Our Blog

PRIOR LAKE Monopoly is here!

July 21st, 2020

 New to the world of board games! Ekim Orthodontics contributes as the "Community Chest" in PL-Monopoly and other local businesses. Created by our Prior Lake Chamber, this cool board game is detailed with Laker pride elements and community favorites. What a great gift!

Virtual Appointments & Online Referrals

June 24th, 2020

NEW and AWESOME! Virtual orthodontic appointment options for our patients. Our options include email assessment or live assessments through our secure online platforms. It has been an excellent way to keep in touch with our patients and plan ahead. And now that we are open, we continue to provide virtual visits for certain appointments and even as an option for new patients. It has been a great addition that allows us to communicate orthodontic treatment options, social distance as needed, provide information to working parents, help with financial planning etc.  Patients simply click the emailed link from anywhere and we are there to greet them! You can also refer a friend or have professional referrals made through our website. We are looking forward to continuing our virtual orthodontic services. In office or virtual, we are here for you!

Promoting Safety, Health and Compassion

June 11th, 2020

I hope this update finds you all safe, healthy and back to work and life. The last several weeks have challenged us all in ways like never before.  Armed with additional personal protective equipment, air filtration systems, barriers, a COVID19 preparedness plan, careful scheduling, additional disinfection protocols, wellness screening protocols and a trained healthy team, Ekim Orthodontics was able to safely reopen on May 14th, 2020. I am so happy to return to my patients, my team and to what I love to do. In addition to COVID19, we also find ourselves in grief and turmoil as we tackle deep issues of equality and a senseless loss of life. As we fight against COVID19 and continue the quest for social justice, we also see our kids graduate another school year. This reminds us that teaching our youth and modeling daily kindness and respect for all people is of the utmost importance for the brighter future of humanity. From my heart to yours, great job returning to work, homeschooling and navigating such uncertain difficult times. Please let me know if we can help. I look forward to seeing you all in person again (with a mask and hopefully soon without a mask).

Generic Clear Aligners vs. Invisalign®

January 29th, 2020

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®

  • 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 Prior Lake, and Burnsville office, Drs. Suzan Ekim, and Heather Horton 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.)

Generic Aligners

  • 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. Suzan Ekim, and Heather Horton to provide you with gentle, tested, and successful care!