself safe. If adult beverages will be part of your celebration, plan on spending the night wherever you are or line up a designated driver to bring you home after the party is over.
- Enjoy Family and Friends. Spending time with the important people in your life is what makes the holidays enjoyable. Coordinate your schedules and choose New Year's Eve activities that everyone in the group will enjoy. You don't have to go to a party to ring in the New Year; some people like to go bowling, see a movie, or have a great meal at home.
- Accessorize with a Smile. Whether you dress up or have a quiet dinner with family and friends, one of the best accessories you can add to your attire is a beautiful smile.
New Year's Eve is a time to gather with friends and family, reflect on the year that's coming to an end, and look forward to the new one with anticipation. Enjoy this transitional holiday in a way that's safe, healthy, and fun. After all, counting down until the clock strikes 12 marks the beginning of a full year of opportunity ahead of you. From Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, have a great new year!.
December 23rd, 2015
Braces can be painful, but if you are a teen who loves being social, the worst part about them can be their look. They show up in your photos, and you will not be able to take braces-free photos for several months, or even years. The time will pass, though, and your teeth will be the better for it. In the meantime, consider the other people who have survived braces.
Plenty of People Get Braces
There are many reasons for getting braces:
- Correct an overbite or underbite
- Straighten teeth
- Fix poorly-spaced teeth
With so many possible ways to get braces, it’s no surprise that they are so common.
Find Out Who Had Braces
The long lists of celebrities who had braces as teenagers or even adults can give you the comfort of knowing you are in good company. Even better, these lists provide visible proof that there is life on the other side of braces. Actors and actresses on the Cosby Show, Scrubs, and Ugly Betty, as well as tennis star Martina Hingis and Miss America 1975, Shirley Cothran, had braces. Ask your parents. If they didn’t have braces, there is a good chance that some of their siblings did.
Benefits of Braces
Wearing braces can make your life a lot better in the future. Your teeth will be more attractive, and your smile will shine through in photos of you. Straight teeth are not just about looks, though. They can prevent a variety of health problems, such as caries, gum disease, speech impairments, and trouble chewing. Be patient, and the benefits of braces will come.
December 16th, 2015
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, we know orthodontic emergencies are neither convenient nor timely. If you are a patient of record, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team are more than willing to see you after hours or over the weekend. As a general rule, you should call our Aventura, FL 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.
December 9th, 2015
Is it possible to straighten the teeth without braces? Yes, it is. Welcome to the world of Invisalign aligners. Invisalign aligners are made from a clear, thermoplastic material that is custom made to fit your teeth. Unlike conventional braces, Invisalign aligners are removable. More importantly, the clear thermoplastic material makes the aligners invisible, which is ideal if the thought of metal braces and elastics make you self-conscious. For the best results, proper handling and care of your Invisalign aligners is important. Follow these steps to take care of your aligners:
1. Do not eat or drink hot beverages while wearing aligners. It's a good idea to get in the practice of removing the aligners before eating and drinking. Because the aligners are made of plastic resin, heat can distort and damage them. Also, eating while wearing the aligners will cause sugar and other food particles to stay on your teeth, which contributes to plaque and tooth decay.
2. Clean the aligner trays regularly. Invisalign aligners are exposed to the same bacteria and plaque that your mouth is, so you need to clean them as regularly as you clean your teeth. However, avoid cleaning the aligners with harsh chemicals. We recommend using a cleaning kit or some other type of specific solution. When it comes to cleaning Invisalign aligners, carefully follow the instructions given by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister.
3. Store aligners in a cool, dry, safe place. When you’re not wearing the aligners, store them in the case provided by our office. If you don’t use the case, they can easily be lost. Keeping them out of reach of small children and pets is also a good idea. The last thing you want is for Fido to think your Invisalign aligners are chew toys.
4. Don’t chew gum while wearing aligners. There’s one thing that conventional braces and Invisalign aligners have in common: chewing gum damages both of them.
5. Don’t soak aligners in mouthwash. Many popular mouthwashes contain a color pigment. It’s possible that soaking Invisalign aligners in mouthwash will tint or stain them.
For more tips and tricks for a successful Invisalign experience, contact our Aventura, FL office!
December 2nd, 2015
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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister want you to know there is another option – Invisalign®!
Invisalign 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can determine if Invisalign is right for you. We encourage you to give us a call at our friendly Aventura, FL 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!
November 25th, 2015
At Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, we love to celebrate the holidays with vigor! Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister would love to share some unique ways of celebrating Thanksgiving from beyond the Aventura, FL 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.
November 18th, 2015
Many teens want to improve their smile without the pain and embarrassment of having to wear metal braces. Just like metal braces, Invisalign works by gently moving teeth into position. Metal braces are worn continuously, however, and need to be adjusted by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister regularly in order to move the teeth into proper position.
Invisalign uses a series of clear trays to move teeth into position. When you are done with one tray, simply pop in the next! Invisalign Teen straightens teeth just as well as traditional metal braces, but has several advantages.
