Minnesotaorthodontist's Blog


Another Round of Smiling Faces!

More Smiles by Zapfel Orthodontics!

For More Information

Please call (763) 784-0420 or visit www.ZapfelOrthodontics.com for more information or to schedule a complimentary initial examination and x-ray. Zapfel Orthodontics is located at 1130 NE County Road 10 in Spring Lake Park, MN 55432 and serves the Minneapolis/St. Paul Twin Cities including Coon Rapids, Blaine, Fridley, Roseville, Anoka, Brooklyn Park, Columbia Heights, and Mounds View, Minnesota.

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Minnesota Orthodontist Discusses Teeth Whitening

Bleaching Tips for Patients with Braces

After orthodontic treatment, a number of patients choose to have their teeth whitened. Tooth whitening, or bleaching, is a safe, effective way to improve natural tooth color. As we age, teeth can darken. Teeth can also be stained from exposure to certain environmental factors such as certain foods, drinks or habits. Some common things that stain or discolor teeth include red wine, smoking, coffee, and some types of medications.

If you are interested in bleaching your teeth, here are some things to keep in mind:

– There are different types of bleaching systems. Some bleaching systems are available over the counter. Typically, the most effective bleaching systems are custom made by your dentist or orthodontist to specifically fit your teeth.
– If you are undergoing orthodontic treatment, the general recommendation is to bleach your teeth after orthodontic treatment is complete. Depending on what type of bleaching you do, the trays may not fit and the bleach not work as effectively as possible if you are still having orthodontic treatment.
– Restorations that you have (including silver, gold, or tooth colored fillings and crowns) will not change shade via bleaching. If you are planning to have restorative work done after orthodontic treatment, it is best to bleach before the restorations are done so they will be made to match your new, whiter tooth color.
– Though bleaching is a safe and effective way to lighten the shade of your teeth, some patients may experience tooth sensitivity. If you have sensitive teeth after bleaching, you may decrease the frequency of bleaching treatment or ask your dental provider for a less concentrated bleaching formula. Your dental provider may also be able to treat dental sensitivity with a separate procedure.

For more information about bleaching or other procedures that Zapfel Orthodontics offers, please visit our website or call for an appointment.

For More Information

Please call (763) 784-0420 or visit www.ZapfelOrthodontics.com for more information or to schedule a complimentary initial examination and x-ray. Zapfel Orthodontics is located at 1130 NE County Road 10 in Spring Lake Park, MN 55432 and serves the Minneapolis/St. Paul Twin Cities including Coon Rapids, Blaine, Fridley, Roseville, Anoka, Brooklyn Park, Columbia Heights, and Mounds View, Minnesota.



Meet Your Twin Cities Orthodontists

Get to know your Spring Lake Park Orthodontists!

Drs. Zapfel and Madson at Zapfel Orthodontics love getting to know their patients. Here’s your opportunity to get to know Drs. Zapfel and Madson a little better!

What is your favorite thing about being an orthodontist?

Dr. Zapfel: The best part of being an orthodontist is meeting and getting to know so many interesting patients and eventually seeing their smiles the day their braces come off.

Dr. Madson: I love seeing how happy patients are when they get their braces off, and knowing that I played a role in helping them achieve their most beautiful smile. It’s really neat to see the rapid changes in technology, too, with new tools such as Invisalign and mini-implants.

Have you always known you wanted to be an orthodontist?

Dr. Z: No, I didn’t know until fairly late in my dental school training that I wanted to be an orthodontist. Once I saw the amazing things we could do with braces to create great smiles, I knew it was what I wanted to do.

Dr. M: I always knew I’d like to have a job that would allow me to help other people, but it wasn’t until my third year of dental school that I decided orthodontics was definitely what I wanted to do.

Why did you choose orthodontics as a profession?

Dr. Z: By my 4th year at the University of Minnesota Dental school I knew that orthodontics was for me. I had talked to a lot of older students and faculty members and had a good idea of what it would be like to be an orthodontist. I remember especially one of the orthodontists teaching at the University tell me that every orthodontist he knew loved his job and I he was right.

Dr. M: For me, dentistry is the perfect mix of art and science. I like orthodontics in particular because it’s so nice to be able to help improve a person’s self-esteem and confidence through my job. And the patients are great!

Did you ever have braces?

Dr. Z: I did have braces for over 2 years. At that time everyone had braces that were stainless steel and of course there were no colors to put on them. With todays choices of ceramic, gold, or stainless steel braces I think I would pick ceramic.

Dr. M: I had braces as a teenager. I could choose colors for my braces, but Invisalign hadn’t been invented yet, and ceramic braces weren’t as good as they are today.

If you weren’t an orthodontist, what would you be?

Dr. Z: When I was in college I majored in biology and the first Earth Day was during my senior year. I think I would have followed a career in ecology if I hadn’t decided to go to dental school. We are very conscious of having a green office and I think that stems from my ecology background.

