The shoe went on the other foot a few days ago, when Dr. Wilson experienced the same procedure that thousands of his patients  have gone through.  And now, like them,  he’s adjusting to life with braces. Dr. Wilson explains why, how, and expected outcome below.

dr-wilson-with-bracesWhen I was a kid my twin brother got the braces, since my parents couldn’t afford to have both of us in orthodontic treatment at the same time and his teeth were worse than mine. I have always wanted to fix my teeth since I’ve had a bite problem forever – it’s fine on one side but off on the other. And the teeth with the alignment issue have been wearing down to the point where I  finally needed to act.

dr-wilson-getting-bracesWe made models of my teeth for reference, and I marked where the braces should be placed on each tooth. Lisa, our Clinical Coordinator, handled the actual installation. That’s something she doesn’t normally do but I coached her through the process, sometimes  using a mirror to check her progress. And thanks to Lisa, things went just fine!

Wearing braces really helps me relate to the experiences of my patient. I haven’t had any discomfort at all (actually fell asleep in the chair during the procedure!), but the process has made me appreciate the amount of time and effort that goes into the living with braces. I’m really watching what I eat and concentrating on proper cleaning and oral hygiene.

I’m expecting to be in my braces for about a year and a half but  I’m hoping to be finished in a year. When they’re gone, I’ll need some restorative dental work done by my general dentist to repair the worn teeth. Then, I’ll finally have the new healthy bite that I have always wanted and feeling a lot more comfortable. Hooray for orthodontics…you’re never too old for braces!

Clues To Your Child’s Oral Health


(top) Crooked, crowded teeth prior to treatment
(bottom) Phase 1 results

Tooth and jaw problems start early, and they never get better if they’re not addressed—ideally, sooner than later.

Crowded, crooked teeth – this is a very common condition and one that’s easy to spot. Some orthodontists delay treatment and then extract healthy permanent teeth to gain the needed space to correct the crowding. Instead, Wilson Orthodontics uses early orthodontic treatment to painlessly harness the patient’s own growth potential to create space and correct bad bite problems.

Speech problems – children with pronunciation difficulties often have narrow upper jaws, so there’s not enough room for the tongue to function in proper enunciation. We’ve helped scores of kids overcome speech difficulties with non-surgical jaw expansion.

Eating problems – an underbite (when the lower teeth align in front of the uppers), a deep bite (when the lower front teeth bite against the roof of the mouth) and other orthodontic conditions can make chewing food very difficult.

checking-teethBreathing problems – nasal airway obstruction due to chronic allergies, deviated nasal septum and enlarged tonsils and/or adenoids, etc. can lead to “chronic mouth breathing,” since the patient cannot breathe through the nose. Nasal breathing is necessary for proper jaw growth and bite development. A narrow upper jaw with a receded lower jaw are often caused by chronic mouth breathing. At Wilson Orthodontics, we identify those problems early and recommend the proper treatment to avoid serious jaw growth problems. We have been told that we provide the most thorough initial orthodontic exam in the Central Susquehanna Valley by our patients and referring dentists.


(left) Lip incompetence
(right) Lip competence AFTER treatment

Lip Incompetence – does your child have difficulty closing his/her lips without protruding the lower jaw? This condition has both functional and aesthetic concerns. We address the condition by using a Herbst appliance to grow the lower jaw forward.

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur at the first sign of orthodontic problems or no later than age seven. Please call us at 570-743-8119 for a free initial exam!

Goodbye Goo, Hello 3-D Scans!

For many years, orthodontists have used plaster casts to create replicas of patients’ teeth and jaws. They serve as dental records, and as a tool to fabricate custom-fitted retainers and other orthodontic appliances.

Making a plaster cast involves placing a tray filled with alginate (a gooey paste made from seaweed) into the mouth and taking a firm dental impression of both the upper and lower jaws. When the alginate mold gels in a few minutes it’s removed from the patient’s mouth, and the negative impression is used as a form for the wet plaster. After the plaster hardens, the alginate form is removed from the casting to create the finished product. The process is intricate and laborious, and many patients have found it a bit uncomfortable.

digital-plastic-castWilson Orthodontics has recently invested in an exciting new technology that replaces the need for plaster casts in almost all cases – 3-D digital scanning. There are several advantages of computer-generated modeling, most notably more accurate, reliable results, plus a much more comfortable experience for our patients. Digital scanning also saves materials and valuable storage space – records are stored in the “Cloud,” not inventoried at our office.

This practice has always embraced proven new technologies that benefit our patients and streamline our delivery of their treatment, and 3-D scanning is a big winner…our patients love it and so do we!

We Just Helped “Power Up” Hundreds of Girls!

powerup_500Throughout the years, Wilson Orthodontics has supported numerous non-profit organization in the region. Our latest effort was helping sponsor the Greater Susquehanna Valley chapter’s Girls on the Run spring race, held under beautiful sunny skies on Saturday, May 9th.

