Our Blog

See Your Dream Smile Before You Start, with Zach Frazier Orthodontics

July 6th, 2022

Ever wonder what your smile will look like once you close that annoying gap or fix the crowding? While a doctor can explain the process of straightening your teeth and adjusting your bite, it may be hard to envision what YOUR teeth will actually look like once treatment is complete. Well, at ZFO we have great news for you – we have powerful technology to show you what your future smile will look like! With a clear picture of the expected results, you can  judge for yourself if orthodontic treatment is right for you or your child.

How are we able to show you the result before starting treatment? We use a high-tech iTero intraoral scanner to take a 3D model of your mouth (that’s right – no more goopy impressions!) and then we use software to move your teeth right in front of you on the screen. The software allows us to show you esthetic changes as well as bite correction changes that are needed for an excellent result.

At every complimentary consultation, I use our Smile Simulator technology to show patients what their final outcome will look like. Not only does it help you feel confident that the 6-24 month journey you’re about to embark on will be worth it, but it gives you and/or your child incentive to focus on the end goal with good participation. Everyone knows what we’re working towards from the very start, and seeing is believing.

I became an orthodontist for many reasons, but one of them is that I love building relationships and helping increase their self-confidence in patients. I see providing this glimpse into the future as an important part of each of those journeys. Knowing what our shared goal is helps me connect with you and helps you take pride in the treatment. 

If you’re considering orthodontic treatment for your child, tween or teen (or yourself), we’d love to meet. Zach Frazier Orthodontics is a no pressure practice and all consultations are complimentary. 

Come see us and see what the smile of your dreams might look like today. 

To schedule that complimentary consultation, click or call below.

-Dr. Zach Frazier

CLICK BELOW OR CALL US TODAY FOR A COMPLIMENTARY CONSULTATION. 

Braces or Invisalign: You Have Options!

March 7th, 2022

Dr. Zach Frazier sitting at desk

A common question we hear from parents is “what’s right for my teenager – braces or Invisalign?”  They’ve heard conflicting opinions from their friends or their dentist, but at the end of the day, they want to know what will work best for their child. At Zach Frazier Orthodontics, we believe in educating you on the pros and cons of each option so that you can choose what goes into your child’s mouth. 

You know your child better than anyone else, and you should be involved in deciding what treatment is best for them. At every orthodontic consult (that’s a first appointment, and free, by the way) I talk with patients about the advantages and disadvantages of both Invisalign and traditional orthodontic braces based on what I’ve seen treating thousands of teenagers over the past 10 years.

In this post, I will discuss my perspective as well as the merits, drawbacks, and similarities of each treatment.

Traditional Braces

The technology with braces has come a long way in the past 30 years, and our ability to shorten the time wearing braces continues to improve. Traditional braces use brackets cemented to the face of the tooth, and they can be made out of metal or clear ceramic material.  The braces hold a wire that runs lengthwise to apply pressure, moving teeth into place with ties that secure wires to the brackets. A patient sees slight changes over time as the orthodontist makes adjustments every six to eight weeks. 

Invisalign/Invisalign Teen

Invisalign and Invisalign Teen are clear BPA-free plastic appliances that offer patients an alternative to traditional metal and ceramic braces. It is a relatively newer tool for orthodontists as the technology is about 20 years old.  We take a digital scan of the teeth, creating a 3D image that’s used to produce a series of clear trays (aligners) worn by the patient for 22 hours per day (they should only be taken out to eat and brush/floss). Each aligner is configured to adjust the teeth according to a predetermined treatment plan mapped out by me, Dr. Zach Frazier. A patient sees slight changes over time as the aligners are changed weekly, and the progress is checked regularly every 8 to 12 weeks. 

