- Unsightly smile
- Damage to the teeth
- Greater difficulty in keeping the teeth clean
- Compromised chewing function
- Increased risk of injury to the soft oral tissues
- At what age should patients begin wearing braces? There is not a one size fits all answer for this one. However, it is advised that children consult with their orthodontist at around the age of seven. Although treatment may not begin that early, this is a perfect opportunity for laying the groundwork for what to anticipate as the child grows.
- How long would braces need to be worn? This is based on the severity of the malocclusion. A malocclusion occurs when the top row of teeth do not align correctly with their corresponding bottom teeth. For milder cases, braces may only be required for months; the more difficult the problem, the longer the need to wear braces for a solution.
- What kind of foods must be eliminated while wearing braces? This depends on the type of braces the patient elects to wear. Standard metal bands and brackets will mean more changes than teeth straightening methods where aligners are worn. With aligners, no food changes are required as aligners are removed before snacks and meals. With metal braces, foods that are sticky, hard, or crunchy are much more difficult to manage. It is imperative that the wires woven between teeth not bend or break. If this should occur, a visit to have repairs made is required.
- Will I still need to get my teeth cleaned while wearing braces? Yes, in fact it is very important that you do not skip your twice yearly teeth cleaning and dental exam appointments. Even though you will be seeing your orthodontist more often, this does not preclude the need to see your family dentist.
September 8, 2021
Clear braces – particularly Invisalign – make a great treatment option for adults looking to straighten their smiles. Invisalign is an effective alternative to traditional metal and wire braces. Our orthodontist offers Invisalign because patients enjoy its discreet appearance, added convenience, and unparalleled comfort.
How Invisalign Works
Invisalign is a type of clear braces. Instead of utilizing fixed orthodontia, Invisalign improves the positioning of teeth through translucent, plastic appliances called “aligners”. These aligners fit over teeth like a retainer. Similar to braces, aligners apply consistent pressure, which generates tooth movement over time.
Every two weeks, patients will switch to a new set of aligners. Each successive set is tighter than the one before. By the end of treatment, patients will see noticeable improvements in the positions of their teeth such as gaps closing and crooked teeth appearing upright. Invisalign can also improve a patient’s bite.
Benefits of Invisalign
Invisalign treatment offers distinct advantages. The most noticeable benefit is that clear braces are much less conspicuous than metal and wire ones. This makes navigating one’s professional and personal life less distracting.
Other helpful advantages to choosing Invisalign include increased comfort and improved oral function. Aligners are smooth and therefore will not irritate the linings of lips and cheeks the way that conventional braces do. Invisalign is also removable. This makes eating meals and performing oral hygiene easy and efficient.
When compared to traditional orthodontia, Invisalign requires less visits to our orthodontist. Invisalign doesn’t require adjustments like metal and wire braces do. For busy professionals, making it to dental appointments can be difficult so having fewer appointments is appealing to many adults.
How to Find Out if Clear Braces Meet Your Needs
Determining if Invisalign meets your needs involves an orthodontic consultation. If you desire a straighter, healthier smile, we invite you to schedule a visit with our orthodontist. During your visit, we can help you select the treatment method that suits your unique circumstances.
Call Fleming Orthodontics today to reserve your appointment.
July 12, 2021
The thrill of getting your braces off after a course of orthodontic treatment is cause for celebration, but it doesn’t mean that your treatment is over. The next stage of treatment is wearing a retainer so that your teeth won’t shift back to their previous positions.
It is just as important to follow through with this phase of treatment as it is for you to see your orthodontist as directed during so-called active treatment, as there is a significant risk of relapse if you don’t wear your retainer.
Purpose Of An Orthodontic Retainer
Although orthodontic treatment does successfully reposition your teeth, those results can easily be undone if the teeth begin to shift back to their original positions. Wearing your retainer reinforces the new positioning of the teeth and prevents potential relapse.
Your orthodontist will give you specific instructions of how to wear your retainer. Typically, patients are directed to wear their retainers all day for a period of time. Eventually, you will be given the go-ahead to only wear your retainer while you sleep.
Because the risk of relapse is present for at least several years after your braces come off, you should plan to wear your retainer as directed for at least that amount of time.
Consequences Of Not Wearing A Retainer
When patients don’t wear their retainers as directed after orthodontic treatment and experience a relapse, significant consequences result. This can cause all of the same problems as the original misalignment did, such as:
Ultimately, if you don’t wear your retainer, you may eventually need to go through another round of wearing braces, which will require an additional investment of your time and energy. Furthermore, insurance is unlikely to cover a second round of braces.
If you anticipate any obstacles to wearing your retainer as directed, work with your orthodontist to develop a plan to overcome those obstacles. It is truly essential to the long-term success of your treatment.
For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact Fleming Orthodontics today.
May 14, 2021
Although many of us associate wearing braces with youth, an increasing number of adults choose to receive orthodontic treatment every year. Some of the most popular braces for adults include invisible braces, ceramic braces, and conventional metal and wire braces. Our orthodontist provides braces for adults and children to help improve the overall appearance and health of their smiles.
What are clear braces?
Clear braces like Invisalign are a popular option for adults. Made from clear plastic, these types of braces are lauded for their discreet appearance and increased comfort. Invisalign is especially popular among working professionals because of their inconspicuous appearance and the fact that this orthodontic treatment is removable for meals and oral hygiene.
Invisible braces can correct common orthodontic issues like gapped, crooked, overlapped, and crowded teeth.