You’ve probably figured out the most obvious advantage already: the aligners are nearly invisible. Invisalign works by using a series of clear aligners that should be worn 20 to 22 hours a day. Invisalign trays are almost undetectable when you wear them, so you can smile with confidence — even while you are straightening your teeth.
One of the best things about Invisalign Teen is that the trays are removable. This means you can remove your tray to eat, brush, and floss your teeth, or even to play sports. While Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister require you to wear the trays for most of the day, having the ability to remove your straightening trays means you have practically none of the dietary restrictions that metal brace wearers have to observe.
Teens that play contact sports often experience difficulties with metal braces. Invisalign Teen allows the flexibility to wear a mouthguard, and no metal wires or brackets means less risk of cuts or other injuries while playing a game. Musicians also benefit from being able to remove their trays during rehearsals and performances. You can even remove your tray for your school photo or to snap a quick selfie!
Finally, because you can remove your aligners, you can easily keep your teeth clean through normal brushing and flossing. You can also clean your trays by brushing and rinsing them in warm water. Brushing and flossing with metal braces can be frustrating and time-consuming. Invisalign Teen treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister helps you keep your smile white and shiny with very little change to your normal routine.
To learn more about Invisalign Teen, or to schedule an appointment with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
November 11th, 2015
We hear this question a lot at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, and we don’t mind when patients who are eager to complete their orthodontic treatment ask us. After all, we know there is no better feeling than getting your braces off!
During your initial consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, we will map out a specific treatment for you and will try our hardest to give you a timeline of when we expect you to wrap up treatment.
Having said that, we know every patient is different. People have different biological responses to orthodontic treatment and some people’s teeth may move faster than others.
Luckily, there are things you can do to ensure your treatment wraps up in a timely manner. By following these suggestions, you can avoid any setbacks during your treatment.
- Make sure to keep your adjustment appointments. Postponing or cancelling will delay treatment!
- Be sure to show up on time to your appointments. This will give Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team time to do everything we planned during your adjustment visit.
- When prescribed, make sure you are diligent about wearing rubber bands or other appliances.
- Avoid damage to your braces and teeth by wearing a mouth guard during sports activities.
- Make sure to brush and floss regularly! Gum disease or other dental work can delay orthodontic treatment.
If you remember to follow these guidelines, you’ll be on your way to having the dazzling, healthy smile you’ve always wanted. As for us, our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister will do our part to move your orthodontic treatment along efficiently. If you have any questions about your treatment time, please give us a call at our Aventura, FL office or ask us during your next visit!
November 4th, 2015
Halitosis is the fancy, scientific word for “bad breath.” Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team know there are several reasons why you may have halitosis; let’s look at a few:
- Gum disease (also known as periodontal disease) – There are five main types of gum disease, and each one can range from mild to severe. For example the most common one is gingivitis; it is caused by bacteria in the plaque that has been allowed to build up, usually as a result of poor oral hygiene. A more serious and uncommon type of gum disease is called necrotizing periodontal disease. It is most common in people who have a suppressed immune system.
- Dry Mouth – This can be caused by something as simple as a medication you take.
- Food – Of course, if you eat something that is potent like garlic, it is going to give you bad breath.
- Diseases of the Body – Some diseases such as sinus infections and diabetes, among a few other types of infections, can also cause you to have halitosis.
How to Get Rid of Halitosis
The most obvious answer to how to get rid of halitosis is to practice good oral hygiene, although, depending on the cause of halitosis it may not be that simple. If you have an infection that is causing the halitosis then you may need an antibiotic to clear up the infection and then the bad breath will go away. Here are more tips:
- Brush your teeth after every meal and before bed.
- Floss your teeth. The more plaque you get out of your teeth, the better chance you have of not getting cavities or bad breath.
- Address any medical conditions that are not related to your teeth that can be causing the halitosis.
- Ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister for a prescription mouthwash that kills bacteria.
Halitosis (bad breath) can be an embarrassing condition to live with, but there are plenty of ways to get rid of it permanently. Start by talking to a member of our team at our Aventura, FL office.
October 28th, 2015
Halloween is a favorite holiday among children due to the festive games, imaginative costumes, and candy. Modern celebrations stem from a combination of traditions from Pagan and Christian traditions throughout the centuries. The original holiday was called Samhain and derived from the ancient Druids of Ireland. In their belief system, November 1st marked the beginning of winter, and Pagans began their Samhain celebrations at sunset on October 31st.
Modern Celebrations of Halloween
Children and adults love dressing up for Halloween, and this tradition comes from the ancient belief in spirits. From sunset on October 31st until sunrise on November 1st, the souls of the dead entered the physical world. Some spirits were benevolent and wanted only to cross over to the afterlife while others harbored malicious intents of revenge and trickery. Pagans wore masks and disguised themselves so that the malevolent souls would mistake them as fellow spirits.
Families left food and ale outside of their doors to appease the spirits. With the rise of Christianity in Europe, the church encouraged its members to offer food and money to beggars. In exchange, the beggars would agree to pray for the family's deceased loved ones. Eventually these traditions led to the development of today's customs where children dressed up and received candy from their neighbors while circling the community.
