Frequently Asked Orthodontic Questions

If you have any questions about teeth straightening aligners or Orthodontic braces, it is likely we have been asked it before. Check out the common questions we have been asked here. If you still have questions get in touch and we will get back to you.

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Does treatment hurt?

Having a brace fitted is a painless procedure. However you can experience some discomfort for a few days afterwards. Taking your normal painkillers should help relieve discomfort. Most problems subside within 48 hours.                                                    

How long does treatment take?

A course of orthodontic treatment varies with the complexity of the case. With fixed braces it can take anywhere between 3 months to two years for active treatment. Following this there will then be a phase of retention, which stabilizes your teeth. You continue to visit the surgery every 3-4 months for 1 year and then on your Orthodontist's advice you can be discharged.                                                            

Will I need time off school or work?

Out of school appointments are popular with everyone. Late appointments are offered to adults and fee paying child patients by prior arrangement with the practice. Please discuss your requirements with us before starting your treatment and we can advise on which treatment package will suit your needs.                         ��                  

What do I do if my brace breaks?

Always contact the surgery for advice as soon as possible, same day or the next day at the latest. If you break your retainers you must contact the surgery as soon as possible for advice.                                                                                                    

What can I do if my brace rubs?

The wax supplied in your starter kit can be applied to a fixed brace. Try to dry the area first with a piece of cloth or tissue to help the wax stick. If a removable brace is rubbing, wear it as much as possible but contact the surgery as soon as possible to have it looked at.                                                                                                                              

What can I do if the brace hurts?

Painkillers can be taken if necessary in the first few days. A soft diet may also help in those first few days. Sipping iced cold water helps to lessen the pulling sensation on the teeth. Most problems subside within 48 hours.

Will treatment affect my speech?

With a removable brace, it is likely that your speech will be affected to start with. Most people have very few problems after the first few days. A removable brace should be worn as instructed. If it is continually removed, it is unlikely that the speech will adapt. Hidden Lingual braces can take a few days to adapt but with normal fixed braces there is normally little or no change in speech.                                                                                                                                                                                                

I play a woodwind / brass instrument. Will it affect my playing?

Most people have no problems, whilst others will be affected for the whole course of treatment. This needs to be borne in mind when starting a course of treatment

If I need to have teeth removed, who will do this?

We will write a letter to your general Dentist, who will arrange for teeth to be removed, usually under a local anaesthetic. If the extractions are likely to be more complicated, your Orthodontist may refer you to a specialist dental surgeon (Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon). Most extractions are done at the Dentist with local anaesthetic to make the procedure painless.      

What if I play contact sports?

Removable braces must ALWAYS be removed and placed in an appliance box during contact sports. A mouthguard should be worn during contact sports.

A mouthguard is recommended when a fixed brace is worn. Your chemist should be able to supply  mouth-guards that can be molded to your teeth by placing in hot water. We also offer a special guard that protects the upper and lower teeth as well as the lips and cheeks. We can also provide custom fitted mouth-guards, made at our laboratory. They are made to allow movement of the teeth during treatment whilst protecting the appliance and teeth.                                                                                                                          

What happens at the end of active treatment?

Once the fixed braces are removed, removable retainers will be fitted. These should be worn as directed by your orthodontist. Generally, it is highly recommended that long-term retainer wear is continued to maintain the results. Fixed or bonded retainers are another option. These are permanently attached to the inside of your teeth and prevent any future movement. Your Orthodontist will give you instructions regarding the options available.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Will I still need to go to my regular Dentist?

Yes, this is very important. We recommend that you visit your dentist and hygienist every six months to check that your teeth and gums are healthy.  We DO NOT check your teeth for other dental problems. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have your teeth checked regularly.                                                          

Will the brace damage my teeth?

There is a possibility of minor risks to the teeth during orthodontic treatment. These are outlined at your consultation and we ensure that you are fully aware of all the risks associated prior to commencing treatment. Many of the risks can be reduced or eliminated by following the advice you are given. These risks are mainly caused by poor oral hygiene standards, diet and failure to comply with your Orthodontists instructions.    

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