Why Choose An Orthodontist?
Orthodontics receive an additional two to three years of specialized education beyond dental school to learn the proper way to align and straighten teeth. Only those with this formal education may call themselves “orthodontists,” and only orthodontists may be members of the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO). Dr. Carlson from Surf City Smiles has achieved this specialization and is an active member of AAO.
When Should Children Get An Orthodontic Check-Up?
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening at age seven. By this age, most children have several permanent teeth that have erupted, letting us evaluate their orthodontic needs.
By this age, Dr. Carlson can spot subtle problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth while some baby teeth are still present. That’s important, because some orthodontic problems may be easier to correct if they’re found early. Most orthodontic patients begin active braces treatment between ages 9 and 14.
Can Adults Benefit From Orthodontic Treatment?
Orthodontic treatment can be successful at almost any age. In fact, about one in every four orthodontic patients today is over age 18. Thanks to today’s smaller, less visible and more comfortable orthodontic appliances, including metal braces, ceramic braces, and Invisalign, adults find treatment appealing.
What Is My Role In Treatment?
Orthodontic treatment is a partnership between the doctor and patient. Dr. Carlson provides custom-made fixed or removable appliances that use gentle pressure to move teeth into their proper positions. Your job is to follow Dr. Carlson instruction, keep scheduled orthodontic appointments and maintaining excellent oral hygiene to get the best results. You will also need to see your general dentist as recommended to continue your general dental care.
Why Do Some Teeth Shift?
The small changes that happen after braces are removed are due to settling in as you use your teeth for biting and chewing. The more serious and unwanted changes may be traced to genetics or later-than-normal growth, which is unpredictable. Movement is most common in lower front teeth. This is particularly true if the teeth were extremely crowded prior to treatment. Changes in tooth position are a lifelong and naturally occurring phenomenon. The best way to keep your teeth from shifting is to wear your retainers as prescribed. If you notice movement after your braces are removed, please contact Surf City Smiles.
What Should My Long-Term Expectations Be?
The fact is that throughout your lifetime, even though you have had orthodontic treatment, you can expect changes in tooth position. Many factors at work may cause teeth to shift. Such changes are different for everyone and most of the time they are hardly noticeable. However, on occasion changes can occur that are disappointing to both the patient and Surf City Smiles. Changes in tooth position are not a failure of your orthodontic treatment. They are a natural process. We expect changes in our bodies as we grow older, and teeth are no exception. To help control and limit these changes, retainers are prescribed after your braces are removed.