Frequently Asked Questions
Is it required that my family dentist schedule my appointment with the orthodontist?
No, it is not. Many of our patients are referred by their family dentist, yet many other patients take the initiative to schedule an examination themselves.
At what age should I schedule an appointment for an orthodontic screening?
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening at age 7. By this age, several permanent teeth in most children have erupted, allowing us to effectively evaluate your orthodontic condition.
Will my teeth straighten out as they grow?
No, they will not. The space available for the front teeth does not increase as you grow. In most people, after the permanent molars erupt, the space available for the front teeth decreases with age.
How do I schedule an appointment for an initial exam?
If you would like to know if you or your child can potentially benefit from orthodontic treatment, simply call our office, send us an e-mail or fill out our appointment request form online. We will be happy to schedule an appointment for you. When you call to schedule your appointment, our front office staff will request some basic information from you.
What will happen at the initial examination appointment?
Upon arriving, each patient and parent will be seen by the staff and doctor who will acquaint you to our office and prepare for the initial exam. We will take the necessary photographs and X-rays to allow us to make a proper diagnosis. The doctor will then complete a brief, but thorough, exam.
What will I learn from the initial examination?
There are five essential questions that we will cover during the initial examination:
- Is there an orthodontic problem, and if so, what is it and is this the appropriate time to treat it?
- What must be done to correct the problem?
- Will any teeth need to be removed?
- How long will the treatment take to complete?
- How much will the treatment cost?
Will I need to have teeth extracted for braces?
In most cases we can unravel even severe crowding without permanent tooth extractions. The light force wires combined with the Damon System allow so many more options. Tooth extractions in our office are based on profile while taking into consideration the long-term affects of your face as you age.
Are all braces the same?
No. We are proud to offer the Damon® System, which don’t just align teeth, but also helps to create beautiful smiles. We will customize your treatment based on specific needs and desires. The Damon® System is designed to provide results for a lifetime.
How long will it take to complete treatment?
Treatment with the Damon® System is typically 6-8 months faster than conventional braces. As an added bonus, far fewer appointments are required during treatment.
How much will braces cost? Are financing options available? How does my insurance work?
It is impossible to give an exact cost for treatment until we have examined you. We will cover the exact cost and financial options during the initial examination. We have several financing options available to accommodate your needs, and we will review these with you. We will also review your insurance policy and help to maximize your benefit and file your claims.
How often will I have appointments?
Appointments are scheduled according to each patient’s needs. Most patients in braces will be seen every 6 to 10 weeks. If there are specific situations that require more frequent monitoring, we will schedule appointments accordingly.
Can all of my appointments be scheduled for after school?
We do value our patients’ time and will make an honest effort to meet your scheduling needs, we unfortunately cannot schedule all appointments after-school hours. However, since we usually only need to see patients every 6 to 10 weeks, patients will miss minimal school due to their treatment.
What if I miss or cancel an appointment?
If for some reason you are unable to make it to your scheduled appointment, we ask that you contact us as soon as possible so we can offer your appointment to another patient, as well as reschedule yours. The sooner you call to reschedule your appointment, the sooner a new appointment can be made, thus avoiding prolonging your orthodontic treatment. Missed appointments are often the leading cause for extended treatment times.
Can I drop my child off for an appointment?
Yes. We understand your busy schedule, and we are happy to help you make the most of your time. On some occasions, we may request to speak with a parent when they return.
Will it hurt when I get my braces on?
No, the braces are glued straight to your teeth. There are no shots and no drilling. Some slight discomfort may be present the first 3-5 days after the braces are put on, but should subside fairly quickly. Tylenol or Advil may be used to minimize any discomfort.
What colors are available for my braces?
Just about every color imaginable is available. While Damon® brackets do not need color ties to hold the wires in place, patients do have the option of adding their choice of color if desired. We want you to enjoy your treatment with us and will do what it takes to make it fun.
Will it hurt when I have my braces tightened?
No. With the Damon® System, we do not tighten your braces, just change your wires. Some slight discomfort may be present the first 3-5 days after each adjustment, but this can be alleviated with Tylenol or Advil.
