Friday, September 12, 2014

Jelly fish, Whales and Dophins

My treatment room ceiling is covered in fish- the beany baby kind- so that patients have something to look at while laying back in the chair. The younger patients like to talk to the the whale hanging over their heads, and several patients have donated new additions to our ceiling aquarium. C.T. has been looking for a rainbow fish for over a year, but settled recently on this pink jellyfish. I was thrilled with her thoughtful gift and promised her I'd hang it over the sink where patients
wash up after treatment. It turns out that I'm not the only one excited by my new addition.  In one day four patients commented on my new jelly fish. Now the kids have a new friend to keep them company.

Okun Orthodontics is a Better Business Bureau Accredited Business

 Dr. Judith A. Okun is honored that the Better Business Bureau has recognized Okun Orthodontics as a business which deals honestly with our patients and colleagues. For over 25 years Dr. Okun has worked to deliver quality patient care, fully explain our treatment goals and expectations, and honor all of our agreements. Congratulations Dr. Okun!

Monday, September 8, 2014

It's intriguing to see how patients entertain themselves in our reception area.  Sometimes they pull out the tablet or phone that Mom keeps in her purse, sometimes their devices travel in their own pockets, Candy Crush at the ready. Often it's our game cube or magazines.  I always smile when I see that they are still intrigued by old fashioned real-life blocks.  Zach was so pleased with his creation that he couldn't wait for his mom to see it, so we preserved it for posterity in this photo.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Giving Back

We at Okun Orthodontics believe in giving back to our local community.  That is why we are one of the proud sponsers of Rye Brook’s 2014 Officer Phil Child Safety Program.  This program will teach students in Kindergarten through Fourth grade safety information such as how to deal with bullies, and what to do if you see someone trying to pull your friend into a car.  The Officer Phil program is part of an ongoing educational process which is modified for each grade level’s capabilities.

Last year Okun Orthodontics also participated in Rye Brook’s Crime in America Community Resource Program which was dedicated to adults.  The educational materials produced covered topics such as domestic abuse, sexual assault, carjacking, shoplifting, home security, teen abuse of prescription drugs, telemarketing scams, consumer and jury duty scams, child identity theft, protecting your credit cards, fire prevention, and senior safety.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Dental Care = Healthcare

Here’s a summary of the most recent continuing education course I have taken.  Dr. Tim Donley (DDS, MSD) spoke about periodontal disease and what we dental professional should be telling our patients:

“Inflammation ls at the root cause of many of the chronic diseases that occur with age.  The mouth is a source of these exact same mediators of inflammation when chronic periodontal disease is present.”  When there is inflammation of the gums (i.e. gums that are red and puffy or gums that bleed), there is ulceration of the epithelium (skin) allowing bacteria, bacterial byproducts, and mediators of inflammation to enter the blood stream, and travel throughout the body, influencing the progression of systemic diseases including heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and pregnancies which  result in premature low birth weight babies. All diseases in the mouth are caused by bacteria, but the body’s response to the bacteria does vary.  The patient’s most at risk for chronic inflammatory periodontal disease are tobacco users, diabetics, and patients who suffer from obesity. "Brushing and flossing" is good prevention, but won’t solve the problem if there is subgingival inflammation already present, therefore you need to partner with your dental care professional (dentist and hygienist) for minimal oral inflammation over your lifespan. Good dental care is necessary for good healthcare.

When was the last time a dentist or hygienist checked you for gum disease?

Thursday, May 8, 2014

"A beautiful smile can change your self image." I've said it again and again....
NBC is still running their "love your selfie" series. In February , each anchor- person described what they did and did not like about their image now and in the past. 
When describing what they didn't like about themselves, 2 out of 9 "hosts" said that they didn't like their big front teeth that "stuck out". Braces solved this problem for them both. Yes its true, braces can change your self-image!

