Q. Why should I wear braces?
A. There are many reasons. Braces straighten your teeth and improve self esteem. Correcting improper alignment of teeth can help eliminate gum disease and early tooth loss.
Q. When should I visit the orthodontist?
A. Children should see an orthodontist usually between the ages of 7-10. Early correction of some problems is critical for a child’s facial structures to develop properly. Adults can visit an orthodontist any time even if you’ve had braces before.
Q. How long will my orthodontic treatment last?
A. Braces may be on between 6 months to 30 months, or longer depending on the age of the patient, the severity of the problem and the patient’s cooperation. If you keep your regularly scheduled appointments, practice good oral hygiene and take care of your braces, you have a better chance of completing the treatment early.
Q. What can I expect on my first visit?
A. At your complimentary initial visit, we will take a couple of x-rays and examine your teeth and jaws. You can meet the staff and ask any questions. From there, we’ll determine a course of treatment and an estimate of treatment length.
Q. What kind of braces are available?
A. We offer traditional metal braces, clear ceramic braces and Invisalign®’s invisible braces. The state of the art brace is made of stainless steel. This is the brace that the majority of our patients (adult and children) choose. This brace is small, durable, and very strong. Clear ceramic braces are only used on the upper front teeth. While these brackets are less noticeable, they do have drawbacks. The drawbacks include larger size, more bulk, increased breakage and a tendency for staining of the small ties used to hold the wire in the brace.
Q. How long does it take to put the braces on?
A. It depends on the case, but usually 1 ½ to 2 hours.
Q. Will my braces hurt?
A. Your teeth are usually sore for the first few days after the braces are put on or are adjusted but the soreness quickly goes away after that.
Q. Do I need to do anything special the first week or so?
A. Normally it is best to eat softer foods for the first few days. We will give you a list of foods to stay away from and instructions on how to care for your braces when they are put on.
Q. Can I play sports?
A. Absolutely! Let us know and we can provide an orthodontic mouth guard for protection.
Q. What other foods should I avoid?
A. Stay away from hard, sticky, gooey or crunchy foods. If food is too hard to chew it could cause a bracket to come off.
Q. What happens if a bracket comes off?
A. Notify our office so that we can allow enough time to replace the broken bracket at the next appointment. However, every time a bracket has to replaced, it delays treatment.
Q. Do I need to brush more with braces?
A. Continue to brush and floss after every meal and before you go to bed. Flossing is especially important to keep you gums healthy.
Q. Why do some people wear rubber bands?
A. The rubber bands are used to move teeth forward or back in your mouth depending on your bite.
Q. Will I need to wear a retainer?
A. Yes! Retainers keep your teeth straight after the braces come off. Without them your teeth will shift which could result in having to wear braces again.