With all of the excitement and free candy on Halloween, it is easy to get carried away on a sugar high. Parents warn their children not to eat too many pieces in one night to avoid tummy aches and cavities. Our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister especially wants to remind children with braces to be extra cautious about the treats they eat because some varieties can get stuck in between the brackets and damage the devices. Sticky candy, such as caramels, fruit chews, and gum should be avoided when wearing braces. Children can trade with their friends and siblings to get only safe candies. The following list offers some alternative treats that children with braces can safely enjoy.
- Solid chocolate, including milk, white, or dark
- Nougat-filled candy bars, such as Three Musketeers
- Candy-coated chocolates like M&Ms
- Powdery candy, such as Sweet Tarts or Pixie Stix
- Mint-flavored candy
- Malted milk balls
- Peanut butter crackers or cookies
When in doubt, children should ask their parents or Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister if a specific candy is safe. Halloween is a fun holiday for children, and having braces does not have to take away any of the excitement from tasty treats.
October 21st, 2015
The stereotypical braces wearer – in middle school, with a mouth full of metal brackets – has led to numerous myths about orthodontics that discourage many people from getting the dental care they need. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff would like to put some of these myths to rest.
Myth 1: Orthodontic treatment is for kids. Although teenagers often visit the orthodontist to get braces, adults represent a growing proportion of orthodontic patients. Whether you’re eight or 80, a consultation with an orthodontist can identify problems with your teeth, jaws, or bite that can be corrected by orthodontic interventions.
Myth 2: Traditional, metal braces are my only option. Advances in orthodontic technology have rendered improved braces and other orthodontic appliances that are much less noticeable than the braces of yesteryear. Ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister about Invisalign® braces and other options that make sense for your situation.
Myth 3: Orthodontic treatment is only helpful for crooked teeth. Sure, a crooked smile is a common reason that patients seek orthodontic care. However, orthodontic interventions help with a range of dental health problems. From missing teeth to overbite to jaw misalignment, your orthodontist can help with many problems associated with the teeth, gums, and jaws.
Myth 4: Orthodontic treatment is too expensive. As with any medical procedure, orthodontics can be pricey. However, our Aventura, FL team works with patients to find payment plans, insurance coverage, or other payment options that reduce the financial burden.
October 14th, 2015
It's the big day and your braces are finally coming off! Does that mean you are completely done? Not so fast! After you complete your treatment here at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team will recommend you wear a retainer, which must be worn routinely after treatment in order to hold your teeth in their proper, new position while your gums, ligaments and bones adapt. Most patients are required to wear their retainer every night at first, with many also being directed to wear them during the day. It's important to know there are different kinds of retainers, and today we thought we would explain the differences between them.
The Hawley retainer is one of the most common types of retainers. It is a removable retainer made of a combination of a metal wire that typically surrounds the six anterior teeth and is designed to keep your teeth in place. This retainer is made from impressions of your teeth so that it fits snugly and comfortably in the roof of your mouth, while the wire and acrylic framing keeps your teeth in an ideal position. The acrylic can also be personalized with a large number of colors or patterns.
Essix (Clear) Retainers
The Essix retainer is a transparent removable retainer that fits over the entire arch of your teeth. This clear or transparent retainer fits over the entire arch of teeth and is produced from a mold. Similar to Invisalign’s clear aligner trays, Essix retainers have no metal or wires. They can also be used to produce minor tooth movements and can be helpful in prevention of tooth wear due to tooth grinding at night.
Bonded lingual retainers are cemented directly to the inside surface of your lower canines. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister encourage our patients with bonded lingual retainers to be careful with their bite as the bonding material may break due to incorrect biting and cause your teeth to shift. As with removable retainers, it is important to keep your bonded retainers clean. When brushing, make sure to carefully clean the inside of your lower teeth, as well as the wire itself.
The retention phase of treatment begins when the patient’s braces are removed. Retainers are worn full time, typically for the first nine months, except while eating. Retainers should also be removed before brushing your teeth.
If you have any questions about the retainers we offer or to learn more about post-orthodontic treatment, please feel free to contact us at our convenient Aventura, FL office and we will be happy to answer any of your questions!
October 7th, 2015
What does the month of October mean to you? For people in the northern hemisphere, October is when the weather starts to get a little chilly: heavy jackets might come out of storage and the summer clothing gets packed away. You might start making plans for the upcoming holidays or looking at the beautiful and changing autumn scenery. October means something a little different to our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister because this is National Orthodontic Health Month. During October, orthodontic clinics all over the country work together to promote their services and inform the community about the important work we do.
National Orthodontic Health Month is an awareness campaign created cooperatively by orthodontists and other dental health professionals. During this month, we make a special effort to promote dental health and orthodontic health in particular. This is a great time to get your questions answered by dental professionals in your community and to learn more about exactly what an orthodontist can do for you and your family. Events held in connection with National Orthodontic Health Month are also an opportunity for us orthodontists to come out and meet community members. If you have never been to an orthodontist before, you might not know what to expect. Meeting one of us in person before your checkup is a great way to find out what kind of person you’ll be seeing during your appointment.
