At what age should I schedule an appointment for an orthodontic screening?
The Canadian Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening for children at age 7-8. By this age, many permanent teeth have erupted, allowing us to effectively evaluate your orthodontic condition.
Can adults benefit from orthodontics?
The process of tooth movement is the same in adults than in children and adolescents. An orthodontic treatment can usually be successfully undertaken at any age. The health of your teeth, gums and supporting bone are the main factors determining the corrective possibilities!
How long will it take to complete treatment?
The duration of treatment varies depending on each patient’s specific orthodontic problem. Some factors may influence the required time:
- seriousness of the problem
In general, treatment times range from 9 to 36 months. At the consultation visit, we will be able to estimate the time required for your care.
Under what circumstances is it important to consult an orthodontist?
If you notice one or more of the following problems, it is best to consult an orthodontist.
- Early or late tooth loss
- Crooked, crowded or spaced teeth
- Difficulty chewing or biting
- Frequent sores to palate or cheeks caused by teeth
- Prominent dentition
- Asymmetrical Face
- Recessed or protruding jaws
Do I need to see my family dentist while in braces?
Yes! Maintaining a healthy dentition is very important. We work together with your dentist, regular checkups and cleanings with your family dentist are indispensable while in treatment.
How often will I have appointments?
The interval between appointments is prescribed by Doctors Fortier and Bourassa to ensure the optimal progression of treatment. We use precise appliances with ultramodern wires that are designed to deliver a light and continuous force over long periods. Most patients in braces are seen every 6-12 weeks.
We always try to accommodate your scheduling needs. However, certain appointments can’t be scheduled during after-school or work hours.
Can I still play sports or a wind instrument?
Absolutely. You can maintain all of your regular activities. We recommend wearing a mouth guard for all contact sports. We will give you one. For wind instruments, an adaptation period will be necessary. Initially, you can place orthodontic wax on the lower anterior braces.
How do I brush my teeth while in braces?
Patients should brush their teeth after each meal (3 to 4 times a day) for a period of 2 to 3 minutes each brushing. You can use a manual or electric toothbrush; it’s a good technique that makes the difference in both cases! We will show you how at the office.
You also need to:
- Floss once a day using a threader or “Superfloss”
- Use a proxabrush (cone shaped brush) at least once a day to clean all around the brackets and under the wire.
Are there foods I cannot eat while I have braces?
Hard and sticky foods damage braces. You can avoid most emergency appointments to repair broken or damaged braces by carefully following our instructions. Loose brackets and bent wires considerably prolong your treatment!
Foods not to eat include:
- Chewing Gum
- Candy, stick caramel, licorice, jelly beans etc.
- Popcorn (it gets stuck underneath the gums…that hurts!)
- Peanuts and nuts
- Corn flour chips (Doritos, nachos, tacos)
- Ice Cubes
Foods to eat with care
Certain foods must be cut before being chewing:
- Raw vegetables, especially carrots should be sliced thin or in small pieces.
- Apples, or other hard fruits; cut them into wedges.
- Corn on the cob; remove the kernels from the cob with a knife.
- Granola and cookies; cut into pieces or do not eat if too hard.
Sugary foods should be avoided as much as possible, especially as a snack. Choose to eat them after meals and brush your teeth immediately after. If you are unable to brush, rinse your mouth vigorously with water.
Will my teeth be sore?
Generally, orthodontic tooth movements cause a temporary discomfort of the teeth. When an appliance is new or following certain visits, your teeth may be sensitive for a few days. In these situations, you can choose to a softer diet, cut foods in small pieces and take pain medication such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen (Advil or Tylenol). However, after most visits patients feel very little soreness. Don’t forget, it does not have to hurt to work!