FAQs – Learn More!

FAQs

For your convenience, we have provided answers to some frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding Invisalign® clear braces and pediatric dentistry.

How do I care for my aligners?

You can wash your Invisalign aligners with a toothbrush and warm water and soap.

Can my treatment be shortened?

Treatment time may be shortened, or accelerated, if your case is appropriate for accelerated treatment. If you are interested in accelerating your treatment time, or if our orthodontist thinks you are a good candidate for it, you may be able to incorporate either AcceleDent or Propel into your treatment. Both AcceleDent and Propel shorten your treatment time.

What is IPR?

IPR is short for Interproximal Reduction, which is when your orthodontist utilizes the correct tools to adjust the size and shape of your teeth (mostly on the sides of your tooth, where it touches another tooth). You may require some IPR for a few different reasons: if your upper and lower sets of teeth do not fit together well, if the teeth do not lay adjacent to each other well, or in some cases of mild crowding. IPR does not hurt, and is a very quick and seamless procedure.

What are attachments?

If needed, we may place little “bumps” or attachments onto your tooth so that the aligner can grip the tooth easier in order to correctly align it. Attachments are very small enamel or tooth-colored pieces that we bond to your teeth. Corresponding bumps in your Invisalign aligners match up with the attachment on your tooth to better achieve your straight smile. Attachments may fall off after bonding, but if that occurs please give us a call and we can make an appointment to rebond your attachments.

How often do I wear my Invisalign?

You need to wear your aligners for 22 to 24 hours a day in order for them to work correctly. Failure to adhere to your treatment plan may cause a delay in treatment or relapse.

 

I was told my teeth are too “messed up” for Invisalign – is this true?

Invisalign can fix most orthodontic cases. In some instances, however, it may be more prudent for the patient to opt for traditional braces. Most of our orthodontic patients choose Invisalign for orthodontic treatment.

What is Invisalign?

Invisalign are a series of clear, or invisible aligners that are custom created for your orthodontic treatment to align your teeth.

How do I care for my oral health with braces?

You should always make sure to floss and brush regularly, especially after eating. Teeth can become discolored with braces as caring for your oral health is harder with braces.

What can I not eat or drink with braces?

Because braces are bonded to your teeth, we advise patients to avoid foods and beverages that may stain (coffee, tea, darkly pigmented sauces, etc.). Eating sticky or chewy foods are also cautioned to avoid.

What are braces?

Braces are small brackets that can be metal, tooth-colored, or clear, and these brackets are affixed to the teeth. Braces place gentle forces onto the teeth along with very thin and flexible wires, which wrap around the bracket. Over the supervision of an orthodontist, these forces work together to straighten your teeth.

Am I too old for orthodontics?

Contrary to popular belief, orthodontics is not just for children or teenagers. We have many adult patients who go through orthodontic treatment, and orthodontics has evolved vastly in the past 20 years.

 

What is early phase orthodontics?

Some children may be recommended by their dentist to have some orthodontic work completed prior to all of their adult, or permanent teeth, coming in. Some children benefit greatly by having early phase orthodontics done if they have severe orthodontic issues (overbite, underbite, need for jaw expansion).

What are the benefits of orthodontics?

Orthodontics solves cosmetic issues, but did you also know that having straight teeth is also positively associated with healthier gums, which directly contributes to your cardiovascular health? Periodontal health and cardiovascular health are linked, so take care of your smile and your general health will be even better!

When do I come in for check-ups?

If you are in braces, you come into see us every 4 weeks! If you are in Invisalign, you typically come in for check-ups ever 6 weeks. Time for appointments can vary if you have any issues or want to just come in for a check.

How long is treatment?

Standard treatment time for most cases is 12 months to 18 months. The severity of your case directly influences treatment time. Sometimes treatment time can be 8 to 9 months, or up to 24 months.

When should orthodontic treatment be completed?

When a child turns 7, if recommended by their dentist, they should see an orthodontist for a consultation to see if early phase orthodontics is needed. Otherwise, anyone over age 7 is eligible for orthodontic treatment!

How much does orthodontics cost?

