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Can I Play Sports with a Mouthguard When I Get Braces?

Dr. Raymond Kubisch, Dr. Andrew Ferris and the team at Kubisch & Ferris Orthodontics recommends to their patients who play sports that they wear a mouthguard so that their braces stay protected during their activity. Dr. Raymond Kubisch and Dr. Andrew Ferris believes it is important for all their patients to know exactly what mouthguards do and why they are important. Active patients can focus then on their game and also stay on schedule with their orthodontic treatment in Santa Barbara CA. The professionals at Kubisch & Ferris Orthodontics treat all their patients with the care and consistency that their lifestyles demand while ensuring the best possible treatment outcomes.

What do mouthguards do?

Mouthguards help prevent injuries to the teeth and jaws when patients get active in sports or physical activities. Many sports teams and leagues (football, lacrosse, and ice hockey) require mouthguards because they help keep the players teeth and mouth safe during their activity. When a patient has braces, mouthguards are even more important so the braces stay intact and do not break.

What are the different types of mouthguards available?

There are three main kinds of mouthguards that can be used by patients with braces in Santa Barbara CA. These three kinds of mouthguards are:

  1. Stock Mouthguards: Stock mouthguards are inexpensive, come ready to wear, and can be bought at most sporting goods stores. Stock mouthguards offer the least amount of protection for a patient’s teeth and braces. They are a one-size-fits-all uniform fit and therefore cannot be adjusted easily. Some patients find them bulky and that they make talking and breathing difficult.
  2. Boil-and-Bite Mouthguards: Boil-and-bite mouthguards mold to the player’s teeth and gums. To get a custom fit, a patient would heat the mouthguard in hot water to soften the thermoplastic material. The patient then bites down on the warm, softened mouthguard to mold it perfectly to fit their teeth and braces. Boil-and-bite mouthguards can be found at most sporting goods stores and, although they are a little more expensive than stock mouthguards, they are not prohibitively expensive.
  3. Orthodontic Mouthguards: Orthodontic mouthguards are available only by orthodontists like Dr. Raymond Kubisch and Dr. Andrew Ferris. These mouthguards may be more expensive than the others, and they are customized to fit and protect the teeth and braces. Orthodontic mouthguards offer the most comfort and protection of any of these types of mouthguards. 

No matter what mouthguard you choose, Dr. Raymond Kubisch, Dr. Andrew Ferris and the pros at  Kubisch & Ferris Orthodontics want to make sure that your teeth and braces are fully protected during any kind of physical activity. It’s important to any competitor to perform their best on the field, diamond, or court, so make sure your braces are protected while you play. For more information on mouthguards or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Raymond Kubisch and Dr. Andrew Ferris, please call Kubisch & Ferris Orthodontics in Santa Barbara CA today at: 805.964.4786


Why Does My Child Need Braces Twice?

“I just finished taking my 8 year old to the orthodontist and I was told that they should start a two-phase treatment before all of the baby teeth are lost.  It just seems so aggressive to start so young. “

Over the last several years, the approach to orthodontic treatment has changed remarkably.  In past years, it was not unusual for the orthodontist to recommend that treatment not start until all the permanent teeth were in and growth was complete.  The thinking was that the child could grow out of the correction if done early and that by waiting, there was less risk.  The consequence is that once growth is complete, the ability to positively influence growth is also lost.  Studies have shown that kids with crowded teeth do not have additional useful jaw growth after the age of 6. However, in many children it is possible to gain additional jaw growth using orthopedic arch expansion to create space for the crowded teeth.  This is as an alternative to extraction of permanent teeth.  This is not to say that extraction is wrong, as it may still be the treatment of choice in some cases.  For example, where there is a combination of crowded teeth and forward protrusion of the front teeth.  It can also be useful in other cases.

