The Christmas season has a special magic that brings joy and happiness to people's lives. It could be the warmth of holiday lights, the excitement of exchanging gifts, or the anticipation of spending time with loved ones.
Smiling is important for our well-being and those around us. During the holiday season, it can be especially helpful to boost our mood and the mood of others. When we smile, our brain releases "feel-good" hormones called endorphins which make us feel happier. Smiling is also contagious and can brighten the day of those who may be feeling down or stressed.
So, let's make an effort to smile more often and spread positivity wherever we go!
The many traditions associated with Christmas, such as baking cookies, decorating the tree, or singing carols, make the season more enjoyable, especially when done with friends and family.
However, Christmas is not only about presents and parties but also about reflection and gratitude. It's a time to appreciate the blessings in our lives and help those who are less fortunate.
Many people volunteer at a local soup kitchen or donate toys to a children's hospital to spread joy during the holidays. Our team participates in a Tree of Giving with our local schools to help provide gifts to deserving boys and girls.
A smile is a powerful tool that can brighten someone's day and spread joy during the holiday season. Whether you're posing for festive photos or simply enjoying the company of loved ones, a confident smile can help you feel more connected and uplifted.
Our team of smile experts is here to help you achieve the perfect smile so that you can fully enjoy all the magic that the holiday season has to offer. Give us a call today to schedule your consultation.
Braces can be a major adjustment for anyone, especially when it comes to diet. Many orthodontists recommend avoiding hard, chewy, or sticky foods to prevent broken brackets. However, one common favorite among all ages is chicken nuggets. But can people with braces still indulge in these crispy, breaded delights?
In this blog, we will look at a few of our favorite chicken nuggets from area restaurants and see how they fare in the world of braces.
Generally, chicken nuggets are good food for patients with braces. But which ones are considered the best for braces? We recently went around town buying up chicken nuggets (for science!), and we found that some are more suitable than others when you have braces.
The restaurants we visited include Wendy's, Chick-fil-a, Sonic, Zacadoo's, and Mcdonald's. We bought these nuggets from each restaurant and brought them back to test on our own braces model.
We decided not to include chicken strips in our test because we feel chicken strips are entirely something else. Still delicious, just not nugs!
And please remember that this is strictly based on crunchiness and toughness, not taste.
Here are our findings:
1. Wendy's Chicken Nuggets
These are the middle of the road in our braces test. The soft interior makes it very easy to eat, but depending on the crunchiness of the outside, it could be difficult to bite into. Side note: Not good cold. They became tough and dry.
2. Chick-fil-a Chicken Nuggets
The Lord's Chicken Nuggets are some of the most popular in our area, so we had high hopes for them. And we were not disappointed. These nuggets were tender and juicy and had a light batter on the outside, making them easy to bite into, even with brackets. The only thing to watch for may be the denseness of the chicken itself since it's real chicken breast.
3. Sonic Drive-In Chicken Nuggets... AKA Popcorn Chicken
So while technically not a chicken nugget, these small bite-sized chicken pieces were their equivalent. Unfortunately, these did not fare well in our braces test, and we recommend caution with these while you have braces on your teeth. Or better yet, avoid them altogether and opt for other options at Sonic to prevent possible bent wires or broken brackets. We love their burgers and tots! And their milkshakes!
4. Zacadoo's Chicken Nuggets
This is a local place in our area, and it's well-known for its chicken fingers. On the day we tried them, they were overcooked and chewy, making them difficult for the braces model to bite into. The batter was much too hard to eat without possibly bending wires or breaking off brackets. Maybe these would be a good option on a better day, but we can't recommend them for our test.
5. McDonald's Chicken Nuggets
The classic! These are the nuggets that started it all, the ones we all grew up on. McDonald's chicken nuggets are known for their crispy coating, but our study found that the ones we received were surprisingly easy to bite into and even easier to eat. The coating was not too hard and would not be a problem to eat with braces on, as long as the nuggets were not too old or overcooked.
Mostly, all chicken nuggets are the same, a great food option for patients with braces. While we recommend avoiding popcorn chicken varieties due to the extreme crispness and chewiness, the classic nuggets are a great choice! Just be mindful of how your nuggets are prepared, and always be careful eating nuggets with extra heavy coating or breading. Also, watch out for overcooked nuggets, as these can be harder to bite into.
And as always -- Don't forget to brush your teeth!
So... Which is your favorite chicken nugget? Let us know in the comments below!
“Look after the land and the land will look after you, destroy the land and it will destroy you.” —Aboriginal Prover
Recycling is becoming more important in our world today as we seek to reduce waste and increase sustainability.
With the growing concern for the environment, it is no surprise that people are interested in finding new ways to recycle and reuse materials.
Whether through traditional recycling methods or innovative ideas such as recycling Invisalign materials, we can all do our part to make a difference.
Due to the increasing worry about the environment, numerous individuals seek methods to diminish waste and contribute to improving the environment.
The Hester and Morris Team is committed to helping in this endeavor. That's why we are excited to announce that we are partnering with a recycling program called Terracycle.
