You may not realize it, but orthodontic treatment can drastically change people’s lives. A healthy, straight smile improves your appearance and increases self-esteem and confidence. Insecurities about your smile could be holding you back from all kinds of things; a beautiful smile might give you just the edge on life that you need.
It doesn’t matter if you’re 16 or 60, a great smile is important. Age is really not a consideration for orthodontic treatment, especially with new advancements making treatment more and more discreet. So if you’re unhappy with your look and wonder if orthodontics can help, schedule an appointment with a qualified and experienced orthodontist to learn about the possibilities for your smile.
Most orthodontists offer a variety of options for treatment. These may include traditional metal braces, ceramic braces, lingual braces, Invisalign clear aligners and other appliances as appropriate. Ask your orthodontist about the best way to improve your smile, making sure to voice your concerns about treatment and the lifestyle that you hope to have during the process. For example, if diet restrictions are a big deal to you, then Invisalign removeable aligners might be appealing.
Some common issues that orthodontics helps with include:
- Crowded or overlapping teeth
- Spaces or gaps between teeth
- Overbite where the upper front teeth protrude over the lower ones
- Underbite where the lower teeth cover the upper teeth
- Open bite where the teeth do not touch normally
A good orthodontist will work with you to create a comprehensive treatment plan that achieves your smile goals. You’ll learn how to care for your mouth during the process so that your teeth remain healthy and strong. Then when treatment is complete, you’ll be able to display your new look proudly and enjoy it for a lifetime.
We look forward to seeing you in our Sherman Oaks dental office
The advantages of receiving orthodontic treatment are more than just cosmetic. Straight teeth do make a beautiful smile, but they are also better for your overall long term oral health. Improvements in your self-esteem are also likely when you have an attractive smile. Patients seek orthodontic treatment for a number of important reasons beyond how the results look.
Crooked or overlapping teeth are difficult to clean thoroughly. Plaque and germs can build up to cause tooth decay and cavities. Straightening your teeth with orthodontic treatment allows you to clean your teeth more effectively. This helps you fight cavities, decay, gum disease, and even tooth loss.
When teeth are not aligned correctly, it is called malocclusion. This contributes to improper wear patterns on your teeth, which can ultimately lead to the need for dental veneers or bonding. Stress on your jaw muscles can also result, causing jaw pain. Malocclusion also may affect your bones and gums that support your teeth, which can end up in tooth loss if not treated.
An overbite is when the upper teeth overlap the bottom teeth, which may cause uneven or excessive wear on the teeth. Chips requiring dental repair can occur from an overbite, especially on the bottom teeth. An open bite is when the front teeth do not touch at all when you bite. This can lead to excessive pressure and wear on the back teeth. Bite problems are commonly corrected with orthodontic treatment.
Braces or other orthodontics typically improve the function of your teeth. You may be able to bite and chew your food better, as well as speak more clearly. Orthodontic treatment improves your chances for better long-term function and health of your teeth and gums.
Dr. Fotovat is an orthodontist treating patients in the Sherman Oaks, CA area.
Once you get braces put on your teeth, you must learn how to live successfully while wearing them. Following your orthodontist’s advice for restrictions and proper care will help the treatment process go faster. Here are some suggestions to follow while wearing braces.
Traditional braces have specific diet restrictions because some foods can cause damage. Your orthodontist will provide a list, but typical food categories to avoid include:
- Crunchy–popcorn, ice, chips
- Sticky–candy, gum
- Hard–candy, nuts
- Chewy–bagels, licorice
- Biting–corn on the cob, carrots, apples
On the other hand, foods to keep in your diet are dairy, soft breads, pasta, seafood, soft fruits and vegetables, and even desserts if they avoid the risky characteristics like stickiness or crunchiness.
Your mouth will be sore when you first get braces, but it will go away in a few days. Over-the-counter pain relievers and rinsing with warm salt water can help. Your cheeks, lips, and tongue sometimes become irritated, so ask your orthodontist for wax to place over pointy edges to lessen discomfort.
