Here at Bailey Orthodontics, we are dedicated to the health of your teeth. We also want to save you time and money while still ensuring that you have a smile of which you can be proud.

Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about orthodontics:

Who is an orthodontist?

An orthodontist is a dental specialist who has received 2 to 3 years of additional training and experience beyond dental school. Your orthodontist is able to straighten teeth, correct misaligned jaw structure improve the function of your bite and establish a beautiful smile.

What is the best age to visit an orthodontist?

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children first visit an orthodontist around the age of 7; Fortunately, orthodontic treatment is not exclusive to children and teens, with about one in every five orthodontic patients being over the age of 21. Whether you’re considering treatment for yourself, or for a child, any time is a good time to visit the orthodontist.

Do I need a referral to see an Orthodontist?

Dentists will identify orthodontic problems during routine dental exams and recommend a visit to us, but a referral is not required or necessary if you have concerns about your bite or smile. Please don’t hesitate to call us at any time. We provide a complimentary initial visit so you can receive all the necessary information to make a treatment decision. We will also notify your dentist about our findings and treatment recommendations.

What types of braces can I get?

There are many different types of braces that will get you the smile you deserve. Before we decide what you need, we will do a thorough examination. We may also do x-rays to further evaluate the problem. Once we have all of the necessary information, together we can decide which type of braces would work best for you.

Some of the types of braces we offer are clear ceramic and traditional metal. We also offer self-ligating and invisible braces.

How does Orthodontic treatment work?

Orthodontic appliances are made of metal, ceramic, or plastic. They may be removable, or they may be brackets bonded to the teeth. By placing a constant, gentle force in a carefully controlled direction, braces slowly move teeth to the proper position. It is no longer necessary to place a metal band with a bracket around each tooth. You can now choose clear or metal brackets and, in some cases, the color of your appliance. Wires are far less noticeable, and the latest materials are designed to move teeth faster with more comfort. Today, any age is a great age to wear braces!

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

Treatment duration is very dependent on the individual patient. Every person responds differently to treatment. Treatment times can take anywhere between 6 to 30 months; however, most standard treatments take about 22 months. Treatment duration is dependent on cooperation as well. Those who are very compliant with keeping their teeth clean and gum tissue healthy and consistently wear prescribed rubber bands, generally finish treatment much sooner.

Do braces hurt?

Placing the braces does not hurt, however, you may feel discomfort and your teeth will be sore to pressure for a couple days after getting your braces. This is because your teeth, gums, cheeks, and mouth need some time to get used to your new braces. The best way to manage the discomfort is by taking Ibuprofen every 6 hours for 2-3 days after your braces are put on your teeth.

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

Thorough brushing with the braces is essential for an ideal treatment outcome. You should brush your teeth at least three times a day to keep your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy and clean. We recommend brushing you teeth for at least 4 minutes every time you brush. 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. We will 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?

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 and can lead to cavities, gingivitis, and gum disease. We will work closely with your dentist to make sure that your teeth stay clean and healthy while wearing braces. We may recommend more frequent visits in adults who have experience bone loss prior to treatment.

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

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

How do I schedule my next appointment?

Simply give us a call! 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 the information you need.

What causes orthodontic problems?

Orthodontic problems, such as crowding of the teeth, too much space between the teeth, jaw growth problems, protruding teeth, and bad bites, can be inherited or caused by injury to the mouth, early or late loss of baby teeth, or thumb-sucking habits.

What can I eat when I have braces?

Foods You CAN Eat with Braces:

  • Dairy — soft cheese, pudding, milk-based drinks
  • Breads — soft tortillas, pancakes, muffins without nuts
  • Grains — pasta, soft cooked rice
  • Meats/poultry — soft cooked chicken, meatballs, lunch meats
  • Seafood — tuna, salmon, crab cakes
  • Vegetables — mashed potatoes, steamed spinach, beans
  • Fruits — applesauce, bananas, fruit juice
  • Treats — ice cream without nuts, milkshakes, Jell-O, soft cakes

Foods to Avoid with Braces:

  • Chewy foods — bagels, licorice
  • Crunchy foods — popcorn, chips, ice
  • Sticky foods — caramel candies, chewing gum
  • Hard foods — nuts, hard candies
  • Foods that require biting into — corn on the cob, apples, carrots

If you have any additional questions, don’t hesitate to contact us today.