Physical growth rate in humans is variable. Therefore, the rate and speed of the biological processes that allow the teeth to move will also vary between patients. Slower than normal tooth growth, unexpected jaw growth, or impacted teeth are uncontrollable factors and can contribute to a longer treatment length. However, the most common factors causing prolonged treatment are poor patient cooperation, frequent breakage and missing appointments. These factors are under the direct control of the patient.
Frequently Asked Questions
Teeth can be straighten without obvious braces. Adults or matures teens with only 1 – 6 millimeters of crowding or spacing of the front teeth and no missing or severely tipped teeth will not require braces that are glued on. A series of 3-D computer generated invisible aligners may create a beautiful smile for you without visible braces. Keep in mind that invisible aligners will not correct poor bites that due to jaw bone malpositioning. Therefore, to achieve the best smile possible, many patients will benefit from a treatment program which combines a short period of traditional braces followed by a longer period of invisible aligners.
The industry leader for invisible aligners is Invisalign (TM). Be aware that in 2002, Invisalign (TM) began licensing its technology to dentists who have “no prior orthodontic experience”. In light of the fact that invisible aligners alone are unlikely to produce the best smile, we urge patients interested in using invisible aligners to seek their treatment from licensed orthodontists.
Orthodontic treatment does not take the place of regular dental check ups. Patients under orthodontic care should maintain the recommended 6 month checkup/cleaning visits with their general dentist to make sure their teeth are remain healthy during the course of treatment.
Children aren’t the only ones who benefit from orthodontics. Adults are even more likely to be bothered by having a less than perfect smile. If you are an adult, it is not too late to correct problems such as crooked or crowded teeth, overbites, underbites, incorrect jaw position, or jaw-joint disorders. The biological process involved in moving teeth is the same at any age. There are differences between orthodontic treatment for adults and for children. Treatment for an adult usually takes a little longer than treatment for a child. Further, because an adult’s facial bones are no longer growing, certain corrections may require procedures in addition to braces. No matter what your age, it is never too late to improve your dental health and beautify your smile.
At any given time, approximately 4 million Americans are in braces.
How much is self-confidence, a proper bite and a beautiful smile worth?
The fee for orthodontic treatment will depend on many factors, including how severe the problem is, how complex the treatment is, and how long the treatment lasts. Orthodontic treatment is an individualized service. It is not like buying a TV or car where you can choose your model and bargain shop for the lowest price. Just as you would not automatically choose the contractor for your home based on the bottom line, you should not automatically choose your orthodontist based on the bottom line. Instead, you need to consider the level of service you will be receiving, the technology and materials used, the expertise and the quality of education received by your practitioner. All orthodontic offices are not created equal. Straight teeth and a winning smile is a gainful investment that will yield immeasurable returns.
Please keep in mind that orthodontic treatment is not merely cosmetic. In many cases there is an underlying medical dysfunction. Therefore, financing for treatment is usually available. The cost of orthodontic treatment may even be completely covered for eligible patients. (Please see: How can I get free braces?) Moreover, our office offers various payment plans to accommodate your financial situation and will even tailor a payment schedule to fit your needs. Well timed orthodontic treatment to correct a problem is often less costly than the additional dental care required to treat the more serious problems that can develop years later.
Studies show that people’s teeth may shift as they age. Teeth always tend to drift once braces are removed if a patient refuses to use a retainer. The most common change is crowding of the bottom front teeth. Careful studies have shown that the removal of the lower third molars or wisdom teeth will not prevent this crowding. Adhering to your doctor’s recommendations for retainer use is the best way to maintain the smile you worked so hard to achieve. Orthodontists agree that life long retention is the only way to prevent teeth from shifting.
We recommend brushing 3 times a day for 3-4 minutes each session. You must spend more time and care in brushing and flossing your teeth since food will stick the brackets of the braces and certain areas will be more difficult to access for cleaning.