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1. What is an orthodontist?
An orthodontist attends three additional years of specialized education after they complete their general dentistry requirements. These extra three years prepare the dentist to diagnose, prevent and treat dental and facial irregularities and to correctly align the teeth and jaws.
2. What are braces?Braces are used by orthodontists to help you improve the look and feel of your smile. There are several different types of braces to choose from, including:
• Clear braces
• Ceramic braces
• Lingual braces
• Self-ligating braces
• Invisible braces
• Traditional metal braces
3. Why should my child see an orthodontist at such a young age?
The American Association of Orthodontistrecommends that all children are screened by age 7! This is because some common malocclusions of the teeth and jaw may be reduced while the bones of the mouth and face are still developing. Remembermany females are finished growing around the time their second molars are in place, so it is important to act early!
4. What’s the best age to visit the orthodontist?If you want to improve the look and feel of your smile, then any age can be a great time to see an orthodontist. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children first visit an orthodontist around the age of seven; however, orthodontic treatment is not exclusive to children and teens.About one in every five orthodontic patients is over the age of 21. Whether you’re considering treatment for yourself or for a child, any age is a good time to visit the orthodontist.
5. Why does my child require a panoramic x-ray?
A panoramic x-ray helps your doctor determine a custom treatment plan for your child. Often times a panoramic radiograph is utilized to view all of the teeth. This includes all of your child’s baby and adult teeth in one photo. The panoramic image also shows the upper and lower jaws, the temporomandibular joints (TMJ) and the sinuses above the upper teeth. Your doctor is able to detect many dental anomalies with this image as well. Early detection of any dental anomaly results in the best possible outcome.X-rays are an important aspect of treatment when recommended by the doctor and are imperative for proper diagnosing. Please ask your doctor if you have specific questions regarding x-rays.
6. How can I take care of my teeth if I’m wearing braces or a retainer?
ALWAYS remember to brush your teeth after every meal and floss at least once a day.
Make sure to use toothpaste that contains fluoride, and ask your doctor if you need a fluoride rinse. This will help prevent cavities!If you take out your retainer to eat, make sure you brush your teeth, floss, and remember to keep the retainer safe in its container so it does not get lost or broken.Keep your retainer clean, too, by brushing it gently with a toothbrush and toothpaste. You may also soak it in denture cleaner as instructed by our office. Do not put your retainer in boiling water or in the dishwasher.During your treatment, try to avoid foods with a lot of sugar, which increases the amount of bacteria that grows in your mouth, and can cause more plaque and potential cavities.Avoid sticky and chewy foods (caramel, chewing gum, gummy bears), hard foods (hard candy, nuts, ice cubes), or any foods that could possibly get stuck in your braces (corn on the cob, soft bagels, ribs, taffy, etc.).
Be sure to schedule your routine checkups with your family dentist. It is recommended that you continue to visit the dentist every six months.
7. If I get braces, how long do I have to wear them?
The amount of time spent in braces will vary, depending on the individual patient, because every smile responds differently to treatment. Treatment times can last anywhere from six to 30 months, but most standard treatments take about 22 months.
8. Do braces hurt?Braces do not often hurt, though you may feel a small amount of discomfort for a couple days as your teeth, gums, cheeks, and mouth get used to your new braces.
9. Do I need to brush my teeth more often if I have braces?
With braces, you should brush your teeth at least three times a day to keep your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy and clean. Brushing regularly will help remove any food that may be caught between the braces.You should also floss daily to get between your braces where your brush isn’t able to reach. Your doctor can show you how to brush and floss properly once your braces are placed.
10. If I have braces, do I still need dental checkups every six months?
Yes! In fact, it’s even more important that patients receiving orthodontic treatment visit their dentist regularly. With braces, food may be caught in places your toothbrush can’t reach. This causes bacteria to build up and can lead to cavities, gingivitis, and gum disease. We will work closely with your dentist to make sure your teeth stay clean and healthy while you’re wearing braces.
11. Will my braces interfere with my school activities like sports, playing an instrument, or singing?
Playing an instrument or a contact sport may require some adjustment when you first get your braces, but wearing braces will not stop you from participating in any of your school activities. If you play a contact sport, it is recommended that you wear a mouthguard to protect your braces or appliance.
12. How do I schedule my next appointment?
Simply call our practice! Our front desk staff will be happy to schedule your next appointment at your convenience. If you are a new patient or have been referred to our practice, please let us know and we will provide you with all the information you need.We have Over 20 years of experience.