Frequently Asked Questions2021-10-27T13:04:49+00:00


Can I only get braces on my top teeth or bottom teeth?2021-02-16T18:58:37+00:00

Everyone is different and it depends. The best answer is to come for a free consultation and we can let you know. We typically recommend both because when you change the top or bottom arch, it changes the way that your bite comes together.


Do braces hurt?2021-08-20T10:03:21+00:00

Getting your braces on does not hurt. In fact, braces are glued onto the surface of your teeth similar to the way that a sticker is applied to a shirt: it’s that simple! At first, you will feel like you have bumps on your teeth, and it takes a while to get used to that feeling. Once your teeth will start to move (usually within a few hours), that is where you will most likely notice some soreness. This can feel like a little or a lot of pressure depending on the severity of your case. By alternating Advil, then Tylenol as your doctor or orthodontist recommends, this is the best way to eliminate any discomfort. This can last anywhere from a few days up to one week.

Do you need a referral to come see an orthodontist?2021-02-16T18:40:47+00:00

No, you do not. We are happy to see everyone for a free evaluation. It is recommended to see an orthodontic specialist by age 7.

Do you recommend whitening? What are the Pros and Cons?2021-02-16T18:53:11+00:00

Whitening is safe once the roots of teeth fully develop. We recommend waiting until you are 15 to whiten your teeth. The pros are that it whitens your teeth and can blend any imperfections in your enamel. The cons are that it can cause short term sensitivity. Ask our doctors how to bleach properly!

Do you treat adults? Do you use braces or invisalign?2021-02-16T18:47:56+00:00

We definitely treat adults with braces and Invisalign or clear aligners depending on wishes of the patient and severity of the condition.

Has anyone ever locked braces by kissing someone with braces?2021-02-16T19:05:06+00:00

No 🙂

How do I clean my retainers?2021-02-16T18:57:28+00:00

The best way to clean your retainers is with a soft toothbrush, toothpaste, and cold water. If possible, brush them with non-abrasive toothpaste. Additionally, if you soak them in denture cleaner, it cleans all of the germs. Make sure you soak them in cold water! Hot water can distort your retainers.

How does orthodontic treatment work?2021-02-16T19:04:32+00:00

Orthodontics works by applying light pressure to a tooth in a certain way to move it. Everyone’s treatment is different! Most of our treatments take 18-24 months. Some can take more than that, and some can take less. At your first complimentary appointment, your doctor can tell you the range of time it will take to complete your treatment.

How long do I keep my retainers?2021-02-16T18:53:33+00:00

You should keep your retainers for your entire life! If one breaks, please call us to make a replacement retainer. Teeth shift over time, and making a new retainer can save you lots of money and re-treatment

How long does orthodontic treatment take?2021-02-16T18:59:38+00:00

Everyone is different! When you come for your free consultation, we will give you an accurate estimate of how long it will take. Typically, a moderate problem takes 18-24 months to correct. If it is easier, it is faster than that and if it is harder, it is longer in some (but not many) cases.

How long should I brush my teeth?2021-02-16T18:57:09+00:00

You should brush for 2 minutes every time you brush, which at a minimum is 2 minutes a day

How long will each appointment take?2021-02-16T19:04:49+00:00

Each appointment has a specific amount of time associated with it. While some appointments are longer and some are shorter depending on the procedure, we aim for 30 minute visits.

How old does my child need to be to come in for an orthodontic evaluation?2021-02-16T18:40:15+00:00

We encourage you to bring your child in for a free consultation at the age of 7! We can prevent many, many problems such as impacted teeth, crossbites, and overcrowding, often saving you a surgery or extractions if we can see you earlier. We do not treat everyone early: the first appointment is to make a plan for when the timing is right.

How old is too old for braces?2021-02-16T19:01:51+00:00

There is not an age limit for braces or invisalign. Our youngest patient is 5 and our oldest is 93: it just depends on your needs.

