We are devoted to your safety

safe orthodontics

There have been some recent news reports about people contracting infections in certain medical facilities due to improper sterilization.  These reports, understandably, have made some people concerned about infection control.  Here at Kellerstein Orthodontics, we believe that proper sterilization procedures are critical and we adhere to the protocols of the Ontario Dental Association (ODA) and the Canadian Dental Association (CDA).  We take every possible precaution to ensure your safety:

  • First, used instruments are cleaned and disinfected in an ultrasonic bath with an enzymatic detergent to remove any debris or contamination
  • Then, the instruments are rinsed in a bath of distilled water to remove any contaminants and soaps
  • Then the instruments are packaged into cassettes and sterilized in a steam-pressure autoclave.  This autoclave is checked frequently to ensure that not even the toughest microorganisms can survive in it.
  • Cassettes are wrapped and not uncovered until ready for use.  This prevents any microbes from getting to the instruments while they wait to be used

With all of these protocols in place, patients can be certain that the instruments used in their mouths are safe.  But safety does not end with our instruments.  All of our countertops are disinfected between patients with a high-level surface disinfectant.  Chairs, counters, sinks and handles are wiped down and disinfected before each new patient is called in.

We use gloves and masks for each patient, and disinfect hands with hand sanitizer before gloves are put on.  We use disposable barriers on all surfaces that cannot be wiped down, and change these between patients.

When you come to visit us for any reason, whether it be an adjustment to your braces, or a new aligner or retainer is being fitted for your use, or whether you are having your teeth scanned with our iTero 3D scanner for an Invisalign case, you can rest assured that all of our instruments are always properly sterilized before use and because we use a cassette system, each tray which contains the instruments is also wrapped in plastic to minimize any accidental exposure to any foreign contaminant.

Our office also takes care to run tests on our sterilization machines to be 100% certain that any bacteria or virus is killed ensuring that you may rest easy knowing that your visit is not only comfortable but safe.

News reports about infections are disturbing, buy you can rest assured that at this practice your safety is our top priority.

How the selfie is impacting Orthodontics

Selfies and invisalign

The selfie – love it or hate it, there’s no denying it has had a major impact on the dental world.  It has become a go-to form of expression for many people, almost as socially acceptable as a handshake!  People will snap dozens of shots, cherry pick the one they like the best, and share it with the world.  In the course of taking multiple selfies you get to see your smile up close and zoom right in.  In the industry, this is referred to as “Photographic self-assessment”.

As a direct result of selfies we see many patients come to our door with specific concerns or requests about how to align their teeth just right for that perfect look!  That is great from my perspective, since the more specific patients are about their concerns, the better I am able to tailor a specific treatment plan to address them.
And this type of specific planning is where our new software for Invisalign treatment really shines.  First, we create an individualized smile-plan by taking a 3-dimensional scan with our state-of-the-art ITero Element scanner.  We then create a computerized simulation (called a “Clincheck”) of how the teeth will move from the start to the end of treatment, taking care that the final result addresses all of the patient’s concerns.  The Clincheck simulation also includes views of how the teeth should look at each week of the treatment, allowing us to monitor how well the teeth are responding to treatment and whether things are proceeding on schedule.  And, for patients who love to take selfies along the way, they can compare their selfies to the simulation to reassure themselves that everything is on-track.

Now, one final note about selfies – we definitely want to create a plan that addresses all of our patient’s esthetic concerns.  But we also have to keep in mind the health of the teeth, gums, and jaws.  This is why we always create plans that not only address the appearance of the front teeth, but also the back teeth and the bite, which you can’t see on the selfie.   Without doing so, the teeth may straighten but may develop gum disease, jaw aches, and may not be stable in their new position.

So take a selfie and make a list of your goals….and realize that as your orthodontist, I will likely have important input to modify that list to get you a smile that is not only dazzling, but also will last for the long-term.  And realize that obtaining that perfect smile will likely take some time, but short-cuts often end up costing more time and money in the long-run.  As the old expression goes,  “There are no short-cuts to anywhere worth going.”

