Your Braces Questions Answered
We’re sharing the answers to the questions we get most often from our Westminster, Arvada and Northglenn braces patients. If you don’t find what you’re looking for below, please don’t hesitate to call our office at (303) 428-3613. A friendly team member will provide you with any information you need!
What are dental braces?
Braces are used by your orthodontist to help you improve the look and feel of your smile. There are several different types of braces, including:
- Clear braces
- Ceramic braces
- Lingual braces
- Self-ligating braces
- Invisible braces
How do braces work?
Braces consist of brackets and archwires. When the archwires are placed in your brackets, they try to go back to their original shape. As they do this, they exert continuous, gentle pressure that gradually moves your teeth where we direct them.
How long does braces treatment last?
The amount of time spent in braces will vary depending on the individual patient, because every smile responds differently to treatment. Treatment times can take anywhere between six and 30 months, but most standard treatments take about 22 months.
Do braces hurt?
Braces do not often hurt and you should never experience true braces pain. That said, you may feel a small amount of discomfort for a couple days after first getting braces as your teeth, gums, cheeks, and mouth get used to your appliance. This mild tenderness can easily be managed by eating soft foods. You can also take an over-the-counter pain reliever (whatever you’d normally take for a headache) if needed.
What happens when I get my braces put on?
Getting your braces put on is painless and doesn’t involve needles. First, we’ll polish your teeth and then use a solution to prime the enamel for the special adhesive we use. Then, Dr. Cronin or Dr. Czarnik will stick the brackets to your teeth and insert your archwires. They’ll wrap up your appointment by telling you how to properly care for your appliance and what to expect over the first few weeks.
What happens when I get my braces taken off?
Dr. Cronin or Dr. Czarnik will remove your wires and then gently take your brackets off your teeth. They’ll remove any leftover glue and polish your teeth before letting you admire your beautiful, new smile in the mirror.
Do I need to brush my teeth more often if I have braces?
You should brush your teeth with braces after every meal and snack, which equates to at least three times a day. This will keep your teeth, gums and mouth healthy and clean. Brushing regularly will remove any food that may be caught between the braces. You should also floss once daily to get in between your braces where your toothbrush isn’t able to reach. Dr. Cronin or Dr. Czarnik can show you how to properly brush and floss once your braces are placed.
If I have braces, do I still need dental checkups every six months?
Yes! In fact, it’s even more important that patients receiving orthodontic treatment visit their dentist regularly. With braces, food may be caught in places that your toothbrush can’t reach. This causes bacteria to build up that can lead to cavities, gingivitis and gum disease. Your dentist will work closely with your orthodontist to make sure that your teeth stay clean and healthy while wearing braces.
Will my braces interfere with my school activities like sports, playing an instrument, or singing?
Playing an instrument or a contact sport may require some adjustment when you first get your braces, but wearing braces will not stop you from participating in any of your school activities. If you play a sport or do any activity that could result in a blow to the face, it’s recommended that you wear a mouthguard to protect your braces and your mouth.
How much do braces cost?
Unfortunately, we can’t give you an exact braces cost. This is because the cost of braces depends on how severe your case is and the extent of treatment needed. At your consultation, once Dr. Cronin or Dr. Czarnik has determined a diagnosis and treatment plan, they’ll be able to tell you how much treatment will cost. At our practice, we aim to make braces affordable for all of our patients. That’s why we accept most insurance and offer flexible payment plans to fit your budget.
Do I need braces?
The only way to find out for certain whether you need braces or not is to visit a certified specialist in orthodontics like Dr. Cronin and Dr. Czarnik. Our experts have the training and knowledge to determine if you need braces and, if you do, to develop a personalized treatment plan that will bring out the best in your smile.
If you have any of the following issues, you should schedule a complimentary consultation at our Westminster, CO orthodontics office:
- Upper front teeth that stick out excessively over the bottom teeth (overjet teeth)
- Upper front teeth that cover most of the lower front teeth (deep bite) or your lower teeth bite into the roof of your mouth
- Bottom teeth that sit outside of your top teeth when your jaw is closed (underbite)
- The top and bottom teeth don’t touch when biting down (open bite)
- Crowded, overlapping or crooked teeth
- The center of your top teeth doesn’t line up with the center of your bottom teeth
- Difficulty chewing
- Excessive or uneven wear of the teeth
- Lower jaw shifts to one side when bringing your teeth together or some of the bottom teeth are in front of some of the top teeth (crossbite)
- Spaces between the teeth
- Difficulty chewing or speaking clearly
- Oral habits like finger or thumbsucking or pacifier use that continues beyond the age of 5
- Teeth that tilt or lean too far in or too far out
- Feeling self-conscious about the appearance of your smile
Can I just get braces on my top teeth or bottom teeth?
Getting braces on your top teeth only or just on your bottom teeth is called single-arch orthodontic treatment. It can be effective on occasions, however, a number of factors have to line up for it to be a possibility. Dr. Cronin and Dr. Czarnik will be able to determine the type of treatment that will work best for you.
Confident Smiles Start With Expert Care
Don’t let your smile insecurities hold you back! As a top orthodontist in Westminster, CO, we have the knowledge and expertise to achieve fantastic results for patients of all ages. Whether you have slightly crooked teeth, severe orthodontic concerns or anything in between, our doctors will tailor treatment to your unique needs. To get started, schedule a complimentary consultation today!