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Thanksgiving Trivia

November 23rd, 2022

At Forever Smiles we love learning trivia and interesting facts about Thanksgiving! This year, Dr. Yan Razdolsky 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.

The Turkey

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.

The Parade

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.

Generations of Smiles

November 22nd, 2022


This is Part three of a three-part series: Generations of Smiles is a historic telling of the origins of orthodontics, all the way to today. Part one of the series taught us about the Birth of Modern Orthodontics and part two shared with us An Orthodontic Renaissance - both of which you can read more about in the September and October issues of Bracket Chatter.

According to the American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics there are currently four generations of orthodontists in the workforce. Thankfully Forever Smiles boasts two of the finest Buffalo Grove has to offer. When we left off in our last issue of Bracket Chatter’s Generation of Smiles, the Baby Boomer Orthodontic Specialists began to explore the importance of individualized treatment options which made way for the revolutionary, aesthetic and technologic orthodontic accomplishments of today’s Generation X followed by the Millennials.

Many of those in Generation X (1961-1981) grew up in dual income families who were said to be the first generation not to be as financially successful as their parents. Theirs was a cohort who displayed individualism and skepticism, but with a drive for results and a desire for getting a job done well. As a reflection of this, gold was more universally abandoned in the 1960s in favor of stainless steel bringing the cost of orthodontics down considerably. And by the 1970s, major breakthroughs such as development of a dental adhesive used to bond miniature brackets to teeth eliminated the need of bands around the teeth, thus beginning the era of aesthetic orthodontics. Along with these developments, elastics gained in popularity and self-litigating or ligature-less brackets reappeared allowing for greater control of force and movement in treatment. Also introduced in this generation is titanium alloys offering greater stiffness, strength, and range.

The 1980’s brought to orthodontics the first aesthetic ceramic brackets made from single crystal sapphire and polycrystalline zirconia. Although in the coming decades these products are replaced and refined, their appearance in the field of orthodontics opened the door for those who once bristled at the stigma of wearing braces. This decade also found the arrival of many innovative techniques to the U.S. from across the globe and introduces us to our first notable and favorite orthodontist!
In 1987, Dr. Yan Razdolsky earned his graduate degree in orthodontics and went to work with a prominent orthodontist on the west side of Chicago. In just six short months, he says he learned more than he had in two years of residency.
“It takes years to learn some of the techniques and procedures that I learned in practical application and working with real patients,” said Dr. Yan. “It wasn’t until years later that I realized just how valuable that experience was and how it influenced who I am as an orthodontist today.”

While many of the techniques which Dr. Yan learned were innovative back then, many are far more mainstream today. For that reason alone, they inspired him to develop his own techniques for which he has held five patents.
Notable orthodontic achievements of Generation X:

  • By the 1970 orthodontic appliances evolved into the traditional systems most of us recognize today as comprised of wires and brackets.
  • 1975 Lingual Braces (brackets placed on the back of the teeth) were introduced.
  • Debut of bonded miniature brackets, marking the arrival of esthetic orthodontics.
  • CAD/CAM technology first introduced to dentistry in 1985
  • 1987 First clear, tooth-colored ceramic brackets introduced using translucent polycrystalline alumina or TPA. Initially a product developed by NASA and Ceradyne, Inc., a global leader in manufacture of advanced ceramics for aerospace, defense, electronics, and industrial use.
  • As an aside, the 2016 AAO membership data shows that 41.9% of practicing orthodontists are Gen-Xers.

The Millennials or Generation Y (1982-2001) grew up a generation that is optimistic, tech savvy, confident, team-oriented, and achievement focused. They are smart, flexible and command respect. According to AAO’s 2016 membership data, 11.8% of practicing orthodontists are Millennials.
At the start of this generation to its close at the century mark, we can proudly reflect on the innovations and achievements of the era which brought us electricity, the automobile, aviation, electronics, civil rights, space exploration, and the computer age. Some might suggest that mankind accrued more knowledge in the 20th century than in all prior ones combined. It can then be argued that orthodontic developments during this time reflect those feats. Like computers and tech, the field of orthodontics strived to make things better, smaller, more aesthetic, yet functional and with accurately calculated results. These modern-day orthodontic marvels are more effective, efficient, and discreet than ever with self-ligating systems teeth can be straightened without elastic bands, while clear ceramic braces and aligners such as Invisalign are barely noticeable. The introduction of Temporary Anchorage Devices or TADs afford our Forever Smiles team the ability to better control movement using a less invasive and secure anchor. This, along with 3-D planning software means they can create a customized treatment program unique to each patient based on their unique facial and dental features. What’s more they can even give patients a sneak preview of what their smile will look like at the end of treatment.