This change in thinking has resulted in a change in the name of the Orthodontic specialty from “Orthodontics” to “Orthodontics and Facial Orthopedics”.   It is now common for Orthodontic residency training programs to devote much of the curriculum to treatment planning for younger patients.  In these selected cases, the Orthodontic treatment is purposely divided into two phases.  The first to gain control of the amount of space available for permanent teeth along with preliminary bite correction and a second stage of treatment after full dental development to finish.  In these cases, the second stage should not be viewed as a failure of treatment but rather a planned event to finish with the best result.

Dr. Raymond Kubisch and Dr. Drew Ferris have spent the last 30 plus years developing a protocol for this type of treatment that is unique in the Santa Barbara area.  It is important to note that not all children need interceptive treatment. If early treatment is recommended, the plan is based on each child as an individual with precise measurements that assure control of the treatment so as not to over treat the child.  The treatment is also unique in that it addresses both the upper and lower dental arches where some providers propose treatment plans that treat the upper arch only.  The typical Phase 1 treatment is about 13 months in length followed by observation and retention with the completing stage lasting about 12 to 15 months.  The combined treatment time is similar in time to a single stage of treatment but the results can be far superior.  Early treatment can also provide an early boost for the child’s self esteem and allow them to be complete with orthodontic treatment before High School begins.

If you are interested in finding out more about this approach to treatment, please call 805-687-7417 for a complimentary consultation.   We are conveniently located on upper State Street in Santa Barbara.


Braces for Kids in Santa Barbara CA

In Santa Barbara, everyone always asks the question, “When is the best time for my child to get braces?”  According to Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics, located in Santa Barbara CA, orthodontic treatment starts at different ages, depending on each child’s needs.  No two sets of teeth are ever the same, so never consider a specific age the time for kids to get braces.  Orthodontic treatment for kids is a good option, and should be considered for most kids.

At Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics, childhood braces are seen to be great in reducing the risks of dental problems later in life.  When kids get braces, they have less of a chance of needing tooth removal in the future.  Early orthodontic treatment can also create facial symmetry and create room for crowded, erupting teeth.  The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that kids should be evaluated at around the age of seven to see if orthodontic treatment is needed, but the age of seven is not the age for every kid.

If you have a child in Santa Barbara that you think would benefit from braces, Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics would be glad to evaluate him or her.  Please contact us at (805) 687-6417 to schedule an appointment, or e-mail us at

Straighten Your Teeth in Goleta, CA

Have you been lacking confidence in your smile for a while now and are tired of the way you look with unstructured teeth? We at Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics in Goleta, CA are here to help you make the necessary changes to straighten your teeth and obtain that winning, radiant smile. You may be experiencing common issues such as crowding of the teeth, overbite, spacing of the teeth, etc. All of these problems and more are highly common and usually easy to correct with the right treatment. Fortunately, if you are suffering from one or more of these complications, Drs. Kubisch and Ferris, along with their dedicated staff, are more than qualified and willing to accommodate your every need; catering to your comfort levels in order to ensure customer satisfaction and loyalty. At Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics, we will be sure to correct and straighten your teeth in the most efficient and feasible way possible, no matter what issue you may be experiencing. Whether you are a child that just needs a simple retainer for adjustment lining or a teen or adult that needs braces, we offer many different treatment options and packages that are both reliable and affordable. For instance, if you are in need of braces but are opposed to the distasteful look of metal braces, we offer the clear and removable option of Invisalign. Don’t wait any longer to correct and straighten your teeth in order to bring back that confidence and obtain a glowing smile. Please contact us at (805) 964-4786 to schedule your consultation today!

Oral Hygiene and Braces

Why bother to spend thousands of dollars and years of your time on straightening your teeth, and then ignore your oral hygiene? When you have braces, you will need to brush your teeth several times per day, ideally after every meal. Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics says that this may sound like a big pain, but you’ll get used to it. In fact, you will want to brush your teeth often, because food gets stuck between your brackets, which can be really disgusting and cause bad breath and tooth decay. At the very least, Drs. Kubisch and Ferris say you should swish your mouth with water after eating.