Meeting Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister in a relaxed “meet and greet” atmosphere can be especially helpful for any young orthodontic patients in your family. Kids of all ages–and their parents!–can feel anxiety about going to the dentist. Getting to know the person you have an appointment with can make the experience a lot less stressful for everyone. We don't want anyone to avoid seeing a dental professional for regular checkups just because they don't know who we are. Just meeting and talking with the orthodontist you'll be seeing may be enough to make you feel more comfortable about your upcoming appointment.
Dental health is something that affects everyone; healthy teeth and gums contribute to a healthy smile and a lifetime of comfort and well-being. Orthodontists are just one of the various dental practitioners you could visit at some point in your life, so taking a little time to learn who we are and what we do is certain to be a helpful experience. We look forward to seeing you and your family this October at our Aventura, FL location!
September 30th, 2015
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, we are happy to offer a variety of treatment options to straighten our patients’ teeth. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Aventura, FL office for an initial consultation. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team welcome children, teens, and adults alike. Call us today for an appointment!
September 23rd, 2015
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.
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to understand how these orthodontic interventions may work for your unique situation.
September 16th, 2015
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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.
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.
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, feel free to give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
September 9th, 2015
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister because it helps our younger patients achieve a straight, beautiful smile without their friends noticing.
Our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Aventura, FL office today!
September 2nd, 2015
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister!
August 26th, 2015
Straighter teeth is something many people desire. A nice smile is one of the most attractive things about a person. However, wearing a mouth full of braces for two, three, or more years can be a major pain, both literally and figuratively.
Luckily, there is another option. Invisalign is an alternative to traditional braces. Learn more about the benefits Invisalign offers and why you should consider this exciting method of straightening teeth.
- When you have straight teeth, your mouth is healthier in general and there is less chance of tooth decay and gum disease. Invisalign makes it possible for more people to straighten their teeth.
- Invisalign is essentially invisible. You can straighten your teeth without unsightly metal in your mouth.
- The average cost is similar to that of traditional braces, which makes it affordable for many families.
- With Invisalign, the aligner trays are smooth and comfortable to wear. Traditional metal braces can be uncomfortable and cause irritation to the mouth.
- Invisalign is removable, so you do not have to wear the system during special occasions, or when you’re eating. With normal metal braces, you are stuck with them for the entire straightening process.
- Brushing and flossing are simple. Since the system is removable, you can brush and floss just like normal.
As you can see, Invisalign is an exciting option we provide at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister for those who want straighter teeth. If this is something that sounds interesting to you, talk to Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and find out if it would work for your particular situation. Get started today, and before you know it you will be enjoying your straighter teeth.
For more information about Invisalign, or to schedule an initial consultation with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office today!
August 19th, 2015
The number one goal of orthodontic treatment is to give you or your child a beautiful, healthy smile that will last a lifetime. One of the first things people notice about others is their smiles so take the first step towards getting the smile you’ve always wanted and make your initial consultation at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister
A good bite not only makes it easier to eat and speak, but will enhance your dental and overall health as well. Straight teeth aren’t just pretty, they’re healthy as well. Teeth that are properly aligned are easier to clean reducing the risk of gingivitis and periodontal disease.
Let your smile express yourself! Give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office to schedule your consultation today!
August 12th, 2015
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. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister. 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 Aventura, FL office, and our staff will be happy to assist you!
August 5th, 2015
Now that many of the schools in Aventura, FL are back in session, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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!
July 29th, 2015
When you think of orthodontic treatment, you may automatically assume that it only relates to older children and teens with alignment and spacing issues. But this isn’t the case: Orthodontic treatment at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister offers many benefits when applied at a young age.
By considering orthodontic treatment at a younger age, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff are able to identify your child’s alignment issues early on, and are able to intervene in order to provide treatment as the teeth begin to develop. It is important to start dental care early, not only for proper dental health and the cosmetic benefits, but to improve a child’s overall health as well.
The Benefits of Straighter Teeth
Besides the cosmetic benefits, there are multiple advantages to starting orthodontic treatment at a young age:
- It can reduce the extent of orthodontic treatment needed later.
- With early treatment, the pediatric dentist helps guide the teeth into their right position to prevent the removal of teeth and improve an overbite, underbite, or crossbite.
- Straighter teeth are easier to clean and better for preventing tooth decay.
- As a benefit to you, the parent, your child’s orthodontic expenses will be much lower with early treatment.
- Lastly, much early treatment is covered by dental insurance.
Stages of Orthodontic Treatment
Multiple stages are included in early orthodontic treatment, with three stages in all:
The first stage is early treatment that starts around age two or three, and continues until the child is around six years old. This stage deals with preventive measures, such as avoiding bad habits that lead to crooked teeth and creating a plan for the future based on how the teeth are growing in.
During stage two, when the child is six to 12 years old, the first permanent teeth erupt and the dentist looks at possible early treatment for misalignment or bite issues.
Finally, stage three occurs during adolescence to correct any further problems with permanent teeth.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our staff are able to see how the teeth first erupt and know right away whether or not your child will need to have braces later on. Early treatment means fewer procedures, cleaner teeth, and less expense.
