Arkansas Pokémon GO Fans

Arkansas Dentistry & Braces patients know how to have some fun! For all of you Pokémon GO fans, Dr. Burris found a great article with a few tricks to help you step up your game. Read the article here!


One Fee – Smiles Made Easy!

I’ve never been more proud to do what I do. Serving the people of Arkansas has been my mission for over a decade and it’s been a great journey that has led us here! I’m a fanatic when it comes to increasing access to affordable, quality dental care and I’m so excited to announce that all of our Arkansas Dentistry & Braces locations now offer Braces or Invisalign for $3995. One fee for every patient. One fee for clear aligners or traditional braces. One fee that makes getting the smile of your dreams affordable for all Arkansans! We are even going a step further. Not only is our $3995 fee unprecedented, our financing is awesome as well: $300 down, $148 a month for 25 months! I wanted to take a minute and explain how and why we are able to offer such incredible pricing and financing. This drastic change is the culmination of years of work and our dream of increasing access to braces because everyone deserves a great smile.

  1. My business partner, Dr. Justin Bethel, and I are firm believers that we need to be a company that offers ever increasing access to dental care for patients in Arkansas. Braces used to be a privilege but now it is really part of growing up – a rite of passage. We are determined to make it affordable for everyone instead of just wealthy people.
  2. We are moving to a full service, multi-specialty practice that does more than just orthodontics. We now have General Dentists and Orthodontists and Hygienists working in almost all our offices. Now that we do braces and Invisalign as part of a larger business instead of just being an orthodontic practice, things change and pricing changes as a benefit.
  3. As we have gotten bigger the price we pay for equipment and for braces and for everything it takes to do orthodontics goes down. We have also learned to be more efficient and braces take less time from start to finish. We are passing on all these savings to our patients and their families.
  4. The $3995 price is very attractive and will market itself and sell itself. We feel confident that once the word gets out, we will be able to spend less and less on advertising. Again, we will be able to pass this savings on to our patients.
  5. We hope to see the price of orthodontics decline statewide as a result of our bold step, but it is unlikely that other traditional orthodontic practices will be willing or able to lower their prices AND have great financing like we do. Our size gives us a big advantage when it comes to purchasing power. Also, it takes a very solid business to be able to afford to lower your prices and offer great financing because of the implications to cash flow and running a business.

Can you see why the entire ARDB team is so excited about our one fee pricing for orthodontics? I thought I would put a few Frequently Asked Questions here as well:

  1. Does this include Invisalign?
    1. ANSWER: yes
  2. What about a 12 month case?
    1. ANSWER: $3995
  3. What about a 30 month case?
    1. ANSWER: $3995
  4. What about a hard case?
    1. ANSWER: $3995
  5. What about an easy case?
    1. ANSWER: $3995
  6. What is the down payment?
    1. ANSWER: $300
  7. What is the monthly payment amount?
    1. ANSWER: $147.80
  8. How many months of payments?
    1. ANSWER: Only 25! Always 25.
  9. Is this just a summer special?
    1. ANSWER: No
  10. Will we still file insurance?
    1. ANSWER: yes
  11. Can I use other discounts with the $3995 price?
    1. ANSWER: No. The old discounts are for the old pricing.

-Ben Burris, DDS, MDS


Book Our Snow Cone Truck

Arkansas Dentistry & Braces is proud to give back to the communities we serve. You can book our Snow Cone Truck for your next school, church or fundraising event! You can get more information or reserve the truck for your event here! It’s a great way to add some fun to your event!

The AR Dentistry & Braces Smile Squad

Arkansas Dentistry & Braces has an all-star team! We call our team of professionals the Smile Squad. The Smile Squad is determined to make sure you get an amazing smile, but also have a little fun while visiting our office. Visit our Facebook page to learn more and to see the Arkansas Dentistry & Braces Smile Squad in action!


Watch How to Floss Your Kids’ Teeth

Your children’s morning and evening routines likely include the brushing of their teeth—either by you or by them—but are their teeth getting flossed as well?

Flossing your children’s teeth is important because it removes all the little bits of food between teeth that brushes can’t reach. And flossing is not as hard as you might think, especially if you use a little plastic tool called a floss threader.

Let Dr. Burris and his daughter Berkeley show you how it’s done.

Some key tips of the video:

  • Have your child sit in a chair facing you.
  • Start with the lower back teeth and work your way around.
  • Run the floss along both sides of each tooth getting a little below the gumline
  • You should hear a little “pop” each time the threader comes out.
  • When your child first starts flossing, there may be a little bleeding, but it should stop once flossing becomes a regular habit.
  • Flossing once a day is ideal, but a few times a week will do.

