This three-part article series provides a comprehensive FAQ guide to orthodontics: the field of dentistry concerned with the correction of teeth orientation and jaw alignment.
Welcome back to this three-part article series on your frequently asked questions about orthodontics. Let’s jump straight back into answering those pressing questions, shall we?
FAQ: Can adults benefit from orthodontic treatment? Or is it reserved for younger people whose jawbones are still developing?
An Orthodontist in Silver Spring MD Answers: Orthodontic treatment can be done to benefit patients of just about any age. Approximately a quarter of all the patients treated for various orthodontic problems are adults, so a beautiful and healthy smile is within easy reach!
FAQ: How does orthodontic treatment work?
Answer: It really depends on what condition you’re having treated and just how severe that condition is. Many Silver Spring residents’ dental problems can be successfully treated with braces, in which case, it really is a waiting game. Braces consist of brackets, which are cemented to the outer surface of each tooth. An archwire is then threaded through the brackets, connecting each tooth to the next one. These wires are tightened, which applies a pressure, via the bracket, to each tooth and this gently and slowly guides the teeth into better and more favorable positions.
Orthognathic surgery can be done to address the more extreme cases of malocclusion - such as overbites, underbite, crossbites and open bites - or to correct damage done to the oral and maxillofacial area as a result of a bad accident.
FAQ: If I need braces, how long will I have to wear them for?
A Silver Spring Orthodontist Answers: Treatment time varies from patient to patient and depends on the severity of malocclusion and tooth orientation. On average, orthodontic patients wear braces for between one and two years, sometimes longer. The amount of time it takes for treatment to be considered successful also depends on how well a patient complies. It’s crucial that you keep regular scheduled appointments with your orthodontist and maintain a high standard of oral hygiene to avoid decay and infection.
FAQ: Does it hurt to have braces?
Answer: The actual procedure involved in placing braces does not hurt the patient, according to Silver Spring dental professionals. You will probably feel a pressure applied to the teeth at the time, which, over the next few days, can leave the teeth and gums feeling quite sore and tender. This typically disappears within one to four days. You will also need to grow accustomed to the feeling of the braces against your lips and cheeks. Orthodontists will send Silver Spring residents home with soft wax, which can be pressed into the brackets to improve comfort and help prevent ulceration from occurring.
Every few weeks or so, you will need to return to your orthodontist to have your braces tightened so that a continual pressure can be applied to your teeth. Every time this is done, you will experience the same degree of transient tenderness. This can quite easily be managed with over-the-counter pain medications; however, most patients don’t even need that.
FAQ: Can having orthodontic braces interfere with me playing sports?
A Dentist in Silver Spring Answers: Your braces should not get in the way of you playing sports - and winning. It is, however, recommend that patients wear a mouth guard to prevent damage to the teeth should they get whacked in the mouth with a ball, flailing fist, etc. You can have a mouth guard custom made for you at your local Silver Spring dental healthcare professional. Alternatively, you can just buy a standard one over-the-counter at your local sports store. They aren’t expensive and come in a wide range of colors, so you can choose one to match your favorite sports team!