(818) 980-5300 5445 Laurel Canyon Blvd.
Valley Village, CA   91607

Do You Need a Second Opinion about Orthodontic Treatment?

An orthodontist’s treatment for you or your family member is something that will impact the rest of your lives. A smile isn’t something you want to put at risk, so choosing the right healthcare professional is important. There is absolutely nothing wrong with shopping around, or getting a second opinion, when it comes to orthodontic treatment.

The main reason most patients seek a second opinion is to increase the confidence in the treatment plan and the provider’s ability to successfully carry it out. If your treatment plan is straightforward and the orthodontist comes highly recommended to you by friends or your dentist, you may feel comfortable pursuing treatment without getting a second opinion. Remember to consider all aspects of the practice, such as the staff, environment, cost, appointment times, and emergency policies.

If you choose to obtain multiple opinions, you may be given several different treatment options. This can be confusing, but it just means that you need to do your research and decide which plan and which specialist you feel most confident in. Different orthodontists use different procedures or techniques to address the same issues, and that doesn’t mean that one way is absolutely wrong. You just need to determine which plan fits best with your goals and lifestyle.

If you are uncomfortable with the proposed treatment, ask lots of questions about the reason for it and why other options aren’t recommended. If you are still uncertain, be sure to get another opinion. Also make sure that a provider doesn’t push you toward treatment that you get the feeling is their “only” or “favorite” method. For example, if an orthodontist says that teeth “always” must be extracted as part of every patient’s treatment, that is a reason to get a second opinion.

You should never feel pressured by an orthodontist to begin treatment immediately or rush into anything. Your healthcare is always your decision, so consult orthodontists until you are happy and confident with the plan and the provider.

Is Headgear Still Around?

If you hear the term headgear, it will likely conjure up images of an awkward contraption forced upon many an adolescent over the years in their quest for straight teeth. As much as patients might like to avoid it, headgear is a proven way to guide the growth of your jaw. It is definitely still used today by orthodontists for some patients to achieve their ideal smile.

Why is headgear needed?
Headgear is an appliance used to correct overbites by holding back the upper jaw’s growth, allowing the lower jaw to move into the correct position. It creates forces that guide the growth of your face and jaws, and also helps move your teeth into better position.

How much do I need to wear it?
Headgear is usually worn about 10 to 14 hours daily, and usage lasts anywhere from 6 to 18 months. The time required depends on how severe your overbite is and how much growth you have remaining. Each case is unique, so your orthodontist will identify how much wear is necessary. It’s important to follow your doctor’s instructions so that this portion of your treatment can move quickly and achieve optimum results.

Does headgear hurt?
Your teeth will be sore when chewing for several days when you begin wearing headgear, but will subside as long as you wear it consistently. Often the second and third days after beginning usage are the worst, and then soreness lessens. Taking ibuprofen and eating a soft diet will help. You’ll achieve the quickest relief if you continue to wear your headgear even though your teeth are sore.

How do I get the best results?

Your headgear only works if you wear it! Follow these guidelines:,/h2>

• Remove your headgear as directed so that you don’t injure yourself.
• Take off your headgear before playing sports or running.
• Don’t allow anyone to grab or pull on your headgear.
• Take your headgear with you to all orthodontist appointments.
• Follow proper techniques to care for and clean your headgear.

Learning about Lingual Braces

The most common treatment method for straightening teeth and correcting bites has been braces for many years. However, new types of braces have been developed as technology has advanced. One example is lingual braces, sometimes also referred to as incognito braces.

Like traditional braces, lingual braces are made of metal. There is one major difference from braces that have been available for a long time; lingual braces are fitted on the inside of your teeth instead of the outside. This provides the benefits of braces without the embarrassment of visible metal braces.

Many patients are candidates for lingual braces, although they might be considered most popular among adults who especially want to hide the fact that they are undergoing orthodontic treatment at a later age. A consultation with an orthodontist is necessary to determine if you are a good candidate, or if a different option might be more effective.

Braces that require wires and brackets on your teeth have a reputation for causing discomfort. Lingual braces are no different, and in fact, they tend to be a bit more uncomfortable due to their placement on the inside of your teeth. It feels somewhat unnatural having the metal inside your mouth where your tongue brushes against it often. For the first week or so, your tongue may feel a little sore as you get used to it having to share space with the braces.

Talking and eating may be awkward after you initially get lingual braces. A slight lisp or whistling sound is common when speaking at first, but disappears as you grow accustomed to the braces. The same goes for eating, as you’ll get used to how the braces fit in your mouth.

Because of their location, lingual braces are difficult to clean. Food tends to get stuck in the braces and it’s hard to remove, especially since you can’t see behind your teeth well. It’s hard to know how dirty or clean your braces and teeth are. Regular brushing and flossing is key to maintaining good oral health while wearing lingual braces.

If achieving the perfect smile while hiding treatment is important to you, talk to an orthodontist about the possibility of lingual braces.

Getting Your Questions about Invisalign Answered

The best way to determine if an orthodontic treatment plan is right for you is to visit a qualified professional for a consultation. However, it’s also smart to go into the office with some knowledge about the options and questions that you might have. Being well-informed puts you on the road to a successful experience. If you’re wondering about Invisalign treatment, here are some common questions and answers about this method.

How does Invisalign work?
Unique 3D computer technology is used to create a treatment plan from the initial teeth position to the final desired position. Clear plastic aligners are developed based on the imaging in sets to be worn from the start of treatment and changed every couple of weeks to new sets as treatment progresses. This process gradually moves the teeth into better positions.

Who is a good candidate for Invisalign?
Most adults and teens are eligible for treatment, with the exception of those who still have too many baby teeth or are awaiting the eruption of second molars. Invisalign addresses most orthodontic issues, although a professional consultation is the best way to find out if it’s right for you.

What type of doctor should I see?
Special training is required to become an authorized Invisalign provider, as well as ongoing training classes to maintain the designation of “Preferred Provider.” This status may be achieved by a dentist or an orthodontist, so just look for a provider with the required Invisalign training.

Does Invisalign hurt?
The pain associated with traditional orthodontics does not occur with Invisalign, mainly because there are no wires involved. You may experience slight discomfort as you adjust to each new set of aligners, but it dissipates quickly and is not severe.

How will Invisalign affect my everyday life?
Since the aligners are removeable for eating and cleaning, you can stick to your regular diet and oral hygiene. Fewer appointments are required than with traditional braces, so you won’t even be giving up your time to sit in the dental chair. Your daily life will hardly be affected during Invisalign treatment.

Mehdi Fotovat, D.D.S.


5445 Laurel Canyon Blvd.

Valley Village, CA 91607

(818) 980-5300

Our practice is conveniently located on Laurel Canyon Blvd. between Burbank Blvd. and Chandler Blvd. in Valley Village. Free parking is available behind the building.

Our Hours

Tuesday: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm (closed for lunch 12-1:20)

Wednesday: 7:30 am – 5:30 pm (closed for lunch 12-1:30)

Thursday: 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Friday: 7:30 am – 3:30 pm (closed for lunch 12-12:30)