Ideally, how many times a day should I brush? With Braces and Without?2021-02-16T18:51:37+00:00

With or without braces, at a minimum you should brush 2 minutes in the morning and 2 minutes in the evening. Brushing after lunch is recommended with braces.

If my child has a loose tooth with braces on, what do I do?2021-02-16T19:00:31+00:00

Please call us! This is a good problem to have because it means that the permanent tooth is coming into the right place. If you are away on vacation or cannot come to the office, refer to our Instagram on how to remove a color tie from a baby tooth, which will enable it to come out.

If my wire is poking what should I do?2021-02-16T18:59:58+00:00

Please call us! We will get you taken care of. If you are away on vacation or cannot come to the office, refer to our Instagram on how to cut a wire with a sterilized nail clipper.

Should I see my general dentist while I have braces?2021-02-16T19:07:10+00:00

Yes, definitely. Please continue to see your general dentist or dental specialist every 6 months, or as prescribed by your dentist. We recommend more frequent cleanings while in braces.

What are some signs that braces are needed?2021-02-16T19:02:32+00:00

Braces are needed when there is a cosmetic concern and a bite issue. For example, if teeth are misaligned and becoming loose from biting down, that is a reason to move the teeth into a better place. Also, more simple things such as closing a space is a reason to get braces. Other signs that braces are recommended are if you have a crossbite, underbite, crowding, traumatic occlusion, jaw pain, difficulty breathing or snoring at night, or simply want to improve your smile and how you feel.

What are the benefits of straightening your teeth?2021-02-16T18:58:16+00:00

There are many benefits, not just cosmetic. Having a corrected bite means that you do not grind or wear out your teeth, preventing teeth from potentially cracking later on. It makes it easier to floss, preventing any gum recession from overcrowding. It can also widen your airway, eliminating headaches and also help with attention deficit disorder in some children. Having straight teeth can also help to balance your facial muscles, joint pressures, and help protect your gums so that they are healthy for a lifetime.

What causes white marks on teeth?2021-02-16T18:53:52+00:00

White marks are caused from leaving plaque on your teeth for too long. Plaque forms naturally, but has harmful bacteria that cause scarring if it is not brushed away. Flossing at night and brushing above, below, and the sides of your teeth are the best ways to make sure you do not get white spots. White spots are permanent marks on your teeth, which is why we take brushing so seriously!

What do I need to know about my retainers?2021-02-16T19:05:34+00:00

You should wear your retainers every night for a lifetime. You simply have to wear them every night so that your teeth do not shift. Please keep them at home so that you do not lose them or accidentally throw them away. We can definitely replace them, however, there is a replacement retainer fee. The best way to clean your retainers is with a toothbrush, toothpaste and cold water in the morning when you wake up. You can also soak your retainers in denture cleaner in cold water when you are not wearing them for extra cleanliness.

What does your team do?2021-02-16T19:06:52+00:00

Our team assists the doctors in making your treatment work the way that it should work. The doctors make the decisions about your treatment, and the assistants help to carry out the prescribed work.

What is a permanent retainer?2021-02-16T18:57:51+00:00

A permanent retainer is a thin wire placed on the back of the teeth so that crowding does not come back, or spaces that were previously there before you got braces do not come back. It is considered permanent because you cannot remove it, but your orthodontist or dentist can easily remove it for you. It is simply glued onto the back of your teeth and is not invasive. You typically wear a clear retainer at night time over your permanent retainer, so that you do not grind your teeth and so that your back teeth do not shift. We recommend a permanent retainer for everyone who does not wear their clear retainer every night.

What is an orthodontist?2021-02-16T18:39:23+00:00

An orthodontist must first become a dentist, going to dental school to learn how to do everything a dentist does. To become an orthodontist, you must go to an extra residency program to learn how to move teeth and jaws, which is called dente-facial orthopedics. It typically takes 10 years to become an orthodontist and is a very challenging academic and laboratory program. In short, orthodontists are dentist who specialize n the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of dental and facial irregularities.

