Find Out if You Need an Orthodontist
Determining if braces are needed for adults and children is an important decision that should be made with the help of an experienced, licensed, and reputable orthodontist. Every adult, teenager, and even child wants an aesthetically pleasing smile, but orthodontic care goes beyond correcting crooked teeth. If you’re asking yourself, do I need braces, we will be happy to help answer your questions below.
Proper alignment of the teeth and jaw are vital to our oral health. Overly crowded teeth are difficult to clean, which leads to gum disease, and jaw misalignment issues can cause teeth to wear unevenly. Jaw and bite mismatches can also make proper chewing and speech difficult.
Patients should start seeing an orthodontist at a young age. An early evaluation can catch problems with jaw growth or eruption of permanent teeth that may not be readily visible to a parent. The orthodontist can often provide preventative care that could potentially eliminate or reduce the need for invasive orthodontic intervention down the road.
How to Determine if Orthodontic Care is Needed
While it’s true that all orthodontists are dentists—orthodontists receive extensive, specialized training and education to diagnose as well as correct teeth and jaw misalignment.
Scheduling a free consultation with the best orthodontist is the right decision when it comes to getting an expert to prescribe proper treatment for crooked or crowded teeth, gaps between teeth, or jaw alignment issues.
Even if teeth appear straight, they might be growing in under the gum line incorrectly, which cannot be seen by the naked eye. If this condition is left untreated, a wayward tooth could become impacted (stuck) underneath the gums or damage nearby permanent teeth.
Dr. Redford and Dr. Burke make your orthodontic needs their top priority and focus on personalized care in a friendly and comfortable atmosphere. Located in Temecula and Lake Elsinore, the doctors assist their patients in making educated decisions about their oral health and provide a treatment plan with zero interest financing options.
How Do I Know if I Need Braces?
Issues that might indicate you need braces include:
- Crooked teeth
- Food that gets stuck in between teeth due to overcrowding or gaps
- Jaw shifting when biting down
- Difficulty in chewing food
- Issues with an overbite or underbite
Receiving a thorough examination from Dr. Redford or Dr. Burke is the best approach to take if you’re asking yourself, do I need braces?
Braces Provide Benefits for Adults and Children
Children and teenagers most commonly get orthodontic treatment; however, adults are also seeing tremendous benefits in receiving orthodontic care. The natural aging process can cause teeth to shift in adults, and age should never be a reason to rule out the possibility of receiving orthodontic treatment.
If braces are being considered for a child, Burke & Redford Orthodontists will thoroughly explain the process and determine the best age for pediatric orthodontic care. The doctors recommend a child be brought in for a free consultation and examination beginning at the age of seven.
This examination provides an excellent baseline of the jaws, teeth and growth stage. Many of these young children won’t immediately require orthodontic treatment. For others, however, early (often simple) intervention can make all the difference in preventing worse orthodontic problems once they get older.
What Are Orthodontic Appliances?
Orthodontic appliances are different from braces. Braces are used specifically for straightening crooked teeth or correcting large gaps in teeth. Jaw alignment issues such as an overbite or underbite may need to be addressed before the process of straightening teeth can begin.
There are different types of appliances that can be used to correct the misalignment between dental arches when the jaw is closed.
- Banded and bonded expanders. This device is used to expand the upper jaw or upper dental arch.
- Pendulum appliance. This appliance is used to expand the upper jaw and move the upper back teeth backward.
- Habit appliance. If thumb or finger sucking is causing dental issues, this type of device can assist in breaking the habit.
- Herbst appliance. This appliance corrects an overbite by moving the lower jaw and teeth forward.
- Space maintainer appliances. Nance appliances (upper teeth) and lower lingual holding arches (lower teeth) hold space in the mouth to allow normal eruption of permanent teeth.
What Types of Braces Are Available?
Years ago, the only type of braces available were metal braces. Now, there are even more great choices available, which depend upon age, circumstance, and patient preference.
- Self-ligating metal braces.
Self-ligating metal braces are a great choice for correcting crooked teeth. A big advantage to braces is the control they give the orthodontist to precisely move teeth in all directions and in small increments. Self-ligating braces are unique, since they don’t have elastic or metal ties (although colored ties can still be used as a “decoration” if patients prefer). Instead, a door mechanism attaches the braces to the wire. They are easy to clean, make for quick adjustment appointments, and allow for fewer total appointments needed for adjustments. Damon braces are one type of self-ligating braces we use in our office.
- Self-ligating ceramic or clear braces.
Ceramic braces are made of transparent ceramic or other clear materials which make them more aesthetic than metal braces. They are equally versatile as metal self-ligating braces and will achieve the same result as metal braces in the same amount of time. The only difference is their appearance. Also, white wires can be used to make them much less noticeable than metal braces. Older teens and adults love ceramic braces.
- Lingual braces.
Lingual braces are an option for those who are self-conscious of their appearance wearing braces on the front of their teeth. These are are metal braces that are glued to the back of teeth instead of the front. This option is often more expensive and less comfortable than other braces or Invisalign, but offers some benefits.
This is the best Invisalign doctor site in Temecula and Lake Elsinore, and it’s a fantastic choice for those who want the most flexibility to their lifestyle while also straightening their teeth. Invisalign is the least noticeable (although not completely invisible) braces option and can be removed for eating and brushing. Instead of wires and braces, the Invisalign system uses a clear aligner that is custom fit for each patient. These aligners are changed every week or two as teeth gradually shift into place. Having a skilled orthodontist to meticulously plan and direct how and when teeth will move with Invisalign is crucial to getting a good result.
Burke & Redford Orthodontists take pride in offering our patients the best orthodontic care in Southern California, with offices in Temecula and Lake Elsinore. Careful consideration of each patient’s oral health and a customized plan tailored for adults and children is our primary focus.
Will a Retainer Be Needed?
Patients need retainers after braces have been removed. The purpose of the retainer is to keep the teeth in their final and correct positions. Braces correct teeth misalignment, but the use of a retainer is necessary to prevent teeth from shifting after the braces are removed.
There are different types of retainers and the best option for each situation is always considered. Some varieties include:
- Bonded retainers
Recommended most often for lower teeth, bonded retainers are glued to the back of the patient’s teeth using a thin metal wire. With lower front teeth being the most prone to unwanted movement after braces are removed, bonded retainers ensure that straight teeth stay in place. Bonded retainers are also advised for upper teeth in some situations.
- Clear retainers
Clear retainers are made from plastic and are practically invisible. They are removable but must be worn a specific number of hours each day to prevent teeth from shifting once braces are removed. In our practice, this type of retainer is normally used for upper teeth.
- Hawley retainers
These traditional-style removable retainers are made of acrylic and metal wires and are very durable. These are a great option for patients that value a durable retainer option or rule out bonded or clear retainers.
Retainers are an essential part of orthodontic care, and wearing them as the orthodontist prescribes is necessary for a successful outcome and appealing smile. If you have asked yourself, do I need braces, more than once—it’s time to come in for a free consultation.
If you have questions about the braces and retainers and this article has helped you answer your question, do I need braces, then it’s time to contact Burke & Redford Orthodontists at (951)-699-8011 or fill out the contact form on our website anytime.