Thanks for voting Arkansas Dentistry & Braces Best In NWA!

Arkansas Dentistry & Braces is proud to have been voted the #1 orthodontic practice in NWA! Thank you to our orthodontic patients that nominated us!

Arkansas Dentistry & Braces not only provides braces and orthodontic care, we also provide dental exams, dental cleanings, fillings, crowns, implants and oral surgery. Arkansas Dentistry & Braces can be your home for complete dental care.  

Thank you for voting Arkansas Dentistry & Braces Best in NWA!

Best Orthodontist Seal

What Braces Were Like

When Grandma Wore Braces

If you asked your grandparents about what braces were like in the good old days, they would tell you those days weren’t so good.

Although rudimentary orthodontics have been around for a long time, straightening teeth only became a professional endeavor in the twentieth century. If your grandmother had braces in the 1940s, they were probably made of gold, because its softness made it malleable. But that softness meant frequent visits to the orthodontist for painful readjustments. And gold was more expensive than it is today.

In the 1950s, wearing braces became really popular, even a status symbol. Check out pictures in high school yearbooks from those days, and you can count dozens of metal mouths. Typical braces were thick bands of stainless steel that wrapped completely around each tooth, covering most of the enamel. Just a thin, white sliver of teeth showed above the band, and brushing those bands and wires was a laborious task. Wires loosened easily, and patients had to go at least once a month to the orthodontist for painful tightening. What’s worse, treatment times were often 4 to 8 years, while today most patients wear braces for 1 to 3 years.

Why were treatment times so long? Orthodontists didn’t have good diagnostic tools. They were just beginning to use X-rays, but even with them, doctors had to do a lot of guesswork. They used rulers and protractors to make drawings and plan their work, cutting and pasting images that they thought would fit an individual’s face structure. Because they were operating on educated guesses, they frequently had to make adjustments to their plans. Now, orthodontists have in their diagnostic arsenal panoramic X-rays, moldings of bite impressions, 3-D modeling and other sophisticated tools. These allow them to create a predictable treatment plan.

Back then, orthodontists extracted new permanent teeth when there was no space for them to grow straight in the patient’s mouth. Braces couldn’t create space, so removal was the only solution. Today, if a child is first evaluated at a young age (7 to 9) when facial bones are more plastic, the orthodontist can use a variety of devices to widen or reshape the dental arch so that the patient can retain all of his or her permanent teeth.

In the old days, rubber bands were frequently used to attach braces on the upper teeth to those on the lower. Shaped like tiny miniature doughnuts, the user would struggle to get them on and they would often pop off in the process, flying across the room, or they would break when stretching them to fit onto the braces. Patients back then had to carry packages of rubber bands to be sure they had enough, and they had to be removed to eat and then new ones put on.

Today, there are no more rubber bands, no more night-time head gears which held retainer type devices in place. Bands no longer cover teeth. They are much smaller, lighter in weight and come in many colors. Other modern options include lingual braces that attach to the teeth on the inside of the mouth or Invisalign, clear removable aligner trays that are changed every two weeks.

Wires are no longer stainless steel. They are typically heat-activated nickel titanium that warm to body temperature as they move teeth in anticipated directions. They don’t need adjustment as frequently as steel wires.

When it comes to orthodontics, things have improved a lot since the time grandma and grandpa were young. Braces now are less noticeable, offer greater comfort, need fewer orthodontic adjustments, and work more quickly.

Preventing Tooth Decay While Wearing Braces

“I have had braces for about two years. I admit that about 70 percent of the days I’ve had them I haven’t brushed more than once a day,” a teenager says in an online forum. He goes on to wonder if he can hold off tooth decay if he were to brush more often. If he came to us, we’d tell him that the answer is “yes,” but there’s also more he could do.

Since food gets stuck in unseen places on teeth when braces surround them, cleaning teeth requires both frequency and special tools. Here are some suggestions:

  • Brush after every meal or big snack. The less time food sits on your teeth, the less likely it will cause decay.
  • Use a soft bristle brush at a 45 degree angle or an electric toothbrush, which we frequently recommend because it allows you to easily brush each tooth individually. Be sure to brush all sides of your teeth. Fluoride toothpaste is best.
  • Use a floss threader or a proxabrush to clean between braces and under wires.
  • Use a Water Pik. The pressurized pulsating water it emits removes food particles from hard-to-reach places.
  • End your cleanings with a fluoride mouth wash, which helps disinfect under your braces and other spots where a brush can’t reach.
  • Even if you can’t brush after every time you eat, carry mouthwash to use after eating. At a minimum, rinse your mouth with plain water. It’s better than nothing.
  • Have a dental professional cleaning at least twice a year.

