When considering braces, it’s common for questions to arise. Getting braces can be exciting, especially when you consider the possibility of having a more vibrant smile. Below you’ll find answers to the most commonly asked questions concerning orthodontics.
1. Do I actually need braces?
When it comes to the issue of whether or not you need braces, it really depends on your situation. Generally, orthodontic treatments are elective and serve the purpose of resolving minor to moderate problems. There are some people that can benefit from braces because it will boost the level of confidence they have. However, there are some people that actually need braces because they have a severe underbite or overbite. When this is the case, they will also need jaw surgery.
2. When should I schedule a consultation with an orthodontist?
It’s been recommended by the American Association of Orthodontists that every child visit an orthodontist to get an evaluation before they turn 8 years old. By the age of 7, there are a variety of problems that can arise and should be resolved. There’s a chance that an orthodontist evaluation will result in no treatments because it isn’t necessary. When it comes to adults, you can visit Hallgren Orthodontics in Kalamazoo, MI at any point to optimize your oral health.
3. Are shots involved in the process?
If you’re someone that’s afraid of getting shots, there’s no need to worry because you don’t typically need to get shots during orthodontic treatments. There are other related treatments that might end up requiring shots, such as surgical procedures.
4. Are braces painful?
Generally, there isn’t a lot of pain involved when getting braces, especially because of the new technologies that exist. However, you will probably feel soreness right after getting braces and for a few days following the procedure. Pain medication is usually prescribed. There is also the issue of your braces rubbing against your cheeks, lips and tongue. This friction can cause you to feel irritation. Orthodontic wax is often used to prevent pain.
5. Does my dentist have to provide a referral to an orthodontist?
While there is no requirement to have a referral from a dentist to see an orthodontist, you will need to check with your insurance to see if there are any limitations.
6. How many orthodontic appointments are necessary?
The initial process of getting braces will usually take several appointments. After that process, you will have appointments every 4 to 8 weeks, depending on your unique situation. Sometimes the orthodontist will want to closely monitor your teeth and schedule more frequent appointments.
7. Can I eat any type of food when wearing braces?
While you can eat just about any type of food when wearing braces, there are some foods that should be eaten in moderation or avoided altogether. This includes anything that’s hard. The goal is to avoid foods that could break a tooth or your braces.
8. Will my teeth straighten over time without braces?
If you do not get braces, there isn’t much of a chance that your teeth will straighten out by themselves as time progresses. However, there is a chance that the spaces that exist between teeth with get smaller as time passes.
9. Can I get braces on just the top or bottom?
While there is a chance that you can get braces on only the top or bottom, it is sometimes problematic because it can result in a malocclusion, which is a bad bite that can cause damage to your tissues, teeth and jaw joints.
10. What is the purpose of elastics?
The purpose of elastics (rubber bans) is to correct problems with your bite. They are easy to install and you’ll receive instructions after getting braces.