July 22nd, 2015
When the time comes for Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to remove your braces, 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister recommendations, but knowing more about the two types of retainer beforehand can be helpful.
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 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. If you’re still not sure whether the choice you’ve made is truly right for you, get in touch with us at our Aventura, FL location right away!
July 15th, 2015
Your first few days with braces will feel rather odd, awkward, and even painful. The day you get your braces you will probably just feel weird, like you have something in your mouth – because you do. You are most likely to feel pain and soreness during the second and third days. After that, you should be fine. If you experience any pain with your braces, there are a few things you can do to get some relief.
Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water will soothe it and promote healing. Rinse several times a day or when your mouth, particularly mouth sores, are hurting. You can also take some Tylenol every four hours. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team advise against products that contain ibuprofen because it slows down the movement of your teeth.
You can also eat cold foods like ice cream or yogurt. The cold of the food will help dull the pain. Ice packs applied to your mouth help as well. You can also swish ice water around your mouth, but DO NOT eat ice!
Products for canker sores can be applied to the mouth sores you develop from your braces. There are also various rinses you can use that act as a shield or barrier in your mouth, and protect your mouth sores from further irritation.
Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team may have given you some dental wax to put on the abrasive areas of your braces to protect your mouth. Putting dental wax on the brackets creates a barrier that keeps your mouth from getting scraped and sore.
Bite wafers are another great pain relief too. When you bite down on the wafer, it increases circulation in your gums, which can ease the pain a bit. Just a little pressure will work; you don’t want to bite too hard. And they usually come in cool colors, too!
The pain won’t last forever. One day you will wake up and you won’t have any pain. In fact, you probably won’t even notice the braces in your mouth at all!
July 8th, 2015
You can probably see how teeth straightening can make your smile more attractive, but you might be wary of how Invisalign Teen treatment works. If you’re like most teens at our Aventura, FL office, you love hanging out with your friends, and you don’t want to be different, watch what you eat, or worry about how you look. Invisalign Teen has several benefits over traditional metal braces that can make your treatment easier.
People won’t know you’re wearing them.
Invisalign Teen consists of clear trays that are virtual impossible for others to see. Chances are, the only people who know that you are getting your teeth straightened will be your family and any of your friends whom you choose to tell. You won’t need to answer to “Tinsel Teeth” and “Metal Mouth” as some of your classmates with metal braces do.
You can eat what your friends eat.
You take your Invisalign Teen aligners out of your mouth for meals and snacks, so you can eat just like you normally would. You don’t need to worry about food getting stuck in your braces or leading to a bracket popping off. Unlike with braces, you can enjoy the following foods with your friends during Invisalign Teen straightening treatment:
- Popcorn at the movies
- Trail mix with dried fruit when you’re hanging out together
- Ribs and chicken wings at a party
- Eating a peanut butter sandwich, apple, and carrot sticks for lunch
You can take care of your teeth more easily.
It would be a shame if you took the trouble to straighten your teeth and then found out that you had developed tooth decay while wearing braces. This is less of a problem with Invisalign Teen aligners because they are removable. You can brush and floss your teeth as normal just by taking the trays out of your mouth.
Getting straighter teeth can be a serious confidence-booster in the long run, and with Invisalign Teen, the treatment isn’t that bad. You can wear these clear aligners without letting people know that you’re straightening your teeth, and they won’t interfere with your diet or dental hygiene.
July 1st, 2015
Happy Independence Day from Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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!
June 24th, 2015
Invisalign is gaining traction as a sought-after solution for orthodontic problems. Unlike traditional braces, which require the placement of brackets on teeth and the connection of unsightly wires, Invisalign works nearly invisibly (as its name suggests). Particularly for those who do not wish to draw attention to their orthodontic work, Invisalign provides an attractive solution.
Consultation with a Treatment Provider
Our practice has received specialized training to work with Invisalign. During your consultation appointment, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will assess your smile needs. In some cases, the type of problem may not lend itself to correction through Invisalign, and we may offer an alternative solution.
Creation of a Custom Treatment Plan
Invisalign works using a series of customized clear trays that fit almost perfectly over the teeth. To create these trays, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will take X-rays and impressions of your teeth. These are submitted to a specialized laboratory that makes a 3D image of your smile. This is used to create a specialized treatment plan that provides an estimate of how long treatment will take.
Arrival of Custom Trays
Once your customized trays have arrived, the treatment begins. For Invisalign to work properly, you must wear the aligners 20 to 22 hours per day, removing them only to eat, drink, and brush your teeth. The trays gently draw your teeth into proper alignment, correcting your orthodontic problems as you go about your everyday life.
In general, you will replace your aligners with a new set every two weeks. This is to encourage your teeth to continue moving throughout the treatment process. You’ll need to check in with our Aventura, FL office every six weeks or so to ensure treatment progresses smoothly.
Beautiful Smile: Complete!
Once you complete your individualized treatment plan, you’ll have the smile you’ve always dreamed of. Like with traditional braces, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister may recommend that you wear a retainer to ensure that your teeth remain in their new positions.
