FAQ

Many Patients Ask…

Should I continue to see my family dentist while having orthodontic treatment?

Absolutely! Your family dentist will be an integral part of your orthodontic and dental treatment team. Your family dentist will clean your teeth and check them for cavities. He or she will also teach you how to keep your teeth and mouth extra clean. We recommend a check-up at least every 4-6 months.

How long does orthodontic treatment take?

The length of treatment depends upon many factors including the complexity of the orthodontic problem, desired corrections, and how well you participate with the care and maintenance of your appliances, teeth and gums during treatment. Typically, full treatment takes approximately 2 years, and is followed by retention where the teeth are held in their proper position with retainers.

Do I have to pay for orthodontic care all at once?

We try to make orthodontics as affordable as possible and offer different payment options. We offer an interest free outside financing option where no down payment is required and monthly payments are spread over a period of time, up to 18 months. You can pre-apply for this option directly from our website (see Chase Health Advance under the Financing tab). We also offer full payment with a cash payment courtesy, or a down payment and spreading monthly payments over a period of time. You can choose the payment option which best fits into your budget. We will be glad to discuss these options with you at your initial examination or at your treatment consultation appointment.

Orthodontics for Children

When should my child see an orthodontist?

Normally the best time to see an orthodontist is as soon as a problem is detected. Your child will generally begin seeing your family dentist as early as age 2. As your family dentist becomes familiar with your child’s teeth, he or she will notice any problems and, as an informed professional, will refer you to an orthodontist promptly. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that a child visit an orthodontist by at least age 7, or sooner, if any problems are detected or anticipated.

Isn’t seven years of age too early?

No. Many problems of jaw growth, crowding of teeth and effects of habits such as thumb-sucking are readily detectable at this age. While growth is still occurring, early interceptive treatment may reduce the severity of the problem and the complexity of the orthodontic treatment, or the need for a future surgical correction. Addressing possible problems at an early age provides an opportunity to make beneficial corrections before substantial growth is completed.

How will my child benefit from orthodontic treatment?

It is not uncommon for children to ask their parents to take them to an orthodontist. Young people are very aware of the esthetic benefits as well as seeing many of their friends having orthodontic treatment. What they may not know is that besides the benefits from an enhanced appearance and an attractive smile, orthodontics also improves the alignment of teeth and the bite. This will help preserve healthy gums, teeth and jaw joints for many years to come.

If my child’s permanent teeth aren’t in, how can we start orthodontic treatment?

It is not necessary for your child’s permanent teeth to be in prior to orthodontic treatment. One main purpose of early interceptive treatment is to create space for the permanent teeth and to reduce overbites. Early treatment creates the proper environment allowing the permanent teeth to come in correctly. Once most of the permanent teeth are in, a second phase of treatment takes place as the braces are applied to move the permanent teeth into the ideal alignment.

What type of orthodontic treatments do you use?

There may be several options depending upon the type of treatment needed. We have great experience with metal and clear braces, with and without colored ties. We also use self-ligating braces which allow less friction and more movement during treatment. We use appliances for jaw expansion and lower jaw advancement. And, we use the Invisalign® aligner therapy with both teens and adults. With the selection of the right appliance at the right age, we have been delighted by our ability to reduce the number of permanent teeth which need to be extracted, and our ability to produce broader and fuller smiles.

Orthodontics for Adults

Why do people choose to have orthodontics as adults?

Many adults did not receive orthodontic treatment earlier in life or may have experienced problems due to later tooth movement, gum disease, tooth loss, poor jaw growth, or even joint problems. Any of these problems can be successfully and comfortably treated in adults, with the same wonderful benefits as if done at a younger age.

Is there a growing trend towards orthodontics for adults?

Yes. Nearly one million adults are in orthodontic treatment today. Advances in orthodontic appliances, including clear braces, “high tech” wires, and the Invisalign® Aligner therapy, have made it much more comfortable and esthetically pleasing for adults to benefit from orthodontics. Because of the long-term benefits to the teeth, gums and jaw joints from improved alignment, informed professionals, including your family dentist and orthodontist, recommend orthodontics for their adult patients who need them.

Do adults have different orthodontic options?

With more mature teeth in an adult, we are often able to use clear braces on the upper front teeth. Most braces are cemented to the outside tooth surface with bands used as needed on the back teeth. For moderate corrections, the Invisalign® clear plastic aligner is available for select teen and adult patients. New low friction braces in combination with super elastic and temperature sensitive wires are allowing us to reduce the forces on the teeth. This is much more comfortable, and allows us to sometimes lengthen the time between adjustment appointments.

Is adult treatment different than that for the child?

While some adults require just simple alignment, others may present us with many treatment challenges. We may need to reposition teeth to help the dentist restore teeth or replace missing teeth. Adults may have had jaw growth problems where a surgical correction offers us the ability to restore bite function and produce a pleasing and harmonious facial balance. For some adults who have had TMJ dysfunction problems and splint therapy, orthodontic treatment may help eliminate or reduce the need for a splint and help make the bite more supportive for the joints.