Are ceramic braces a good option for adults?
Ceramic braces are another popular option for older patients. Unlike Invisalign, ceramic braces are fixed in place by brackets. Although this type of orthodontic treatment is not removable, it is more discreet than conventional metal braces because its orthodontic appliances are tooth-colored.
Wearing ceramic braces can improve typical tooth placement issues along with a patient’s bite.
Are metal braces worn by adults?
Yes, many adults choose conventional braces to treat orthodontic concerns. While these braces aren’t as inconspicuous as other options, they do provide well-rounded benefits such as improving the placement of teeth and the position of one’s bite.
Why should adults get orthodontic care?
Orthodontic care provides more benefits than just improving your smile. While having a straight smile is certainly advantageous, there are other health benefits that patients should consider, too. Those with properly positioned and spaced teeth tend to have lower incidences of tooth decay and gum disease. This is because it is easier to brush and floss straight teeth.
Wearing braces will also improve how and where your teeth make contact during oral function. This could reduce your risk for untimely tooth wear, which often requires dental restorations to repair.
If you have questions about braces for adults, call Fleming Orthodontics to schedule a consultation with our orthodontist.
March 12, 2021
Early orthodontic treatment has a number of advantages for patients. In the past, most orthodontic treatment was completed in one phase with braces and other oral appliances during one’s teenage years. Today, however, an orthodontist may break treatment into two phases with one occurring during childhood. Early orthodontic treatment can prevent a number of alignment concerns, reduce treatment times with braces, and improve a patient’s bite.
Here’s some helpful information on how early orthodontic treatment might benefit your child.
Prevents Crowding and Overlapping
Sometimes, a child may have too narrow of a jaw. As their permanent teeth begin to erupt, they may become crowded and overlapped because their jaw cannot accommodate the space all their teeth need.
Early orthodontic treatment can take advantage of the fact that a child’s jaws are still developing. For example, a palate expander can be placed to widen the jaw, which will ultimately prevent emerging teeth from crowding.
Reduces Treatment Times in Many Cases
Breaking orthodontic treatment into two phases can sometimes reduce the time a patient needs to wear braces. This is because interceptive orthodontics can create more room for teeth to emerge in upright, straight positions. By anticipating certain orthodontic concerns and treating them ahead of time, braces can be worn for less time during the second phase of treatment.
Lowers the Risk for Tooth Decay and Gum Disease
Early orthodontics helps prevent spacing issues. When teeth are crowded, overlapped, and crooked, it is difficult to brush and floss them properly. Proper spacing makes oral hygiene easier and more effective. Improving the effectiveness of oral hygiene reduces the risks for developing tooth decay and periodontal disease in the future.
Corrects Improper Bites
A “bite” refers to how the upper and lower sets of teeth line up during oral function. If one has issues with the alignment of their jaws, it can accelerate tooth wear and affect one’s appearance. Correcting bite issues early on improves oral function and protects teeth from tooth wear.
If you have questions about braces and orthodontic care, call Fleming Orthodontics to reserve a consultation with our orthodontist.
January 14, 2021
Wearing braces is a great investment in your oral health and your appearance. Orthodontic treatment can improve your smile, boost your self-esteem, and reduce your risks for many common oral health concerns. If you’re planning on wearing braces, you likely have questions for our orthodontist about how treatment will affect your day-to-day life. Here are some helpful tips on activities you should avoid.
Foregoing Necessary Dental Hygiene
Practicing good oral hygiene is always important but it’s especially important when you’re wearing braces. Food and surface debris can easily become trapped beneath orthodontic appliances. Mitigating this concern involves performing thorough brushing and flossing exactly as recommended by our orthodontist. Some patients invest in water irrigators to help keep their teeth cleaner while wearing braces.
Chewing ice is a destructive habit – with or without braces. If you have a habit of chewing ice, we strongly encourage you to break it. Not only does crunching on ice wear down your teeth, it can break orthodontic appliances like brackets and ligatures.
Using Your Teeth as Tools
Your teeth are not tools and should not be used to open bottles or packaging. Using your teeth as tools while wearing braces is particularly dangerous. The force from opening a bottle or a package could damage orthodontic appliances, which requires professional intervention to repair.
Considerations for Those Who Play Sports or Participate in Performing Arts
If you play sports, it is wise to invest in a mouthguard. Trauma to the face or head could cause severe injuries – especially if you are wearing orthodontic appliances. Custom mouthguards protect your teeth and gums so that you can enjoy sports and physical exercise.
For those who sing in choir or play instruments in orchestra or band, it is wise to avoid having new appliances (like palate expanders) placed or adjusted just before a performance. Orthodontic adjustments can cause some soreness for a few days and this could affect your ability to perform as well as you would like.
Call Fleming Orthodontics if you have questions about braces or would like to schedule a consultation with our orthodontist.
November 16, 2020
Having straight teeth is something everyone wants; however, in many cases we need a little help to achieve this goal. This usually means wearing braces to correct a malocclusion. But having straight teeth is more important than just a great smile. Decay prevention coupled with healthier gum tissue are two more reasons why orthodontics should be a priority for anyone dealing with a malocclusion.
Common Queries About Wearing Braces
Children, Teens, and Adults of all Ages are Great Candidates for Teeth Straightening
A primary requirement for patients seeking that great smile is healthy teeth and gums. Braces are not appropriate for patients suffering from severe decay or periodontal disease until those conditions are brought under control.For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact our team at Fleming Orthodontics today.