June 17th, 2015
Most of our patients at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will recommend that rubber bands be used. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister may also recommend using rubber bands to close or open spaces.
Rubber bands are a critical part of your treatment, and wearing them as Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team recommend will help move your teeth into the desired position. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Aventura, FL office and pick up more!
June 10th, 2015
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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.
June 3rd, 2015
If you are wearing braces and are planning a vacation, our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister would suggest that you be prepared. We put together a list of items that will be handy to have with you at all times while you are out of town. They include:
- Toothpick, flosspick, or other interdental cleaners
- Travel toothbrush
- A water bottle or a mini bottle of mouth rinse
- Orthodontic wax to help with discomfort from protruding wires
- A small mirror for examining any possible issues in your mouth
Putting these items together in a “braces/oral hygiene kit” may be wise. You may even buy pre-made braces kits. Please ask us for more information.
If you happen to be on vacation and experience problems reaching our office, we suggest going online and searching for orthodontic practices in your area. Most orthodontists will lend a helping hand to another orthodontic patient and get him or her out of pain or discomfort.
We also suggest avoiding the following foods to prevent broken brackets and/or wire distortion while you are on vacation:
- Chewy, sticky, or gummy food
- Apples, pears, and other whole fruits (cut fruit into wedges before consuming)
- Bagels and hard rolls
- Corn on the cob
- Hard candies
- Hard cookies or pretzels
- All varieties of nuts, including peanuts, almonds, and cashews
Finally, if you are wearing clear aligners and happen to lose your tray, don’t worry! Simply put in either the previous tray or the next tray and contact us as soon as you get home!
Follow these tips and you can have a worry-free vacation! Please give us a call if you have any questions!
May 27th, 2015
Invisalign, which we happily provide at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, is a great alternative to traditional orthodontic treatment if you've been apprehensive about the thought of metal braces. During your initial visit, 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.
Invisalign treatment, which consists of a series of aligners that you switch out approximately every couple of weeks, can help patients with crowded teeth, crossbites, overbites, underbites and more. Invisalign gradually shifts your teeth into place, creating the dazzling smile you’ve always wanted. During treatment with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, patients wear the aligners all day and night, except for during meals and when they’re brushing and flossing; cleaning your teeth and eating are a snap since you can easily remove your aligners! And because they’re clear, no one will know that your teeth are steadily straightening!
To find out if you are the right candidate for Invisalign treatment, we invite you to give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office and schedule a consultation.
May 21st, 2015
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL 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.
May 13th, 2015
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. A consultation at our Aventura, FL 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.
May 6th, 2015
"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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister. 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our entire staff would like you to know that we appreciate you all!
Happy Mother’s Day and enjoy your special day!
April 29th, 2015
However you may feel about having to wear braces, choosing the color of your rubber bands is sure to bring a smile to your face. Whether you want to express your creativity, coordinate your braces with your outfits, or show some serious school spirit, decorating your mouth with colorful bands takes some of the stress and self-consciousness out of wearing braces. So what do your rubber band colors say about you? Look no further than our rubber band horoscope.
Red. You’re intense and forward thinking, and that you won’t back down no matter how big the challenge. Red is also the color of the heart, so red rubber bands indicate that you’re a caring, loving person.
Blue. Blue means you’re chill – as cool as a cucumber. You’re one cool customer, as the saying goes. You’re relaxed and calm, even when your mom says you can’t chew any gum or eat popcorn because of your braces.
Green. Look at a traffic light and green means go, right? So you’re the type of person who’s always on the move. Go, go, go! It also means you’re generous and kind. Green is the color of nature and spring, so it says you love Mother Earth. Perhaps you even recycle. Green is the color of good luck.
Orange. You’re daring and wild, flamboyant and fun. Orange may indicate you’re an artist or a drama student. It says you have a big personality and that you don’t care what other people think about you. However, orange is also the color of balance and energy. And being flamboyant and fun takes a lot of energy!
Purple. You’re the creative type, for sure. You beat to a different drummer and think outside the box. It says you're mysterious. Purple is the color of royalty, and when you wear your purple rubber bands you are royally cool.
What if you can’t choose just one color? Well, you can decorate your teeth with alternating colors. You can choose the colors of your favorite sports team or holiday colors like red and green. If you’re still stumped as to what colors to choose, ask Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister or a member of our team. We can let you in on all the trends our other patents are sporting at our Aventura, FL office!
April 22nd, 2015
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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister wants to remind you to celebrate Earth Day and help the environment, knowing that it will benefit your and your children's generation.
April 15th, 2015
It’s estimated that up to four million people at any one time are wearing braces in the United States and Canada. But Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Aventura, FL office!
April 8th, 2015
When it comes to straightening your smile, our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister knows that having a mouth full of metal braces may not be your idea of fun. Luckily for you, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can offer a cosmetic alternative: Invisalign!
Using a series of clear, comfortable, and completely customized aligners, you can get the smile you’ve always wanted without traditional braces.
Since Invisalign aligners are discreet, they’re hardly noticeable when you speak and smile, and because they’re removable, you can eat and drink whatever you want. Just remember to brush and floss before putting your aligners back in! Treatment with Invisalign is just as effective as with metal braces, and the results are just as amazing!
