Minnesotaorthodontist's Blog


More Smiles by Zapfel Orthodontics!

Congratulations to more of our newly braces-free patients!!

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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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.



Twin Cities Orthodontist Discusses Brushing and Flossing

The Importance of Good Oral Hygiene

“Only floss the teeth you want to keep!” Have you ever heard that quote before? Brushing and flossing is not only important for oral health, it is important for overall general health, too. We need our teeth to eat a well balanced diet. Teeth are also important for other functions such as speaking, and of course nice teeth are esthetically pleasing.

While wearing braces, it is much easier for food to get stuck around teeth. It is also more difficult to keep the teeth clean, but it is very important in order to not develop white scarring or even cavities around the braces. If plaque is left on the teeth, the enamel can become scarred and the gum tissue can become unhealthy.

At Zapfel Orthodontics, every patient who has braces gets a specially made oral hygiene kit, including floss, threaders, toothbrush, timer, interproximal brushes, and more. While wearing braces, it is important to brush at least 3 times per day (especially after eating), and floss at least once per day. If you have any questions about how you use something in your kit, just ask at your next appointment or give us a call!

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.



The Importance of Orthodontic Timing

Twin Cities Orthodontist on Treatment Timing

For many people, timing of orthodontic treatment is very important. Often, there is an underlying problem in the size of one or both jaws that is causing the teeth to not line up properly. In these instances, early treatment (also known as “Phase I”) may be indicated. If this opportunity for jaw growth guidance is missed, some patients may require jaw surgery for a complete bite correction. In other cases, waiting too long to have orthodontic treatment can allow teeth in poor positions to wear in an unhealthy or excessive pattern, which can require expensive restorative dental work in conjunction with orthodontic treatment.

We at Zapfel Orthodontics always strive to do what is best for each patient. However, we understand that orthodontic treatment requires an investment of time and money. For these reasons, we try our best to accommodate each individual and be as flexible with financing as possible. Our financing is done here at the office, always with zero interest. We feel that every patient deserves to have the best chance at achieving a high-quality result, and we never want finances to be the reason why a great result is not achieved.

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.



Minnesota Orthodontist Discusses Braces Emergencies

How To Handle Braces Emergencies

The holiday season is upon us, which means that many dental offices are closed a few extra days during the month. Jenny, one of our talented and friendly dental assistants at Zapfel Orthodontics, would like to offer some tips on how to handle orthodontic emergencies!

Wire Poke: One of the most common types of orthodontic emergencies is a wire poke. This more frequently occurs in the beginning months of orthodontic treatment when the wires are more flexible and can shift to the left or right. If you have a poking wire, first try to slide the wire back toward the center, or use wax or wet cotton to cover the area. If this doesn’t work, you may try to clip the wire with a nail clipper, or try bending the wire over with a pencil eraser. If the wire is out of the tube on a molar, you may try to place the wire end back through the tube with a tweezers.

Loose Brace: If you notice a loose brace, just call during open business hours. We can help you schedule a time to come in to have the brace repaired. If the brace is still attached to the wire but is irritating your lips or cheeks, place wax over the brace to relieve the discomfort.

Loose Band: If you notice a loose band (the metal rings around the molars), please call during business hours. We can schedule a time for you to come in to have the band re-cemented. If the band is attached to another wire, or if it is irritating your lips or cheeks, try to place wax over the band or else you may try to clip the wire and remove the band until you can get in. Please bring the band in with you to your next visit. If you were wearing elastics to the loose band, stop elastic wear for the time being.

Soft Tissue Irritation: Use wax to cover any areas of the braces that are irritating your lips or cheeks. Soft tissue irritation is very common in the first days or week of orthodontic treatment, or anytime you have something new placed in your mouth. If necessary, you may take the pain reliever you would normally take for a headache or similar discomfort.

Trauma: If you experience trauma to your mouth while wearing braces, first make sure that you are okay. Seek medical attention if necessary. Often, your lips or cheeks can be cut by the braces if you get bumped in the mouth. If this happens, keep the area clean by using warm saltwater rinses a few times a day. You can also place wax over any brace that is irritating the area. If you have significant trauma to the teeth, please call your dentist to have a thorough evaluation in order to make sure that there are no serious injuries.

Tooth Pain: When the braces or separators are first placed, and occasionally after regular adjustments, you may experience some tenderness or discomfort from your tooth or teeth. If necessary, you may take the pain reliever you would normally take for a headache or similar discomfort. If you develop severe pain that keeps you awake or is sensitive to hot or cold, it is possible that you have a dental infection. In this case, please see your dentist for a complete evaluation.

Bite Changes: As your teeth move, the feeling of your bite will also change. This is to be expected, even toward the end of treatment. If your mouth gets locked shut or open due to temporomandibular joint (TMJ) issues, please call your dentist or orthodontist.

If none of these tips alleviates your discomfort, please call your orthodontist for an appointment. We here at Zapfel Orthodontics always have someone available to answer our patients’ questions regarding emergency orthodontic care. Please have a safe and enjoyable holiday season!

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.