Braces

I Don't Have Any Dental Problems: Should I Still Visit an Orthodontist?

Orthodontics is a field of medicine that is mainly used by someone who has developed a dental problem. It is rare to find someone visiting an orthodontist for preventive measures. However, most problems with tooth alignment can be effectively dealt with if found out in time. 

By understanding the problem one experiences on their teeth alignment and the roles of this specialist, you will be able to answer the question -- why visit an orthodontist? Each of these will be explained in the text below, together with reasons to visit an orthodontist even when you don't have dental problems. 

Problems Experienced with Tooth Alignment 

They are discussed below: 

  • Overbite – This is a jaw-related problem where the upper jaw extends out. A person with an overbite may be uncomfortable when the lower teeth bite into the hard palette on the upper jaw. 
  • Underbite – This condition occurs where the lower jaw extends out. Here, the lower front teeth sit in front of the upper front teeth. Both underbite and overbite cause difficulties in chewing. 
  • Open bite – The upper and lower jaw of someone who suffers from an open bite are unable to make physical contact when the jaws are closed 
  • Spaced teeth – The space between teeth is known as a diastema and it is common among children and a number of adults. However, it becomes an issue when it compromises one's oral hygiene. This is especially where food particles accumulate in these gaps. 
  • Crowding – The crowding of teeth occurs where the jaw does not have enough space to accumulate all the teeth. It is mainly caused by the early or late loss of primary teeth, genetic imbalances between teeth and the jaw sizes, and random eruption of teeth. 
  • Midlines misaligned – The midline of one's teeth is the center of the two incisors that divide the teeth in half on either jaw. This condition occurs when the midline of the upper and lower jaw are not in line with each other. 

Each of these conditions may affect the aesthetics of one's face. This arouses the need for prevention or treatment. 

The Roles of an Orthodontist 

Orthodontists are concerned with the alignment of teeth and guiding proper development of the facial structure. They do this by straightening teeth and improving bites. The latter is done by correcting how the jaws line up and how the teeth fit together. 

They first begin by getting x-rays of the alignment of jaws or by making plaster molds of the patient's jaws. These thorough examination of the jaws and facial muscles are necessary to identify the exact problem. The dental records of the patient also give the orthodontist more information on the patient's mouth. 

Afterward, by using braces, aligners, headgear, and other appliances, they provide the face with enough force to make the teeth move. The choice of appliance depends on the condition of the patients. 

An orthodontist is supposed to insert the appliance into the patient's mouth then adjust it to fit and be comfortable in the patient's mouth. After fitting, the patient will be expected to visit the orthodontist to have the appliance cleaned and adjusted.

Beecroft Orthodontics - How to Find an Orthodontist Near Me

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What Braces Fix 

Braces are the most common appliances that are used for the alignment of teeth. There are different designs of braces, and they can be fitted at the front of the teeth where they are visible or at the back where they cannot be seen. 

Invisalign is a type of braces that are designed to blend in with the teeth. The material used to make it is clear, but it is more susceptible to discoloring from food stains. These braces, therefore, require regular replacement than the others. They are used to maintain aesthetic value where the patient is self-conscious about the appearance of the braces. 

Some of the problems that can be fixed by braces include overcrowding and protrusion. These appliances should be adjusted every few months as they become loose when the teeth move back into place. You should, therefore, see your orthodontist regularly to have them adjusted. 

When treating an overbite using braces, a patient goes through a two-stage process. In the first stage, the metal brackets that are fastened on a patient's teeth are connected with a metal wire. This combination provides enough force to straighten and align the teeth. 

In the second stage, the focus shifts to treating the overbite. Here, rubber bands, springs, and coils are added to the braces to shift your jawline into place, hence treating the overbite. 

The main weaknesses associated with the use of standard braces include difficulty with maintaining dental hygiene and their opaque property. Food particles may accumulate around and behind braces, causing decay. On the other hand, their lack of transparency may cause a change in aesthetic appearance. However, Invisalign solves both these issues, as it is transparent and removable, hence allowing you to brush and floss your teeth easily. 

Why Visit an Orthodontist Even without Dental Problems? 

The importance to visit an orthodontist cannot be emphasized in enough, particularly for kids. Any issues with jaw and teeth alignment can be detected before they happen. Therefore, corrective measures can be taken to ensure that as he grows, his teeth grow correctly without misalignment. This prevents your child from experiencing any form of teasing from peers due to his teeth. 