If you want to know more about Invisalign, contact our Aventura, FL office to schedule an appointment.
April 1st, 2015
The Importance of Facial Protection
Americans from all walks of life should mark April as National Facial Protection Month on their calendars. The American Association of Pediatric Dentistry, Academy for Sports Dentistry, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, and American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons have combined forces to sponsor this annual campaign, which aims to educate and remind us of the importance of protecting our face and teeth against impacts and injuries.
Wearing a helmet can save your life and prevent devastating physical damage in a variety of situations, from playing football to riding a bicycle. According to the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, helmets reduce the risk of various head injuries by as much as 85 percent. Whether helmet laws apply in your area or not, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister want you to make sure you and your loved ones wear helmets with the appropriate safety ratings for specific activities. (A sticker on or inside the helmet will usually indicate this rating.) Helmets can also help save your teeth if they come with an attached faceguard, an essential addition for football players and others involved in contact sports.
Preventing Dental Injuries
A mouthguard can protect you against a variety of dental injuries, such as cracked, broken, or knocked-out teeth. The American Dental Association states that mouthguards play an essential role in preventing up to 200,000 dental injuries each year, and many states mandate their use for sports activities such as football and hockey. The Academy for Sports Dentistry warns, however, that these mouthguards must be custom-fitted as precisely as possible to prove effective. Have a professional-quality mouthguard molded and fitted by our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister for better protection than a generic store-bought or “boil-and-bite” variety can offer. These cheaper versions tend to wear out quickly, interfere with proper breathing, and provide uneven degrees of cushion against impacts. Always have a fresh mouthguard fitted for each new sports season.
Choose the right combination of helmet, faceguard, and mouthguard to protect your teeth and face this April, and tell your friends to do the same! To learn more about mouthguards, or to schedule an appointment with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office!
March 25th, 2015
If Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister have recommended a palatal expander, you might be wondering what it is and how it will help you. A palatal expander is a small appliance fitted in your mouth to create a wider space in the upper jaw. It is often used when there is a problem with overcrowding of the teeth or when the upper and lower molars don’t fit together correctly. While it is most commonly used in children, some teens and adults may also need a palatal expander.
Reasons to get a palatal expander
There are several reasons you might need to get a palatal expander:
- Insufficient room for permanent teeth currently erupting
- Insufficient space for permanent teeth still developing which might need extraction in the future
- A back crossbite with a narrow upper arch
- A front crossbite with a narrow upper arch
How long will you need the palatal expander?
On average, patients have the palatal expander for four to seven months, although this is based on the individual and the amount of correction needed. Several months are needed to allow the bone to form and move to the desired width. It is not removable and must remain in the mouth for the entire time.
Does it prevent the necessity for braces?
The palatal expander doesn’t necessarily remove the need for braces in the future, but it can in some cases. Some people only need braces because of a crossbite or overcrowding of the teeth, which a palatal expander can help correct during childhood, when teeth are just beginning to erupt. However, others may eventually need braces if, once all their permanent teeth come in, they have grown in crookedly or with additional spaces between.
If you think your child could benefit from a palatal expander, or want to learn about your own orthodontic treatment options, please feel free to contact our Aventura, FL office!
March 18th, 2015
You have done a lot of work to get the perfect smile. You wore your Invisalign aligner trays and cared for your teeth, and now your treatment is done. You still need to take care of your teeth to keep your beautiful smile. Keeps these things in mind when you think about your oral care routine.
Many patients do require a retainer after Invisalign treatment. This will be based on your unique situation. If a retainer is recommended by Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, use it as directed. Retainers prevent your teeth from shifting back into their original position. You should also avoid hard, crunchy foods for the first couple of weeks as your teeth adjust. For younger patients, retainers are normally used until the wisdom teeth come in or are extracted.
Brushing and Flossing
Brushing and flossing must be part of your daily oral care. Flossing helps remove the plaque, which becomes tartar or calculus. This build up can lead to gingivitis and gum disease. Your gums may be more sensitive for a week or two after your orthodontic work is completed. A warm salt water rinse may relieve discomfort.
Your teeth may be slightly sensitive for a short time. They have been protected by your Invisalign aligner trays and now are fully exposed. You might want to try a sensitive toothpaste to get through the transition. Just ask; we will be glad to recommend the best type for your needs. If your teeth are stained, a professional whitening treatment can be considered.
Regular Dental Checkups
You still need to have regular dental exams. Professional cleanings and X-rays make sure that both your teeth and gums stay healthy so you can keep your teeth for life. If cavities or other problems are found, they can be taken care of quickly.
If you have any questions about how to care for your teeth after your Invisalign program, please ask our Aventura, FL team. We want you to keep your healthy smile and enjoy the results of your Invisalign treatment.
March 11th, 2015
Millions of people, around Aventura, FL 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. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister!
March 4th, 2015
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister. 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 Aventura, FL 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 Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister, to straighten their teeth with confidence.