What is orthodontics?2021-02-16T18:39:48+00:00

Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry that works in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of dental and facial irregularities. An orthodontist aligns the teeth and the bite, preventing later problems that can happen with teeth. Typically, an orthodontist uses braces or clear aligners to straighten teeth and other appliances to align jaws. The end result is a great smile and corrected bite.

What is Phase I orthodontics? How many phases are there?2021-08-20T10:04:53+00:00

Phase I refers to orthodontic treatment when there are both baby teeth and adult teeth present. As much work as possible is done in Phase I with the hope that we can prevent problems for your child. Phase I is a Preventative Phase of Treatment, moving teeth and sometimes the upper jaw to where they need to be to normalize the underlying condition at hand. It typically lasts for a 12-18 month time period.

Phase II refers to the stage when all or almost all of the permanent teeth are present. Without Phase I, sometimes all of the permanent teeth cannot come in! Phase II is a time in orthodontic treatment to fine-tune the straightness of the teeth, and to fully correct the bite. It typically lasts for a 12-18 month time period.

The ultimate goal is to prevent problems for your child. It is NOT to charge twice for braces.

Not everybody needs early treatment. Some reasons for early treatment (also called Phase I) include severe crowding, crossbites, underbites, impacted teeth, small airway, or extra or missing teeth. Every child is different, and our doctors take their time when explaining when early treatment is necessary.

There are only Phase I and Phase II, there is not a Phase III!

What kind of mouthguard should I buy if my child plays sports? Where should I buy it?2021-02-16T18:50:47+00:00

For contact sports (football, basketball, even baseball) we recommend the Shock Doctor for Braces. You can get them on Amazon or Dicks Sporting Goods store.

What kind of toothpaste do you recommend for adults and for kids?2021-02-16T18:51:07+00:00

A fluoridated toothpaste like Colgate Total is great for adults. For kids, we recommend any fluoridated toothpaste that they like, such as a strawberry-flavored toothpaste. We love natural ingredients, but it MUST have fluoride. Charcoal activated or non-fluoridated toothpastes will not protect your teeth and can be too abrasive for the enamel on your teeth.

What kinds of food do I stay away from when I have braces?2021-02-16T18:54:24+00:00

With braces, you should avoid hard, sticky candy like taffy and jolly ranchers. You should also avoid soda because the acidic content can cause white spots on your teeth. Popcorn with kernels is also one to avoid, because it can get stuck under your braces and cause infections. Everything else is manageable, just cut or eat things in smaller pieces!

When are my braces coming off?2021-02-16T19:06:13+00:00

Braces are removed when your bite is corrected and smile is beautiful! We strive to complete our treatments in the window prescribed for your treatment. Removal can be delayed by not wearing your elastics, missing appointments, or breaking too many brackets.

Why is it necessary to change a wire?2021-02-16T19:06:32+00:00

The wire is the most essential part to straightening your teeth. When you increase in wire size, your teeth become straighter!

Will braces interfere with playing a musical instrument?2021-02-16T19:02:53+00:00

Braces do not interfere with playing an instrument long-term. Typically, there is a few day adjustment period where placing wax over your braces can help support your lip while you adjust to playing your instrument with braces. After a few days, the wax is no longer needed. Patients can also consider Invisalign as an alternative to braces if you have a concern.

Will braces interfere with playing a sport?2021-02-16T19:03:06+00:00

Braces do not interfere with playing a sport. In fact, the more exercise, the more tooth movement which helps things feel great and move faster! We definitely recommend using a mouthguard while playing sports, especially contact sports.

Would an adult patient benefit from orthodontic treatment?2021-02-16T19:02:14+00:00

There are many, many benefits! Everyone wants to look and feel their best: a great smile is key to great communication and many happy life events. Ease with flossing, creating space if you need an implant, balancing your bite to help clenching, grinding, or cracking your teeth, preventing tooth loss, helping gum health, and lessening tension are just some of the many benefits of adult orthodontics.



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