Every case is unique to the patient, so there is no standard fee for orthodontics. Some insurances include orthodontics in their dental benefits, so check with your specific plan to see if you have coverage.

What are the different orthodontic treatment options?

Depending on your needs and preferences, we offer a couple different options for orthodontic treatment including braces and Invisalign.

What kind of issues does orthodontics fix?

Orthodontics can fix many cosmetic issues including: alignment issues, overcrowding, overbite/underbite, or deep or open bite. Having a straight smile helps with confidence, and smiling more makes everyone happy!

How long will I need to wear my Invisalign® braces?

Treatment times will vary depending on the extent of your needs, but most adults generally wear Invisalign® braces for about 12 months to achieve their goals. Treatment times for teens and children will vary depending on the growth of their permanent teeth.

How do I clean my aligners?

To clean your Invisalign® braces, simply scrub them with a toothbrush under cool/warm water.

Can I drink anything while wearing Invisalign®?

There are no restrictions on what you may drink while wearing your clear braces, but we do recommend you drink from a straw for any liquids other than water.

What effect will Invisalign® braces have on my speech?

You may experience a subtle lisp in the first few days of your treatment; however, any lisp will generally dissipate once you are accustomed to wearing the aligners.

Can I take the aligners out?

Yes. The Invisalign® clear teeth aligners can be removed for eating, drinking, brushing, and flossing. However, it is best to wear the aligners as much as possible throughout the day.

How does Invisalign® work?

Over the course of your treatment, you will progress through a series of customized aligners until your teeth are moved into a more desirable position. Each aligner is designed to make minor adjustments and progressively re-align your teeth over a period of several months.

How apparent will my Invisalign® braces be to other people?

Invisalign® braces are virtually undetectable as they are composed of a clear, thermoplastic material.

How much does Invisalign® cost?

The cost of Invisalign® is often less than traditional braces, but overall prices will vary depending on the extent of work needed to align your teeth.

How can I make my child’s diet safe for his or her dental health?

A child should maintain a well-balanced diet and minimize sugar intake.

What should I do if my child happens to knock out a tooth?

Stay calm, everything will be ok. First, immediately locate the tooth and try to re-insert the tooth by handling the top (or crown) of the tooth into the socket. If this is not possible, place the tooth in a container filled with milk and contact your pediatric dentist as soon as possible.

Are dental X-rays safe for my child?

Dental x-rays are safe and pose very minimal risks. Preventative measures are used to minimize these risks with the use of a lead apron and digital radiography.

What can I do to help prevent tooth decay for my child?

Taking your child to a dentist every six months will help prevent tooth decay. The dental team can provide nutritional guidance, as well as review and reinforce oral health care techniques such as proper brushing and flossing.

Is fluoride safe and how do I know if my child is getting enough?

Fluoride is safe. A pediatric dentist can determine if your drinking water contains fluoride or not and may prescribe fluoride supplements.

What are dental sealants and how do they work?

Sealants are white protective coatings used to help prevent decay on the chewing surfaces of back teeth.

Are pacifiers and thumbsucking habits harmful for my child’s teeth?

Pacifiers and thumbsucking habits are harmful for a child’s teeth only if the habit continues for a prolonged period or when permanent teeth begin to erupt.

When should my child begin using toothpaste and how much should be used?

A child should begin using toothpaste as soon as possible under the supervision of an adult. Children should spit and not swallow toothpaste. For infants, use a small cloth with water to clean around the gums and, if teeth are present, to apply a pea-sized amount of toothpaste on a soft-bristled toothbrush.

How frequently does my child need to visit the pediatric dentist?

In order to maintain good oral health, a child should visit his or her pediatric dentist every six months.

What is the difference between a pediatric dentist and a family dentist?

A pediatric dentist pursues an additional 2 to 3 years of advanced training beyond dental school in treating infants, children, and special needs patients through to adolescence.

What age should my child have his or her first dental visit?

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), children should visit a pediatric dentist by their first birthday or within 6 months of their first erupted tooth.

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If you would like more information please contact us today. We look forward to answering your questions.