Orthodontics FAQs

Orthodontics FAQs

November 1, 2020

Misaligned teeth and bite issues are a confidence buster for your child, but they can also affect their dental health. Fixing these problems is crucial to the dental development of your children. Fortunately, we have orthodontic treatment in Houston, TX, that can help rectify the bite problems.

But, before you come for your orthodontic treatment in South Houston, TX, it is important to have all the necessary information.

What is Orthodontics?

Orthodontics is a dental service involved with diagnosing, correcting, and preventing bite problems and misaligned teeth.

The orthodontic in Houston, TX, services are provided by an orthodontist, not a general dentist.

An orthodontist is required to complete a two-year graduate training in orthodontics. The dentists specialize in correcting and treating bite problems and misaligned teeth using several devices.

When Should I Get an Orthodontic Treatment?

The American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) recommends the first visit to be done by age seven. At this age, the baby teeth have started falling, and the permanent ones are coming out. This period provides the dentist with an opportunity to detect any dental irregularities on time.

That does not mean you can get orthodontic treatment as an adult. If you have misaligned teeth and jaw and would like to have them corrected, visit our orthodontic for proper assessment and treatment.

During the first orthodontic assessment, the orthodontic will assess the jaw and the teeth. Three outcomes can come from that initial evaluation:

  • No treatment required
  • Monitoring is required. The child does not have a dental problem. But, they may be at risk, so the orthodontist will monitor the progress.
  • There is a problem, and early orthodontic treatment is required.

What Are the Phases of Orthodontic Treatment?

Pediatric orthodontic treatment is done in stages:

    • Early orthodontic treatment

Early orthodontic treatment is usually recommended if there is a dental abnormality that needs addressing.

The early orthodontic treatment’s primary goal is to intercept the dental problem, correct the jaw, and create space for the teeth to emerge correctly.

Some of the problems that may benefit from early orthodontic treatment include underbites, excessively spaced teeth, very crowded teeth, extra or missing teeth, thumb sucking, and teeth that abnormally or don’t meet all. These dental problems affect jaw development and may impair how the permanent teeth will come out.

The early orthodontic treatment is done while the child still has some baby teeth. The orthodontist prescribes appliances like the palatal expander to increase jaw space. Braces are usually recommended after all the permanent teeth have come out. Using braces too early will affect the jaw and cause the permanent teeth to come out crooked.

    • Teeth alignment

Teeth alignment is phase two of the orthodontic treatment, and it begins after all the permanent teeth have come out (at age 12). The orthodontist will examine the teeth and jaw and choose a suitable brace device. Several options are available:

    • Metal braces. They are the commonly used brace type, especially among children. The braces are made of wires that are fixed on the teeth. These braces are visible, but the freedom of choosing the colors you want.
    • Lingual braces. They are similar to the metal ones, only that the wires are fixed on the inside of the teeth.
    • Clear braces. These include Invisalign® and ClearCorrect®. These are made of clear plastic and are nearly invisible.

After the orthodontic treatment, the dentist will give you a retainer to maintain the new position of the teeth.

How Long Does the Orthodontic Treatment Last?

The duration of the orthodontic treatment will vary depending on the severity of the problem. The treatment can last between six and 30 months, but it takes around 24 months on average. The orthodontist will share the time frame after your initial dental assessment.

What Can You Expect During the Orthodontic Treatment?

The first time you wear the brace, you will feel slightly pressured as the gums and tongue get used to them. The discomfort and pressure last for a few days and clear without treatment.

However, if your pressure persists or you have sore gums, visit Greenway Pediatric Dentistry for an assessment and treatment.

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