Office Blog

Dr Chrissy and her kids

How becoming a mom made me a better practitioner

When I was ready to have kids, I worried about how it would affect my ability to work as a practitioner.  As I sit here and reflect on this with my 5-year-old and 2-year-old, I’ve realized it’s made me better!  I would never have guessed that back then.  Why do I think it made me better?   As a mom, I understand the juggle of being a parent, I treat kids how I would want me own to be treated, I respect when parents question what we are doing as they only want what’s best for their kids, and I do my best to provide a safe and friendly environment to our families.

First, the juggling act of being a parent!  I remember after I returned from maternity leave with my first in 2016, I was scheduled to leave a few minutes early one day and I had a mom tell the office they should find a new doctor to replace me.  I already had so much guilt at that time. I was a new mom and trying to find a balance and felt like I was letting down families and my own daughter.  Looking back, I realize that my leaving a few minutes early on one day wasn’t making or breaking anything.  In the end, that situation gave me the ability to see things through a different lens.  First, I don’t fault that mom.  Maybe she was in a job that didn’t allow her the flexibility to get her daughter to her appointment by a certain time on a certain day.  I luckily have an amazing partner who supports me, and we share pick up and drop off and appointments, but we still have days where we are scrambling.  I relate to parents in the quest to work, get your kids to appointments, not miss too much school.  It’s tough!

Beyond that, I see myself through the lens of a parent daily when I make treatment plans.  What would I want for my child? THE BEST!  A caring provider that listens, spends time with my family, is compassionate, is data driven and up to date on the latest in healthcare ideas and technology.  They do not over treat or offer treatment that is not needed just to make more money.  This is exactly what drove me to open CD Orthodontics and provide the care that I know every family deserves!

I can relate to parents questioning treatment or coming in with concerns that they want addressed.  As parents, we can tell a practitioner something is wrong, they may tell us it isn’t, but we can still feel it’s wrong, and maybe seek a second opinion.  As orthodontists (same with physicians) we were trained in school, but research and data changes over the years.  I am constantly trying to stay on target with new research and never minimize parents’ concerns.  While I don’t feel like doctors need to be trained in every single area, we need to be open to referring to a specialist when appropriate. Instead of saying that’s not a thing, don’t worry about it.

I remember when I was in residency thinking, I can’t have kids right now, I need to be in school and finish my program and then graduating and getting a job and still worrying.  I wish I could go back and tell myself how being a mom would make me a BETTER practitioner and person.  I own my own practice where I provide the type of care that I feel families and patients deserve.  And if someone feels that I cannot offer what they are looking for, there are many other practices in the area that have multiple doctors and locations.  For me, I love the one-on-one care I provide to each family.

My child’s big teeth aren’t coming in, what is going on?

Did your child lose a baby tooth months ago and the permanent tooth still hasn’t come in?

There are a few reasons why this happens, which we will discuss here.  But the best thing you can do is schedule a consultation with orthodontic specialist who will evaluate.  We recommend kids first visit at age 7 or 8 and you DO NOT need a referral from your dentist.  This visit is always complimentary in our office.

*Below I have highlighting the most common reasons your kids teeth are not coming in to their mouth

  1. Lack of space, or severe crowding is one reason why these teeth may not come in.

There must be adequate space for an adult tooth to erupt in to the mouth.  The adult teeth are wider than the baby teeth, which is why we like to see spacing in young kids who still have primary teeth.  This is surprising to parents whose child’s teeth looked great before the baby one fell out. Again, baby teeth shouldn’t look perfect, there should be space.  If there is not enough space, your child may require early orthodontic treatment to create space.

  1. An adult tooth may not come in is because it’s not in the right position.

If the tooth is heading in the wrong direction, it can require even further care later in life, which is why we recommend seeing an orthodontist at age 7 or 8.  There we will evaluate that all the teeth are developing in the correct position, and if they are not, we can make early adjustments.  In many cases, removing a baby tooth as soon as the problem is identified may help the tooth find its correct path. If the path doesn’t change, orthodontic treatment is sometimes required to create space and sometimes guide it into the right position.

  1. Some adult teeth do not develop

This is very common for the upper lateral incisors, the second tooth from the center.  It is also common for the lower second premolars.  Because the lateral incisors are an esthetic tooth, it is helpful to know they are missing to plan for the esthetic replacement.  I have seen cases where the baby teeth are pulled, not realizing the permanent teeth are not developing and these patients are left without these front teeth.  In these cases, we leave baby teeth for as long as possible.  We then make a retainer with fake teeth until the patient is ready for a more permanent replacement such as implants.

  1. More rare instances

Sometimes the tooth takes longer than expected and nothing is wrong.  In cases where baby teeth are extracted early due to trauma or decay, we often see a delay in eruption of this tooth, which is still considering “normal”.  There are more rare conditions such as ankylosis or primary failure of eruption.  I won’t go into these, but again, we just recommend visiting your orthodontist for an evaluation.

In summary, the best thing to do is have your child evaluated by an orthodontic specialist at the age of 7 or 8.  There is no referral needed, we do not charge for the visit, and we can ensure everything is there and erupting properly.  If things need to be addressed, we can discuss the best solution.  Early treatment is sometimes the best and easiest solution for certain cases; however, I will never push early treatment if it is not needed.  At the end of the day my job is to show you everything I see and give you my professional recommendations.

FSA and HSA can be used for Orthodontic treatment

Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) are accounts, typically set up through your employer, that allows you to set aside pre-tax money for qualifying health care expenses.  Orthodontic care is an expense that can be paid with an HSA or an FSA.