TerraCycle is a company that specializes in recycling hard-to-recycle materials. With their help, Align Technology, the makers of Invisalign, is working with TerraCycle to recycle the specially made SmartTrack ® Invisalign material.
As you know, the plastic of Invisalign is different than the regular plastic or even of other clear aligners. That's one of the ways Invisalign is set apart. Previously we could not recycle the Invisalign and advised patients to throw old aligners in the trash.
With this new partnership with TerraCycle, our patients can recycle their old aligners and help the environment simply by bringing them to the office.
TerraCycle can recycle both the aligners and the little bags they come in.
Just bring them into our office any time you're close by or at your next appointment and put them into the recycling bin. We'll take care of the rest.
As a reminder, we always encourage our patients to keep their previous set of aligners to use as a backup in case an aligner doesn't fit or gets lost. This advice does not change with this new recycling program.
At this time, the Invisalign boxes or cases are not accepted.
We're excited to be able to offer this recycling program! If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out by phone or email.
Get ready to save your smile AND the environment! Live Life Smiling!
October is here, and that means Halloween is on the way!
The Hester and Morris team hopes you will join us on Thursday, October 27, from 4:30 to 6:00, as we partner with our neighbors from Southland Children’s Dentistry for our annual Smile-O-Ween event!
What is Smile-O-Ween?
Started in 2020, Smile-O-Ween is a drive-through Halloween event in Valdosta, Georgia, started by a collaboration between Hester Morris Orthodontics and Southland Children’s Dentistry.
During the pandemic, options for children during Halloween were limited, and we wanted to give back to our community and provide a fun little outing for our younger patients. We gave out a lot of candy and put smiles on many faces!
Smile-O-Ween has been such a success these past two years that we’ve decided to continue it again this October!
Simply drive through the parking lot between our two offices, and our team will be dressed in costume and handing out candy bags. No getting out of the car is needed! Our neighbors from Southland Children’s Dentistry will join in on the fun.
While they last, we'll have candy, kids' coloring books, and a toothbrush in trick-or-treats bags for children in attendance.
Eating at the movie theater can be a daunting task. What should you eat? There are so many choices! But when you have braces, it can be a bit more complicated.
If you have braces, here are a few things you should avoid when eating at the movies.
This is a classic movie go-to for most people. But when you have braces, it's not so simple.
When you eat popcorn with your braces on, the kernels can get caught in the brackets and cause damage. This can easily lead to gum irritation when kernels cannot be quickly brushed out.
Plus, who wants to see a braces smile that's full of popcorn?
This is another classic movie food full of cheesy goodness, but also one to watch out for if you are wearing braces.
The tortilla chips can get caught in the braces and cause the brackets to break loose from the wire. Even if you're careful, mistakes can happen! That's why we just recommend avoiding nachos altogether.
This sour-sweet candy has been around since the 1960s but is way too hard to bite down on when you have braces. Leave a comment if you've ever been unfortunate enough to try one... Much too dry, even without braces!
Skittles, Milk Duds, & Sour Patch Kids:
Are you a sweet or sour candy person? If you're like us, there's room for both! Either way -- Beware of these extra chewy candies that can suction to braces.
So... What can you eat at the movies while you have braces?
The good news is that there are still options for snacks that are not off-limits for braces patients. Here are a few of our favorites.
Cookie dough bites
Reese's Pieces and M&M's (without nuts)
Pizza (without the crust)
We love these movie snack options because they're easy to grab and don't have any significant risk factors when it comes to braces.
What happens if I break a bracket on my braces?
Trust us; we see it all the time. Mistakes happen, or even with our best efforts, a bracket could come loose while eating movie snacks.
If you break a bracket, the Hester & Morris team can help repair your braces at a time that is convenient for you. You can always call or send a message HERE.
Broken brackets can cause delays in your orthodontic treatment, and so for that reason, we will always encourage our patients to stay away from any foods that can cause breakage. Better safe than sorry! Want more info about braces? Check this out!
[caption id="attachment_145" align="alignnone" width="200"] Pine Grove Students[/caption]
The shoes are new, and the pencils are sharpened; it’s time for back to school!
Of all the things that we at Hester Morris Orthodontics get to help within our community, it's being a Community Partner in Education that is incredibly close to our hearts.
We love supporting our schools and giving back with donations of time and supplies during the year. At the start of the school year, one of the ways that our team helps support our local schools is through the provision of drawstring bags and lanyards for our area middle schools. These bags are so helpful in holding gym clothes, and students love them!
The schools appreciate the lanyards as well, for they hold student IDs that many schools require. In addition to these donations, our team has also helped try to brighten the days of art returning teachers with donations of food and gift cards for raffles and contests and their schools. Who couldn’t use a gasoline gift card in 2022?!
We believe in being community minded and serving in the city we work and live in! Our patients matter to us. Therefore, we must invest in their schools.
The best way to do that is to give back to our schools. When we can provide our schools with supplies and bags for the students, we feel like we are making a difference in the community. We are thankful for the opportunity to partner with our schools, and we know that our staff and patients will also benefit from the partnership. We know our education system is essential to our city and our country, and we are glad to be a part of helping our community schools!
Schools make us smile -- What about you? What causes are important to you? Tell us in the comments below!