Does Susie Really Need Braces?

loudoun county braces Kids need braces for many reasons. Crooked teeth, overlapping or overcrowded teeth and a “bad bite” (malocclusion) are amongst the many reasons your child may need braces. Tooth and jaw problems, losing baby teeth too soon and accidents or bad habits like thumb sucking are also amongst the many reasons one’s child may need braces.

Ultimately, no matter what the reason the thought of braces causes parents and their child(ren) who may need braces to pause. Take a deep breath. Ask lots of question. Prepare and plan. Information for making the best decision takes time. Eventually it will cost but with the right help, both you and your child will be happy that
you made the decision you made.

1. What are Braces?
Braces is the popular term for orthodontic appliances. There are two kinds of orthodontic appliances. They are either fixed, which means attached to each tooth by special glue, or removable which means that the appliance can be taken in and out of the mouth by either the patient or the doctor. Usually when people say that they have braces, they are referring to the fixed type of orthodontic appliance. This includes brackets, which are attached to the outside or inside surfaces of the teeth, bands that go around a tooth and the archwire that goes through the brackets and bands to connect the teeth. Recently though, aligner therapy, better known as Invisalign,
a series of removable appliances, is becoming popular.

2. What different types of braces are there?
As I mentioned earlier in the article, there are basically two types of orthodontic appliances; fixed and removable. In the fixed category you can have brackets made of stainless steel ( the most popular), titanium, plastic, ceramic and other types of visible and not so visible materials. These brackets can be affixed to either the outside surface of a tooth or the inside surface of a tooth.

In the removable category, the appliance is usually made out of a specific type of plastic or a combination of that specific plastic and wire. So braces can be made of very visible metals such as stainless steel and titanium or less visible materials such as ceramics and clear plastic.

3. Can I take them off every night or do they stay on all of the time?
With the fixed appliance therapy, they stay on your teeth 24/7; all the time, no matter what material they are made of. With removable appliance therapy, you keep them in the mouth at all times unless the doctor tells you differently. You normally take them out when you eat or drink.

4. How long does one have to wear braces?
The length of the time that one has to wear braces is determined on an individual basis. A person who has a mild case of crowded teeth won’t have to wear braces as long as a person who has severe crowding, rotated teeth and a large overbite. Treatment can last from 2-4 months for mild cases to 2-3 years for more severe cases. Most cases have treatment times of 18-24 months.

5. Are there braces for adult?
There are no “adults only” braces, although some adults tend to go with the less visible bracket options like plastic, ceramic and much the much smaller “mini-braces.” Plastic removable appliances are popular also among adults with malocclusions that can be resolved using these types of appliances.

6. Are the braces for children different than those worn by adults?
Although there are brackets available for children that are made with the shape of a football, a soccer ball, a star, etc; the concept is still the same. An adult can get these same brackets also if he or she desires…I won’t tell.

loudoun county braces 7. How often does one visit the orthodontist while wearing braces?
If a patient is wearing fixed appliances, the adjustment sequence can be every 2-8 weeks depending upon where we are in the treatment. The average sequence is an office visit every 4-6 weeks for about 15 minutes. For removable/aligner thearapy there is an office visit every 3 weeks for about 5 mins.

8. Do I still have to visit my regular dentist while wearing braces?
ABSOLUTELY! Your General dentist and I are a team. We work together for your optimum oral health. As an Orthodontist, my goal is to correct your bite, straighten your teeth and give you that healthy beautiful smile that you deserve. Your General Dentist is responsible for and committed to your daily dental care year after year. I recommend regular visits to your general dentist every 4 months while under the care of an Orthodontist. Those visits should include a prophylaxis (cleaning) and regular exam.

9. Some people say that they hurt when they come in for their routine appointment, is that true?
First of all let me say this, we don’t use the “P” word in our office. Certain four letter words just aren’t allowed. ::Smile:: Having said that, there may be some “ transient discomfort” or some soreness. Rarely is there any pain. An occasional wire poke and some bracket irritation is not uncommon. A little ibuprofen or acetaminophen along with a warm salt water rinse and some wax usually can resolve any issues. Of course should you continue to feel discomfort our office wants to know. Calling and speaking with one member of my staff or me is a part of what we do. Never should you wait. always we are a phone call away and available and ready to assist with any concerns you may be having as you are adjusting to braces .

10. I have seen people with pink and blue braces. Do you have colored braces?
Not exactly, what you see are little “O” rings, elastic ligatures that tie the archwire into the bracket on each tooth. They come in a rainbow and more of color choices. Every time we change a wire, or at each appointment you can change to a different color if you so desire. This helps make orthodontic treatment a serious yet colorful and fun experience.

11. My dad had braces and they also had elastic bands to hold them together. Do people still need those elastic bands in the mouth?
It depends on the treatment plan as to whether a patient needs to wear elastics or not. These elastics allow us to create more tension and pressure on the teeth to help us to move them to their proper positions. Most patients will have some type of elastic wear during their treatment.

12. What should I expect after my first visit?
At the first scheduled visit or consultation, we get the opportunity to meet you and welcome you to our office. At that time, we take a medical and dental history. Using a set of study models, briefly show you the ideal position of the teeth and the ideal bite. We then examine you, compare your tooth positions and bite to the ideal. We will discuss mutual treatment objectives and how we are going to work together to obtain them for you. Before moving forward we need to diagnose what the problem is. We do this by using several different methods to obtain information. We take a series of X-Rays, some specific photographs, and an impression of your teeth to make study
models of your bite and your tooth positions. We then evaluate this information to help us come up with the proper plan of treatment and the best type of appliance for you. NOW YOU ARE READY FOR BRACES!!!

13. Does insurance cover braces?
Every insurance plan is different. Many dental health plans cover braces. To best know what your insurance plan will and/or will not cover is something that our staff will discuss in detail during the consultation. To best prepare for the consultation, be sure to bring your medical card or the plan and we will review it with both you and the carrier as a part of our service.

14. Can I set up a payment plan if insurance does not cover braces?
Payment plan options are available and discussed in detail during the consultation.

15. How do I set up a meeting to discuss my personal concerns, including a plan of action.
Our staff of professionals are available Monday – Thursday and on weekends by appointment to answer any questions you might have. Call us and let’s start the process for making your smile beautiful and the best ever. For more information and to answer questions, 703.423.0893. Call us!

John H. Jones III DDS
Jones Orthodontics
20 Pidgeon Hill Dr. #206
Sterling, Va 20165

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