Can I return to school the day I receive my braces?
Yes. There is no reason to miss school because of an orthodontic appointment.
Do you use recycled braces?
Absolutely not! It is our belief that each patient should be provided with their own braces to achieve the best orthodontic result possible.
Can I still play sports?
Yes, it is advised that patients protect their smiles by wearing a mouth guard when participating in any sports activity. We recommend that patients get their mouth guards through our office. These mouth guards are specifically made to fit over braces and allow unimpeded tooth movement.
Do I need to see my family dentist while in braces?
Yes! Regular checkups with your family dentist are important while in braces. Your family dentist will determine the intervals between cleaning appointments while you are in braces.
Are there foods I cannot eat while I have braces?
Yes. Once treatment begins, we will explain the complete instructions and provide a comprehensive list of foods to avoid. Some of those foods include: ice, hard candy, raw vegetables and all sticky foods (i.e. caramel and taffy). You can avoid most emergency appointments to repair broken or damaged braces by carefully following our instructions.
How often should I brush my teeth while in braces?
Patients should brush their teeth at least four times each day – after each meal and before going to bed. We will show each patient how to floss their teeth with braces and may also provide a prescription for a special fluoride, if necessary.
If something happens to my braces, can I come directly to the office or do I need to schedule an appointment?
Please call our office if you experience a problem with your braces so we can schedule an appointment. We have same day emergency visits available and it is our goal to make sure you are comfortable as possible while in our care.
What do I do if I have an after hours emergency?
In the event of an extreme after hours emergency (trauma or injury), please call our office for instructions. While true emergencies are rare, we are available to assist with after hours emergencies.
Apply some wax over the brace or wire that is irritating you. Then, call our office to schedule an appointment to have the wire trimmed.
Call our office to schedule an appointment to have the bracket repaired. If you are wearing rubber bands, discontinue wearing them until the braces have been repaired.
Out of Rubber bands
Either stop by and pick some up or call the office and we can mail some to you.
Can orthodontic correction occur while a child has baby teeth?
Yes. Some orthodontic problems are significant enough to require early intervention. However, if a patient is not yet ready for treatment, we will follow that patient’s growth and development until the time is right for treatment to begin.
What is Phase One (early) Treatment?
Phase One treatment, if necessary, is usually initiated on children between the ages of 7 and 10. Phase One treatment usually lasts about 12-18 months. The primary objective for Phase One treatment is to address significant problems to prevent them from becoming more severe and to improve self-esteem and self-image.
Will my child need full braces if he/she has Phase One treatment?
It is best to assume that your child will need full braces even after Phase One treatment. The period following Phase One treatment is called the “resting period,” during which growth and tooth eruption are closely monitored. Throughout this period, parents and patients will be kept informed of future treatment recommendations. Phase Two is generally 10-12 months treatment time, ideally prior to 9th grade.
Will my child need an expander?
The use of expanders in Dr. Eisinger’s practice is limited to a very small percentage of young children. Following the initial exam, the need for an expander, if any, will be discussed.
Is it too late to have braces if I am already an adult?
A surprising percentage of our patients are adults. In fact, nearly 50 percent of all our patients are adults. Health, happiness and self-esteem are vitally important to adults. No patient is “too old” to wear braces!
Can I wear braces even though I have crowns and missing teeth?
Yes. A tooth with a crown will move just like a tooth with a simple filling. When teeth are missing, orthodontic treatment will aid in the alignment of the remaining teeth.
Why should you choose an orthodontic specialist?
Teeth, and sometimes entire facial structures, are permanently changed by orthodontic treatment. It is important that the treatment be appropriate and properly completed. Orthodontic specialists have years of extensive and specialized training beyond dental school that enables them to provide their patients with professional, personalized treatments.
What happens after my treatment is complete?
Following treatment, all of our patients will undergo a one-year retention program. Retainers will be delivered at the end of treatment, final records are taken and reviewed, and occasional follow-up appointments are schedule to ensure your beautiful smile will last a lifetime.
How long do I need to wear retainers?
As long as you want straight teeth, you will need to wear your retainers forever. In most cases though, retainers only need to be worn at night after the first year.