The type of food you eat can also increase the likelihood of decay as well as damage your braces. Any food high in sugar or starch can cause decay. Especially, avoid eating the following:

  • Sticky foods such as gum or caramel, which can get stuck on your braces and be hard to remove.
  • Crunchy treats like chips and popcorn, which can bend or break your wires.

Eating hard foods like apples, corn on the cob, and carrots can break your braces. Still, they can be part of a healthy diet, so cut them into small pieces so you don’t have to bite down hard.

If you have additional questions about how to care for your teeth, feel free to ask us when you’re in for your next appointment.

The Sweets You Can Eat on Halloween

When you have braces, you have to be more careful about what you eat, but you don’t have to let your braces ruin your Halloween fun. Whenever you encounter a bag or bowl of candy, the general rule is the softer the candy, the better. Can it melt in your mouth? OK to eat.

Keep in mind that braces are affixed with a special type of orthodontic glue, and when you work the powerful muscles of your jaw to break apart hard candies, it can cause braces to pop off. Braces are also sort of fragile in their own way, and the strong impact of intense crunching can damage the brackets.

And you should avoid sticky, chewy candies (even if they’re soft). They aren’t always hard to chew, but they can get stuck in your brackets, making your braces hard to clean and fostering tooth decay.

Here’s a partial list to keep in mind:

Fine to eat

  • Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups
  • Hershey’s Kisses
  • Three Musketeers
  • Mounds Bars
  • Kit Kats (which are a little crunchy but still OK)
  • Crunch Bars (again, a little crunchy but OK)
  • M&M’s (but let ’em melt in your mouth first!)

Give away or trade

  • Snickers
  • Hershey’s Bars with Almonds
  • Jelly Beans
  • Laffy Taffy
  • Tootsie Rolls
  • Caramels
  • Twizzlers
  • Skittles
  • Chewing Gum
  • Gobstoppers

Even with the OK-to-eat candies, you don’t want that sugar clinging to your brackets for long. Be sure to brush soon after you eat anything sweet, and enjoy your holiday!

5 Oral Hygiene Tips for Patients in Braces

No one wants to look in the mirror and see food caught in their teeth. It can be embarrassing. But keeping food from getting stuck in your teeth isn’t just about maintaining appearances. A clean mouth means a healthy mouth. With proper oral hygiene, you’ll avoid the build up of plaque, discoloration, gingivitis and other problems.

When you first get braces, you’ll find that cleaning your mouth is harder because the brackets and wires make access to trapped food more difficult, especially near the gum line. At the same time, it’s even more important than ever to keep up with cleaning when you’re in braces. If you don’t, your treatment time could take longer. In a worst-case scenario, a patient can develop gum disease. When this happens, the braces must come off temporarily to let gums heal and their condition improve. Only then can the braces be put back on and treatment resume.

Did that scare you enough? But there’s no need to be worried. It’s actually not all that hard to maintain dental hygiene when you’re in orthodontic treatment. Here are our tips to keep you on top of your game:

1. Eat right and avoid junk
There are foods that are good for your teeth’s enamel like cheese, milk, meat, and chicken, so eat these often. And eating lots of vegetables is always a good idea. The worst foods for your teeth are those high in sugar, so avoid sugary drinks and candy. Especially stay away from hard or chewy candy that can crack your brackets or get stuck in them.

2. Brush often
Aim to brush your teeth four times a day, after each meal and just before bed. With braces, however, you must develop some new techniques. First brush your brackets straight on, then from an upper angle and then again from a lower angle. You can buy a tool called a proxa brush with bristles in a cone shape to help you target brushing in hard-to-reach areas.

3. Floss daily
You won’t be able to use normal floss when your teeth are in braces, but drugstores sell floss threaders with a stiffened end. You can push the end underneath the wire so you can reach your gumline.

4. Use a rinse
Even with dedicated brushing and flossing, you are unlikely to clean every small area where food and biofilm can hide. So make a habit of swishing at night with a fluoride rinse.

5. Keep your appointments
Naturally, you’ll do this anyway, but in addition to checking on the progress of your treatment, we can check for any signs of incipient gum disease. And while you’re in the chair, you can discuss any issues you might be having with keeping your braces clean, and we can recommend or prescribe extra products or rinses.