1. Why should my treatment be completed by 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 have extensive and specialized training that enables them to provide their patients with professional, personalized treatments.
2. How much will braces or Invisalign ® cost? Are financing options available?
It is impossible to give an exact cost for braces or Invisalign® treatment until we have completed your smile assessment. That being said, the last thing you should have to do is spend time worrying about how to pay for your braces and orthodontic treatment. We are happy to provide you with several flexible payment-plan options, including our zero% interest plan, that will help you get the treatment that’s needed without busting your budget. We will also review your insurance policy and help to maximize your benefit and file your claims. We accept most major insurances.
3. Is it required that your dentist schedules an appointment for you or refers you to our orthodontist in Tampa and Brandon, FL?
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.
4. What will you learn from your initial exam?
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?
• Will any teeth need to be removed?
• How long will I need to wear my braces?
• How much will my braces cost?
5. Is it too late to get braces and orthodontic treatment if you are an adult?
A surprising percentage of our patients are adults. In fact, 25 percent of all orthodontic patients are adults! After all, health, happiness and self-esteem are just as vitally important to adults as they are for children and teenagers. No patient is ever “too old” to enjoy the benefits of braces and orthodontic treatment!
6. At what age should you 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
7. Can orthodontic corrections be made while a child has baby teeth?
Yes. Some orthodontic problems are significant enough to require early intervention. However, if a patient is not yet ready for treatment, we will follow that patient’s growth and development until the time is right for treatment to begin.
8. Will your teeth straighten out as they grow?
No, they will not. The space available for the front teeth does not increase as you grow. In most people, after the permanent molars erupt, the space available for the front teeth decreases with age.
9. What is Phase One (early) treatment?
Phase One treatment, if necessary, is usually initiated on children between the ages of 6 and 10. Phase One treatment can last anywhere from 12 to 21 months. The primary objective is to address significant problems to prevent them from becoming more severe and to improve self-esteem and self-image.
10. Will my child need full braces if he/she has Phase One treatment?
It is best to assume that your child will need full braces even after Phase One treatment. The period following Phase One treatment is called the “resting period,” during which growth and tooth eruption are closely monitored. Throughout this period, parents and patients will be kept informed of future treatment recommendations.
11. Will my child need an expander?
At the completion of the initial examination, we will determine whether a patient will need an expander.
12. Can you wear braces if you have crowns or missing teeth?
Yes. A tooth with a crown will move just like a tooth without one. When teeth are missing, orthodontic treatment will aid in the alignment of the remaining teeth.
13. Do braces hurt?
Generally, braces do not cause pain, although occasional mild discomfort can occur. After some visits, your teeth may be sore for a few days while they adjust to your newly tightened braces. In these situations, pain medications such as Advil or Tylenol will ease the discomfort. However, after most visits, patients do not feel any soreness at all!
14. Can I return to school or work the day my braces are placed?
Yes! There is no reason to miss school or work because of an orthodontic appointment.
15. Do you give shots?
No. Shots are not necessary in orthodontic treatment.
16. Do you use recycled braces?
Absolutely not! It is our belief that each patient should be provided with their own braces to achieve the best possible treatment outcomes.
17. Are there foods you cannot eat while in braces?
Yes, there are foods you cannot eat while in braces. Once orthodontic treatment begins, we will explain the complete instructions and talk about the list of foods to avoid with braces. 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 this list.
18. Do you need to brush your teeth more often with braces?
Theoretically, you should brush your teeth after each time you eat and before bedtime 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. We can show you how to brush and floss properly once your braces have been placed.
19. How often will you have appointments?
Appointments are scheduled according to each patient’s needs. Most patients in braces will be seen every 8 to 12 weeks. If there are specific situations that require more frequent monitoring, we will schedule appointments accordingly.
20. Can I schedule all my appointments after school or work?
Unfortunately, we cannot schedule all appointments for students during after-school hours. However, because most appointments are scheduled every 8 to 12 weeks apart, most patients will mis minimal school due to their orthodontic treatments. We will; however, make a sincere effort to meet your scheduling needs.
21. Can I drop my child off for an appointment?
Yes. We understand your busy schedule and we are happy to help you make the most of your time. On some occasions, we may request to speak with a parent, so we ask that parents check in with the front desk before dropping off their child.
22. If you have braces, do you still need regular dental checkups?
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. Ultimately, your family dentist will determine how often you will need cleaning appointments while in treatment.
23. Can you still play sports with braces? What about playing an instrument?
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, we recommend that you wear a mouth guard to protect your braces and your teeth.
24. How long will you have to wear your braces?
Treatment time in braces depends on each patient’s specific orthodontic problem. In general, orthodontic treatment times range from 12 to 30 months. The average time frame a person wears braces is approximately 24 months.
25. 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.