Happy 4th of July

June 28th, 2017

The Fourth of July is a great time to get together with friends and family members for BBQ, games, fireworks, and other celebrations in honor of our country's independence. While your fellow revelers eat hot dogs and wave flags, you can impress them by sharing these fascinating facts and historical tidbits about some of our country's traditions and symbols from the team at McKinney Orthodontics.

The Statue of Liberty

With a torch in one hand a a tablet in the other, the Statue of Liberty is one of the most iconic and recognizable symbols of our country. However, as recognizable as certain parts of the statue are, not many people know that broken shackles, which represent oppression and tyranny, are lying at Lady Liberty's feet. According to the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, the copper-plated lady weighs in at a whopping 450,000 tons and has been holding her torch up for more than 125 years, which must make for some impressive arm muscles.

The History behind Fireworks

viewing the nighttime fireworks display is exciting way to finish off the fourth. Many people know that these brilliant displays probably originated with the Chinese. However, many historians also believe that fireworks were stumbled upon when the Chinese roasted bamboo sticks over fires and watched them explode. After many years of roasting the sticks, a group of alchemists created an early form of gunpowder, which they stuffed into the bamboo sticks to create an even more powerful explosion, paving the way for today's modern fireworks.

Celebration on the River

Every year, Tuscaloosa hosts a FREE fireworks show at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater. Gates open around 6 pm and the Fireworks Show will start a little after 8 pm.

4th of July Fireworks Celebration, Huntsville, AL.

If you are spending 4th of July in the Huntsville area, get you a good seat anywhere in the city and watch the fireworks show that will be put on at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center at 9 pm.

Whether you're planning on visiting the Statue of Liberty or watching fireworks in Alabama, Dr. McKinney and our team hope you have a safe and fun-filled holiday. Happy Fourth of July!

Remembrance on Memorial Day

May 28th, 2017

Memorial Day is not only a federal holiday in the United States, but it is a day of observance and remembrance of those who died in service. Originally known as Decoration Day, this solemn day has been marked on calendars since the end of the American Civil War as a day to commemorate both the Confederate and Union soldiers who fought and died in the war.

Marking the graves of fallen soldiers with flowers, wreaths, or other tokens has been practiced throughout history, but it wasn't until the mark of the end of the Civil War that a special day was decided upon as the one to spend in remembrance. By 1890, every state in the country was observing Decoration Day. It wasn't until 1967 when the name formally changed from Decoration Day to Memorial Day, in order to encompass all fallen American soldiers in all wars and conflicts. In June of 1968, Congress moved the official date of Memorial Day to the last Monday in May in order to create a three day weekend.

Today, while there is certainly an air of remembrance on Memorial Day, it has become more a day of spending time with family, friends, and their loved ones. This day is also heralded as the start of summer, with many schools finishing for the year around this time. Our team at McKinney Orthodontics remembers it as a day to take solace and remembered those lost.

Traditional observances of Memorial Day are still held, and they often involve raising the American Flag the lowering it to a half-staff position until noon, and the raising it once again to its full height afterwards. the flag is lowered to remember those who've lost their lives while in service to their country, and then it is raised to signify our willingness to not let their sacrifice be in vain.

From Community parades, backyard cook-outs, and fireworks to formal ceremonies, memorial Day is commemorated in many different ways. No matter how you choose to spend this day, take a moment to remember those who've lost their lives in an effort to preserve our freedom.

Easter Candy & Braces

April 13th, 2017

With Easter coming up, you, your child, or teen might be daydreaming about all those delicious treats hidden in colorful eggs. If you have braces, you might want to think twice before you sink your teeth into something sweet.

Since braces are attached to teeth with cement, it's very easy to break, bend or loosen them. Hard, sweet and sticky foods are the worst when it comes to damaging braces, so some candy should obviously be avoided. But if you know what you can eat and what you should avoid, it will go a long way toward protecting your teeth and braces.

Of course, you could always opt for invisalign for yourself or your teen.

What You Can Eat

When it comes to foods you can eat with braces, focus on two words: soft and healthy. With a little creativity, you can still splurge during Easter without eating anything that's hard or sticky. Here are a few examples of what you can eat during Easter (or any other time while wearing braces):

  • Marshmallows: Peeps are an Easter classic!
  • Soft chocolate: Just make sure there aren't any nuts or a hard shell (3 Musketeers & Reese’s are good examples).
  • Sugar-Free gum: Safe!
  • Ice cream: Enjoy them in classic Easter colors like pink or blue.
  • Cakes: The perfect canvas for Easter-themed indulgence.
  • Eggs: Decorate the outside, then enjoy the soft center!

Coming up with ideas for candy with braces can be half the fun, so use your imagination and indulge.

What You Should Avoid

As mentioned before, braces and candy are a bad mix. Obviously, avoid hard, sticky candy and focus on items like the ones mentioned above. Here are some specific examples of bad ortho Easter candy:

  • Nuts: PayDay, Snickers, etc.
  • Sticky Caramel: Caramel Apples, Werther's, etc.
  • Hard Candy: Jawbreakers, Spree, Gobstoppers, etc.
  • Sugar Gum: bubblegum, fruit flavored, etc.
  • Sticky Candy: Starbursts, Gummy Bears, etc.

Click here to learn more about living with braces!

If you'd like more information on ortho candy or other ortho topics, schedule a consultation with our orthodontist!