Invisalign Promotions or “cheap” invisalign. Buyer Beware.

Cheap invisalign

Let’s face it – everyone loves a good deal. That’s why, when people search online for Invisalign, their eyes are often drawn toward the ads for cheap promotions. $1800 Invsialign! $2500 Invisalign! Given that the average orthodontist’s fee for Invisalign is $6000-$7000 in Toronto, these deals seem almost too good to be true. And, as a general rule, if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.

Imagine, for a moment, seeing an online ad for plastic surgery – “Nose jobs, normally $8000, now only $1999.99.” Seems like a good deal, right? But almost too good to be true? Why would a qualified plastic surgeon lower the fee so much? Now imagine reading the fine print and discovering that the sale price was not actually for a procedure that would fully correct the nose, just alter the appearance very slightly.  And imagine finding out that the doctor performing the procedure was not actually a plastic surgeon, but just a family doctor who took a few weekend courses.  Would the deal still seem as enticing at that point, or would alarm bells be ringing in your head?

Most of the online deals for Invisalign are very similar to our imaginary plastic surgery ad.  The treatment offered at the low price is usually a product called “Invisalign Express,” vs  “full Invisalign”.  The Express product was designed for patients with the most minor dental problems, and is totally insufficient for the vast majority of patients. In other words, this cheap product is unlikely to give you the results you want, and is not the same as full Invisalign.  Furthermore,  most of the doctors offering these promotions are not orthodontists, but general dentists with much less training – similar to family doctors offering surgery.  So even when full Invisalign is used, it is not used as expertly or with the same results that an orthodontist could provide.

There is nothing wrong with wanting to save money, and some promotions are legitimate.  but before you go for that online promotion, here are some tips to be sure of what you are getting:

    1) Be aware that there is a difference between orthodontists and general dentists, and that not everyone who does Invisalign is an orthodontist.   Remember that Invisalign is just a tool and, like any tool, the results you get depend on the skill of the user.  If you aren’t sure whether your doctor is an orthodontist or a general dentist, just ask!  And beware of un-regulated terms like “cosmetic dentist” or “invisalign expert.”

    2) Make sure that the product you are buying is full Invisalign, not Invisalign Express. This will ensure

    that you will get as many aligners as you need, as well as a 5-year warranty on the results.  Ask your doctor if they are using iTero 3D scanning to help map out your treatment plan?  Our office is equipped with this exciting technology you can learn more about and watch a video about iTero here and read more in this article about it’s key benefits and why you will benefit from working with an Orthodontist that works with this technology.

    3) Ask the doctor what happens if the results are less than perfect. Will more aligners be ordered at no extra charge?  Will braces be provided at no additional charge to correct the problem? Or will you need to be referred elsewhere and have to pay again?

    4) Ask the doctor whether the goal is simply to straighten the teeth or also to correct the bite. You, as a patient, may not care much about your bite, but the doctor performing Invisalign on you should.  Without taking your bite into consideration, the results may cause you more harm than good.   

    Most of us wouldn’t shop for bargain basement medical care because we want the best for our health. Let’s not forget that our dental health is part of our overall medical health. Don’t settle for less than the best.

There are many Orthodontists in Toronto. Why choose us?

Toronto Orthodontist

Since there are many Orthodontists in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area), the question sometimes arises: “Why would I drive or take the TTC to your Sheppard Avenue office when I can just walk down the street (maybe) to see another orthodontist?”

At face value, that’s a logical question.  Here’s the logical answer!

Because we are going to know one another for a significant amount of time, you should pick an orthodontist that’s going to work for you and your specific needs.

When you are comparing Orthodontic offices, here are a few things to consider:

1) Does the Orthodontist do all the work themselves?

You’d be amazed at how many practices, especially in a busy metropolitan area like the GTA, delegate the work to hygienists!  Many corporate style offices book patients in and have them turned around in the fastest time possible, sometimes without even seeing the orthodontist!  At Kellerstein Orthodontics, all the work is done by Dr. Kellerstein himself.  No part of your treatment is delegated to an assistant or hygienist, so you can be confident that you are receiving the best possible treatment from the most qualified provider.

