You can find answers to all your orthondontics questions here.

Questions from our patients

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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 our team or your family dentist 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 retainer cleaner tablets 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 regularly throughout your treatment.
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. We can show you how to brush and floss properly once your braces are placed.

Will braces interfere with playing sports?

No. It is recommended, however, that patients protect their smiles by wearing a mouthguard when participating in any sporting activity. Mouthguards are inexpensive, comfortable, and come in a variety of colors and patterns.

What is Phase I and Phase II treatment?

Phase I, or early interceptive treatment, is limited orthodontic treatment (e.g. expander or partial braces) before all of the permanent teeth have erupted. Such treatment can occur between the ages of six and ten. This treatment is sometimes recommended to make more space for developing teeth, correction of crossbites, overbites, and underbites, or harmful oral habits. Phase II treatment is also called comprehensive treatment because it involves full braces when all of the permanent teeth have erupted, usually between the ages of eleven and thirteen.

Can I wear braces even though I have crowns and missing teeth?

Yes. A tooth with a crown will move just like a tooth with a simple filling. When teeth are missing, orthodontic treatment will aid in the alignment of the remaining teeth.

Do I need to see my family dentist while in braces?

Yes! Regular checkups with your family dentist are very important while in braces. Your family dentist will determine the intervals between cleaning appointments while you are in braces.

Will my teeth straighten out as they grow?

Sometimes. It really depends on the situation and that’s why an orthodontic evaluation is important. The overall space available for the teeth does not increase after the age of about 8 years old. In fact, the space available for the permanent teeth to grow in can actually decrease as the last baby molars fall out so the timing of orthodontic treatment can be very important.

What are some possible benefits of orthodontics?
  • A more attractive smile
  • Reduced appearance-consciousness during critical development years
  • Better function of the teeth
  • Possible increase in self-confidence
  • Increased ability to clean the teeth
  • Improved force distribution and wear patterns of the teeth
  • Better long-term health of teeth and gums
  • Guide permanent teeth into more favorable positions
  • Reduce the risk of injury to protruded front teeth
  • Aids in optimizing other dental treatment
Would an adult patient benefit from orthodontics?

Orthodontic treatment can be successful at any age. Everyone wants a beautiful and healthy smile. Twenty to twenty-five percent of orthodontic patients today are adults.

What will happen at the initial examination appointment?

This initial consultation offers you the chance to get acquainted with our team, explore the world of orthodontics, undergo a comprehensive examination, and identify the treatment options that best suit your needs. We will cover the following during your initial consultation:

-Examine your dental and medical history records

-Conduct a thorough oral examination, which may include digital photos and X-rays, to determine if treatment is required

-Assist in developing a tailored treatment strategy

-Discuss financial details, insurance choices, and payment plans

Why should you choose an orthodontic specialist?

The position of the teeth, and sometimes entire facial structures, are permanently changed by orthodontic treatment. It is important that the situation be diagnosed properly, and that the treatment be appropriately and properly completed. Orthodontic specialists have the extensive and specialized training that enables them to provide their patients with the professional and personalized treatment that orthodontic treatment requires.

What is the first step in starting my smile journey?

Simply call our office or book your consultation online. We will be happy to schedule an appointment for you. When you call to schedule your appointment, our front office staff will collect some basic information from you.

Is it required that my family dentist refer me for an orthodontic assessment?

No, it is not. While many of our patients are indeed referred by their family dentist, many other patients take the initiative to schedule an examination themselves. We are happy to see new patients and give you our opinion.

How does Invisalign™ work?

Invisalign is a unique orthodontic system that straightens your teeth with clear plastic aligner trays, in place of wires and brackets. These aligners are custom-made for your smile, based on a treatment plan created specifically for you by your Orthodontist. Over the course of your treatment, you will be provided with a number of trays, each tray making small changes to your tooth and jaw alignment. The aligner trays are designed in such a way that each will move your teeth into the desired position, as identified by your Orthodontist. Because the trays are clear, they provide patients with a discreet approach to orthodontic treatment.

Do braces hurt?

Although you might be familiar with the metal braces many people associate with orthodontic treatment, you’ll be pleased to know that the technology behind braces has come a very long way. Newer braces are much more comfortable, with most patients describing their discomfort as mild to moderate. You may experience some discomfort only in the first few days of your treatment and/or after an adjustment. Over-the-counter pain medications that you would normally take for headaches are effective for reducing any discomfort you might feel during your treatment.

Are there any signs I might notice in my child’s development that can indicate a possible orthodontic issue?
  • Development of poor habits like finger or thumb-sucking
  • Tongue thrusting
  • Mouth breathing or breathing with greater difficulty than should be expected
  • Delayed or impeded speech
  • Crowding of teeth on the upper or lower jaw
  • Crooked eruption of adult teeth
  • Premature loss of baby teeth
  • Late loss of baby teeth
  • Headaches
  • An obvious overbite or underbite
Who is a candidate for braces or Invisalign™ ?

There are many ways in which having Invisalign can have a positive impact on your overall health and well-being. First, braces or Invisalign can make a huge difference for your self-confidence as they can alleviate any concerns that you have about your teeth and smile. Second, braces can reduce the likelihood of several diseases, such as tooth decay or gum disease, and can even prevent the development of heart disease. Finally, treating any issues you have with your bite or the alignment of your teeth can greatly reduce the likelihood of you needing more expensive or complex treatments like jaw surgery or a tooth extraction.

How long will treatment take?

Your treatment is as unique as you are, so there is no “one size fits all” length of time that you’ll wear your braces or undergo other forms of treatment. However, average treatment times typically range between six and 24 months and each case varies in complexity. Patients who practice good oral hygiene can expect to have a positive impact on their treatment. Keeping up good habits like regularly flossing and brushing your teeth can help your treatment go faster, as can complying with treatment recommendations, like wearing your elastics.

What is the right age to bring my child in for an orthodontic consultation?

The guideline set out by the Canadian Association of Orthodontists states that children should see an Orthodontist for an early evaluation by the time they turn seven. By this point, a child’s jaw and teeth will have formed enough so that any developing issues are obvious, and an Orthodontist will be able to identify what treatment, if any, will be beneficial. For most patients, treatment won’t start until well after age seven. You don’t need a referral to have your child assessed by a docbraces Orthodontist.

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