About Orthodontics

What is orthodontics?

Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry that specializes in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dental and facial irregularities.

How do I choose an orthodontist?

As with any professional, finding a good orthodontist is essential to ensuring a desirable experience and results. Click here for 4 important factors to consider when choosing a new orthodontist.

Why orthodontics?

Orthodontics offer a variety of benefits including:

  • Guides permanent teeth into more favorable positions, resulting in a more attractive smile
  • Teeth function better overall
  • Increases self esteem and reduces self-consciousness in relation to one’s smile
  • Easier to clean the teeth
  • Teeth and gums are healthier long term
  • Reduces the risk of injury to protruding teeth and optimizes other dental treatments

How do I know if I need braces?

If any of the following is relevant to you, then you probably need to see an orthodontist to discuss your options:

  • Your front teeth protrude over the lower teeth or appear to be bucked.
  • When you bite down, your upper front teeth cover the majority of your lower teeth.
  • Your lower and upper teeth don’t touch when you bite down.
  • You have crowded, overlapping or crooked teeth.
  • You sucked your fingers or thumbs after the age of 6 or 7.
  • You experienced difficulty chewing your food thoroughly
  • You have excessive space between teeth
  • Your lower jaw shifts unnaturally to one side when you bite down.
  • The center of your upper and lower teeth don’t line up.

What is the best age to pursue orthodontic treatment?

Many orthodontic problems are easier to correct if cared for at an early age because the jaw is easier to mold, and early treatment may prevent surgery and more serious issues. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children have their first orthodontic visit by the age of 7 or earlier. However, orthodontic treatment can begin at any age.

What is Phase I and Phase II treatment?

Phase 1 Early Interceptive Treatment – this phase involves treatment with an expander or partial braces before all the permanent teeth have erupted. This treatment can help correct overcrowding, cross bites, overbites and under bites.

Phase 2 Comprehensive Treatment — this phase involves putting on full braces when all the permanent teeth have erupted. This usually occurs between the ages of 11-17. Learn more about these phases.

Can adults benefit from orthodontic treatment?

Yes! Orthodontic treatment can benefit anyone at any age. It’s never too late to invest in a beautiful healthy smile.

Generally, how long does orthodontic treatment take?

The average treatment time is one to two years. However, every situation is different and the amount of time depends on the severity of the individual situation. Treatment length also depends on how well the patient maintains good oral hygiene and regular treatment appointments.

Do braces hurt?

Yes, as your teeth gradually move you may experience some soreness.

Will braces interfere with playing sports?

No! However, professionals recommend that you wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth when playing any sporting activity. This is the case even without braces or retainers.

Should I see my regular dentist while I have braces on?

Yes, you will need to see your dentist for regular cleanings and checkups.

What foods can I eat?

Stay away from chewy, sticky, crunchy, or hard foods, as these can gum up your braces and break bands and brackets. Also avoid chewing on things like pens, water bottles, or soda caps – these can damage braces as well, lengthening your treatment time. Beyond that, however, you can eat whatever you want!

What’s the right way to brush and floss?

You can use a normal toothbrush to clean the outside of and spaces above and below your braces, as well the tops and backsides of your teeth. We’ll also provide you with a proxy brush, which you’ll use to brush under the archwire between your teeth.

Flossing will be a little tricky at first, but you’ll get used to it! We’ll provide you with a floss threader: simply put the floss through the eye of the threader and bring the threader behind the archwire, then detach the floss from the threader. Floss as normal, then floss around the brackets to remove any debris.

What type of braces do you offer?

Learn more here.