Dr. M: I think I’d be a teacher or a music video director. That would be fun!

What is an interesting fact about yourself?

Dr. Z: I am planning a trip to Uzbekistan next spring to visit my daughter who is a foreign service officer in Tashkent.

Dr. M: I love to eat, but I only know how to make one meal from scratch. Some day I’ll take some more cooking classes!


What are some of your hobbies and interests?

Dr. Z: I’m usually active and like to do a variety of things. I can be found on the golf course on occasion. I have been runner for over 25 years and although I don’t run in marathons or other events I hate to miss out on a good jog after work. My hobby is the flower garden in back of the office. It is always a work in progress. Gardening is a bit like orthodontics in that you start out with a plan and help things along. Sometimes it takes a year or two before you see the end result.

Dr. M: I really like watching and playing sports and music. When I have time off, I enjoy traveling, and I like to stay active at the gym and outdoors.

What is your favorite food?

Dr. Z: I really like any kind of seafood and my favorite place to eat is Oceanaire.

Dr. M: I love ice cream! I like anything frozen and sweet.

Where did you grow up?

Dr. Z: I was born in Chicago and lived in the city until I was in second grade. Then we moved to the suburbs of Chicago. I came to Minnesota to attend college and have been here ever since then. I started my practice at the Unity Professional Building in Fridley and moved to Spring Lake Park in 1996.

Dr. M: I was born in South Korea, but I grew up in the Twin Cities. I’ve lived here basically my whole life aside from going to college in western Minnesota. I also studied for a semester in Germany during dental school, which was a great experience!

Do you have any pets?

Dr. Z: No, I don’t have a pet. I have had several dogs and a cockatiel at different times.

Dr. M: No, I don’t have any pets, but I’ve had fish, birds and guinea pigs in the past.

For More Information

Please call (763) 784-0420 or visit www.ZapfelOrthodontics.com for more information or to schedule a complimentary initial examination and x-ray. Zapfel Orthodontics is located at 1130 NE County Road 10 in Spring Lake Park, MN 55432 and serves the Minneapolis/St. Paul Twin Cities including Coon Rapids, Blaine, Fridley, Roseville, Anoka, Brooklyn Park, Columbia Heights, and Mounds View, Minnesota.



Another Tasty Recipe From Your Friends at Zapfel Orthodontics!

Another Tasty Recipe!

Kim, our Treatment Coordinator, will always greet the patients at Zapfel Orthodontics with a smile! Besides being a great asset to the Zapfel Orthodontics team, Kim is also a fabulous baker. Please enjoy this delicious braces-friendly recipe from Kim!

Pumpkin Bars
4 eggs
1-2/3 cup sugar
1 cup oil
16 oz. can pumpkin
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda

Beat eggs, sugar, oil, and pumpkin. Add dry ingredients. Stir all together. Spread in jelly roll pan (not greased). Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

Frosting
3 or 4 oz. cream cheese – softened
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar
1 stick butter or margarine, softened
(Optional) Can decorate on top with Pumpkin corn candies or chopped walnuts

Cream the cream cheese, butter and vanilla. Add powdered sugar and mix thoroughly. Frost when cool.

If you have a braces-friendly recipe that you’d like to share, please bring it in at your next visit!

For More Information

Please call (763) 784-0420 or visit www.ZapfelOrthodontics.com for more information or to schedule a complimentary initial examination and x-ray. Zapfel Orthodontics is located at 1130 NE County Road 10 in Spring Lake Park, MN 55432 and serves the Minneapolis/St. Paul Twin Cities including Coon Rapids, Blaine, Fridley, Roseville, Anoka, Brooklyn Park, Columbia Heights, and Mounds View, Minnesota.



Blaine Orthodontic Office Keeps Your Mouth Happy

Braces-Friendly Recipe from Blaine Orthodontic Office!

The cool weather is rolling in, and we here at Zapfel Orthodontics want to make sure our patients stay warm and well-fed!  We asked Pat, our scheduling coordinator, what her favorite cold weather recipe is.  Below is one of her favorite braces-friendly recipes: Speedy Spinach Lasagna.  Do you have a favorite braces-friendly recipe to share?  Let us know!

Speedy Spinach Lasagna

1 package spaghetti sauce mix

1 6-ounce can tomato paste

1 8-ounce can tomato sauce

1 3/4 cups cold water

2 eggs

1 15-ounce container ricotta or 1 pound creamed cottage cheese

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/2 pound sliced mozzarella cheese

1/2 pound uncooked lasagna noodles, broken in half

Dash of oregano

Empty spaghetti sauce mix into saucepan; add tomato paste, tomato sauce and water.  Heat, stirring, until well blended.  Remove from heat.  Beat eggs in a large bowl and add Ricotta or cottage cheese, spinach, salt and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.  Lightly grease the bottom of a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish; cover with a little sauce.  Layer noodles, half of the cheese-spinach mixture, half the mozzarella cheese and half the tomato sauce.  Repeat layers.  Sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and a dash of oregano.  Cover dish with a lightly greased sheet of aluminum foil and bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 60 minutes or until noodles are tender.  Let stand 10 minutes before cutting in squares and serving.  Serves 8.