Contact your orthodontist if any parts of your braces become loose, and save any pieces that fall off. Use the back of an eraser on a pencil to gently push wires back in place to avoid irritation until you can get your braces properly repaired.
It is normal for your teeth to feel a little loose when they are being moved into better position. Once they are in the right place, they won’t be loose anymore.
You can continue to play sports while wearing braces, but should wear a mouth guard to prevent damage or injuries. Contact your orthodontist if you do experience any damage while playing sports so that it can be fixed.
Take good care of your braces so that they can effectively do their job in the shortest timeframe. Consistently wearing any additional orthodontics like rubber bands, retainers, headgear, and other appliances will enhance your treatment as well. Brush, floss, and care for your braces as directed by your orthodontist.
If you live in the Sherman Oaks CA area and you are interested in braces, contact our office today.
Pretty much everyone knows that flossing your teeth with braces is not a simple task. The metal wires form an obstacle for moving the dental floss up and down between your teeth. Not only that, it’s difficult to reach your gumline when flossing. If you wear braces and give up on flossing, you are putting your oral health at risk. Luckily there are some tricks to help you floss so that you can maintain a healthy and clean smile.
First, before you even begin flossing, use an anti-plaque rinse to help clean your teeth. Rinse vigorously for about thirty seconds before spitting it out. This will help loosen food particles and plaque that have become trapped in your braces.
Once you’re ready to floss, consider using tools that are available to help make flossing with braces easier. One such tool is an orthodontic pick or flosser. These are plastic wands that are already strung with dental floss. Orthodontic flossers have a thin arm that can slide under the archwires and allow you to reach the gumline. The other end of the flosser contains a pick for you to use to eliminate food or plaque from your brackets. This type of flossing tool helps you reach all of your teeth and do a thorough job.
Another product to help you clean your teeth while wearing braces is a waterflosser. It sprays a pressurized stream of water that gets rid of debris and plaque between your teeth. This handheld tool is easy to use and also can target bacteria below your gumline. Many orthodontists recommend waterflossers, especially for patients who are unwilling to use traditional dental floss to clean their teeth and braces.
There is no argument that flossing plays a vital role in your oral health. Wearing braces is no excuse to neglect this element of your dental hygiene routine. By following some of these steps to make the task easier, you can still have clean teeth and gums while your smile is being improved with braces.
Dr. Fotovat is an orthodontist that provided braces to patients in the Sherman Oaks, CA area.
Parents, teens, and adults all may wonder if braces are really necessary. Sometimes it’s obvious that orthodontics would benefit the patient, and in other cases it’s not so clear. Braces really are something that each individual or family must decide whether to pursue, of course with input from an orthodontist. However, there are some circumstances where braces are usually the ideal solution.
The main goal of treatment is to not only improve the patient’s appearance, but also to obtain a healthy bite. Every person’s mouth is different, which means treatment will vary and so will the results. That’s a good thing though, because everyone wants their own individual smile.
Aside from the cosmetic benefits that wearing braces will provide, there are some important reasons that some people will medically benefit from treatment. Problems in the way teeth are aligned can cause serious dental issues, which can worsen over time. If a patient’s teeth has slight crowding or gaps, these are the cases that may or may not need braces depending on the person’s desires. More serious cases are when the upper or lower jaw is out of alignment, and braces can really be important.
When the lower or upper jaw protrudes forward, a number of problems can result. These may include jaw pain, tooth decay, gum disease, speech impediments, teeth grinding or clenching, or difficulty eating and chewing. Patients may not even realize these types of issues can be linked to jaw misalignment. By moving the patient’s jaws and teeth through the use of braces, an orthodontist can help reduce or eliminate these types of problems that patients experience.
There isn’t always a definite answer, just as all patients have varying opinions about treatment. The key is to work together with an orthodontist, express goals, and agree upon a customized plan for treatment.
Braces orthodontist in Sherman Oaks CA