A model example of her generation, Dr. Elizabeth Razdolsky Michalczyk brings to Forever Smiles thousands of hours of hands-on experience, helping hundreds of patients achieve cleaner, straighter smiles. Her residency at the Georgia School of Orthodontics is a testament to her craft as it offered her the opportunity to work in a state-of-the-art clinical setting with the latest orthodontic appliances and cutting-edge diagnostic technology representing generations of research and technology.
“Successful orthodontic treatment requires a thorough understanding of biology and physics,” said Dr. Liz. “The science behind today’s orthodontic correction and alignment isn’t just a simple straightening of teeth, but a complex orchestration of diagnosis, prevention, mechanics, technology, and art. All the things we have learned to this point have culminated to help us bring patients their beautiful Forever Smile. What a time to be in orthodontics,” she added.

Notable orthodontic achievements of the Millennial Generation:

  • Introduction of continuous fiber composites and CP-titanium products
  • Improved sliding mechanics with ceramic-bracket inserts and self-ligating brackets
  • Invisalign introduced to the market in 1999
  • Temporary Anchorage Devices (TADs) introduced in 2005

Getting a Retainer? Make It Personal!

November 16th, 2022

If Dr. Yan Razdolsky and our team recommend a Hawley retainer to complete your orthodontic treatment, you’re getting a classic. This retainer, invented by Dr. Charles Hawley, has been in use since the early decades of the twentieth century.

But this isn’t your great grandmother’s pink plastic retainer! The look of today’s Hawley retainer has really evolved from its early days as the “Hawley bite plate”—and pink is now a choice instead of an inevitability. In fact, you can choose from any number of colors, patterns, and designs to create a retainer that is uniquely you.

Each Hawley retainer is customized to fit your mouth and teeth perfectly. Wire clasps and a labial bow wire are securely attached to an acrylic base based on a model made from your teeth and mouth.

Your retainer is designed for function—the bow wire makes sure your teeth stay in the perfect position while your bones and ligaments get strong enough to hold them in place. The acrylic base, of course, is also functional—but that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun with it!

Retainer bases can be formed in different ways.  One type of retainer model uses pre-formed acrylic discs for the base, and these are available in many pre-formed colors and patterns. Another type of retainer builds the base by alternating several applications of liquid and powder acrylics, layer after layer. This process allows the retainer technician to create one-of-a-kind designs.

What are some of the ways to make your retainer uniquely yours?

  • Color—whether deep tones, pastels, electrics, neon, or metallic, you can find an appealing shade in the color chart. Or, if you want your retainer to keep a low profile, choose a clear or a color-coordinated pink tone.
  • Glow in the Dark—if you don’t want your retainer to keep a low profile, this might be just the look for you!
  • Glitter—accessorize your sparkling smile with a sparkling retainer.
  • Patterns—stripes, polka dots, geometric shapes—even animal patterns are possible.
  • Color Combinations—why choose one color when you can have a marbled swirl of your favorites? Or a tie-dye look? Or team colors?
  • Acrylic Designs—a colorful design that captures your personality is available with some creative acrylic artistry. Rainbows and flags, hearts and flowers, ladybugs, and spider webs are just some of the options on hand.
  • Picture Perfect—for that special hobby, pet, team, or other personal favorite, decals or pictures can be applied under a layer of clear acrylic.

Hawley retainers are made to last, so choose your design with years of use in mind. Talk to our Forever Smiles Team at our Buffalo Grove team about the custom looks which are available to celebrate your unique personality. After all, there’s nothing more personal than your smile!

At what age should my child have an orthodontic evaluation?

November 9th, 2022

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 Forever Smiles Team at our Buffalo Grove 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 Dr. Yan Razdolsky, 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 Dr. Yan Razdolsky 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, Dr. Yan Razdolsky can usually address the problems immediately and then follow up with another round of treatment when the child has all the adult teeth.