WHAT IS ORTHODONTICS?
Orthodontics is a specialized field of dentistry that focuses on diagnosing, treating, and preventing dental and facial irregularities. Orthodontic treatment involves the use of braces, clear aligners, and other orthodontic appliances to align and straighten teeth, correct bite issues, and improve overall dental health.
WHAT IS AN ORTHODONTIST?
An orthodontist is a specialized dentist who has received additional training in orthodontics. Orthodontists are experts in diagnosing, preventing, and treating dental and facial irregularities, such as misaligned teeth and jaws.
WHAT’S THE BEST AGE TO VISIT THE ORTHODONTIST?
According to the American Association of Orthodontists, the best age to visit an orthodontist is seven. At this age, orthodontists can evaluate the growth and development of the teeth and jaws and detect any potential problems early. However, orthodontic treatment can be effective for patients of all ages.
HOW CAN I TAKE CARE OF MY TEETH IF I’M WEARING BRACES OR A RETAINER?
Taking care of your teeth while wearing braces or a retainer is important to maintain good dental health. Brushing and floss regularly is essential to remove plaque and food particles that can build up around braces or orthodontic appliances. Patients should avoid hard or sticky foods that damage braces or dislodge wires. Visiting your orthodontist for regular checkups and adjustments is also important to ensure the best possible outcome.
WHAT ARE BRACES?
Braces are orthodontic appliances used to align and straighten teeth, correct bite issues, and improve overall dental health. Braces consist of brackets, wires, and elastic bands that work together to apply gentle pressure to the teeth and move them into the desired position. There are several types of braces, including traditional metal braces, ceramic braces, and lingual braces.
IF I GET BRACES, HOW LONG DO I HAVE TO WEAR THEM?
The length of time you’ll need to wear braces depends on the severity of your orthodontic issues. Most people wear braces for 1-3 years. During this time, patients must visit their orthodontist every 4-8 weeks for adjustments to the braces or other orthodontic appliances. The orthodontist will monitor the progress of the treatment and make necessary adjustments to ensure the best possible outcome.
DO BRACES HURT?
There may be some discomfort when you first get your braces and each time they are adjusted, but the discomfort is usually mild and can be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers. The teeth may also be sore for a few days after getting braces or adjustments, but this is normal and should subside. It’s important to follow your orthodontist’s instructions on managing any discomfort and taking good care of your braces and teeth.
DO I NEED TO BRUSH MY TEETH MORE OFTEN IF I HAVE BRACES?
It’s important to brush your teeth more often if you have braces to prevent the buildup of plaque and food particles. We recommend brushing after every meal and flossing at least once a day. Patients should use a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to brush gently around the braces and orthodontic appliances. Orthodontic patients may also benefit from using a Waterpik® or other interdental cleaning device to remove food particles and debris from hard-to-reach areas.
IF I HAVE BRACES, DO I STILL NEED DENTAL CHECKUPS EVERY SIX MONTHS?
Yes, even if you have braces, you still need to visit the dentist every six months for regular checkups and cleanings. During these visits, your
WILL MY BRACES INTERFERE WITH MY SCHOOL ACTIVITIES LIKE SPORTS, PLAYING AN INSTRUMENT, OR SINGING?
Braces may require some adjustments to school activities, but they should not prevent you from participating in sports, playing an instrument, or singing. Talk to your orthodontist for specific advice.
HOW DO I SCHEDULE MY NEXT APPOINTMENT?
To schedule your next appointment, you can call our office or use our online appointment scheduling tool on our website.