Below you will find some of the most commonly asked questions when thinking about orthodontic treatment. Some of this information is general and may differ based on your individual circumstances. If you have any questions or would like to discuss some of the information in detail please feel free to contact us, we'd love to hear from you!
When should I see an orthodontist?
The Australian Society of Orthodontists suggests that most orthodontic problems are usually apparent by the age of 7. Early examination allows the Orthodontist to detect and evaluate any problems and plan appropriate treatment. Early treatment may prevent more serious problems from developing and/or make treatment at an older age shorter and less complicated.
Why should I see an orthodontist?
An orthodontist is a dentist who has done three extra years of study to become a registered specialist in Orthodontics (in much the same way that a cardiologist is a doctor who has become a specialist in heart problems). An Orthodontist is the most qualified person to diagnose and treat any problems you may have with the alignment of your teeth.
Braces or Invisalign, which one is right for me?
There are many factors that will determine which treatment option will suit you best. Some of the factors are cost, treatment time and presenting issue. Our orthodontists will be able to discuss the options and there suitability at your first visit.
Do I need to keep seeing my general dentist?
Yes, regular check ups and cleanings with your general dentist are a very important part of keeping your mouth healthy while undergoing orthodontic treatment.
Do I need a referral?
No, you do not need a referral to see an orthodontist.
What happens if something breaks?
Occasionally things don't go to plan with your braces, here's your troubleshooting guide.
Remember that eating certain foods can dislodge a bracket and bend wires, so be careful to eat the right foods to avoid breakages. A broken bracket is not an emergency so you do not need to rush in to our rooms, simply contact us during business hours and we will scheduled a time within the next few days to two weeks to have it repaired. If you have the bracket, please bring it with you. Please note most repairs will be scheduled during school hours.
As your teeth move so do your wires, this can sometimes cause a wire to irritate your cheeks or gums. Please contact our rooms and we will schedule a time to fix this. In the meantime use your wax as instructed to relieve any discomfort.
As your teeth move and change position the braces can cause some discomfort in different areas of your mouth. Please use your wax as instructed and ensure you are brushing well.
Why should I have orthodontics?
Orthodontics plays an important role in improving overall oral health and achieving balance and harmony between the face and the teeth. The correct bite of the teeth with healthy muscles and jaw joints will provide optimum chewing function. Properly aligned teeth trap less food and are easier to brush. Therefore the likelihood of developing tooth decay and gum disease is decreased. Straight, healthy teeth can also improve self esteem and confidence.
How long will my treatment be?
Orthodontic treatment with braces normally takes 12 to 18 months. Some cases may take less time, more complicated cases may take a little longer. Factors such as regular attendance, avoiding breakages and compliance with any instructions will ensure your treatment finishes as quickly as possible.
How much do braces cost?
The needs of each patient are different and the fee will depend on the orthodontic treatment required. In most situations our fee includes the entire treatment. The fee does not include treatment for any broken brackets or appliances, lost retainers or any treatment provided by other dentists or specialists. Alternatively we offer a financial courtesy for full payment at the commencement of treatment with braces.
All costs will be completely discussed with you before the start of any treatment. Depending on your personal situation it may be possible to claim on your tax or through private health insurance.
Will I have to change my diet whilst having orthodontic treatment?
Usually a minor change in diet will be sufficient whilst undergoing treatment. Sticky lollies, hard foods such as apples, corn on the cob, carrots and celery which need to be bitten into. Break or cut these foods into bite size pieces and chew them on your back teeth. Avoid chewing gum and/or bubble gum and food and drinks high in sugar. These foods can increase your risk of tooth decay and can damage or break the appliances. Also avoid biting your fingernails or chewing on pens or pencils!