Frequently Asked Questions
The majority of our cases are between 18 to 30 months in duration, depending upon you, the patient, your cooperation and complexity of your case.
Regular adjustment visits are very important to the overall success of your orthodontic treatment. We will normally see most patients on a 6 to 8 week rotation cycle, at which time we will check your progress and make adjustments to your orthodontic appliances (brackets). You will be given guidance by our clinical staff in how to best care for your braces and be monitored on your oral hygiene.
Many of our patients have been referred to us from their family dentists, however, word of mouth recommendations from friends and family members of patients who are currently in our care are also welcomed. By referring someone to our office for a consultation, you pay us the nicest compliment possible.
If you have been referred to us by your dentist, we will send him/her a report of our findings and assessments, upon completion of your consultation.
Should you not have a dentist, we would strenuously advise you to do so and will be glad to give you a referral based upon your geographical location.
We are happy to work with your family dentist in providing your dental health care; however, we will focus solely on the orthodontic component of your care. Your family dentist will continue to provide you with your primary dental care and as such we will stress the importance of seeing them for a thorough cleaning and check up prior to the initiation of orthodontic treatment, throughout treatment and at the completion.
Braces are attached to teeth with a special adhesive and tend to sit in the middle of your teeth. If a brace is knocked out during sport or while eating a hard food, the attachment to the tooth will fail. Occasionally, the brace is rotated on the wire and sticks out into the lip. Household tweezers may be used to push the brace around and back up against the tooth. A small amount of wax may be used to then keep it in place until you can arrange to come in and see us to have it fixed.
If a wire is protruding out the end of the last brace, or if a thin wire is coming off the braces and irritating your lips or cheeks, a small nail clipper can be helpful. Use the clipper to cut the wire. It may be helpful to use a folded Kleenex to trap the piece of wire. Again, contact the office to arrange for a visit to have this corrected as soon as possible.
Upon having your braces placed, you may experience some level of discomfort for several days. This may make eating more difficult. One suggestion is to make sure soft foods are available and to use non-prescription pain relievers such as those you would use for a headache.
Irritation of lips and cheeks from braces rubbing tends to occur when the braces are first placed. Wax is available and will have been supplied to you in the kit given to you when the braces were placed. This wax can provide you comfort while you get used to your braces. To apply the wax, pinch off a small piece and roll it into a ball the size of a pea. After the wax is squeezed into a small disc, push it onto the brace where the irritation is occurring.
We would advise you to contact the office at your earliest convenience to inform us that you have lost your retainer, as a new one will need to be made for you, at an additional fee. When eating out, it is recommended that you remove your retainer. Please, do not wrap the retainer in a tissue or napkin. This eventually results in the retainer being discarded. We will provide you with a retainer case, which is available in many colours, for you to use, both in your homes and when out. Use these retainer cases whenever you remove your retainers or appliances. A removable appliance or retainer is only safe in two places, your mouth or in the retainer case.
If you have braces there are certain foods that should be avoided. Sticky foods, such as gum, caramel and licorice, are all foods that cannot be easily cleaned off the braces. They may lead to discoloration and decay of your teeth. As well, they may loosen the glue on the brackets, causing it to break off the tooth. Hard foods such as nuts, hard candy and pizza crusts may also damage your braces. Even though our braces are made of durable materials, such as stainless steel and ceramics, they are fragile and can be damaged by eating the wrong foods.
We consider your dentist an important member within our ortho team. Throughout your orthodontic treatment, regular check-ups with your family dentist are extremely important for maintaining your dental health. Please be sure to see your general dentist for your regular cleanings. These cleanings are even more important for patients who are wearing braces.
There are no age limits for orthodontic treatment. Many adults are now realizing that there have been many new advancements made in the field of orthodontics making treatment more feasible. It’s never too late for a great smile.
You’ll have to do everything you do now. Swim, talk, play a musical instrument, even play sports. However, you will have to be careful with certain things you eat, nothing too hard or sticky, like gum or toffee. You’ll have to be a little more careful when playing sports and wear a special mouthguard. Other than a few changes, your life style will not be affected and you will end up with a GREAT smile!