- Does every child need orthodontic treatment?
No, not every child would benefit from orthodontic care. However, the incidence of malocclusion, (bad bite), narrow dental arches, and crowded malposed teeth has increased dramatically in modern industrialized countries. Some of the reasons are:
A) Environmental factors which have resulted in allergies and airway issues which affect our normal natural tongue posture and swallow. This contributes to more narrow, crowded dental arches.
B) Decrease in sustained infant breast feeding. Breast feeding benefits the development of a healthy tongue posture, normal swallow and wide dental arch form. It can also help minimize allergies in children.
C) The replacement of natural foods in our diet by predominantly processed food has, over time, altered our population’s jaw structure.
- At what age should my child be screened for braces?
The critical age to start children to see if they need interception and treat kids with no extractions is at the age of 8. It is critical to assess the amount of room in the mouth for incoming adult teeth. We do the screening as part of an initial consultation and take a panoramic x-ray to aid in identifying if any interception or early treatment of the palate or lower arch is necessary.
- If I get braces, how long do I have to wear them/ Timeline of treatment?
Duration of treatment varies with each patient. A complimentary initial evaluation is necessary for determination of when treatment should be initiated and duration.
- Do adults need braces?
Yes. Besides improving their current smile or aesthetics, there are compelling functional reasons for orthodontics, such as: Collapsed bite over time, excessive wear on front teeth and improving the function of adult dentition. Progressive dental crowding of the front teeth can contribute to gum problems and loss of bone around the teeth. 20-30% of Dr. Slavin’s patients are adults.
- How is adult orthodontic care different?
Arch development such as palatal expansion is not possible in adults. Thus other treatment modalities may be required to resolve crowded arches. Many adults may prefer treatment with clear aligners over conventional brackets and wires.
- Do braces hurt?
No. Patients sometimes experience mild transient discomfort easily resolved with over the counter meds such as Advil or Tylenol.
- Will braces interfere with my activities?
No. Orthodontic patients may participate in all sports and musical activities.
- Are braces covered under my dental insurance?
Most dental plans commonly cover orthodontics irrespective of patient age.
- Approximate cost of braces?
Treatment fees can usually be estimated at the initial complimentary evaluation. The cost of treatment is dependent upon many factors such as the severity of the orthodontic issues, the type of recommended treatment and the length of treatment time.