All posts by Garland Dentist

Fleming Orthodontics is devoted to providing patients of all ages with the highest quality of orthodontic care in a friendly, comfortable environment. Dr. Patty Fleming and her team strive to create an atmosphere with an emphasis on delivering customer service beyond expectations.

Braces For Adults: What are my options?

braces for adults Garland TXAdults may need to get braces for any number of reasons. Perhaps they are dissatisfied with a misaligned smile that was never corrected during their childhood or adolescence. Maybe they did undergo one round of treatment but the teeth reverted to their original positions.

Regardless of the reason for braces for adults, these patients have a number of treatment options. However, they have unique needs that a teenager doesn’t, so it’s important to consider these factors when deciding on a treatment option.

We recommend that adult patients explore all of their treatment options and work closely with their orthodontist to determine which one will be most effective and best meet their needs. We are happy to answer any questions you may have about the process.

Considerations For Orthodontic Treatment In Adult Patients

Adult orthodontic patients have different needs from children and teenagers. For example, they will be more concerned with maintaining a professional image in the workplace. Certain options for braces for adults will have minimal impact on your smile’s appearance.

Additionally, adult patients who never were treated by an orthodontist earlier in their lives may have more complex cases. The misalignments may be more severe, requiring specialized appliances or possibly even surgery.

Orthodontic Treatment Options

Fortunately, braces for adults come in multiple forms, and we can work with you to find the option that’s the best fit. Here are the main options:

  • Invisalign: A series of removable aligner trays made of clear plastic apply forces to the teeth to reposition them. Although many patients will be appropriate for Invisalign, this treatment may not be completely effective in particularly complex cases.
  • Ceramic braces: Traditional orthodontic appliances (brackets and wires) are made of tooth-colored ceramic materials. Although not truly “invisible,” ceramic braces are not as noticeable as metal braces.
  • Metal braces: Brackets and wires that are made of metal and manipulated to achieve the desired movement of the teeth. These appliances may be the most effective treatment option in certain cases.

After evaluating your case, our orthodontist can determine which option is most likely to be effective and as convenient for you as possible.

The best way to figure out which orthodontic treatment option is right for you is to schedule a consultation at our office. Call Fleming Orthodontics today to set up your appointment.

Categories: braces for adults, Garland orthodontist, Invisalign

A Parent’s Guide to Early Orthodontic Treatment

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children receive their first orthodontic consultation by the age of seven. This appointment helps determine if children need early orthodontic treatment to correct potential issues with their dentofacial development. Following is a helpful guide to understanding early orthodontic treatment.

What is early interceptive orthodontics?

early orthodontic treatment Garland TXEarly orthodontic treatment – also called early interceptive orthodontics – breaks up treatment into two phases. The first phase occurs during childhood and the second phase occurs during a child’s teenage years. Early treatment can anticipate potential problems and correct them to make the second phase of treatment more effective and efficient.

An example of how early orthodontic treatment helps children is correcting crowded teeth. Oral appliances such as palatal expanders can take advantage of growing bones to create additional space so that adult teeth erupt properly. Appliances used in early treatment can also help promote facial symmetry, improve a child’s bite, and correct issues that impair proper speech.

Not all children will require early treatment. At your initial appointment, our orthodontist will perform a physical examination and take diagnostic images. This process will help our team determine whether your child will benefit from two-phase treatment. It will also help us develop a treatment plan to address your child’s unique needs in the future.

What are signs that my child might need early orthodontic treatment?

The only way to be sure that you child needs early treatment is to consult with an orthodontist. Typical candidates for early treatment include those who have:

  • Protruding front teeth
  • Problems with speech
  • Significant crowding
  • Severely misaligned teeth
  • Occlusal issues such as open bites, crossbites, and overbites

Orthodontic care offers more benefits than just improving the appearance of a smile. Properly spaced and aligned teeth are easier to clean and less likely to develop wear. Early treatment can reduce treatment times, decrease the need for certain types of surgeries, and improve your child’s oral function.

