Maybe not all of us have braces, but we surely know someone who does. And perhaps not everyone is as celebratory about orthodontics as we are.
Keeping with our October dental awareness series over the past week or so, we wanted to also promote a little ortho love.
How many degrees of separation are between you and your nearest orthodontic overachiever?
Give a hoot this October, and pass along some beneficial social local dentistry as it relates to orthodontics and braces.
Our orthodontists and dentists have many fashionable ways to straighten our crooked teeth, correct our bad bites, and realign any misalignment of our jaws.
Just don’t tell your teenage…of course, with advanced options comes increased cost.
In honor of National Orthodontic Health Month, here are some more orthodontic FAQs, courtesy of braces.org.
Can I play sports while wearing braces?
Yes, but make sure you wear a protective mouth guard.
Can I play musical instruments while wearing braces?
With practice and a period of adjustment, braces typically do not interfere with the playing of wind or brass instruments.
What are my options if I don’t want braces that show?
Should your case warrant it, you might want to consider lingual braces, which feature brackets that are bonded behind the teeth. Ceramic braces are another option to lessen the visibility of braces; they blend in with the teeth for a more natural effect. Additionally, the use of a series of invisible aligner trays (invisible braces) instead of traditional braces may be used to correct some problems.
Exercise caution with tongue-piercing jewelry. It can contribute to breakage of braces appliances and to tooth and gum damage from contact with the stud.
If my teeth have been crooked for years, why do I need orthodontic treatment now?
It’s never too late! Healthy teeth can be moved at any age. Orthodontic treatment can restore good function, and teeth that work better usually look better, too. A healthy, beautiful smile can improve self-esteem, no matter your age.
Can I afford orthodontic treatment?
Most orthodontists have a variety of convenient payment plans. Many dental insurance plans now include orthodontic benefits.
I am pregnant and want to begin orthodontic treatment. Is this OK?
Discuss this question with your medical practitioner/physician and orthodontist before you start any orthodontic treatment, as pregnancy brings on bodily changes that may affect the mouth. Soft tissues such as gums become much more susceptible to infection.
Do teeth with braces need special care?
Yes, clean, healthy teeth move more quickly. Patients with braces must be careful to avoid hard, sticky, chewy and crunchy foods, or hard objects, such as pens, pencils and fingernails. Keeping your teeth and braces clean requires more time, precision and must be done every day if the teeth and gums are to be healthy during and after orthodontic treatment.
I see ads for perfect teeth in only one or two visits to the dentist. Will that give me straight teeth?
Quick-fix veneers temporarily cover crooked teeth. Teeth straightened by an orthodontist are good for life. That’s because only orthodontists receive an extra 2-3 years of education beyond dental school to learn the proper way to align and straighten teeth.
How may I distinguish an orthodontist from a general dentist?
Visit our Find an Orthodontist section to find AAO-member orthodontists near you. AAO membership is the best way to confirm a doctor’s status as an orthodontist because the AAO only accepts orthodontists for membership. Additionally, visit the Questions for Your Orthodontist section for questions that you can ask to help determine if you’re getting your tooth-alignment procedure from an expert.
For more national health awareness days, weeks, or months, click here.