If you're about to start orthodontic treatment for the first time, you’ll probably want to know the answers to some questions. Our friendly and helpful team at Embassy Row Orthodontics want to make sure you’re comfortable and knowledgeable about your care. We’ve compiled the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we get from our patients here.
What is orthodontics?
Orthodontics is the arm of dentistry that focuses on correcting the alignment of a patient’s teeth and jaws. The overall goal of orthodontics is ensuring a patient’s teeth and jaws are in alignment with their facial profile.
Should I see an orthodontist or a dentist for my treatment?
Ideally, you should see both because each has an important part to play in your oral health and well-being. See your dentist for regular check-ups will ensure you remain on top of your oral hygiene, reduce your risk of cavities and keep plaque build-up to a minimum. Should you need further treatment to improve the alignment of your teeth or the bite of your jaw, then it is best you see an orthodontist.
What do braces actually do?
Braces straighten teeth. The benefits of straightening teeth (with braces or Invisalign) include better appearance, more stable positions and better gingival health. Additionally, periodontal health has been associated with cardiovascular health.
Does orthodontic treatment hurt?
Technology used in orthodontics today is much more gentle than it used to be. Braces are smaller, lighter and more comfortable to wear and the super-elastic wires apply gentle but effective forces to your teeth. In fact, teeth actually move faster with these lighter forces because it is just stimulating the bone around the roots to remodel.
How much does orthodontic treatment cost?
The cost of orthodontics varies according to the difficulty of the case. Like other professional services it may also vary relative to the level of experience and personalized care. New technology, dental insurance, pre-tax health savings accounts and payment plans have helped make orthodontics affordable for more people.
How long does orthodontic treatment take?
Treatment time varies with the type of problems and the magnitude of the problems. Average time with braces is two years. Average treatment time with Invisalign is about a year. We also have new orthodontic acceleration techniques to stimulate the bone to remodel faster. This can be a very gentle vibration device (Acceledent) used for 5 minutes per day and/or a micropuncture technique similar to acupuncture (Propel).
How often do I need to see an orthodontist?
During treatment it is important you attend every check-up your orthodontist asks you for. But new technology has made intervals between appointments much longer and appointments are shorter. Super-elastic wires work for up to 12 weeks with braces so we ask that you come in for a check-up every three months. Our standard interval for Invisalign is also every three months.
What is Phase 1 and Phase ll treatment?
Phase I, or early phase, is orthodontic treatment while there are still some primary (baby) teeth, typically in the 7 to 9 year-old age group.
Do I have to change my diet to have orthodontic treatment?
If you are receiving orthodontic treatment it is recommended you avoid sticky foods that may get stuck in your braces. However, brushing after eating anything sticky can be sufficient in maintaining good dental hygiene, so there aren’t many changes you need to make to your diet during orthodontic treatment.
How do I brush my teeth with braces on?
When you are fitted with an orthodontic appliance we will give you some techniques for how to brush around your braces. It is extremely important that you keep up your oral hygiene routine while undergoing orthodontic treatment as your teeth can be more susceptible to plaque build-up.
Got a question?
If you’ve got a question about orthodontics and how you could benefit from treatment, come in and ask us in person. Simply book a free consultation with us today and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.