Call Fleming Orthodontics today to schedule a consultation with our family-friendly practice.

Categories: braces, early orthodontic treatment, Garland orthodontist

I think my child needs braces: what are the first steps?

 

braces Garland TXWearing braces is a great investment in your child’s oral health and wellbeing. If you’re wondering if it’s time for your child to wear braces, the first course of action is to schedule a consultation with an orthodontist. A consultation will involve a physical examination and X-rays to determine if and when braces are necessary.

What types of problems can braces correct?

Braces can address a number of orthodontic problems and improve a person’s bite. Common orthodontic issues that braces improve include crowded, gapped, overlapped, and crooked teeth. Receiving orthodontic care can also improve bite issues including overbites and open bites.

When are braces recommended for children?

Braces are typically prescribed for children after their baby teeth have fallen out. Treatment times can vary, as some children have more pronounced needs than others.

Some children might need treatment sooner, however. Early interceptive orthodontic treatment can be used to take advantage of the fact that the jawbones are developing to make room for tooth movement. Normally, early interceptive treatment involves wearing oral appliances such as palate expanders. Those receiving interceptive care will likely wear braces a few years later.

Are braces really necessary?

Some people believe that braces only address cosmetic issues. While orthodontia certainly improves the appearance of a smile, having straight teeth improves oral health and reduces the risks for developing common diseases.

When teeth are misaligned, they are difficult to keep clean. Inadequate oral hygiene contributes to gum disease and tooth decay. Moreover, improperly aligned teeth tend to develop wear and tear because they make contact when and where they shouldn’t.

We encourage parents to look at orthodontic treatment for their children as an investment in their oral health and their confidence. Possessing a healthy, straight smile is beneficial to children’s self-esteem and their social development, too.

Our practice is here to help you make informed decisions for your children. Call Fleming Orthodontics to schedule a consultation with our orthodontist.

Categories: braces, Garland orthodontist

Benefits of Orthodontic Treatment

orthodontics Garland TXDo you need braces? Do you wonder if orthodontics is a worthwhile investment in your oral health? Beyond straightening the positions of teeth, wearing braces offers a number of benefits to your wellbeing. Receiving orthodontic treatment can reduce wear and tear on your teeth and even lessen the likelihood that you will develop destructive oral health conditions.

Our orthodontist offers conventional braces, clear braces, and Invisalign to accommodate our patients’ diverse needs.

Following are common benefits of orthodontics.

A More Attractive Smile

Improperly positioned teeth can affect the appearance of your smile. Many people who are unhappy with their smiles develop self-esteem and self-confidence issues. Fortunately, orthodontics can transform a smile so that a person feels more confident in their appearance.

Braces can correct common problems including gapped, crooked, and overlapped teeth. Orthodontic care also improves the appearance of malocclusions like overbites and underbites.

Easier Oral Hygiene

When teeth are improperly spaced and positioned, they can be very difficult to keep clean. For example, threading floss between crowded and overlapped teeth makes it almost impossible to remove debris and plaque properly. If plaque is not removed, it will harden into tartar within a couple of days.

Straightening teeth with braces will ultimately make oral hygiene easier. Properly positioned and spaced teeth make brushing and flossing far more effective.

Reduced Risk for Common Oral Health Conditions

Orthodontic issues present more than just aesthetic problems; they contribute to the development of destructive conditions like tooth decay and gum disease. This is because food, plaque, and tartar collect between teeth. This is especially dangerous to oral health since crooked and crowded teeth cannot be brushed or flossed properly.

Lessened Incidence of Tooth Wear

When teeth are misaligned, they tend to make improper contact during oral function. Teeth making contact when and where they shouldn’t weakens them over time. Aligning your teeth can lengthen their lifespan.

Receiving orthodontic care is an investment in your appearance and your oral health. Call Fleming Orthodontics to schedule a consultation.