Approximately 700 runners participated in the 5K race, which wound along the streets and Rail Trail of Mifflinburg before ending at the Community Park. Our contribution was 30 cases of custom labeled bottled spring water – one 16 oz. bottle for each thirsty participant.

Girls on the Run is a non-profit organization focused on helping girls navigate their lives with confidence and joy. Girls learn their worth comes from within, that healthy relationships matter, and that they can make an impact on the world around them.waterbottles_500

“Fantastic…Thanks so much!,”  was the reaction of the local chapter’s executive director Cheryl Stumpf to our contribution. Cheryl, we’re happy to help and planning to help sponsor the fall race in Selinsgrove, too!

Dr. Wilson Teaches Tricks of the Trade

dr_wilson_presentationSixty eight of the region’s top dentists and their staff recently attended a four-hour presentation hosted by Dr. Wiilson at Lewisburg’s Best Western conference room. The group earned Continuing Education Credits (needed to maintain good standing in their practices) while learning techniques and insights developed in Dr. Wilson’s 37 years of experience.

Part one centered on “Early Orthodontic Treatment with Orthodontic Appliances,” which focused on the many benefits of starting treatment early (Dr. Wilson’s specialty).

The second topic was entitled “Orthodontic Treatment with Jaw Surgery for Non-Growing Patients.” It’s never too late to create a perfect smile but sometimes treatment is a little more involved, and this topic was a perfect segue to our guest speaker’s presentation.

Dr. Barry Stein (with Tri-County Oral-Facial Surgeons headquartered in State College) is Dr. Wilson’s “go-to-guy” when oral surgery is needed.  “Orthognathic Surgery with Orthodontic Treatment” wrapped up the seminar with the best practices for orthodontists and surgeons working closely together in creating optimum results for their patients.

Dr. Wilson reports that the presentation was very well received. “Participants were attentive, asked a lot of great questions, and gave very positive feedback  when the seminar ended. Thanks to all that attended and I look forward to working with you when orthodontics is needed for your patients!”

Early Orthodontic Treatment Fact #3

Protruding teeth are much more prone to serious trauma.

Protruding teeth are much more prone to serious trauma.

Protruding front teeth can cause serious problems for your child. Teasing from other kids and a loss of self-confidence are two. Front teeth that extend out over the bottoms are also much more likely to be chipped or even broken.

This condition can be caused by several factors—heredity, thumb-sucking after the adult teeth have grown in, and outward pressure by the tongue (“tongue thrusting”) can all contribute. But by far, the most common reason why front teeth protrude is that the lower jaw has simply not grown forward enough, exposing the upper teeth to potential trauma.

The Herbst Appliance can provide an effective, non-surgical solution.

The Herbst Appliance can provide an effective, non-surgical solution.

The good news is that the jaws can be easily aligned to their proper position, especially with younger patients. We almost always use a Herbst Appliance to gradually and gently grow the lower jaw forward, while holding the upper jaw back. This modern technology is much more discreet, comfortable, and reliable than old-fashioned “headgear.”

For younger kids (ages 8-12) who are still growing, attaining proper jaw alignment with the Herbst Appliance requires no surgery. Wilson Orthodontics is a big proponent of early treatment, and “Fact #3” is just one reason why!

Early Orthodontic Treatment Fact #2

The Best Way for a Broad, Beautiful Smiles

(top) Before expansion – note the dark shadow at each corner (bottom) After expansion – no dark shadows and an amazing “Hollywood Smile”

(top) Before expansion – note the dark shadow at each corner
(bottom) After expansion – no dark shadows and an amazing “Hollywood Smile”

A common condition our new patients suffer from is narrow jaws—typically the cause of overcrowded and crooked teeth, overbites and other orthodontic problems. Many orthodontists chose to ignore narrow jaw problems, opting to instead to extract healthy teeth, then apply braces. We believe that’s a shortcut—an approach that doesn’t address the real problem. The results are often not stable, and the patient ends up with a smile (complete with “dark shadows”) that falls far short of what it could be.

It’s standard practice at Wilson Orthodontics to recognize and treat narrow jaw problems. We use an expander to gently widen jaws prior to shifting teeth into their proper position.

One of the great things about early treatment is that younger patients who have jaw expansion before their upper palate fuses shut (typically at age 11-13) rarely need surgery to expand their jaws. There’s seldom a need to extract teeth, either.

Our patients can count on a more attractive overall facial appearance and stable, permanent results—an incredible smile that will last a lifetime!

Orthodontic Fact #1

wilson_ad_Fact1_revDifferent orthodontists have different treatment philosophies, especially when it comes to younger patients. When a child has a narrow jaw, crowded teeth or other related problem, many orthodontists prefer to wait until the adult teeth grow in, then they extract several healthy ones to create the needed space.