"Mouth Breathing"

We’re back in Spring- complete with grass and pollen allergens. Along with the sniffling and itchy eyes of Spring Allergy season comes swelling of the inside of the nose which can further block the airway. Poor breathing ability has also been linked to poor sleeping (with symptoms typical of sleep apnea). At Okun Orthodontics we see a lot of mouth breathers during allergy season.  Breathing through one’s mouth creates many issues.  The air one “mouth- breathes” is not warmed in the nose or filtered by nose- hairs.  The soft tissues of the mouth desiccate (dry out) and the muscle balance between the tongue, cheeks and lips is altered.  Mouth breathers, like thumb suckers, have a greater force “pushing in” from the taut position of the cheeks. This force is not balanced by a “pushing out” force from the tongue because the tongue is positioned downward with the lower jaw. Therefore mouth breathers tend to have narrower dental arches.  Narrower arches often have more dental crowding.  In young patients, mouth breathing may also contribute to more vertical growth of the lower jaw creating a longer face.

Orthodontists are in the unique position of being able to alter facial growth in children.  As part of the orthodontic process we can expand the bones of the roof of the mouth creating a wider arch form.  Since the bones which form the roof of the mouth are the same bones which form the floor of the nose, palatal expansion increases nose-breathing ability.  This is because the triangular space of the nose increases in area as the base of the triangle widens.  Even when seasonal allergies cause inflammation of the mucous membranes of the nose, the swollen nose tissues are less likely to fully occlude (block) this wider space.  Thus an orthodontic patient who undergoes palatal expansion to alleviate posterior cross-bites and dental crowding can also benefit from increased airway and better sleep quality.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Press Release: Okun Ortho Commits to Green Energy

Okun Orthodontics

Contact: Judith A. Okun DMD                     For Immediate Release
Telephone:  (914) 253-0722
Fax:            (914) 253-0723
Okun Orthodontics announces commitment to Going Green
Beyond Green Cleaning: Green Energy
Okun Orthodontics commits to going green by switching its electric source to 100% wind energy
Rye Brook, NY, 4/25/2014 – Okun Orthodontics, Rye Brook, NY based in the healthcare industry, has announced the company's energy commitment to 100% renewable  energy by purchasing all its company energy needs from a green energy supplier. This long-term commitment by Okun Orthodontics is a conscious effort to remover over 160,000 lbs of carbon emissions from the environment and to show continuous support for green energy through the country.
Okun Orthodontics has chosen to purchase its renewable energy credits (RECs) from American Power & Gas LLC that includes sources like wind and hydroelectric energy in North America. Okun Orthodontics, one of the first in its area to purchase non-emitting renewable energy, encourages other medical and dental offices to also choose Green Energy.
"Our commitment to renewable energy is reflective of our passion for innovation and the environment. We're helping with the choice of renewable energy and ultimately will benefit the neighbourhood and ease the pollution in this country," said Dr. Judith Okun. "There is a sense of urgency now to help the environment and as a reflection of our company values, we made the choice to go green and limit our use of fossil fuels. Okun Orthodontics remains focused on identifying other ways to build the energy efficiency of our operations, promote the benefits of green energy, and to help our customers understand how they too can help the environment.
"We congratulate Okun Orthodontics for using 100 percent renewable energy and taking an active position on the environment," said Jim Bridgeforth, American Power &Gas. "This green power commitment of Okun Orthodontics helps reduce carbon emissions and provides an excellent example for other organizations."
Okun Orthodontics believes it is important to stand out and be publically committed to be green and environmentally conscious. The green culture is something that everyone needs to embrace. We want to encourage all employers, vendors and partners to go green. “We have been working constantly over the years to improve our products and services and we think that the green campaign needs to be part of our company culture,” said Dr. Judith Okun, of Okun Orthodontics, Rye Brook, NY.

For more information about Okun Orthodontics, please visit

Going Green

Corporate Responsibility
“Going Green”

In this day and age, it is becoming extremely important for companies to take on a responsibility in how they handle their business.  That’s why Dr. Judith Okun believes we need to take an active role and become environmentally conscious when it comes to the carbon emissions we are responsible for. Dr. Okun has taken the position to Go Green and our energy needs are now produced from renewable sources such as wind energy that offset our company carbon footprint.

We believe that the energy we use to run our company doesn’t just affect us but also affects our customers, our community and our future generations. We aim to continue to conserve energy, use renewable sources and look for other ways that may help with our corporate responsibility to the environment.