Top Ten Questions To Ask Your Orthodontist

Top Ten Questions To Ask Your Orthodontist
Posted on 03/09/2020

If your dentist has recommended that you or your child need braces, there are some important questions that you will want to ask your orthodontist. Over the years, Dr. Meister from Meister Orthodontics, which serves the Minneapolis and St. Paul communities, has answered many questions about the orthodontic process. 

Dr. Meister believes that being well-informed about the orthodontic process is an important part of the journey to a healthy smile. The following are the questions she recommends asking your orthodontist:

Are you a board-certified orthodontic specialist?

This is an important question because you want to make sure your doctor is completely skilled and experienced in orthodontia. An orthodontic specialist means that after dental school, your doctor has completed the additional educational requirements to receive a Master of Orthodontics. To become board certified by the American Board of Orthodontics, your orthodontist must pass clinical and written exams to demonstrate their knowledge and skills. 

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What type of braces do you offer?

There are several different types of braces to choose from based on your unique dental needs and budget. Not all orthodontic options are appropriate for every patient, so you will want to know the pros and cons of each option, as well as understanding why your orthodontist recommends a specific treatment option. 

Meister Orthodontics offers metal braces, clear braces, and Invisalign.

What is Invisalign?

Invisalign is an alternative to traditional braces that uses a series of removable aligners to shift the teeth to the desired position. Invisalign is not for everyone; it will depend on how extensive your orthodontic needs are, as well as your budget for orthodontic treatment. Invisalign isn’t suitable for children. 

How long will the braces need to be worn? 

Braces are typically worn from six months to two years. The length of your treatment will vary based on several factors, including the complexity of your orthodontic problem, your stage of jaw growth, whether you have some or all of your adult teeth, and what type of braces have been recommended. After a thorough exam and evaluation, your orthodontist will be able to give you an estimate of how long you will need to wear braces. 

How often will I need to visit the orthodontist during treatment?

The frequency of your orthodontic visits will largely depend on the type of treatment and the type of braces you have. During treatment, most patients typically see their orthodontists every four to eight weeks. Keep in mind that a good treatment plan requires making adjustments to move your teeth, so these appointments are a necessary part of success.

Are there restrictions on activities and food?

There are no restrictions on activities you participate in, but if you play sports, your orthodontist will recommend that you wear a mouthguard to protect your mouth from injury. Make sure you talk to your orthodontist about your activities and any necessary steps you should take for protection.

To avoid breaking the wires and brackets of your braces, you will want to avoid sticky and hard foods. Your orthodontist will provide you with a list of foods that you should not eat while you are wearing braces, as well as suggesting some good alternatives during your treatment. 

Will I need to change my dental hygiene while wearing braces?

Diligence will need to become your new mantra. Braces make keeping your teeth free from plaque and food debris more difficult. Flossing and brushing are especially important to avoid decalcification, which is a loss of calcium as a result of plaque accumulation, which will leave your teeth with white spots.

Your orthodontist will provide you with information on how to properly care for your teeth while wearing braces. You should also receive some orthodontic supplies, such as floss threaders, orthodontic wax, and a proxabrush for good dental hygiene.

What happens if I break the dental appliance?

If you break a wire or a bracket or if something happens to your Invisalign aligner, you should contact the orthodontist office as soon as possible to schedule an appointment to repair your braces. Orthodontic emergencies need to be treated promptly to keep your treatment on track. 

If you have a child that is going through orthodontic treatment, make sure they understand the importance of treating their dental appliance with care.

Will I have to wear a retainer after my braces are removed?

Your treatment isn’t over once your braces are removed; you will need retention visits and a retainer to maintain your beautiful new smile. Your teeth are the most vulnerable right after the braces are removed because your teeth are settling into their new position. Your retainer is what protects your teeth from moving back to where they were. 

While you will not have to come to the orthodontist as frequently, retention visits are important to maintaining the new alignment of your teeth. 

How much do braces cost? 

The cost of braces will vary based on the extent of the treatment you need and the type of braces you choose. After a thorough exam, your orthodontist will be able to provide you with a cost estimate of the recommended treatment. The estimate should include appointments, appliances, X-rays, photographs, molds, and retainers. 

If you have dental insurance, you will want to make sure your orthodontist accepts your plan and how much your portion will cost. Also, most orthodontists offer payment plans to help with paying for treatment. 

Make An Appointment Today!

If you are looking for the best orthodontic treatment in the St. Paul and Minneapolis areas, schedule a consultation with Meister Orthodontics office. You can contact our office at (651) 699-2013 to schedule an appointment, or you can also schedule an appointment online.