What is orthodontics?
Dentofacial orthopedics or more commonly known as orthodontics is a specialized branch of dentistry that focuses on the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dental issues.
Who is an orthodontist?
An orthodontist is a specialized individual who went through additional study and training after their dental education. People often confuse dentists and orthodontists, we can say the difference is similar to a doctor who gets additional education to become a surgeon. A dentist focuses on oral hygiene, tackling issues like tooth decay, root canal, gum disease, veneers, teeth whitening, and so on. Whereas an orthodontist specializes in teeth and jaw alignment, focusing on issues like dental misalignment, open bite, overbite, underbite, crowding, and so on.
What is the best age to visit the orthodontist?
According to the American Association of Orthodontists, kids should have an initial orthodontic screening at the age of 7. However, it is perfectly fine to visit an orthodontist at any time of your life.
How can I take care of my teeth while wearing braces or retainers?
- Brush after every meal
- Floss once a day
- Use a toothpaste with fluoride
- Ask your family dentist or orthodontist if you need a fluoride-base rinse
- Keep your retainers clean by gently brushing them and soaking them in retainer brite as instructed
- Avoid sugary, sticky, or chewy food
- Make sure to schedule routine checkups
What are braces?
Braces are special dental appliances used to adjust your teeth to their desired placement. It is a great method to improve your smile and self-confidence. There are different kinds of braces available:
- Clear braces
- Ceramic braces
- Gold braces
- Lingual braces
- Self-ligating braces
- Invisible braces
- Traditional metal braces
How long do I have to wear braces?
This entirely depends on a patient’s dental needs. Some require more work and hence take longer while some only need mild adjustments to unlock their perfect smile. Moreover, each patient responds differently to the same orthodontic methods. On average, it can take anywhere between 6 to 30 months with most orthodontic treatments lasting about 22 months. However, SureSmile robotic braces have reduced the overall treatment period by 40%.
Do braces hurt?
Braces don’t hurt all the time. You may feel slight discomfort in the beginning as your mouth tries to adjust to the new appliance.
Do I need to brush my teeth often if I have braces?
Not really. An average person brushes their teeth twice a day, with braces it is instructed to brush thrice a day. Brushing regularly prevents from any food getting stuck between your braces and rotting over time. This can lead to poor oral hygiene and cause cavities, gingivitis, or gum infections.
If I have braces, do I still need dental checkups every six months?
Absolutely! In fact, it is even more important to visit your dentist regularly if you’re wearing braces. Visiting your dentists regularly can prevent any issues from spreading or growing into something much more severe. It is very important to take extra care of your dental hygiene when wearing braces as there are more chances of building infections where your toothbrush can’t reach to clean.
Will my braces interfere with my school activities like sports, playing an instrument, or singing?
You may require some time adjusting to your instrument and singing with your braces, but other than that, braces don’t stop you from participating in any school activities. For fun on the playground, just make sure to wear a mouthguard and you are good to go.