Benefits

Traditional Braces

  • Tried and true technology that continues to improve over time
  • Participation is virtually guaranteed as there are no decisions about whether to wear or not to wear them 
  • Customizable colors! (if you want them)
  • May have improved outcome for complex or challenging cases
  • Most patients are candidates

Invisalign/Invisalign Teen

  • Clear for aesthetic appeal
  • Office visits can often be spread out over fewer appointments every eight to twelve weeks
  • Easier brushing and flossing
  • Most patients are candidates

Drawbacks

Traditional Braces

  • Metal (or even ceramic) brackets and wires are visible
  • Occasional discomfort from poking wires or brackets that rub the inner portion of the lips
  • Broken brackets that cause “emergency appointments”
  • Brushing and flossing more challenging

Invisalign/Invisalign Teen

  • Participation can sometimes be a challenge – if aligners are not worn, you will see no change
  • More limitations for complex treatments and longer treatment plans
  • Aligners must be removed for snacking and some teenagers are “always snacking” which reduces their aligner wear time
  • Must be removed for eating which can lead to lost aligners

Similarities

  • Both will cause some tooth soreness initially as treatment starts
  • Both move teeth at the same rate so treatment times are similar
  • Both can be used with rubber bands if bite correction is needed
  • Both require you to use a retainer when treatment is completed

What’s right for you?

It may be hard to decide on what option to choose - that’s why we offer complimentary consultations!  

We sincerely will never pressure you one way or the other, and we are truly here to help find what option is best for you and your child : )  

I look forward to meeting you!

- Dr. Zach

CLICK BELOW OR CALL US TODAY FOR A COMPLIMENTARY CONSULTATION. 

We were honored to recently be featured in DMG DENTALPROFILES!

October 25th, 2021

We were honored to recently be featured in DMG DENTALPROFILES! You can view it here (page 59) or read below!


Can you share your journey to becoming an orthodontist? 

I started my education here in Downers Grove at Highland Elementary School, Herrick Middle School, and Downers Grove North. Growing up, I never had my thoughts set on being an orthodontist; instead, I thought about doing something that involved healthcare. My parents are both in healthcare, and I had many extended family members involved in that field as well. After high school, I studied molecular biology and Spanish at The University of Illinois, and after graduation, I began working for an oral surgeon. After this experience, I decided to apply to dental school at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), followed by my orthodontic specialty degree from Washington Hospital Center in Washington, D.C. I was drawn to orthodontics in dental school as I felt like it was the “fun” part of dentistry - no numbing, no needles, etc. I enjoyed the cosmetic and artistry part of orthodontics.

What makes Zach Frazier Orthodontics unique?

A few things make us unique. First, our mission is to serve and improve the community, which is why we are so heavily involved in supporting many schools and organizations locally. Internally, we are seriously dedicated to customer service and communication. We believe there is nothing more important to us than making our patients and their families happy, and we are willing to go above and beyond to prove this. Service, communication, and transparency are sometimes overlooked in the medical field, but those are our key priorities. Straight teeth and a healthy bite are the expectation with any orthodontic office, but we strive to make the experience better than anyone else.

As heavily involved in the community as you are, what are some of the organizations you support and why? 

In the six years that we have been in business, we have made over $40,000 in contributions to 36 community groups/schools/organizations. There are so many to name! We have made many contributions to District 58 & District 99 schools and the private schools in Downers Grove. I attended District 58 & 99 schools growing up, and I love giving back to the schools that helped shape my future. We also have provided support for some schools in the towns surrounding Downers Grove. We are a huge sponsor for many Downers Grove area sports clubs, including Roadrunners soccer, Rebels softball, Hitmen baseball, Fury baseball, Longshots baseball, Panthers football, Downers Grove Youth Baseball, and many more. It is an incredible opportunity to support so many kiddos who come into our office and sponsor their teams. Within Downers Grove, we also support many community groups, such as Downers Grove Junior Woman’s Club, Navigate Adolescence, and The Grove Foundation.

Besides bringing beautiful smiles to your patients, what is the most rewarding part about being an orthodontist? 

One of the most rewarding parts is meeting so many great people. Our dental specialty is very social, and seeing families come in over many years is fun. I love seeing old classmates in the office with their kids.

As a native of Downers Grove, what was your experience growing up here? 

