- Why should I choose an orthodontic specialist?
Teeth, and sometimes entire facial structures, are permanently changed by orthodontic treatment. It is important that the treatment be appropriate and properly completed. Dr. Olson is an Orthodontic Specialist who has 3 years specialty training beyond dentists. This extensive and specialized training is critical in understanding how teeth move, and understanding the limits of orthodontic treatment. If your dentist offers orthodontic treatment, ask them about their training, and be sure to visit an orthodontist before committing to treatment!
- Is it required that my family Dentist schedule my appointment with Olson Orthodontics?
No, it is not. Many of our patients are referred by their family Dentist, yet many other patients take the initiative to schedule an examination themselves. If you have any concerns about your smile we encourage you to schedule an appointment.
- At what age should I schedule an appointment for an orthodontic screening?
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening by age 7. By this age several permanent teeth will have erupted, allowing us to effectively evaluate your child’s orthodontic condition. At this stage, it is sometimes necessary to perform Phase I treatment in order to alleviate a developing problem.
- How can I schedule for an initial consult?
If you or your child can potentially benefit from orthodontic treatment, simply call our office or send us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Is it necessary to have teeth extracted for orthodontic treatment?
The removal of teeth is sometimes required to achieve the best orthodontic result. A thorough diagnosis is necessary to determine the need for extractions or not. Although it is our goal to treat non-extraction, we will consider extractions if root support is in question, or if the lips are strained to close around the teeth.
- How long does it take to complete treatment?
Treatment time is dependent on each patient’s specific orthodontic problem. The “average” time frame for a person in braces is about 18 months. Full Invisalign cases can average about 12 months. Less difficult cases can take 6 months or less.
- Why can my dentist treat my orthodontic problem in 6 months?
The first stage of orthodontic treatment is called leveling and aligning. This stage usually takes 6 months (or less) with simple orthodontic cases. During this stage, the teeth are simply straightened, or mild spaces are closed. The second stage of orthodontic treatment is called the working stage of orthodontics, which focuses on bite correction. This is usually the most difficult aspect of treatment. Aligning the teeth AND obtaining a proper bite can be very difficult in some cases. The third and final stage is the detailing stage. The detailing stage hones in on the esthetic details and bite settling. When 6 month treatment is offered, it will likely leave out two major components of orthodontic treatment.
- How often will I need to have orthodontic appointments?
Appointments are scheduled according to each patient’s needs. Most patients in braces will be seen every 4 to 6 weeks. This is to ensure treatment flows efficiently and is monitored closely.
- Will I get Self Ligating Braces?
Dr. Olson has used an array of self ligating braces in the past, however has chosen against the use of self ligating braces. There are many claims that self ligating braces move teeth faster by utilizing lighter forces. Dr. Olson is a firm believer in utilizing light forces, however it is the metabolic rate of bone remodeling that determines the speed of tooth movement. The most recent literature cites the use of self ligating braces are not effective at speeding up tooth movement.
- Can I drop my child off for an appointment?
Yes. We understand your busy schedule, 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 before dropping their child off.
- Do braces hurt?
Generally, braces do not “hurt.” After the first few adjustments, teeth may be sore for a few days. In these situations, pain medications such as Advil or Tylenol will ease the discomfort. Remember, it doesn’t need to hurt to work!
- Can I still play sports with braces?
Yes. We recommend a mouth guard for all sports.
- Should I continue to see my family dentist while in braces?
Yes! Regular checkups with your family dentist are important while in braces. Your family dentist will determine the intervals between cleaning appointments while you are in braces.
- Are there foods that should be avoided while in braces?
Yes. Once treatment begins, we will provide detailed instructions and a comprehensive list of foods to avoid. Some of those foods include: ice, hard candy, raw vegetables and all sticky foods.
- Is it too late to have braces if I am already an adult?
No. A surprising percentage of our patients are adults. In fact, 25 percent of all orthodontic patients are adults. Health, happiness and self-esteem are vitally important to adults. No patient is “too old” to seek orthodontic treatment!
- Can I get braces with crowns or missing teeth?
Yes. A tooth with a crown will move just like a tooth with a simple filling. When teeth are missing, orthodontic treatment will aid in the alignment of the remaining teeth.