Categories: braces, Garland orthodontist, orthodontics

Subtle Straightening with Clear Braces

Do you want a straighter smile but dread wearing conspicuous orthodontia? Clear braces are a great alternative to traditional metal and wire braces. With Invisalign, you can enjoy discreet orthodontic treatment that’s also low maintenance and comfortable. Our orthodontist offers consultations for teens and adults looking to straighten their teeth inconspicuously with clear braces.

Facts about Invisalign

clear braces Garland TXInvisalign is an orthodontic system that straightens teeth with removable, clear appliances. Instead of relying on fixed wires and brackets, clear braces straighten teeth with custom made components worn like retainers. These components, called “aligners”, are constructed from smooth, transparent plastic. They are worn over the top and bottom teeth for 22 hours a day.

Since aligners are custom made, they will facilitate tooth movement by applying consistent pressure to one’s smile. The force generated by this consistent pressure will close gaps between teeth, correct crooked teeth, and improve the spacing of crowded teeth.

Every two weeks, a patient will wear a new set of custom aligners. Each set is progressively tighter than the one before. As treatment progresses, patients will see noticeable improvements in the spacing of teeth and their positioning.

Aligners are comfortable since they have no sharp edges that can irritate soft oral tissue. They’re low maintenance, too, because they’re removed for meals, brushing, and flossing. Patients with Invisalign enjoy orthodontic treatment without dietary restrictions or obstructions during oral hygiene.

Why Orthodontic Treatment Matters

Orthodontic treatment promotes optimal oral health in addition to the cosmetic benefits of achieving a straighter smile. Those with improperly spaced and positioned teeth have higher risks of developing gum disease, worn dentition, and tooth decay. This is because improperly positioned teeth will make contact when and where they shouldn’t, accelerating tooth wear. Misaligned teeth are also more difficult to keep clean, thereby increasing the risks for developing hygiene-related conditions like gum disease and cavities.

Straightening your smile will boost more than your confidence; it will improve your oral health. Call Fleming Orthodontics to reserve a clear braces consultation with our orthodontist.

Categories: clear braces, Garland orthodontist

Foods to Avoid During Orthodontic Treatment

Orthodontics allows patients who have an incorrect bite a treatment option to achieve straight teeth. This is more important than just a great smile. A malocclusion resulting from an overbite, underbite, and/or crossbite creates areas in the mouth where dental plaque forms and grows. These areas are often difficult to reach with your toothbrush increasing the potential for dental decay and/or gum disease. Your orthodontist will provide a thorough examination and treatment plan to outline needed corrections.

Dental Braces 

orthodontist Garland TXYour orthodontist is a dentist that specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of dental and facial irregularities. When it comes to teeth straightening, you should follow instructions very carefully as your provider has the success of your treatment as their primary concern.

Dental braces worn today are much smaller that the metal braces of years ago. However, the process has not changed much. A dental impression is made and photographs taken that are used as diagnostic tools. Brackets, bands, and wires are implemented. Each is placed strategically to allow teeth to be moved to their correct placement.

You will undergo periodic adjustments where the wires are manipulated to keep teeth moving. It is important to note that these visits do not take the place of dental appointments needed to have teeth cleaned.

Diet Adjustments During Orthodontic Treatment

There are foods that should be avoided throughout orthodontic treatment. Sticky foods like caramel can pull braces off or out of place. Chewing gum throughout treatment is ill advised.

Hard foods are probably the bigger adjustment … hard candy, popcorn, nuts, and ice can break brace components. Fresh fruits and vegetables can be consumed carefully – cut them into small bites. Don’t bite into them whole – while this may be inconvenient, their nutritional value makes them an important part of your daily diet. Crusty break, chips, crackers, and many cookies should also be consumed very carefully, if at all.

Once your dental braces are removed, you are free to enjoy all your favorite foods again. But the final phase of orthodontic treatment is essential – that is wearing the retainer. Wearing the retainer as directed will allow your teeth to develop a memory of their new location. Failure to wear it as prescribed may allow teeth to drift back to their original location.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact our team at Fleming Orthodontics today.

