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When it comes to orthodontic treatment, one of the questions we are commonly asked here in our office is when is the optimal time to start braces. This is a common question and one that needs to be addressed. Dr. April Lee is prepared to work with you to help you identify whether or not you need braces and when. If you would like to schedule an appointment or free consultation, contact Burlingame Smile Studio today.

So, do I need to get braces? The answer is not as simple as yes and no. It really depends on your overall oral health and condition. Dr. Lee often recommends that patients receive braces to improve their dental and facial appearance. Orthodontic treatments can correct crooked or spaced out teeth and can fix underbites, overbites, jaw joint disorders, and more. If a patient has any of these issues present, then braces may be suggested.

When is the Best Time to Get Braces?

If you know that you need braces, you may be wondering when you need to receive the braces. Is there a right time? Patients who need orthodontic treatment can benefit from that treatment at any age. The earlier the treatment is received, the better. However if you are one of many adults out there who never had treatment as a child, remember it’s never too late to improve one’s teeth and smile.

The best time for placement of braces is often before puberty begins. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that all kids are screened for orthodontic treatment at age 7. Many children may not necessarily need to begin treatment at this time, however certain issues are best treated earlier. We are able to utilize a wider range of treatment options during the pre-teen and teenage years that are often not possible once puberty is well underway or completed. This is because the mouth and head are still growing before and during puberty and so we are better able to utilize the growth potential to correct many dental alignment and bite issues. It can be more difficult to straighten permanent adult teeth that have been set in place for many years.

Before any child receives orthodontic treatment, it is important to discuss it with them. Treatment can cause adjustments in the way the face appears, and this can have a serious effect on children and teens. Braces are ideal for kids and teens, but adults can use them as well. More adults are starting to take control of their mouth and straighten their teeth – no matter their age.

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What Kind of Braces Do I Need to Wear?

Dr. Lee will discuss what type of braces or appliances you need to wear. She is experienced and trained in this area and will provide you professional recommendation.

Often times, the patient is presented with multiple choices and they can make their own decision on what treatment they want to receive.

Braces often come in two main styles. The most popular and commonly used type are those that consist of brackets that are ceramic “clear” or metal. These brackets are bonded onto front surfaces the teeth. There are also lingual types of braces, which use metal brackets, but they are attached to the back of the teeth and cannot be seen from the front. The advantage with lingual braces is that no one will be able to see that you are in treatment, however many patients complain that their speech and tongue discomfort is too much to bear.

How Long Do I Need to Wear the Braces?

Dr. Lee is often asked how long a patient will need to wear braces. This answer varies based upon the condition of your teeth alignment and bite. If the problem is simple, you will not have to wear the braces as long as someone who has more serious bite/ alignment issues. Most patients can expect to wear braces somewhere between 18 to 36 months. Once the braces are removed, a retainer is then worn nightly indefinitely to ensure the teeth remain aligned properly. Some patients will be prescribed a permanent retainer that must be worn at all times to return their bite to its proper form.

Treatment: Does it Hurt?

Patients often worry that braces or orthodontic treatment will hurt. The wires that are placed on your teeth are tightened and/or changed when you come into our office, and this can cause some mild discomfort but is not considered painful in any way. Your jaw and teeth can feel some soreness for a while and you may never get used to the visits and experience the soreness after each visit. The discomfort is minimal and subsides in just a few days though.

Burlingame Smile Studio Offers FREE Orthodontic Evaluations

If you would like to learn more about orthodontic treatment or braces, now is the time to call Burlingame Smile Studio. We are committed to working with you to help you get the best smile. Dr. April Lee will talk to you about your options and provide you with the information you need about orthodontic treatment and braces. Call us at 650-231-2680 for free orthodontic evaluations.


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