FAQ

  

1. Is it required that my family dentist schedule my appointment with the orthodontist?

No, it is not. Many of our patients are referred by their family dentist, yet many other patients take the initiative to schedule an examination themselves.
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2. At what age should I schedule an appointment for an orthodontic screening?

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening at age 7. By this age, several permanent teeth in most children have erupted, allowing us to effectively evaluate your orthodontic condition.Whenever you have a question about the development or position of the teeth, and examination visit should be requested.
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3. Will my front teeth straighten out as they grow?

No, they will not. The space available for the front teeth does not increase as you grow. Some increase in space can be accomplished with orthodontic care, allowing for the alignment of crowded teeth.

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4. How do I schedule an appointment for an initial exam?

If you or your child can potentially benefit from orthodontic treatment, simply call our office. We will be happy to schedule a convenient appointment time for you. When you call to schedule your appointment, our front office staff will request some basic information from you.
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5. What will happen at the initial examination appointment?

Upon arriving, each patient and parent will be seen by the staff who will acclimate you to our office and prepare for the initial exam. The doctor will then complete a brief, but thorough, history and exam and we will take any necessary photographs and X-rays to allow us to make a proper diagnosis.  


To read more about your first visit, see our First Visit Page.
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6. What will I learn from the initial examination?

There are five essential questions that we will cover during the initial examination:

· Is there an orthodontic problem, and if so, what is it?
· What must be done to correct the problem?
· When is the appropriate time to address the problems?
· Will any teeth need to be removed and how long will the treatment take to complete?
· How much will the treatment cost and how is my insurance utilized?
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7. Will I need to have teeth extracted for braces?

Removing teeth is sometimes required to achieve the best orthodontic result. Straight teeth and a balanced facial profile are the goal of orthodontics. However, because new technology has provided advanced orthodontic procedures, removing teeth is not usually necessary for orthodontic treatment.
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8. How long will it take to complete treatment?

Treatment time obviously depends on each patient’s specific orthodontic problem. In general, treatment time lasts from 8 months to 30 months. The "average" time frame a person is in braces is approximately 16-20 months.
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9. How much will braces cost? Are financing options available? How does my insurance work?

It is impossible to give an exact cost for treatment until we have examined you. We will discuss cost and financial options during the initial examination. We have several financing options available to accommodate your needs, and we will review these with you. We will also review your insurance policy and help to maximize your benefit, file your claims and, in most situations if authorized, collect from the carrier.
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10. How often will I have appointments?

Appointments are scheduled according to each patient's needs. Most patients in braces will be seen every 5 to 8 weeks. If there are specific situations that require more frequent monitoring, we will schedule appointments accordingly.
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11. Can I schedule all of my appointments after school?

Unfortunately, we cannot schedule all appointments for students during after-school hours. However, because most appointments are scheduled 5 to 8 weeks apart, most patients will miss minimal school due to their orthodontic treatments. We will, however, make a sincere effort to meet your scheduling needs.
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12. Can I return to school the day I receive my braces?

Yes. Returning to school will maximize the opportunity to show off your new braces
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13. Do you give shots?

No. We do not give dental injections in the orthodontic office.
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14. Do you use recycled braces?

No! It is our belief that each patient should be provided with their own new braces to achieve the best orthodontic result possible.
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15. Can I still play sports?

Yes. We recommend a mouth guard for all contact sports.
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16. Do I need to see my family dentist while in braces?

Yes! Regular checkups with your family dentist are important while in braces. Your family dentist will determine the intervals, usually a minimum of 6 months,between cleaning appointments while you are in braces.
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17. Are there foods I cannot eat while I have braces?

Yes. Once treatment begins, we will explain the complete instructions and provide a comprehensive list of foods to avoid. The texture of foods is the critical factor, staying away from hard and sticky sweet items. Some of those foods include: ice, hard candy, raw vegetables and all sticky foods (i.e. caramel and taffy). You can avoid most emergency appointments to repair broken or damaged braces by carefully following our instructions.
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18. How often should I brush my teeth while in braces?

Patients should brush their teeth whenever they are dirty - including after each meal or snack  and before going to bed. We will show each patient how to floss their teeth with braces and may also provide a prescription for a special fluoride, if necessary.
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19. What is an emergency appointment? How are those handled?

If your braces are causing extreme pain or if something breaks, you should call our office. In most cases, we can address these issues over the telephone. If you require an emergency appointment, we will set aside time for you.
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20. Can orthodontic correction occur while a child has baby teeth?

Yes. Some orthodontic problems are significant enough to require early intervention and often braces are placed while a few baby teeth remain. However, if a patient is not yet ready for treatment, we will supervise the patient's growth and development, choosing the right time for treatment to begin.
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21. What is Phase One (early) Treatment?

Phase One treatment, if necessary, is usually initiated on children between the ages of 7 and 10. Phase One treatment may last about 3-20months. The primary objective for Phase One treatment is to address significant developmental problems or gross bite interferences or irregularities to prevent them from becoming more severe and to improve self-esteem and self-image.
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22. Is it too late to have braces if I am already an adult?

A surprising percentage of our patients are adults. In fact, 25 percent of all orthodontic patients are adults. Health, happiness and self-esteem are vitally important to adults. No periodontally healthy patient is "too old" to wear braces!
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23. Can I wear braces even though I have crowns and missing teeth?

Yes. A tooth with a crown will move just like a tooth with a simple filling. When teeth are missing, orthodontic treatment will aid in the alignment of the remaining teeth and improve the environment for tooth replacement if necessary.
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24. Why should I choose an orthodontic specialist?

Teeth, and sometimes entire facial structures, are permanently changed by orthodontic treatment. It is important that the treatment be appropriate and properly completed. Orthodontic specialists limit their practice to orthodontic treatment and have an extra 2-3 years of extensive and specialized training after dental school that enables them to provide their patients with professional, personalized treatments. 
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