Categories: braces, Garland orthodontist

Orthodontic Treatment: Alternatives For The Working Professional

braces for adults Garland TXBraces may seem like a rite of passage for teenagers, but adults can benefit from working with an orthodontist, too. Braces for adults can be beneficial in a variety of scenarios. They may be used to correct an alignment regression that occurred years after initial treatment or straighten smiles for the first time.

Working adults who want to maintain a professional appearance throughout orthodontic treatment will have special considerations, however. Fortunately, such patients have access to a variety of treatment options that have minimal effects on the aesthetics of the smile.

Benefits Of Adult Orthodontic Treatment

Patients may notice that their teeth revert to their original positions in the years after they first sought treatment from an orthodontist, and correcting such misalignments is one benefit of braces for adults. Additionally, adults who never wore braces during their adolescence may find themselves dissatisfied with their crooked teeth and want to fix that problem at long last.

Regardless of the circumstances in which adult patients decide to get braces, the benefits of a properly aligned smile are numerous. Not only will your smile look better, which improves your self-confidence, but a straight smile also can chew more effectively and reduce the risk of damage to the soft oral tissues that can occur when they are bitten by a misaligned jaw. In some cases, orthodontic treatment may even correct conditions that are causing discomfort for a patient.

Orthodontic Treatment Options With Minimal Effects On Your Appearance

Understandably, adult patients who are considering orthodontic treatment may be put off by the idea of wearing clunky metal appliances on their teeth. However, there are alternatives for braces for adults that are more aesthetically pleasing. For example, Invisalign uses clear plastic trays to reposition the teeth, and those trays are barely noticeable. Ceramic brackets can also be used with standard orthodontic appliances for less visibility during treatment.

While Invisalign can correct a number of problems, including some that are fairly complex, this may not be the best treatment choice for all patients and ceramic brackets and orthodontic wires may be a better choice. After evaluating your case, your orthodontist will advise you of the treatment approach that will best help you to achieve your smile goals.

Don’t let reluctance about metal braces stand between you and a straighter smile. Explore orthodontic alternatives that will detract less from your smile’s appearance. Visit our team at Fleming Orthodontics for a consultation.

Categories: braces for adults, Garland orthodontist, Invisalign

What is early orthodontic treatment?

early orthodontic treatment Garland TXEarly orthodontic treatment involves anticipating orthodontic issues early on during childhood and addressing them with treatment, if necessary. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children see an orthodontist for a consultation by their seventh birthday. This consultation will involve an oral examination to monitor the development of the jaws, bite, and tooth transition (the replacement of baby teeth with adult teeth).

Since the oral cavity is still developing, early orthodontic treatment (also known as interceptive orthodontics) can prevent the development of malocclusions like underbites, crossbites, overbites, and open bites. It can also decrease the need for tooth extractions later on. Sometimes, patients who had interceptive treatment enjoy reduced treatment times for braces.

What does interceptive treatment involve?

Interceptive treatment can involve using functional growth appliances to reduce the severity of developing orthodontic issues. Appliances such as palatal expanders to widen the jaw or create room for adult teeth to emerge might be used. Other examples of interceptive treatment include tooth extractions and limited braces.

Will all children need interceptive care?

Whether your child requires interceptive orthodontic care depends on the results of the consultation with an orthodontist. Not all children require early care. There are three outcomes to your child’s initial consultation for orthodontics. The first is that treatment is necessary. The second is that treatment might be necessary and the development of the jaws, bite, and emerging teeth need to be monitored. Lastly, an initial consultation can conclude that early orthodontics isn’t necessary.

Does early orthodontic care eliminate the need for headgear?

External orthodontic appliances can be uncomfortable and do look very obvious. Fortunately, early treatment and advancements in orthodontic appliances have greatly reduced the need for external headgear. There might still be instances where headgear is necessary, however.

What can parents look for that might indicate the need for early treatment?

While a consultation is the best option for revealing whether early treatment is needed, there are some issues that parents can look for. Common indicators for early treatment include bucked teeth, speech impediments, and thumb sucking passed the age of five. Crowded teeth, difficulty chewing, and “mouth breathing” are typical indicators, too.