For brushing your teeth while wearing braces, Drs. Kubisch and Ferris say you can get an orthodontic toothbrush or use a regular soft toothbrush. Both types of toothbrushes are available in the Santa Ynez area. The important thing is to clean your braces thoroughly, making sure that there is no food debris on any of the brackets. You should also floss at least once per day. It isn’t always easy, but there are many “floss threader” products on the market that help. The team at Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics can show you how to brush and floss properly. Speaking of brushing, remember that it is not recommended that you use a whitening toothpaste when you have braces. It could cause you to have “two tone” teeth after the brackets are removed!

Another thing to remember is that although a device like a Waterpik is great for gum stimulation and dislodging food, it is not a substitute for flossing. Even if you use an oral irrigator, you still need to floss daily.

Because you will be brushing so often, it helps to keep a dental kit with you. Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics recommend that you keep a toothbrush, floss and a spill-proof folding cup in your dental kit.

Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics wants to remind you that as your braces and brackets will rub on the inside of your gums and lips and may cause mouth sores so it is imperitive to keep up with your oral hygiene while wearing braces. If your mouth is sore, you can rinse with warm salt water or take Tylenol or ibuprofen. If you ever have questions or concerns with your orthodontic treatment, please feel free to stop by the office near Santa Ynez or call us at 805-687-7417. Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics wants you to be happy with that beautiful smile.

Avoid a Braces Emergency this July 4

braces-emergency-buelltonJuly 4th is fast approaching and you know what that means. Family gatherings and BBQ. Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics wants to warn their patients who wear braces about what BBQ foods to avoid. Drs. Kubisch and Ferris recommend following these tips to avoid a braces emergency visit to their office near Buellton.

Hard foods to Avoid Include:

Corn on the Cob – try taking it off the cob
Ribs on the Bone
Apples, Pears or any fruit that puts pressure directly on your braces (cut your fruit)
Taco shells
Hard Rolls and Bagels

Sticky Foods to Avoid Include:

Gum (sugar-free or regular) / Bubble Gum
Taffy (sorry no salt water Taffy)
Sugar Daddies
Tootsie Rolls

Sweet Foods/Drinks to Avoid Include:

Ice Cream
Keep Soda and Gatorade to a minimum

The team at Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics near Buellton wants you to have a safe and healthy celebration this July 4. So make sure to take care of those braces so that you can avoid any emergency orthodontic treatment visit. If you do need us, call 805-687-7417. Otherwise, enjoy the fireworks and we’ll see you soon.

Brace-ism is a Form of Bullying

Portrait Of Happy Young WomanEveryone knows the classic story: A kid gets braces, goes to school and now he/she is the target for anyone who thinks it’s funny to be different. You hear the old jabs; metal mouth, brace face, antenna head, etc. The urban dictionary term for this (yes there’s a term!) is Brace-ism. Brace-ism is defined as “Acting mean towards people who have braces on their teeth”. Bullying is wrong on many levels, especially when it’s for the greater good of teeth straightening!  Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics in Goleta wish to assure every kid that it’s okay to be different. Braces are essential for healthy straight teeth, so here are some ways to fight against the evil forces of brace-ism!

Take the high road! When you are struck with the slings and arrows of an anti-braces onslaught, just turn around and smile. Show them those big, beautiful brackets and be proud! Soon you will have an award winning grin that will put most of those naysayers to shame.

Come up with a snappy retort! If someone calls you “brace-face” or “metal mouth” you can volley back with “thanks for noticing I didn’t know you cared!” or “metal in your mouth is better than rocks in your head!” This might give a bully something to chew on before he/she decides to mention it again!

Be confident that you are great looking! Remember that those braces are a part of you, and that if you are beautiful then your braces are beautiful too! Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics will work hard to give you and your loved ones the confidence deserved that come with a great smile! Visit our website at  or contact us at 805-964-4786 for more information on how we can help you improve your tomorrow!