2) Convenient appointment times to suit your busy schedule.

We often book early morning and after work appointments to suit your busy and hectic lives!  We invite you to speak with our reception to see about booking a time slot that best suits your family.

3) Cutting edge, carefully selected technology.

Dr. Kellerstein carefully selects the best new and evidence-based technologies for his patients.  At this office, you will not find every new gadget on the market until that gadget has been shown to benefit patients.  We will never try to up-sell patients with expensive technology unless it will reduce your treatment time, improve your comfort, or show some other tangible benefit. For example, we recently invested in an iTERO scanner which will be in our practice very shortly For more information on iTERO and the many benefits of 3D scanning, please click here.

4) Can you talk with your orthodontist?

It may seem like a strange question, but think about it: How important is it for you to be able to discuss your concerns and questions in a comfortable and supportive environment? Have a look at what some of our patients have to say about our service.  https://www.ratemds.com/doctor-ratings/3341855/Dr-Jeremy-Kellerstein-Toronto-ON.html

==> When shopping around for your provider, ask yourself: do they offer every “latest and greatest” invention, or is their treatment plan based on knowledge and sound medical advice?

==> Are they even a specialist?  Some braces and Invisalign providers aren’t even orthodontists but general dentists!

==> Who will provide the best possible care and who is best equipped to handle any potential problems that may arise?

When you consider that appointments on average are once every 2-3 months, traveling to see us from surrounding neighbourhoods and cities actually makes sense given all the benefits of working with our practice. So make sure you take all these factors into account when deciding about your orthodontic treatment. If you’re not sure, come meet with Dr. Kellerstein for a free consultation and see for yourself our difference!

Invisalign from your Dentist: What Could Go Wrong?

As an orthodontist, people are always telling me about their friends who are getting Invisalign, and often it is being done by a general dentist.  Whenever I hear such a story, I mention that I hope the person at least got the opinion of an orthodontist before starting treatment.  And my question usually elicits surprise – what’s wrong with a dentist doing Invisalign?  What could go wrong?

A lot can go wrong, actually. Invisalign is just a tool to straighten teeth and, like any tool, what matters is the skill and training of the user, not the tool itself.  Many people don’t realize that in order to become a certified Invisalign provider, all a dentist needs to do is complete a single, 10 hour course.  That’s it!  And even if dentists take a few continuing education courses in Invisalign, they still have nowhere near the training of an orthodontist, who has trained for over 3000 hours in the use of braces and Invisalign even before graduating!

“Ok”, you might ask, “dentists are not as trained as orthodontists.  But Invisalign is Invisalign, right?  What’s the difference if I get it from my dentist or my orthodontist?”  And the answer is that there is often a huge difference in the quality of the result, depending on who does the treatment.  Because in order for Invisalign to properly correct your teeth and bite, the treatment needs to be planned by a doctor who understands orthodontics.  If not planned properly, the Invisalign will not move the teeth as predicted.  What could go wrong?  Patients can end up with un-esthetic results – protrusive teeth, asymmetric teeth, teeth that won’t fully straighten, etc.  Patients can end up with gum disease, jaw aches, and unstable results.

I’ll give you an example from my own practice.  I recently got a referral from a general dentist who offers Invisalign to his patients.  He had been treating this particular patient with Invisalign for almost 2 years, and he told me that somehow the teeth were just not behaving.  He had taken multiple moldings of the teeth over the years, and asked Invisalign for corrections, but the teeth were just not getting any better.  He hated how his teeth looked, and had difficulty chewing because his back teeth did not bite together properly.  This was how the patient’s teeth looked after 2 years of Invisalign.

Crooked upper teeth.
Slanted lower teeth.
Back teeth don’t touch when biting, patient had trouble chewing.

I told the dentist that this patient would require 1-2 years of braces to correct the problem, and that it was not correctable by Invisalign.  And the dentist was shocked.  He asked me “if this case was not treatable with Invisalign, why did Invisalign accept the case?” And my reply to him was, “because Invisalign is not the doctor, they are just the manufacturer.  They rely on us to tell them what to do, not the other way around.”

