Orthodontics FAQ

When is the best time to begin orthodontics?

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur at the first sign of orthodontic problems or no later than age 7. At this early age, orthodontic treatment may not be necessary, but vigilant examination can anticipate the most advantageous time to begin treatment.

Dr. Brad’s unique dual specialty gives him the ability to determine the appropriate age to begin orthodontic treatment. He will evaluate your child’s orthodontic needs at each regular dental check-up to determine the best timing for orthodontic treatment if it is necessary.

What are the benefits of early orthodontic evaluation?

Early evaluation provides both timely detection of problems and greater opportunity for more effective treatment. Prudent intervention guides growth and development, preventing serious problems later. Since Dr. Brad will evaluate your child for his/her orthodontic needs at each dental checkup he can monitor them for the ideal time to begin treatment.

What foods should be avoided with braces?

  • Chewy foods – bagels, licorice
  • Crunchy foods – popcorn, chips, ice
  • Sticky foods – caramel candies, chewing gum
  • Hard foods – nuts, hard candies
  • Foods that require biting into – corn on the cob, apples, carrots

What foods to eat with braces?

  • Dairy – soft cheese, pudding, milk-based drinks
  • Breads – soft tortillas, pancakes, muffins without nuts
  • Grains – pasta, soft booked rice
  • Meats/poultry – soft cooked chicken, meatballs, lunch meats
  • Seafood – tuna, salmon, crab cakes
  • Vegetables – mashed potatoes, steamed spinanch, beans
  • Fruits – applesauce, bananas, fruit juice
  • Treats – ice cream without nuts, milkshakes, Jell-O, soft cake

Soreness caused from braces and appliances?

When you first get your braces, you may notice that your teeth and mouth feel a little tender or sore. This is perfectly normal for patients who have just gotten their braces put on, and we promise your mouth will not be sore forever! To relieve the pain, we recommend dissolving one teaspoon of salt in eight ounces of lukewarm water. Swish and gargle this solution in your mouth for just a couple of minutes (do not swallow the saltwater).

If the pain is more severe and does not go away after rinsing, you can also try taking a pain reliever. It is also not uncommon for your lips, cheeks, and tongue to become irritated for one to two weeks as they toughen and become used to the braces.

Loose teeth?

If your teeth begin feeling a little loose, don’t worry; this is normal! Your braces must first loosen your teeth in order to move them into the right position. Once your teeth have been repositioned, they will no longer be loose.

Loose wires and bands?

The wires and bands on your braces may come loose. If this happens, please contact us as soon as possible so that we can check and repair your appliance. If any piece of your appliance comes off, be sure to save it and bring it to the office with you.

Playing sports with braces?

You can still play sports even while undergoing orthodontic treatment! If you do play sports, it’s recommended that you wear a mouthguard in order to protect your teeth and your appliance. Let your doctor know if you need help finding the right mouthguard for the best protection.

In case of a sports emergency, be sure to immediately check your mouth and your appliance for any damage that may have occurred. If you notice any loose teeth, or if your appliance has been damaged, please contact our office right away.