DEL MAR & SOLANA BEACH ORTHODONTIC FAQs
WHAT IS ORTHODONTICS?
Orthodontics, or dentofacial orthopedics, is a specialized dental field that focuses on diagnosing, preventing, and treating dental and facial abnormalities.
WHAT IS AN ORTHODONTIST?
An orthodontist is a specialist with two to three years of additional training and experience. They are skilled in straightening teeth, correcting misaligned jaw structures, and improving the overall function of your smile.
WHAT’S THE BEST AGE TO SEE AN ORTHODONTIST?
Visiting the orthodontist can benefit individuals of any age who wish to enhance the appearance and functionality of their smile. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends children have their first visit around seven. However, orthodontics is not limited to children and teens; about one in every five orthodontic patients is over 21. It is always an excellent time to visit the orthodontist.
HOW CAN I CARE FOR MY TEETH WITH BRACES OR A RETAINER?
To maintain good oral health while wearing braces or a retainer, follow these guidelines:
- Brush after every meal and floss daily.
- Use fluoride toothpaste and ask your orthodontist or family dentist about a fluoride rinse to prevent cavities.
- If you remove your retainer to eat, remember to brush your teeth and keep it safe in its container to avoid loss or damage.
- Clean your retainer by gently brushing it with toothpaste or soaking it in a denture cleaner as instructed by your orthodontist. Avoid boiling water or dishwashers for cleaning.
- Limit sugary foods during your treatment to reduce bacteria growth, plaque buildup, and the risk of cavities.
- Avoid sticky, chewy, or hard foods that damage braces.
- Schedule routine checkups with your orthodontist in Del Mar and Solana Beach every six months.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF BRACES?
Orthodontists offer various types of braces to suit individual needs. These include:
- Clear braces
- Ceramic braces
- Lingual braces
- Self-ligating braces
- Invisible braces
- Traditional metal braces
HOW LONG WILL I HAVE TO WEAR BRACES?
The length of treatment varies for each patient, as every smile responds differently. The duration can take anywhere between six and 30 months, with an average of around 22 months.
DO BRACES CAUSE PAIN?
Braces typically do not cause significant discomfort, though you may experience some mild soreness for a few days as your teeth, gums, cheeks, and mouth adjust to the braces.
DO I NEED TO BRUSH MORE OFTEN WITH BRACES?
With braces, brushing your teeth at least three times a day is recommended to maintain oral hygiene. Regular brushing helps remove food particles trapped between the braces. Flossing daily is also crucial to clean the areas your brush may not reach. Your orthodontist can guide you on proper brushing and flossing techniques after placing the braces.
DO I STILL NEED DENTAL CHECKUPS EVERY SIX MONTHS WITH BRACES?
Yes! It is vital for patients undergoing orthodontic treatment to visit their orthodontist regularly. Braces can create areas where food particles get trapped and lead to the buildup of bacteria, which can cause cavities, gingivitis, and gum disease. Your dentist and orthodontist in Del Mar and Solana Beach will work together to ensure your teeth remain clean and healthy during the braces treatment.
WILL BRACES INTERFERE WITH SCHOOL ACTIVITIES, SPORTS, PLAYING INSTRUMENTS, OR SINGING?
Wearing braces should not hinder your participation in school activities, such as playing instruments or sports. However, there may be an adjustment period initially. If you play a contact sport, wearing a mouthguard to protect your braces or other appliances is advisable.
You can continue playing musical instruments while wearing braces. However, adjusting to the braces may take some time. Using wax or other protective coverings to prevent discomfort while playing may be helpful.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT?
Orthodontic treatment offers numerous benefits, including:
- Improved alignment and aesthetics of your smile
- Enhanced oral health by making it easier to clean teeth and gums
- Corrected bite issues, reducing the risk of tooth wear and jaw problems
- Increased self-confidence and self-esteem
HOW OFTEN WILL I NEED TO VISIT THE ORTHODONTIST DURING TREATMENT?
The frequency of orthodontic visits varies depending on the treatment plan and progress. In general, appointments are typically scheduled every 4 to 8 weeks to monitor progress, make adjustments, and address any concerns you may have.
CAN I GET BRACES IF I HAVE MISSING TEETH?
Yes, you can still get braces even if you have missing teeth. Orthodontic treatment in Del Mar and Solana Beach can help align the remaining teeth, close gaps, and create space for future tooth replacement options like dental implants or bridges.
HOW DO I SCHEDULE MY NEXT APPOINTMENT?
To schedule your next appointment at Beach Orthodontics in Del Mar and Solana Beach, simply call our practice. Our friendly front desk staff will assist you in finding a convenient time for your visit. If you’re a new patient or have been referred to our practice, please inform us, and we will provide you with all the necessary information.