February 25th, 2015
Invisalign Teen is one the newer styles of braces, and perfect for those who do not like the standard metal braces. They are available in a clear material that is practically invisible called aligners that are replaced every two weeks. The aligners are custom made for each patient and gradually straighten teeth without all of the metal and rubber bands that come with traditional braces.
Is Invisalign as effective?
If your child will wear them as directed to, then the answer is yes, they are as effective as traditional metal braces. However, to make sure the child is actually wearing them correctly you will notice a small blue spot on the back of each aligner. This is called an indicator and if worn correctly will fade over a period of two weeks. Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister will be able to tell if the patient is not wearing them correctly.
Can Invisalign be removed?
Parents should be aware that the Invisalign aligners can be removed for up to four hours per day to eat, brush teeth, play sports, or play musical instruments. With the option of removing them it actually makes brushing and flossing easier and helps oral hygiene. The recommended time to wear them is at least 20 hours per day.
How long does treatment take and what is the cost?
Your teen will wear Invisalign as long as traditional braces. However, each patient is different so you should speak with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister to determine how many months your child can expect to wear them.
The cost is also very similar to other traditional braces; however there is no set fee. The cost will depend on your child’s unique orthodontic need.
Invisalign Teen has had remarkable success because patients are happy to have the option of having clear aligners for treatment. With the child more confident they are actually more prone to keep up with their treatment and many do complete their treatment sooner. You should speak with Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister as soon as possible to learn about the benefits of Invisalign Teen.
February 18th, 2015
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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister and our team at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister, please give us a call at our convenient Aventura, FL office today!
February 11th, 2015
From a student handing out sweets for her classmates to an older married couple exchanging boxes of candy, Valentine’s Day is the time of year when people like to show affection by gifting sugary treats to their loved ones. Whether you’re on the giving or receiving end of Valentine’s Day candy, you can celebrate the holiday in a healthier way by making dark chocolate your confection of choice.
Contribute to Your Health
According to the Cleveland Clinic, studies have shown that the cocoa beans used to make chocolate contain flavonoids, which can help protect the body against damage from various toxins. Flavonoids may also help lower blood pressure and improve blood flow to the heart and the brain. Dark chocolates typically contain a higher amount of flavonoids than other types, making them a great choice for chocolate lovers. However, you should keep in mind that many companies produce chocolate that is so heavily processed that the flavonoids are largely eliminated. Your best bet is to look for high-quality dark chocolates and cocoa powders that have undergone minimal processing.
Protect Against Cavities
If you think there’s no way candy could ever be beneficial for your teeth, think again. The Texas A&M Health Science Center has reported that the tannins present in cocoa beans may actually help prevent cavities by interfering with bacteria’s harmful interaction with teeth. Just like with flavonoids, tannins have been found to be present more often in dark chocolates, rather than milk chocolates, giving you another great reason to choose the richer, sweet varieties.
Avoid a Sticky Situation
One more benefit of choosing chocolate over other candies is that it is less likely to get stuck in the crevices and spaces between teeth. Gooey sweets like taffy can stay lodged in the mouth for longer periods of time, putting you at a greater risk for developing cavities. When you choose your chocolate, be sure to avoid types that also contain sticky ingredients like caramel or marshmallow, and instead opt for the plain varieties.
Remember that the health benefits you can receive from dark chocolate are largely based on eating the candy in moderation. With that being said, it’s easy to make this delicious and health conscious switch when you’re out shopping for your sweetheart, friends, loved ones, and yourself. Have fun satisfying your sweet tooth this year and Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister!
February 4th, 2015
Those challenging teenage years are some of the most self-conscious ones of your life, and concern for your appearance definitely plays a large part. Invisalign is becoming a very popular choice for adolescent patients today, but is it the best choice?
The results from teenage Invisalign users indicate that Invisalign is both effective for teeth straightening and for satisfying that urge to avoid the dreaded “metal mouth.” Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister can help you determine if Invisalign is right for you, but this article will explain why so many people are calling Invisalign the best choice for teens today.
Invisalign is a clear plastic device that fits directly over the teeth. There are no metal parts to mar the look of your smile, and your Invisalign aligners can straighten while allowing your pearly whites to shine through. Any teen will be the first to tell you that appearance is a top concern, so this is an excellent choice. People don’t even need to know you’re straightening your teeth with Invisalign.
Eat, Brush, and Floss Easily
Another particularly attractive aspect of Invisalign for most teenagers is the freedom it allows. While traditional metal braces can make eating, brushing, and flossing difficult, this is not the case with Invisalign. The aligners are easily removable for these activities, which gives teens the freedom they desire to live life as usual.
More Free Time
Invisalign Teen aligners need to be checked and adjusted at Brilliant, Rothenberg & Meister less frequently than traditional braces. This allows for fewer appointments, something that is really important to teens. Having your teeth straightened is no reason to forgo activities or make room in your schedule for constant office visits when you choose Invisalign.
Learn more about Invisalign Teen at our Aventura, FL office!
January 28th, 2015
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 Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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, Drs. Margo Brilliant, Jeff Rothenberg, and Daniel Meister 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 Aventura, FL office.