If you are one of the many Americans who need to have their teeth straightened, your dentist may recommend that you see an orthodontist and have braces fit. The process of having braces fit is simple and does not involve many steps. Your orthodontist will fit the braces in a series of steps similar to the ones listed below:
In order to find out if you really require braces to fix your malocclusion, you should visit an orthodontist so that they can screen your mouth and teeth. During a preliminary appointment and or diagnostic testing, your care provider will determine what kind of malocclusion you have and which treatment option is best. Some of the tests performed include x-rays, mouth photographs, molds of your smile and gums, and questionnaires that target the problem. During this appointment, you can ask questions about the procedures and materials that the orthodontist uses. It is a good time to ask for a price estimate so that you can assess whether your insurance will cover part of the payment. These essential steps will guide the orthodontist in developing an individualized treatment plan.
Getting Your Braces Placed and Bonded
The biggest step you will undergo is having your metal braces attached to your teeth. The orthodontist will first dry the area of the tooth where the bracket and glue are placed. They will dry the tooth so that the etchant, a material to ready the tooth for the cement, will adhere to the teeth. Once this substance is placed, the practitioner will carefully place the bracket on the tooth face and dry the cement with a special plasma light. This light allows for each bracket to bond with the tooth and remain firmly in place. Once bonded, the archwire will be threaded through the brackets. This wire will be tightened periodically to promote movement. Small rubber bands are placed on the bracket so that the wire and bracket do not separate. Your orthodontist can offer you several different colors to choose such as white, yellow, red, or green. The total time of placement takes about an hour per row of teeth, so in total, two hours.
Check-ups and adjustments
Because orthodontic treatment requires many adjustments, you will need to return periodically for tightening. During these visits, your doctor will adjust your metal braces and wires by removing the old bands and wire and replacing them with a new set. They may feel painful or sore for a bit as your teeth begin to shift again, but after a few days, you will be able to eat and work comfortably. If you suffer from too much discomfort, you can ask your provider about pain relief options. Usually, these appointments are set every eight weeks prior the previous change.
Your Final Appointment
After your orthodontist has determined that your teeth have moved into correct position, he or she will initiate the process of removing your braces. Having them removed is far easier and quicker than placement. They will take a special pair of pliers that will break the bond between your brackets and teeth. Once all of the pieces are removed, he will remove the bonding residue from the teeth with a smoother. The smoother will remove any rough edges, leaving a smooth and polished surface. The entire process takes around fifteen minutes and effectively removes any trace of your braces. During this time, your orthodontist may prepare you for wearing your retainer.
Fitting and Wearing Your Retainer
To maintain your beautiful new smile, you will need to wear a plastic and metal retainer. Because your teeth are not accustomed to staying in their new positions, you need to wear such a device so that the ligaments and bone structures can adapt. Your orthodontist will take impressions of your new teeth and mouth. These molds allow him or her to customize your retainer. This retainer will made out of a colored plastic with small metal wires. You can choose the color of your liking. You should wear your retainer at night or whenever your doctor has ordered. Failure to wear your retainer daily may result in your teeth drifting into their old positions.
Having your braces fit is not as intimidating as it may appear. Under the care of a skilled doctor, your mouth will soon shine.