For More Information

Please call (763) 784-0420 or visit www.ZapfelOrthodontics.com for more information or to schedule a complimentary initial examination and x-ray.  Zapfel Orthodontics is located at 1130 NE County Road 10 in Spring Lake Park, MN 55432 and serves the Minneapolis/St. Paul Twin Cities including Coon Rapids, Blaine, Fridley, Roseville, Anoka, Brooklyn Park, Columbia Heights, and Mounds View, Minnesota.



Spring Lake Park Orthodontist Celebrates National Orthodontic Health Month

October is National Orthodontic Health Month

Did you know that October is National Orthodontic Health Month?  In honor of this month, your friendly Twin Cities orthodontists at Zapfel Orthodontics wanted to briefly review a few of the reasons why orthodontic treatment is important for many people.

  • Overall Oral Health:  When teeth are crooked or crowded, it can be more difficult to keep them clean.  If oral hygiene is not properly maintained, it is possible to develop cavities or gum disease.  Orthodontic treatment can straighten teeth, which can make it easier to maintain proper oral hygiene.

  • Confidence Boost:  Having a beautiful smile can increase confidence.  Good confidence is an important part of being a happy and successful individual.  It is amazing how many people feel better about themselves with straighter teeth!

  • Best Function:  Straight teeth that fit together well generally function much better than teeth that do not fit together well.  If you have a malocclusion, or bad bite, your orthodontist can help you achieve your most functional bite.

  • Esthetics:  A nice side effect of orthodontic treatment to obtain the best function is that the teeth will line up, so the result is a functional AND beautiful smile!

There are many other reasons why people seek orthodontic treatment.  If you would like to learn how you can benefit from braces or Invisalign, please visit Zapfel Orthodontics for a complimentary exam.  We can discuss whether or not you will benefit from orthodontic treatment, and which options would best suit your teeth and overall lifestyle!

For More Information

Please call (763) 784-0420 or visit www.ZapfelOrthodontics.com for more information or to schedule a complimentary initial examination and x-ray.  Zapfel Orthodontics is located at 1130 NE County Road 10 in Spring Lake Park, MN 55432 and serves the Minneapolis/St. Paul Twin Cities including Coon Rapids, Blaine, Fridley, Roseville, Anoka, Brooklyn Park, Columbia Heights, and Mounds View, Minnesota.



Your Customized Orthodontic Plan


Twin Cities Orthodontists customize treatment for each patient

Zapfel Orthodontics is committed to providing excellent service and high quality orthodontic care.  Because no two patients are exactly alike, Twin Cities orthodontists Richard Zapfel and Alisa Madson work hard to customize treatment plans to fit the needs and desires of each individual patient.  Every patient who begins orthodontic treatment at Zapfel Orthodontics will have a comprehensive initial exam.  Before we place braces, we will also collect information at a “records” appointment.  During this appointment, we will take some photos and any indicated x-rays, as well as records of your teeth and how your bite fits together.  With all this information, Drs. Zapfel and Madson will discuss your case in order to present each patient with options and recommendations for his or her most ideal orthodontic treatment plan.

Of course, the main goal of orthodontic treatment is to achieve the best functional and esthetic result for each patient.  There are many types of malocclusions, or “bad bites.”  Treatment for correcting malocclusions may differ from patient to patient.  Some patients may benefit from just braces.  Many patients may need to wear elastics (rubber bands) or other appliances in order to achieve the most ideal correction.  Some patients may also benefit from the use of a “functional appliance,” which can be used to direct growth and development of the jaws toward a favorable direction.  After orthodontic correction is completed, each patient receives customized retainers to wear in order to maintain the beautiful result we’ve achieved together!

During treatment, the goals of each patient may also differ.  For example, some patients look forward to choosing colors to show off their braces.  Other patients may choose clear braces or Invisalign in order to minimize the appearance of their orthodontic appliances.  Whatever your desires are, we can discuss the most effective and efficient treatment that best fits your needs, desires, and lifestyle.

Regardless of the type of orthodontic treatment plan you choose, we strongly encourage each of our patients to continue to see their general dentist for regular exams and dental cleanings.  The best orthodontic results are achieved when the orthodontists, dentist, and patient all work together to successfully follow each patient’s individualized treatment plan.

For More Information

Please call (763) 784-0420 or visit www.ZapfelOrthodontics.com for more information or to schedule a complimentary initial examination and x-ray.  Zapfel Orthodontics is located at 1130 NE County Road 10 in Spring Lake Park, MN 55432 and serves the Minneapolis/St. Paul Twin Cities including Coon Rapids, Blaine, Fridley, Roseville, Anoka, Brooklyn Park, Columbia Heights, and Mounds View, Minnesota.