John W. Schulz, D.D.S. - San FranciscoOrthodontic FAQs
Be sure to brush your teeth right after every meal and before you go to bed. It's best to use a fluoride toothpaste to help fight cavities. Your orthodontist may prescribe a fluoride mouth rinse to help prevent cavities. Try to brush like this:
- Start by brushing the outside of each tooth at least 10 times.
- Then brush where your gums and teeth meet, using a circular motion.
- Brush the inside surface of each tooth at least 10 times too.
- Brush the chewing surfaces of your teeth last.
Yes, you will need to continue to see your dentist for regular checkups.
There may be a little discomfort after adjustments, but Tylenol or Advil can usually remedy any discomfort.
While you are wearing braces, you can eat almost all of your favorite foods. Please stay away from these troublemakers:
- Sticky foods like gum, taffy and caramels
- Hard foods like apples and carrots (cut them into pieces)
- Crunchy foods like corn chips, popcorn and nuts
- Sweet foods like cake, cookies and candy
Because your toothbrush won't reach between your teeth, brushing alone won't keep your teeth clean and healthy. Flossing can help. A floss threader, available from us or a pharmacy, helps you floss with braces on. Floss once a day, like this:
1. Thread floss through the threader and slip it up behind your archwire.
2. Pull the floss between two teeth and up under your gum margins.
3. Rinse with lots of clean water, and watch your teeth and braces sparkle!
Use a fluoridated toothpaste. Your orthodontist may prescribe a fluoride rinse if necessary.
We let our patients know their estimated completion date. We also let our patients know that if they miss or reschedule appointments, don't wear their elastics and do not cooperate, it will take longer.
For the first year you need to wear them all day and all night. After that, retainer wear depends on your individual treatment and the difficulty in holding the teeth in your corrected position.
Treatment is 18 to 30 months, depending on the difficulty of the case and amount of treatment needed.
A bite plate helps to correct a deep bite, and it keeps you from biting into your lower braces.
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that every child receive an initial orthodontic examination as early as age seven. The timing of orthodontic treatment is extremely important and greatly affects the treatment result. Early diagnosis and treatment by a specialist can help prevent more serious problems.
Orthodontics is not just for children. While most people tend to associate orthodontics with children, adults are also prime candidates for treatment. Approximately 25% of all orthodontic patients are adults. Advances in technology and the introduction of more indiscriminate, clear braces make the benefits of orthodontics a must for any adult.
Orthodontics isn't only for pretty teeth. A good, healthy bite helps eliminate other health problems in later years. It also helps save teeth from wearing.