Wilson Orthodontics enhances smiles for patients of all ages but our specialty is early treatment. There are several important reasons why the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur no later than age seven. Getting an early start monitoring and treating orthodontic problems creates an the best opportunity for optimal results.

Instead of extractions, we gently widen the jaw with a palatal expansion appliance. If done early – before the palatal suture fuses, typically between the age of 11-13 – surgery is typically not needed. Extractions aren’t, either.

Stay tuned for more facts on the benefits of early treatment!

Team Jo Jo’s MoJo

Dear Family and Friends,

JojosMojoOriginalI’m committed to beating rare cancers, and I need your support. So, I’ve created a Cycle for Survival team called JoJo’s Mojo. It’s a fantastic way to help Joanne’s physicians and researchers at Memorial Sloan Kettering find a cure for liposarcoma.

My wife Joanne (JoJo) has been through five abdominal surgeries in seven years to remove multiple liposarcoma tumors, several chemotherapy agents and many clinical trials with hopeful new drugs. As of yet, there is no effective treatment option other than surgery for this relentless, reoccurring cancer.

I’m riding in Cycle for Survival, the national indoor team cycling event that funds rare cancer research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK). MSK is one of the world’s premier cancer research institutions, and the work conducted there benefits patients around the world. In just the first eight years of Cycle for Survival events, over $51 million was raised.

That’s an incredible number, but we must keep increasing it to beat these diseases!

My team JoJo’s Mojo is made up of friends and family members. We will be participating in Cycle for Survival 2015 by riding spinning bikes at the Equinox Gym in Bethesda, MD from 8 a.m. to noon on Sunday, March 1, 2015 with hundreds of other riders. Each team member will have sponsors for their particular ride that will contribute to their individual fund raising goal as well as to the Team JoJo’s Mojo goal.

Funding for rare cancer research is critical. Approximately 50% of people with cancer are fighting a rare cancer. And these are familiar diseases: all pediatric cancers, leukemia, lymphoma, and thyroid, ovarian, and pancreatic cancers, among many others including liposarcoma. The people fighting rare cancers face limited, if any, treatment options.
And I’m participating in Cycle for Survival to change that.

100% of the money I raise goes directly to research. Progress—and the real hope it brings to patients and their families—is only possible because of thoughtful contributions from people like you.

I am proud to say that our Cycle for Survival Team JoJo’s Mojo has raised more than $29,000 to date.

Please make checks payable to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center or (MSKCC) and include in the memo area of the check: “In support of David G. Wilson and Team JoJo’s Mojo”

All gifts can be mailed to the following address:

Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
Attn: Cycle for Survival
633 Third Avenue, 4th Fl
New York, NY 10017
Email: Cycleforsurvival@mskcc.org

Phone: 888-72-CYCLE

Or, click here to make donations online to our team.

JOIN THE BATTLE…Thank you for your support!

David G. Wilson D.M.D.



Double Trouble!

ryan_kalebNine-year-old Ryan and his older brother Kaleb entered treatment with many of the same orthodontic conditions. Both had very narrow upper jaws, and as a result, crossbites and crowding of the upper teeth.

Ryan also had a severe underbite, and his was one of the rare cases that we treated with headgear (four months in duration). While both brothers had a problem with their tongues fitting into the narrow upper jaws, Ryan’s case was so severe it affected his pronunciation and he underwent speech therapy prior to treatment.

double_troubleBoth are in Phase One and have progressed nicely with correction of their jaw problems. Jaw expansion is complete and the crossbites, crowding and speech problems have been eliminated – all without extractions or surgery. Phase Two will commence when the rest of their permanent teeth have come in.

Unfortunately, some orthodontists ignore these jaw problems that can be treated at an early age with Early Orthodontic Treatment—they opt to extract permanent teeth or settle for an unsatisfactory result instead. At Wilson Orthodontics, we provide the most thorough evaluation and treatment with a long, excellent reputation for “Broader Smiles & Brighter Lives.”


Laurie chose Wilson Orthodontics to treat her sons for two reasons – a dentist referral and recommendations from her friends. The boys are still in Phase One but she sees big differences already.

“They both had jaw expansions, and it’s easy to see the positive changes in their appearance,” Laurie says. “Another major change is Ryan’s speech problems are gone. And so are his reading difficulties. He was really struggling before treatment, and now he’s two levels ahead. I think those issues are definitely related.

“The treatment has been going great. The staff takes plenty of time to explain what they’re doing and what to expect. I really appreciate that, and it’s helpful for the boys, too…it makes the process much less scary.

“There’s also a great connection between Dr. Wilson and the staff – the office runs very efficiently. And there’s never any waiting, they get us in right away.”

Watch the video for more comments from Laurie, Ryan and Kaleb!