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“Some the most frequently asked questions help patients understand

what they are going through and what to do next.”

What is orthodontics?

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Orthodontics (also known as dentofacial orthopedics) is an area of dentistry that concentrates on the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dental and facial abnormalities.

Who is an orthodontist?

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An orthodontist is a dental specialist with up to three years of additional training, who is able to straighten teeth, correct misaligned jaw structure, and improve the function of your smile.

What's the best age to visit the orthodontist?

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Any age is a great age to see the orthodontist. The Canadian Association of Orthodontists recommends that children first see an orthodontist around the age of seven. However, treatment is not exclusive to children and teens. Approximately one in every five orthodontic patients are over the age of 21. Whether for yourself or for a child, any time is a good time to visit the orthodontist.

How can I take care of my teeth if I'm wearing braces or a retainer?

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  • Brush your teeth after every meal and floss at least once a day.
  • Use toothpaste containing fluoride, plus ask your orthodontist if you require a fluoride rinse. This will help prevent cavities!
  • If you remove  your retainer to eat, make sure to brush your teeth, floss, and keep it safe in its container to prevent it form getting lost or broken.
  • Keep your retainer clean by brushing it with a toothbrush and toothpaste. You may soak it in denture cleaner if instructed by your orthodontist. Do not place your retainer in boiling water or in the dishwasher.
  • During treatment, avoid foods with lots of sugar (sugar raises the level of bacteria growing in your mouth, causing more plaque and possible cavities).
  • Avoid sticky and chewy foods (caramel, chewing gum, gummy bears), hard foods (hard candy, nuts, ice cubes), or any foods that could possibly get stuck in your braces (corn on the cob, soft bagels, ribs, taffy, etc.).
  • Schedule routine checkups with your family dentist every six months.

What are braces?

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Braces are used by an orthodontist to help improve the look and feel of your smile. There are several different types of braces to choose from, including:

  • Clear braces
  • Ceramic braces
  • Gold braces
  • Lingual braces
  • Self-ligating braces
  • Invisible braces
  • Metal braces

If I get braces, how long do I have to wear them?

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Treatment times depends on each individual’s smile and can take anywhere between six and 30 months, but most standard treatments take about 22 months.

Do braces hurt?

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Braces do not hurt often, however  you may feel a slight amount of discomfort for a couple days as your teeth, gums, cheeks, and mouth get used to your new braces.

Do I need to brush my teeth more often if I have braces?

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With braces, you should brush your teeth at least three times a day to keep your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy and clean. Brushing regularly will help remove any food that may be caught between the braces. You should also floss daily to get in between your braces where your brush isn’t able to reach. Your orthodontist can show you how to properly brush and floss once your braces are placed.

If I have braces, do I still need dental checkups every six months?

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Yes! In fact, it’s even more important that patients receiving orthodontic treatment visit their dentist regularly. With braces, food may be caught in places that your toothbrush can’t reach. This causes bacteria to build up that can lead to cavities, gingivitis, and gum disease. Your dentist will work closely with your orthodontist to make sure that your teeth stay clean and healthy while wearing braces.

Will my braces interfere with my school activities like sports, playing an instrument, or singing?

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Playing an instrument or a contact sport may require some adjustment when you first get your braces, but wearing braces will not stop you from participating in any of your school activities. If you play a contact sport, it is recommended that you wear a mouthguard to protect your braces or appliance.

How do I schedule my next appointment?

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Simply call our practice! Our front desk staff will be happy to help schedule your next appointment at your convenience. If you are a new patient or have been referred to our practice, please let us know and we will provide you with all of the information you need.

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