How To Start Your Orthodontic Care
The basic purpose of orthodontic care has remained the same for decades. Dentists and orthodontists want to straighten your teeth.
This makes your smile look better, and it helps your mouth stay healthier.
But how do you know which orthodontic treatment is right for you?
It starts with trust. You need to visit a dentist or orthodontist who you can trust to recommend a treatment that will give you the results that you want.
At Beaumont Family Dentistry in Lexington, we begin with a consultation. This gives us the opportunity to examine your mouth, to see which treatments or treatments may be the most effective, and to determine if we need to refer to you an orthodontist instead.
Our goal is to find the most effective treatment for you, whether or not our office is the one that provides it.
Most patients who are seeking orthodontic treatment are teenagers or adults who have decided they can now afford to fix their teeth.
But sometimes treatments can start at an earlier age. This can minimize or even eliminate the need for corrective orthodontics later.
Preventive orthodontics, also known as Phase I orthodontics, can start around the age of 8 or 9 years old.
If you child is one of our regular patients, we will monitor any changes in his or her teeth during every visit. If we notice something is wrong, we may be able to step in to fix it before your child is ready for braces.
One example of this is a space maintainer. If your child loses a baby tooth earlier that he or she should, then a space maintainer can ensure that the permanent tooth has room to erupt correctly. Without a space maintainer, the adjacent teeth may drift into that vacant space, which can cause crowding when the adult tooth emerges.
Your First Orthodontic Appointment
Phase II orthodontics is what most people think of when they think of orthodontic care. This includes traditional braces, Fastbraces®, Invisalign, and other treatment options.
In general, orthodontics are about using pressure to move your teeth into a straighter position.
As we noted earlier, straight teeth make more visually pleasing smiles. They also make it easier for you or your child to keep those teeth healthy because straight teeth are easier to brush and floss.
If you or your teenager needs orthodontic care, you should plan on spending 90 minutes at our office during this initial visit.
We will start with X-rays of your teeth. This gives your dentist a basic understanding of your specific alignment problems and the health of your jawbone.
Your dentist will perform an examination and explain what your X-rays reveal. If you have any questions, you should feel free to ask them at any time during your appointment.
You also should let the dentist know your concerns and your goals for your treatment. We will try to create a plan that fixes your problems in a way that your can accept.
If you are planning to undergo orthodontic treatment, this is a good time to do so. Today’s patients have more options than ever for how their treatment may be completed.
Here are a few examples:
- Invisalign — This system does away with brackets and wires in favor of clear, plastic aligners. Patients who receive this treatment will change aligners every two weeks or so until their treatment is finished.
- Fastbraces® — These are braces with a twist. Fastbraces® use triangular brackets, which changes how they move your teeth compared to traditional braces. It’s also why Fastbraces® work more quickly than traditional braces.
- Metal braces — These are the tried and true standard for orthodontic care. When other options won’t work, metal braces almost always will.
- Ceramic braces — If you don’t like the idea of wearing metal on your teeth, then ceramic braces may be a better alternative. These braces are more discreet than metal braces because they more closely match the color of your teeth.
Your orthodontic treatment can take anywhere from six months to more than two years depending on the severity of your misalignment and the kind of treatment you receive.
No matter what your needs are, the staff at Beaumont Family Dentistry in Lexington looks forward to helping you with your treatment.
If you live anywhere in Central Kentucky, contact the office closest to you by calling or filling our online form to schedule your consultation.