Friday, March 26, 2010

The Retainer question: Puyallup Orthodontist

Q. I’ve had my braces off for three years now. Do I really still have to wear my retainers?

A.  Absolutely. After your braces are removed, your teeth will shift if they are not stabilized. Retainers provide that stabilization. They are designed to hold your teeth in their corrected, ideal positions. Wearing retainers is the best insurance that your orthodontic treatment will last for a lifetime. For more information, visit us on the web at, or call our downtown Puyallup office at 253.848.4537 for a complimentary consultation.

Wisdom Teeth: Puyallup Wa Orthodontist

Q.  My daughter is a senior in high school, and has had her wisdom teeth for two years.  Most of her friends have had theirs removed; should she get them out before she goes to college?

A.  In most cases, it is best to have wisdom teeth removed in the mid-to-late teen years.  One of the best reasons to have wisdom teeth removed is that they are difficult to clean properly, and are therefore prime candidates for cavities. Also, they can cause crowding, and interfere with orthodontic work that is in progress or has been completed.  If you have questions or concerns, the best thing to do is schedule a consultation with your orthodontist or family dentist.  If you would like more information about our orthodontic practice, please visit us on the web at, or call our office at 253.848.4537 for a complimentary consultation.

April 2009

The difference between Invisalign & Braces: Puyallup Orthodontist

Q.  I saw an Invisalign ad on TV.  Can someone explain the difference between Invisalign and braces?
A.  Invisalign uses a series of clear aligners that fit over your teeth and incrementally move your teeth into the desired straight position. The aligners are replaced about every two weeks and are worn about 22 hours a day. They are removed to eat and drink but can be worn while drinking water. Invisalign is most effective at treating minor to moderate tooth crowding or spacing issues.  Traditional braces utilize either metal or ceramic brackets to move teeth into the desired position. In some cases traditional braces can move teeth BETTER and are often recommended for more complex orthodontic cases.  If you are interested in Invisalign, please call our office for a complimentary consultation at 253.848.4537, or visit us on the web at

What foods to eat with Braces?: Puyallup Orthodontist

Q.  Are there any foods I can’t eat when I have braces?
A.  When you have braces, it is important to stay away from hard, sticky, gooey or crunchy foods. Foods like caramel, taffy and  peanut brittle can stick to your braces and pull them off your teeth. You also need to be careful with crunchy foods like carrots and apples and hard rolls so you do not knock off your braces.  In some cases, you may just need to alter how you prepare the food.  For example, instead of biting in to a whole apple, cut the apple into slices. You can do the same with crusty bread.  Be aware that you have brackets glued to your teeth, and any extreme force against the brackets can pop them off.  For more information, or a complimentary consultation, call our office at 253.848.4537, or visit us on the web at

Chewing gum with Braces?: Puyallup, WA Orthodontist

Q.  Can I still chew gum with braces?

A.  Chewing SUGAR FREE gum while you have braces is fine for most braces these days.  In days past, the gum used to  get caught on the braces and pull them off. Now we have stronger glues and smaller braces. However, gum with sugar can cause other problems.   Sugar will cause  the plaque on the teeth to grow more quickly which leads to higher probability of tooth decay.   In most cases a sugar free, non-stick gum such as Freedent or Wrigley's Extra will be fine. If you have braces, it is best to consult your orthodontist before chewing gum.   For more information, or for a complimentary consultation, call our office at 253.848.4537, or visit us on the web at

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Smiles By Sutherland scholarship: Where are they now?

For those of you who have been wondering about what past Smiles By Sutherland scholarship recipients are doing now, look no further!  We will be updating the blog with what these scholarship winners are doing now.  Today we will highlighting Tim Hurd!

If you are not familiar with the Smiles By Sutherland Schoarship here is a little more information.  Be sure to check out our Website to see other past scholarship winners.

The Dr. Greg Sutherland Scholarships were established in 2004. The scholarships are awarded annually at Puyallup, Emerald Ridge, Rogers and Cascade Christian High Schools.  Each recipient will receive $750.00. The scholarships recognize a past or present patient of Dr. Sutherland. It is to encourage graduates to continue their education and to place a higher value on the benefits of education and life-long learning.

The criteria for this scholarship is that the applicant must be a past or present patient, possess a positive outlook on life, their character, contributions to school, community and be an active participant in local youth groups or Para-church organizations.

Recipient Tim Hurd

1. What have you been up to since 09 when you got your scholarship?

During the summer after I got my scholarship I traveled to work at an orphanage in Nairobi Kenya for July, and relaxed over summer having the first summer break with no homework of my life.
2. Where are you going to school & what are you studying?

I'm going to school at PLU and studying Physics/Engineering.

3. Do you have ideas about what you want to do after school?

I don't really know exactly what I'm planning on doing because so many different career paths sound like fun to me that I am going to have a very hard time choosing when the time comes. I cant even choose what kind of engineering I want to major in yet let alone what kind of job I want after I get it. I guess in general I'd say i want to have a job that is working to improve peoples lives but specifically I don't know exactly which path to take to accomplish that.

4. What are some things you enjoy doing in your spare time?

play ultimate frisbee on the PLU "Reign" team, skiing anywhere I can as much as possible, playing video games with friends, volunteering with a group of friends to help out and have fun with each other, organizing fun events that get people active in the PLU community, and going to see my family back at home every now and then.

5. How has having braces changed you?

It has definitely given me more confidence and also lets me smile with my teeth showing a lot more.