I loved growing up in Downers Grove. I grew up watching movies at the Tivoli with my family, getting ice cream at Every Day’s a Sundae, and heading to McCollum for soccer games. There are so many great memories of playing for Downers Grove North soccer at Carsten’s Field. One thing that is awesome about Downers Grove is that many of my friends who share those memories still live here, too, and we are now reliving those memories with our kids. That’s one of the unique things about Downers Grove – people come back here to settle down and raise their kids, and I think that says a lot about the vibe of this town.

CLICK BELOW OR CALL US FOR A COMPLIMENTARY CONSULTATION

Smile Touch-Up; Minor Fixes, Major Benefits

August 10th, 2021

love your smile again

Many parents we speak to had braces in the past (but didn’t wear a retainer) and lost the straight smile they once had. Many other adults have simply never been happy with their smile. Maybe you’ve never considered orthodontics as an adult because you can’t imagine wearing braces to client meetings or maybe because it’s a big time and financial commitment to undergo years of braces as an adult. 

Whichever boat you fall into, we have good news! Our team doesn’t want any roadblocks in the way of you having a beautiful smile… or having it back again. 

That’s why we’re offering Smile Touch-Up to the adults of our community where Dr. Zach Frazier and our team will address only the elements of your smile that are most important to you. That means shorter treatment times and reduced fees.

People won’t notice you’re wearing them

We 3D print a series of custom clear aligners to straighten your teeth. And, unlike traditional braces that you might have had as a kid, our clear aligners are removable. You take them out briefly when you eat or brush your teeth. Most of the time your aligners will stay in so they can do the work of moving your teeth. The good thing is that they are virtually invisible so people won’t even notice you’re wearing them.    

While we do offer full orthodontic treatment for adults at our practice, we find that many don’t want to make that commitment. Whether it’s financial or time restraints, our Smile Touch-Up is a great option. 

Together we will figure out which elements of your smile are most important to you. We’ll agree on a course of treatment to fix only those areas, and we’ll set an estimated timeline. Because of the limited nature of the adjustments, we are able to improve your smile in a much shorter timeframe than for those looking for full orthodontic treatment. 

You’re not alone

Adults are getting braces and Invisalign clear aligners more than ever before. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) says that adults are getting orthodontic treatment in record numbers, and not all of them for the first time either. Not only that, patients are reporting that after treatment they feel better about themselves and their social lives. Most would recommend seeking out treatment for other adults. Major benefits! 

See an Expert

There are many services out there claiming they can mail you aligners and fix your teeth. We strongly believe that even the smallest changes to your mouth should be done under the in-person care of a trained and certified orthodontist. Dr. Zach Frazier is a board-certified orthodontist with extensive training beyond that of a general dentist.  Our team limits treatment exclusively to braces and Invisalign which means you have your teeth in the hands of an expert.

Make sure you know who it is that is making changes in your mouth. What looks like a small fix could domino into major issues without a trained orthodontist looking at the full picture. 

No Obstacles

At Zach Frazier Orthodontics, we have treated thousands of teens and adults with clear aligners. We know what we’re doing and we’ve treated cases that are both difficult (Full Treatment) and simpler (Smile Touch-Up). Our team strives for clinical excellence in a friendly and welcoming environment. We appreciate that you have a busy schedule and will make sure to have you in and out as quickly as possible - time is important to us! …. It’s one of the reasons why we offer Smile Touch-Up.

Speaking of time, most of our Smile Touch-Up appointments are scheduled at 10-week intervals. And, if you’re away for longer periods of time - we’re talking to you, college students - we can even work with you to ensure your geography doesn’t get in the way of treatment with us. 

Ready to Rejuvenate Your Smile? 

If you’re interested in talking about whether you’re a candidate for a Smile Touch-Up with clear aligners click the button below. We’d be happy to explore this option with you, free of charge.

CLICK BELOW OR CALL US TODAY FOR A COMPLIMENTARY CONSULTATION. 

4909 Forest Ave
Downers Grove, IL 60515
(630) 541-3696