Call Fleming Orthodontics today to reserve a consultation.

Categories: braces, early orthodontic treatment

When is the best time to start orthodontic treatment?

braces Garland TXThe American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children should have their first orthodontic checkup no later than age seven. A dentist might recommend visiting a specialist sooner, however, if abnormalities or concerns are revealed during routine checkups and cleanings.

While it is common for children to wear braces, orthodontics helps people from all age groups, including adults. Determining when to receive braces varies from person to person because everyone’s oral anatomy and developmental progress is unique. A consultation with an orthodontist will help determine the best course of action.

Early Interceptive Orthodontic Care

Early interceptive orthodontics is a treatment method that breaks up treatment into two phases, with the first phase occurring during childhood. This first phase takes advantage of the bones and palate continuing to develop. Since bone growth still occurs, orthodontic appliances like palate expanders can be used to widen the jaw and create room for the emergence of adult teeth.

By creating room and correcting occlusal issues that might arise, some patients can enjoy significantly shorter treatment periods. Many children do not have to wear braces as long with early intervention. Moreover, interceptive care can eliminate the need for external headgear.

Braces for Teens

Teenagers might need braces even if they do not require interceptive care in childhood. Fortunately, today’s braces have unique design elements to increase comfort and streamline the movement of teeth. There are also multiple options for maintaining a natural looking aesthetic, if desired.

For instance, ceramic braces have tooth-colored brackets and clear wires, which look incredibly natural when compared to braces made from metal archwires and brackets.

Orthodontic Intervention in Adulthood

Sometimes people need braces during their adult years. This is common when people never had access to orthodontic care, their wisdom teeth emerged and forced teeth out of position, or when patients do not wear their retainers as directed after braces.

There are a number of solutions for adults in need of braces that are more comfortable and aesthetically appealing than conventional orthodontia. For example, there are self-ligating braces that speed up treatment times and clear alternatives to braces made from plastic.

If you have questions about your treatment options, call Fleming Orthodontics today to reserve a consultation with our orthodontist.

Categories: braces, clear braces, Garland orthodontist

Importance of Plaque Control During Orthodontic Treatment

orthodontics Garland TXOral hygiene is important – especially during orthodontic treatment. While orthodontics is a wonderful investment in your oral health, it is important to know that you have an increased risk for gum disease and tooth decay when wearing braces. This is because food and plaque collect on the surfaces of orthodontic appliances and because braces can make cleaning teeth more cumbersome.

Patients with braces should practice vigilant oral hygiene in addition to having frequent follow-up appointments with our orthodontist.

Brushing

If we brush properly, we can clean about 70% of the surfaces in our mouth. Brushing thoroughly controls the development of plaque and tartar. We should brush our teeth at least twice a day, preferably when we wake up and before we go to bed.

It takes a couple minutes to brush since we need to clean all sides of our teeth, the gums, tongue, and roof of the mouth. Patients should choose soft bristled brushes or brush heads and ADA-approved toothpaste for effective brushing.

Interdental Cleaning

Even though brushing is important, it doesn’t improve interdental hygiene. We must use interdental cleaners like floss to clean between our teeth. Since braces can make flossing more difficult, it is important for orthodontics patients to make extra time in their schedules for oral hygiene. Floss should be threaded behind the archwires of braces to avoid breaking them and to reach between teeth.

Some people wearing braces choose to use other types of Interdental cleaners like handheld disposable picks and water irrigators.

Dietary Considerations

Our diet affects oral health. If we consume starchy and sugary foods, we feed bacteria. Harmful oral bacteria grow stronger and colonize after feeding on sugar molecules. They also release acids, which can weaken tooth enamel, as a by-product of the feeding process. The American Dental Association encourages people to limit intake of sugary and starchy food items.

Our orthodontist is accepting new patients. Call Fleming Orthodontics to reserve a consultation with our helpful team.

Categories: braces, Garland orthodontist, orthodontics