FAQ’S

Why should you choose an orthodontic specialist?
Teeth, and sometimes entire facial structures, are permanently changed by orthodontic treatment. It is important that the treatment be appropriate and properly completed. Orthodontic specialists have extensive and specialized training that enables them to provide their patients with professional, personalized treatments.

Can orthodontic correction occur while a child has baby teeth?
Yes. Some orthodontic problems are significant enough to require early intervention. However, if a patient is not yet ready for treatment, we will follow that patient’s growth and development until the time is right for treatment to begin.

What is an emergency appointment? How are those handled?
If your braces are causing extreme pain or if something breaks, you should call our office. In most cases, we can address these issues over the telephone. If you require an emergency appointment, we will set aside time for you.

How often should i brush my teeth while in braces?
Patients should brush their teeth at least four times each day – after each meal and before going to bed. We will show each patient how to floss their teeth with braces and may also provide a prescription for a special fluoride, if necessary.

Are there foods i cannot eat while i have braces?
Yes. Once treatment begins, we will explain the complete instructions and provide a comprehensive list of foods to avoid. Some of those foods include: ice, hard candy, raw vegetables and all sticky foods (i.e. caramel and taffy). You can avoid most emergency appointments to repair broken or damaged braces by carefully following our instructions.

Do i need to see my family dentist while in braces?
Yes! Regular checkups with your family dentist are important while in braces. Your family dentist will determine the intervals between cleaning appointments and watch for decay while you are in braces.

Can i return to school the day i receive my braces?
Yes, generally there is no reason you cannot return to school the same day.

Do braces hurt?
Generally, braces do not “hurt.” After certain visits, teeth may be sore for a few days. In these situations, pain medications such as Advil or Tylenol will ease the discomfort. However, after most visits, patients do not feel any soreness at all! We often remind our patients, “It doesn’t have to hurt to work!”

Can i drop my child off for an appointment?
Yes. We understand your busy schedule, and we are happy to help you make the most of your time. On some occasions, we may request to speak with a parent when they return, so we ask that parents check in with their patient manager before dropping off their child.

Can i schedule all of my appointments after school?
Unfortunately, we cannot schedule all appointments for students during after-school hours. However, because most appointments are scheduled 4 to 6 weeks apart, most patients will miss minimal school due to their orthodontic treatments. We will, however, make a sincere effort to meet your scheduling needs.

How often will i have appointments?
Appointments are scheduled according to each patient’s needs. Most patients in braces will be seen every 4 to 8 weeks. If there are specific situations that require more frequent monitoring, we will schedule appointments accordingly.

How much will braces cost? Are financing options available? How does my insurance work?
It is impossible to give an exact cost for treatment until we have examined you and decide how long treatment will last and what appliances will be needed. We will provide exact cost and financial options available to help accommodate your needs, and will review these with you. We will determine what your insurance benefits are for orthodontics and assist in filing claims.

How long will it take to complete treatment?
Treatment time obviously depends on each patient’s specific orthodontic problem. In general, treatment time lasts from 8 months to 36 months. The “average” time frame a person is in braces is approximately 28 months.

Will i need to have teeth extracted for braces?
Straight teeth and a balanced facial profile are the goal of orthodontics. Sometimes this requires extracting some teeth. However, new technologies like the Damon brackets make this a less frequent occurrence.

What will i learn from the initial examination?
There are five essential questions that we will cover during the initial examination: · Is there an orthodontic problem, and if so, what is it? · What must be done to correct the problem? · Will any teeth need to be removed? · How long will the treatment take to complete? · How much will the treatment cost?

What will happen at the initial examination appointment?
Upon arriving, each patient will be asked for the new patient forms and insurance card. The doctor will then complete a thorough clinical exam. Additional information, such as X-rays or photographs, may be needed for proper diagnosis.

How do i schedule an appointment for an initial exam?
Simply call our office or send us an e-mail. We will be happy to schedule an appointment for you. When you call to schedule your appointment, our front office staff will request some basic information from you.

Will my teeth straighten out as they grow?
Probably not. The space available for the front teeth does not increase as you grow. In most people, after the permanent molars erupt, the space available for the front teeth decreases with age.

At what age should i schedule an appointment for a screening?
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening at age 7. By this age, several permanent teeth in most children have erupted, allowing us to effectively evaluate your orthodontic condition.

Does my family dentist have to schedule my appointment with the orthodontist?
Nope. Many of our patients are referred by their family dentist, but lots of patients take the initiative to schedule an examination themselves.