The reasons to visit an orthodontist as an adult are the same as those of a child. Any potential bite issues can be detected before they are manifested. Orthodontists can identify such problems before they occur, subsequently saving you a lot of time and costs in the future. Moreover, you can avoid bite problems such as difficulties in chewing, cleaning teeth, and effects on the quality of your smile. 

Therefore, ensure that you visit the orthodontist regularly for early detection of any bite issues. 

Problems with jaw and teeth alignment are common, and they include overbites, under bites, and midlines misaligned, among others. Orthodontists specialize in these issues, and they use various methods for the detection and correction of alignment issues. The most common method used in teeth alignment and straightening is the use of braces. Braces can also be used to correct bites using the two-step method mentioned above. 

 It is of critical importance to visit an orthodontist regularly to take preventive measures against some of these issues. This is especially important for kids whose teeth are yet to erupt fully. So if you haven’t had the chance to visit an orthodontist yet then best to contact and schedule an appointment now or as soon as possible.  

I Don't Have Any Dental Problems: Should I Still Visit an Orthodontist?

BEECROFT ORTHODONTICS

11113 Leavells Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

Phone: 540 898 2200

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My Bottom and Top Teeth Are Not Aligned, Can Braces Help Align My Jaws? 

Not Aligned If you are unhappy with your smile, you are not alone. Fully 80 percent of teens and an estimated 25 percent of adults are currently seeking the help of orthodontic professionals to achieve a straighter, whiter smile. Most parents are now advised to schedule their child's first orthodontic visit as early as age seven, especially if there is a family history of not aligned teeth or adult bottom and top teeth that grow in with improper spacing.  

To alleviate your suspense, the answer to the question posed in the title to this article is a definitive YES. Absolutely, braces can help to correct issues of tooth spacing, alignment, bite, jaw pain, and other oral health issues. Read on to learn more about how this process works. 

Understanding How Crooked Teeth Occur

The teeth become misaligned or crooked in two main ways. The first is through family history. Like it or not, genetics plays a large role in whether a child's adult teeth will grow in smoothly and evenly with a uniform bite or....not.  

But the other main reason why tooth or bite issues occur happens later in life due to behavior. This list highlights some of the most common ways that teeth can become crooked or misaligned other than due to simple DNA:

1. Thumb sucking or continued pacifier use.

These seemingly innocent and comforting infant behaviors represent two of the biggest behavioral culprits of early childhood misalignment in bottom and top teeth.

When sucking the thumb becomes a habit, this causes teeth to grow in at an angle instead of straight.

2. Tongue thrusting.

Tongue thrusting is linked to thumb sucking, but it can also occur independently. It occurs when the tongue is held between the teeth rather than resting on the upper soft palate during swallowing.

Patients often don't know they are doing it until their teeth start moving. Like thumb sucking, tongue thrusting can cause teeth to grow in at an angle and spaced more widely than is desirable.

3. Oral trauma.

Examples of oral trauma that can cause not aligned teeth can include sports injuries, being involved in a vehicle accident or having a bad fall.

Besides Straight Teeth, What are the Benefits of Braces?

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Who Treats Misaligned Teeth and Bite Issues?

Outside of the field of oral health education and science, much confusion remains about the difference between a dentist and an orthodontist.

However, it is critical to understand the role each plays in helping you achieve optimal dental health so you seek out the right type of professional for the care you need.

Dentist Education and Training. 

A dentist has completed a four-year college degree and a four-year dental school degree. Upon graduation, the dentist is awarded a doctoral degree and can then sit for the licensure exam to practice dental medicine.

If you need an annual dental checkup, a cleaning, or minor tooth work such as fillings, a dentist is trained and licensed to perform these procedures for you.

Orthodontist Education and Training.

An orthodontist has completed a four-year college degree and a four-year dental school degree. Then, the orthodontist goes on to complete a two-year (or longer) residency in orthodontic medicine. Upon graduation from the residency, the orthodontist can practice either dental medicine or orthodontic medicine or both.

Here, you will notice that only the orthodontist has trained in how braces align jaws and straighten out teeth and bite issues. There are many techniques only orthodontists are trained and licensed to use that can correct even long-standing teeth and bite issues.

When to Seek Orthodontic Care

People seek out orthodontic care for two reasons: appearance and oral health.

Appearance.

The first reason to seek out orthodontic care is simply a personal dissatisfaction with the appearance of the teeth and smile. If the teeth are crooked or the bite is misaligned, it can cause self-consciousness.

This self-consciousness can have more of an impact than a simple unwillingness to smile in photos or up close with friends or colleagues. Even the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have published studies linking personal smile satisfaction with overall confidence and well being.

