Your braces are finally coming off! Congratulations – but there are some things you should know post-treatment. Here is what you can expect from life after braces – and a few things you should watch out for.
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Orthodontics is the treatment of irregularities in the teeth, especially those of alignment and occlusion, and jaws. These treatments include the use of braces and clear aligners for the development of a straighter smile.
How do I know if I need braces?
Braces can help individuals suffering from visibly misaligned teeth. For some patients, braces are absolutely required to correct a serious overbite or underbite, while for others the benefits are cosmetic, as they desire straightening crooked or misaligned teeth. If you suspect you need or want braces, it is best to contact a local orthodontist for a consultation.
Do orthodontic treatments require follow-up appointments?
For the duration of your treatment follow-ups with your orthodontist will be necessary so they can make adjustments and perform any required maintenance. How often follow-ups will be required will vary by each patient's exact circumstances, including the severity of their condition and whether they are using traditional braces or clear aligners. Your orthodontist will be able to tell you more about what kind of follow-up schedule you should expect.
how long will I have to wear braces or clear aligners?
Treatment times will vary based on every individual patient's needs and circumstances. Most orthodontic treatments last between a year and a half to two years. For a more accurate estimate of how long your treatment will take, speak with your local orthodontist, who should have a reasonably accurate timeline for your needed treatment following an initial examination.
Is a referral from a dentist required to see an orthodontist?
Only in cases where it is required by an insurance provider will a referral from a general dentist be required for a visit to the orthodontist. Patients are welcome to make an appointment with any orthodontist of their choosing, as well as to refer family and friends to their preferred orthodontist's office.
Will my teeth straighten naturally over time?
It is very unlikely that misaligned teeth will straighten naturally over time without orthodontic intervention. In some cases, gaps between teeth may shrink, but the need for treatment with braces or clear aligners will not be mitigated.
More from our blog about Orthodontics Services
New orthodontic patients often have questions about different treatment methods, procedures and how their treatment will impact their oral health. Here are 10 commonly asked questions our network of dentists have received from patients.