The team at Chestermere Station Orthodontics strives to provide the highest level of professionalism, customer service, and quality care to all our patients. It is our goal to deliver orthodontic services that are custom-tailored to meet the unique and ever-changing needs of our orthodontic patients.
Your family dentist may have discussed the benefits of having healthy teeth and proper jaw alignment. Crooked and crowded teeth are hard to clean and maintain, which makes them more susceptible to tooth decay, gum disease and possibly tooth loss. Other orthodontic problems can contribute to abnormal wear of tooth surfaces, inefficient chewing function, excessive stress on the gum tissues and the bone that supports the teeth, or misalignment of the jaw joints. Treatment by an orthodontist can be less costly than the additional care needed to treat dental problems arising as a result of orthodontic problems. For most people, a beautiful smile is the most obvious benefit of orthodontic treatment.
What is Orthodontics?
Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry that specializes in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dental and facial irregularities.
What is an Orthodontist?
An Orthodontist is a specialist who has completed an accredited advanced education residency program following dental school to learn the special skills needed to manage tooth movement and guide facial development.
What are some possible benefits of Orthodontics?
-A more attractive smile
-Reduced appearance-consciousness during critical development years
-Better function of the teeth
-Possible increase in self-confidence
-Increased ability to clean the teeth
-Improved force distribution and wear patterns of the teeth
What are some signs that braces may be needed?
-Upper front teeth protrude excessively over the lower teeth, or are bucked
-Upper front teeth cover most of the lower teeth when biting together (deep bite)
-Upper front teeth are behind or inside the lower front teeth (underbite)
-The upper and lower front teeth do not touch when biting together (open bite)
-Crowded or overlapped teeth
-The center of the upper and lower teeth does not line up
-Finger or thumb sucking habits which continue after six or seven years old
-Teeth that are wearing unevenly or excessively
-The lower jaw shifts to one side or the other when biting together
-Spaces between the teeth
At what age should orthodontic treatment occur?
Orthodontic treatment can be started at almost any age. Many orthodontic problems are easier to correct if detected at an early age before jaw growth has slowed. Early treatment may mean that a patient can avoid surgery and more serious complications. It is recommended that children first visit an orthodontist by age 7 or earlier if a problem is detected by parents, the family dentist or the child’s physician.
What is Phase I and Phase II treatment?
Phase I, or early interceptive treatment, is limited orthodontic treatment (i.e., expander or partial braces) before all the permanent teeth have erupted. Such treatment can occur between the ages of six and ten. This treatment is sometimes recommended to make more space for developing teeth, correction of crossbites, overbites, underbites, or harmful oral habits.
Phase II treatment is also called comprehensive treatment, because it involves full braces when all the permanent teeth have erupted, usually between the ages of eleven and thirteen.
Would an adult patient benefit from orthodontics?
Orthodontic treatment can be successful at any age. Everyone wants a beautiful and healthy smile. Twenty to twenty five percent of orthodontic patients today are adults.
How does orthodontic treatment work?
Braces use steady gentle pressure to gradually move teeth into their proper positions. The brackets that are placed on your teeth and the arch wire that connects them are the main components. When the arch wire is placed into the brackets, it tries to return to its original shape. As it does so, it applies pressure to move your teeth to their new, more ideal positions.
What types of options are there for treatment?
There are many different types of orthodontic treatment. The best treatment for you depends on the exact problem you have.
- Braces – Traditional braces use metal brackets and wires to move teeth into alignment over an extended period of time. The braces are made up of brackets that are glued to the front of each tooth and linked with wires, they can be metal or porcelain (white) and are not removed until the end of the treatment. Today’s high-tech braces wires are less noticeable than the wires of the past, and colorful elastic bands make braces more fun. While braces are most popular among young adolescents, adults also opt for braces to correct their smile as well.
- Removable aligners – Orthodontic aligners can straighten your teeth without the wires or brackets of traditional braces. Aligners use a series of clear, plastic, removable trays that fit over your teeth. You wear each aligner for a specified amount of time each day, usually about 20 hours a day for two weeks, before progressing to the next tray. Aligners can straighten your teeth in anywhere from 6 to 18 months, depending on the severity of your teeth misalignment. Unlike traditional braces, you can remove aligners when you eat, brush, and floss. This type of treatment is most popular among adults and older teens who are worried about the aesthetic appearance of braces.
- Active appliances – Fixed orthodontic appliances can be used to treat several oral concerns. If your child has a narrow or high palate, a palatal expander can help create more space in their mouth by widening the upper jaw.A crib appliance can help to curb a thumb sucking or tongue thrust habit. Lastly, if your child is short on space or prematurely missing primary teeth a holding arch can be placed to hold the space needed for permanent teeth.
How long does orthodontic treatment take?
The placement of bands and brackets on your teeth does not hurt. Once your braces are placed and connected with the arch wires you may feel some soreness in your teeth for one to four days. Your lips and cheeks may need one to two weeks to get used to the braces on your teeth.
Will braces interfere with playing sports?
No. It is recommended, however, that patients protect their smiles by wearing a mouth guard when participating in any sporting activity. Mouth guards are inexpensive, comfortable, and come in a variety of colors and patterns.
Should I see my general dentist while I have braces?
Yes, you should continue to see your general dentist every six months for dental check-ups and every 4-6 months for cleanings.
What constitutes an emergency and what do I do?
True orthodontic emergencies are very rare, but when they do occur, we are available to you. As a general rule, you should call the office when you experience severe pain or when you have a painful appliance problem that you can’t take care of yourself. We’ll be able to schedule an appointment to resolve the problem.
You might be surprised to learn that you can follow our recommendations below to temporarily solve many problems yourself until you schedule an appointment with our office. After alleviating your discomfort, it is very important that you call our office as soon as possible to schedule a time to repair the problem. Allowing your appliance to remain damaged for an extended period of time may result in disruptions in your treatment plan.
How to fix a poking wire?
Using a pencil eraser, push the poking wire down or place wax on it to alleviate the discomfort.
How to fix a broken bracket or band?
If your bracket or band is still attached to the wire, you should leave it in place and put wax on it. If the wire comes out entirely, wrap the bracket with a tissue.
How to fix a loose wire?
Using a tweezers, try to place your wire back into place. If doing this and using wax doesn’t help, as a last resort use a small fingernail clipper to clip the wire behind the last tooth to which it is securely fastened. If your discomfort continues, place wax on it.
How to fix a loose appliance?
If your appliance is poking you, place wax on the offending part of your appliance.
How to relieve general soreness?
When you get your braces on, you may feel general soreness in your mouth and teeth may be tender to biting pressures for about a week. This can be relieved by rinsing your mouth with a warm salt water mouthwash. Dissolve one teaspoonful of salt in 8 ounces of warm water and rinse your mouth vigorously. If the tenderness is severe, take Tylenol® or whatever you normally take for headache or similar pain.
The lips, cheeks, and tongue may also become irritated for one to two weeks as they toughen and become accustomed to the surface of the braces. Placing Orabase® on the affected area may help; this can be found in a pharmacy. You can also put wax on the braces to lessen this. We’ll show you how!