Important things to remember, while an HSA rolls over from year to year, an FSA does not. So make sure you use those FSA dollars before the end of the year!  If you or your child are interested in starting orthodontic treatment before the end of the year, now is the time to get started.  Whether you decide to do braces or invisalign, both are an eligible expense!

Call today to schedule your complimentary consultation with Dr. Chrissy, your local, family friendly orthodontist.

Breast Cancer awareness guest blog with Scientist Jens Schmidt PhD

I want to introduce my husband, Jens, he is going to be writing a guest blog for us this month. Jens is an Assistant Professor at Michigan State. In his everyday work, he uses a combination of cell biological and biophysical approaches to explain how human cells maintain their genomic integrity, which is an important barrier for cancer formation. Basically, he looks at how cells avoid damage, which then helps prevent the formation of cancer.

I want to begin with some numbers to call attention to the magnitude of this devastating disease.
-1 in 8 women in the US will develop breast cancer during their life.
-This risk rises to 7 in 10 if women have specific mutations passed down from one of their parents.
-Over 40,000 women have been estimated to die from breast cancer in 2021 and there are currently almost 4 million breast cancer survivors living in the US.

In short, breast cancer is a terrible disease that affects all our lives.

How does cancer occur? In simple terms, cancer is caused by changes to our DNA. Interestingly, our genomes are damaged every day in a variety of ways. For example, UV light, cigarette smoke, and other factors can change our DNA. Our bodies are typically good at fixing the damage, however, it is when it is not fixed that cancer may occur.

There is a lot of information about family history of breast cancer, so I want to explain that a little bit. A Family history of breast cancer is often caused by pre-existing mutations in the BRCA-1 or BRCA-2 genes. These mutations are then passed down generation to generation, which is what makes it familial.

Let’s back up to explain what the BRCA genes do. BRCA-1 and BRCA-2 are part of the machinery in the cell that fixes damaged DNA. If these genes do not work (are mutated), women accumulate more damage in their cells. More damage means a higher chance of developing cancer.

We know these genes fix damage, but currently we are trying to figure out exactly how BRCA and other similar genes carry out this DNA repair at the molecular level. This knowledge can then be used to develop new therapies for breast cancer and other cancers. Cancer diagnostics are getting better every year, and in the future, we will hopefully be able to combine that with the information we have found in our lab. The hope is to develop personalized therapies tailor made to fight cancer for each individual.

How to support our community

The holiday season is fast approaching.  What does that mean?  Lots of fun and usually free community activities.  Trunk or treats, festivals, parades.  It seems like every week there is at least one fun event to take your kids to.  Most of these events are supported by businesses within the community.   This year I encourage you to look around and see who is there.  Take note and do what you can to support them.  Shopping their business is great, but even simply liking and commenting on their social media posts, or even better, sharing their page and writing reviews.

I will be sharing all the local events that are coming up on our social media.  Do not forget about our trunk or treat on October 22nd from 5:30-7.  Bring friends and family, all are welcome!  We will have pizza and many local businesses will open their trunks to offer candy to your family.  We will also have games and activities!

Also be sure to check out downtown New Hudson next week for the addition of scarecrows set up by local businesses!  While you are there be sure to grab dinner at one of the restaurants!  Finally, the night before Halloween the New Hudson DDA will be hosting a trunk or treat at the Methodist church which we will also be a part of.  Take advantage of the good weather and fun times while you can!  This is our community, let’s make it the best we can!

Dr. Chrissy

How do I find the best Orthodontist?

If you are on the search for an orthodontist, a good place to start is asking friends and families for recommendations.  Ask them why they chose that office and if they would choose them again.  Another thing many people do is google the best orthodontist in South Lyon, or the best orthodontist in Milford, or Orthodontist near me.  This will give you a list of local orthodontists, likely ranked by their google ad words, and many other confusing marketing hacks.  While you are on google you can check out our five-star reviews!

We are very lucky to live in this area because we have so many choices! Once you narrow it down to a few offices, you can schedule a consultation to talk to the staff and orthodontist.  In our office we offer a free consultation where we will discuss options if treatment is recommended.  From there you will be able to ask your own questions and experience the vibe of the office.

The important thing is finding the right orthodontist for you and your family.  Affordability is always important.  We are in network with insurance companies and offer in house 0% financing.  A clean and modern office is good.  Some things that you may not think about, are the technology in the office.  By having more up to date technology, we can provide more efficient care.  No more goopy impressions, we use the medit digital scanner to replace this. We also have digital x-rays that are easily transferred to your dental office.   In today’s busy world, convenience is also a big plus.  We are conveniently located at the 96 and Milford road exit. We have flexible hours, late night options and are open one Saturday a month.

There is a difference between dentists and orthodontists.  All orthodontists are dentists, but only some dentists are orthodontists.  As an orthodontist we go to an additional 2-3 years of school to learn how to move teeth efficiently and effectively.  In fact, in dental school we didn’t learn any orthodontic care.

While DIY options like smile direct club and byte are all the rage these days, they are not recommended.  You wouldn’t put a cast on yourself if you broke your arm, why would you trust this type of system to move your teeth through bone!

In the end you will choose the orthodontist that best suits you and your family.  We hope you choose CD Orthodontics for your family’s orthodontic needs!  We are the only Orthodontist in New Hudson, but convenient enough to see those in South Lyon, Milford, Highland, Novi, Northville, Brighton, Hartland, Howell and beyond!