And this is what is so crucial to understand about Invisalign –

it is not a magical solution for effortless tooth-straightening.  It requires the skill and training of an orthodontist to tell the Invisalign company how to move the teeth.  Otherwise, the plan that Invisalign generates might not be realistic.

What can go wrong if your treatment is not done by an orthodontist?

You can potentially waste 2 years of your life, thousands of dollars, and end up with a worse problem than you started with, as this patient learned to his dismay.

Look on every street corner and you will find a general dentist with an Invisalign sign in the window.  But if you are hoping to get Invisalign, make sure that you choose an orthodontist.  Because Invisalign doesn’t straighten your teeth.  The doctor using the Invisalign does.  Your dentist is not an orthodontist….even if he does Invisalign.

What are the top trends in orthodontics for Adults today? Discreet.  Comfortable and Convenient.

Invisalign braces discreet
Orthodontics haven’t been just for teens or children for many many years.  It’s commonplace for adults to want treatment so that they can straighten their teeth, improve their smile and give them both aesthetics and confidence in their professional lives.  But adults have different needs when it comes to braces.  Often their daily lives are rather hectic and caring for traditional braces the same way a teenager would have to do is not always achievable with the various responsibilities they have.  This is why, while there are several options available to adults, Invisalign has become extremely popular with them.  Invisalign’s smile straightening system is extremely easy for adults to work with and has virtually zero impact on their busy lifestyles.
Patients, especially adults, expect their orthodontic options to be attractive, pain-free and easy to work with. It is precisely these kinds of demands in the marketplace that gave rise to the trends we see in Orthodontics prevalent today.  As such, the top three emerging trends in orthodontics, which drive many of the products and services available to patients  1) Discreet, 2) Comfortable and 3) Convenient
Find out how Invisalign is a market leading technology when it comes to these three orthodontic trends.
#1 — Braces have to be discreet.
Let’s face it, most adults don’t like the look of braces.  But what about if you could have invisible braces?  Invisalign doesn’t work like traditional braces which employ the use of brackets and wires to shift the teeth into position over time.  Instead, Invisalign aligners are virtually invisible (think of something like a clear mouthguard that snaps over your teeth).  The aligners are also removable and they fit snugly over your teeth, snapping into place.  As far as orthodontic solutions go, they are by far the most discreet and this reason above all else is why they are such a favourite with adult patients especially.
Trend #2 — Orthodontics have to be comfortable.
In the past, orthodontic treatment functioned with heavy forces moving teeth into place.  They were regarded as uncomfortable and something no one looked forward to going through.  That simply isn’t the case any longer.  Now you can have your teeth straightened with minimal concern for comfort as most if not all systems are designed to maximize your personal comfort.  Invisalign is by far one the most comfortable to work with.  The aligners themselves are smooth and made of a BPA free plastic that can in fact be removed for mealtimes, thus reducing both the daily maintenance required.   Not only are the aligners smooth, but they are extremely comfortable to wear, custom fit to your mouth for a very snug fit and making all aspects of hygiene a breeze.
Trend #3 — Orthodontic treatment has to be convenient.
Today’s patients need a convenient option.  No one has time for cumbersome solutions nor are they going to sacrifice their lifestyle and valuable time.  Invisalign as a concept is all about convenience. The simple fact that the aligners can be removed puts the system in a class all on it’s own.  Think about it, you can simply remove the aligners for those very special occasions, and then just snap them back in afterwards.  The system also necessitates the least amount of subsequent visits to the orthodontists office, giving you more time to address the many responsibilities of your busy day.
Discreet, Comfortable and Convenient.  These really do capture the essence of the Invisalign straightening system.   We would be remiss if we didn’t mention that the system is not appropriate for every situation though.  If you are interested in learning about whether you are a candidate for this option, contact our office and Dr. Kellerstein would be happy to sit down with you and go through all the various benefits and treatment options with you in person.