Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions about Orthodontic Treatment
The placement of braces does not hurt. However, you may have soreness a few hours after having the braces placed and for several days. To lessen the discomfort while eating, chose soft foods. To help manage the discomfort, take what you would normally take for a headache an hour before dinner and again when you wake up in the morning. Continue this as needed.
Dry the area with a napkin or a tissue and apply wax. Over-the-counter ointments are available to help with these areas (e.g. Orabase). During the first few weeks, your cheeks will “toughen up” in response to your brackets.
Keeping your teeth clean and continuing to see your dentist every six months for a regular cleaning.
Please call us as soon as possible if an appliance is broken or if a wire is poking you.
Avoid eating anything sticky or chewy (e.g. taffy, caramel, Airheads, Skittles, etc.), crunchy or hard (hard candies, hard pretzels, ice, etc.), biting into anything with a hard center (e.g. ribs or chicken legs), biting off parts of food (e.g. cut up apples and corn on the cob), and sucking on lemons.
You may chew sugar-free gum. It may help relieve aches and tenderness. You can also eat popcorn, but avoid eating the kernels that have not completely been popped.
You may drink sodas, but make sure you brush immediately afterward or at least rinse with water.
We will see you approximately every 8 to 10 weeks for an adjustment.
Call our office at 804-282-0505 to schedule a consultation. This free one-hour appointment will consist of taking two digital x-rays and photos of different angles of your face and teeth. Our doctors will review your records and come up with a treatment plan and discuss it with you. Payment options will be discussed at the end of your appointment.
Every case is different and everyone has a different treatment plan. The cost is dependent on the treatment plan that is right for you. At your free consultation you will be presented with treatment plan options and the corresponding cost.
Since each case is different, the the length of treatment varies from patient to patient. The average length of treatment is less than 18 months, but it can range from less than 12 months to over 24 months.
We provide clear braces, metal braces for kids, adult braces, Invisalign braces, retainers, night guards, sleep apnea appliances, to name a few.
Yes! You may continue playing sports while wearing braces, although we recommend wearing a mouth guard to protect your teeth, your braces and your mouth. Make sure you use a mouthguard that does NOT require being boiled in water and molded to your teeth. We will be glad to give you one!
Good News! Treatment is rarely needed at age 7. The American Association of Orthodontics recommends that you have an orthodontist see your child at age 7, but treatment is rarely warranted. There are two reasons that Orthodontists like to see children at this age. The first is because it is a great time to start monitoring the growth and development of patients. It is also a great time to start following the eruption of the permanent teeth. The second reason is because sometimes there are problems that can be treated early that can have better results or that can prevent a lot of problems down the road.
Expansion is a wonderful way to fix a posterior crossbite (which is when the upper jaw is narrow causing the bite to be off in the back of the mouth). Extraction of permanent teeth is less common with modern techniques, and expansion to create space is rarely needed. There is evidence that expansion can help minimize sinus concerns and can help in the eruption of teeth, but these are rare and usually in extreme cases. Our recommendation is that if your child does not have a crossbite and your orthodontist recommends having an expander, consider a second opinion.