From competing in extracurricular activities to interviewing for jobs to going out on dates to choosing a mate, your smile and how willing you are to show it definitely makes a difference in how successful you are in life. The same holds true for your children.

Oral health.

For some people, the main reason to seek out orthodontic care is cosmetic with a side of health. Braces align jaws and teeth, making a minor tweak here and there, and the overall course of treatment is simple and quick.

But for a significant number of patients, the primary reason to get braces is to stave off serious oral health issues that can be life-limiting if not fatal. WebMD cites issues ranging from the onset of gingivitis/periodontal disease to speech difficulties that can arise due to failure to correct crooked teeth.

How to Begin Orthodontic Treatment

Most orthodontists today treat patients of all ages - children, tweens, teens, and adults. If both you and your child need orthodontic treatment, you may be able to ease any fears your child has by getting treated together!

Your first visit will be a consultation so you can share your family dental health history and ask questions. Expect that you will have some X-ray pictures taken so the orthodontist can view what is going on beneath the gum line. This is necessary so your orthodontist can get a big picture view of what is going on in your mouth and with your teeth and jaw.

The X-ray images can also help your orthodontist decide on the best course of orthodontic care to achieve your appearance and health goals as quickly and completely as possible.

You can also find out if the orthodontist works with any dental insurance providers and/or if financing is an option. Then you can schedule your first appointment to begin orthodontic treatment.

Contact Us Today

To learn more or begin your journey to a straight, white smile you can show off with pride, give us a call at 540-898-2200 / 540-659-6300 / 540-775-2022 or visit us online at http://beecroftorthodontics.com. 

BEECROFT ORTHODONTICS

11113 Leavells Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

Phone: 540 898 2200

My Bottom and Top Teeth Are Not Aligned, Can Braces Help Align My Jaws? 

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Help, I’m Wearing my Orthodontic Retainer, but my Teeth are Moving!

Beecroft Orthodontics LAST UPDATED: APRIL 25, 2017

When you've gone through the lengthy process of treatment with braces, it's a great sigh of relief when those braces come off and you can finally show off those pearly whites. Wearing an orthodontic retainer is just par for the course, the final stage of treatment that will help you to preserve those straight teeth after all of that time and effort.

FAQ

Orthodontic Retainers and Post-Braces Care: What if Your Teeth Move?

You need to follow your orthodontist's instructions to the letter and wear that retainer for as long as is specified. If you've noticed some shifting after your braces come off, even while using your retainer, don't be alarmed. It's all a part of the process.

Can I Expect Some Movement in the Initial Period After the Braces Come Off?

When your braces come off, movement is to be expected. Your gums are going to start to adjust, becoming healthier as you can finally give yourself excellent oral hygiene once more. In addition, your teeth will actually start to settle once the wires and brackets are removed. They'll come together in a natural way. This shifting or settling is generally more noticeable in the back or on the sides. Shifting should not be as obvious in the most important area, the front that is the first thing everyone sees.

What Are Other Factors that Affect Movement After Your Braces are Removed?

Even though you are wearing your retainer, you may still see minor changes in the alignment of your teeth for a variety of reasons. If you are still growing, your jaw will be changing and this may alter the appearance of your teeth. You also need to pay attention to your tongue. If you are in the habit of pressing your tongue against your teeth, it may cause shifting. Do your best to avoid any unnecessary pressure on your teeth. You should not see any major alterations. Remember that your body is going to change as you age and that includes your mouth. As your jaw adjusts, shifts, or moves over the course of the coming years, you may see slight alterations in the appearance of your teeth as well.

Should I Keep Wearing My Retainer and See My Orthodontist?

The main thing you need to remember is that your retainer is a must. You have put in the time and invested a great deal of money in getting that beautiful smile. In order to have the most promising results after you've had orthodontic treatment, keep wearing your retainer for the length of time per your orthodontist's instructions. If you are concerned about any shifting in your teeth, make an appointment with our orthodontist specialist at Beecroft Orthodontics. An adjustment in the type of retainer you are wearing may be a remedy to the problem. Your orthodontic specialist will be able to answer all of your questions and assist you in whatever way possible to make sure you keep a beautiful smile for years to come.

Contact Us Now!

We at Beecroft Orthodontics hope that we have done enough to clarify the difference between the two. For any further consultations or if you would like to utilize our services, do not hesitate to call us. We eagerly await the chance to guide you on the journey back to dental wellness.

Beecroft Orthodontics, 10472 Georgetown Dr. Fredericksburg, Virginia

Phone: 540-898-2200

Help, I’m Wearing my Orthodontic Retainer, but my Teeth are Moving!

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