Traveling with Braces on Memorial Day Weekend

memorial-day-braces-montecitoTraveling is an exciting and eye-opening experience. If you have braces and will be traveling this Memorial Day weekend don’t forget to pack a braces traveling kit. Here are a few things that Drs. Kubisch and Ferris of Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics near the Montecito, CA area suggest that you pack:

  • A travel-sized or full-size toothbrush
  • Non-whitening mild toothpaste
  • A durable folding cup or a container for water
  • Dental floss and floss threaders, or special dental floss for braces
  • A small interproximal dental brush
  • Interdental picks
  • Dental wax
  • Advil or Tylenol
  • A small folding mirror

Please note that if an orthodontic emergency occurs during your travels (i.e. poking wires causing pain) and you are not near Montecito, the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) can provide you with referrals to great orthodontics. And if you are traveling outside of the country, many countries have ortho organizations like the AAO, also, the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers (IAMAT) maintains a network of medical personnel, hospitals and clinics around the world that have agreed to treat IAMAT members who need care.

As a precautionary measure before you go, schedule an appointment for an exam with Drs. Kubisch and Ferris , and please feel free to contact Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics at 805-964-4786 with any questions you may have during your travels. Be safe!

Whiten with Braces Yes or No?

braces-whiten-los-olivosCan I whiten my teeth while I have braces on? According to Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics, the answer is yes. You can in fact whiten your teeth while wearing braces, but it is not recommended. Drs. Kubisch and Ferris say, when you get your braces off after whitening, you may have yellow squares on your teeth where the brackets were attached. The best thing you can do instead is to use a whitening toothpaste, mouthwash and floss! Don’t forget you should keep up with good oral hygiene by brush your braces after every meal.

Who doesn’t want a nice white smile to go along with those perfectly straight teeth? As soon as those braces are off, Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics recommends that you schedule a cleaning with your dentist. After a good cleaning, if your son or daughter is not content with the color of their teeth, you can buy over the counter whitening strips. Or you can go to your local dentist in Los Olivos and have them whiten them for you!

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please visit our office near Los Olivos! Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics is always excited to assist you so feel free to call 805-964-4786.

Retainers – What you need to Know

retainer-goletaThe day has finally arrived for you to get your braces removed by Kubisch and Ferris Orthodontics in Goleta, CA. The next step is a retainer! Retainers are used to hold the teeth in their new positions, and are either removable or permanent.

Removable retainers are fairly easy to use and care for, and they make brushing and flossing easier and more comfortable. The retainer is placed in at night, worn while you sleep and taken out in the morning. Retainer schedules may vary from individual to individual, but there are generally times during the day where Drs. Kubisch and Ferris may or may not mandate wearing it. Drs. Kubisch and Ferris stress that the removable retainer schedule can lead to forgetfulness. However, if you don’t remember to wear the retainer, you won’t be benefiting from it completely.

Permanent retainers are more effective than removable retainer, and are a great option for patients who don’t want the extra responsibility of a retainer schedules. The only thing you should be mindful of with a permanent retainer is that it may be more difficult to floss, but Drs. Kubisch and Ferris can help show you how to quickly and effectively do so.

Both may be recommend in some cases with a permanent retainer on the bottom and removable one on top. Whatever the case may be, be sure to follow Drs. Kubisch and Ferris’ advice when using and caring for a retainer.

When Kubisch & Ferris Orthodontics removes your braces, Drs. Kubisch and Ferris will use pliers to remove all the brackets, thoroughly scrape and clean all the glue off your teeth, and take a mold for your new retainer. You will feel a little pressure when the braces are being removed, but no pain. Noteworthy, the newly exposed enamel and your gums will be sensitive at first so Drs. Kubisch and Ferris encourage you to stick to your braces-friendly diet for a little while longer. Just like your braces in the beginning, it will take some time to get used to your retainer, and it may be difficult to speak normally at first. Drs. Kubisch and Ferris recommend practicing speaking, reading aloud or singing as much as you can.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact Kubisch & Ferris Orthodontics at 805-687-7417.