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  • Frequently Asked Questions

    Exploring your orthodontic options and diving into the world of orthodontic care can feel overwhelming. That’s why we are dedicated to providing our patients as many resources and information as possible. Check out some of our most Frequently Asked Questions below and, as always, if you can’t find your specific question here, don’t hesitate to ask our experienced team!

    • General Orthodontics

    Why should an orthodontic specialist complete my treatment?

    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.

    At what age should I schedule an appointment for an orthodontic screening for my child?

    The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening at age 7. For most children, several permanent teeth have come in by this age, allowing the orthodontist to effectively evaluate the patient’s orthodontic condition.

    Will my teeth straighten out as I get older?

    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.

    Is it too late to have braces if I’m already an adult?

    Just for Grins Orthodontics knows that no patient is "too old" to wear braces! A strong percentage of our patients are adults–in fact, 25% of our orthodontic patients are adults. Health and happiness are vitally important to adults, and orthodontic treatment can increase your self-esteem at any age!

    How long will it take to complete treatment?

    Overall treatment time depends on each patient's specific orthodontic problem. In general, treatment times range from 12 to 30 months. The "average" timespan a patient wears braces is approximately 22 months.

    How often will I have an appointment?

    Appointments are scheduled according to each patient's needs. Most patients in braces will be seen every five to 10 weeks. If there are specific situations that require more frequent monitoring, we schedule appointments accordingly.

    Can I drop my child off for an appointment?

    Yes! We understand your schedule is busy, and we are happy to help you make the most of your time. On some occasions, we may request to speak with a parent when they return, so we ask that parents check-in with the patient manager when picking up their child.

    Does wearing braces hurt?

    Generally, braces do not "hurt." After certain appointments, your teeth may be sore for a few days. In these situations, over-the-counter pain medications, such as Advil or Tylenol, will ease any discomfort. However, after most visits, patients do not feel soreness at all!

    Can I still play sports or play my instrument while wearing braces?

    Yes! We recommend that patients wear mouth guards while playing sports. Musicians will likely experience an adjustment period until they are comfortable playing while wearing braces.

    Do I need to see my general dentist while wearing braces?

    Yes! Regular check-ups with your general dentist are still important while in braces. The dentist will determine the intervals between each cleaning appointment during your orthodontic treatment.

    How often should I brush my teeth while I have braces?

    Patients should brush their teeth at least two times each day – even better would be after each meal and before going to bed. We educate our patients how to floss teeth with braces, and we also recommend a special fluoride treatment.

    Are there any foods I cannot eat while I have braces?

    Yes! Once treatment begins, we will explain our complete food care instructions and provide you with a comprehensive list of foods to avoid. Some of those foods include ice, hard candy, raw vegetables, and all sticky foods (i.e. caramels and gummies). You can avoid most orthodontic emergencies by carefully following our instructions!

    Does Invisalign work as well as metal braces?

    Every smile is different, so your orthodontist will be able to determine which form of braces will work best for your specific bite. Many say that Invisalign works best for aesthetic corrections and braces are more for closing large gaps, but your orthodontist will be able to help you decide which path to take.

    Does Invisalign cost more than metal braces?

    The price depends on what kind of treatment the patient needs. Typically, Invisalign can cost somewhat more than traditional braces, but our a consultation is needed to provide an accurate price.

    Can teenagers use Invisalign?

    Yes! Learn more about Invisalign Teen here.

    How often do I have to wear my Invisalign aligners?

    You must wear your Invisalign aligners at all times except for eating, drinking, and regular oral hygiene.

    How can I keep my Invisalign aligners from becoming stained?

    Refrain from drinking colored drinks and smoking while wearing Invisalign aligners to keep them free from stains.

    Is Invisalign noticeable?

    Invisalign is called "Invisible Braces" because they are virtually invisible! Most times, the only people who know you have braces are you, your orthodontist, and the people you brag about them to.

    Will Invisalign give me a lisp?

    This is typically only an issue if the trays do not fit your bite properly. Because our offices use iTero Digital Imaging we are able to ensure that your aligners will fit properly, with no lisp!

    How often will I change my Invisalign aligner?

    This can change with your unique treatment plan, but on average patients change their aligners every two weeks.
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