Your First Visit
New patients can complete the following forms to speed up their initial orthodontic appointments. Please select the form you would like to print and fill out:
Life with Braces
Congratulations! You are on your way to a healthier, more beautiful smile. Now that you are wearing braces, you need to understand how to best protect and clean them. Taking great care of your braces ensures that you will have the most effective and efficient orthodontic treatment possible.
We know there are certain foods you will miss eating during your orthodontic treatment, but we promise you will be eating them again soon! While your braces are on, however, you should steer clear of certain items that can damage your braces or oral appliances. If your braces are impaired, your treatment could be lengthened as a result, and we know you will want to have your braces off as soon as possible!
The following foods should be avoided:
- corn on the cob
- hard candy
- chewing gum
Never chew on ice, as it can harm your braces and teeth. As a rule, anything especially chewy, sticky, tough or crunchy should be avoided. Do not worry; there are still plenty of delicious foods that are totally safe to eat with braces!
Dine confidently on these foods: Mashed potatoes, applesauce, pasta, nut-free muffins, beans, ice cream, pudding, tender chicken, tender rice, salmon, bananas, soft cheese, pancakes, tuna, cake, meatballs, spinach, lunch meat, crab cakes, Jell-O and soft tortillas. Safe beverages include milk, fruit juice, milkshakes and, of course, water! Use your best judgment when eating, and stick to foods that are not crunchy, hard, chewy or sticky. Think about the types of food that might damage your braces, as well as the types of food that may get stuck easily. We would be happy to discuss any foods with you at your appointment and determine whether or not they are safe to eat with braces.
It is completely normal to feel some slight soreness or discomfort when you first have your braces put on. Do not worry — the soreness will fade away soon. You can alleviate your discomfort by mixing a teaspoon of salt with a glass of warm water. Use the solution just as you would use a mouthwash; rinse it for a minute or two and then spit it out.
Some patients may experience more intense pain that is not alleviated by the saltwater solution. It is OK to use a pain reliever to help reduce your discomfort. You may also feel tenderness in your mouth, on your tongue or on the insides of your lips and cheeks as you adjust to your new braces. We are glad to supply you with some orthodontic wax that can cover any irritated spots and protect your mouth. Call our practice and we will give you some soothing wax.
Some patients worry when they feel their teeth grow a little looser. This is expected, and it means your braces are doing their job. For your teeth to move to their desired places, the braces first need to loosen them slightly. Your teeth are strong, and they will strengthen quickly once they are moved to their correct positions.
You may feel a wire or band come unfastened on your braces; this happens from time to time. Please call us immediately so we can examine and restore your braces. Bring any detached pieces with you to your appointment.
For the time being, you can put the loose wire back in its place. Slowly and carefully guide the wire back into its position with a pencil eraser or the back of a spoon. Place dental wax or a damp cotton ball over the area if it is causing you pain or discomfort. We still want to see you and check out your braces even if you have temporarily corrected the issue. Call our office and we will try and see you as soon as possible.
Take good care of your orthodontic appliances. If you impair your appliances, it could result in an extended treatment period. Listen to your doctors and wear your rubber bands, retainers, headgear and other appliances as often as you are supposed to. Appropriate wear will ensure that your teeth and jaw progress as predicted during your treatment.
Orthodontic treatment would not keep you from the field, court or swimming pool! You can throw a football, shoot a basketball or hit a baseball with braces. To keep your smile intact, you should wear a mouthguard. A custom mouthguard will help reduce injuries on the field.
If you do sustain an injury during a game or practice, inspect your mouth and braces for any harm. Call our practice immediately if you find any loose teeth or any impaired appliances in your mouth. To alleviate pain in the interim, use dental wax or swish with saltwater.
Many patients have orthodontic questions. We have included some common questions and answers to help you better understand orthodontic treatments.
Orthodontics is a dental specialty that focuses on identifying, preventing and correcting irregular dental and facial issues. Orthodontics is sometimes called dentofacial orthopedics, and those terms imply involvement of the teeth, face and musculoskeletal system.
Orthodontists complete dental school and then receive an extra two to three years of instruction and practice in orthodontics. Orthodontists align teeth, correct poorly aligned jaw structures and refine the appearance of your smile.
Patients of any age who wish to enhance the appearance and function of their smiles can visit an orthodontist. Children should see an orthodontist when they are about 7 years old, according to the American Association of Orthodontists. Teenagers and adults can seek orthodontic treatment at any time. Twenty percent of orthodontic patients are older than 21. Make an orthodontic appointment whenever you want to improve your smile or your children’s smiles.
First and most importantly, be sure to brush at least two times daily and floss at least once daily. These are simply minimums, so feel free to brush and floss more often for optimum oral health!
Use toothpaste that is fortified with fluoride. Fluoride helps strengthen teeth and reduces your risk of cavities and decay. Ask your dentist or orthodontist to recommend a good fluoride mouthwash for extra protection.
Retainer patients who take their retainers out to eat should place them in their containers to protect them. Before you return your retainer, floss and brush your teeth.
Lightly brush your retainer with a toothbrush and a small amount of liquid hand soap. You can also use a denture cleaner recommended by your orthodontists. Never boil your retainer or run it through the dishwasher. This can warp it and render it useless.
Stay away from foods with high amounts of processed sugar. Sugar raises your levels of oral bacteria and encourages acid production. This can increase your plaque buildup and contribute to dental cavities.
Stay away from foods that are sticky, hard or chewy. Foods that cause problems for patients include chewing gum, hard candy, corn on the cob, caramel, ribs, nuts and taffy. Do not chew on ice; this can damage your braces.
Visit your dentist at least twice a year. Dental cleanings reduce the amount of plaque in your mouth and therefore reduce your risk of cavities and decay.
Orthodontists use braces to align teeth and improve the appearance of your smile. Aligned teeth are also easier to keep clean than crooked or crowded teeth, so they also improve your oral health. There are a variety of options for tooth alignment, including invisible braces, lingual braces, ceramic braces, traditional metal braces, gold braces, clear braces and self-ligating braces. You and your orthodontist can decide which orthodontic option is best for you.
Every smile has different alignment needs, so it is hard to give an answer that is true for all patients. To receive the most accurate estimate for your orthodontic treatment, visit our practice for a complimentary smile consultation. Orthodontic treatment times vary. You may need braces anywhere from six to 30 months, though most treatments average at approximately 22 months.
Do not worry! Braces are not generally painful. You may experience slight tenderness for several days at the beginning of your treatment as your teeth, mouth, jaw and gums adjust to your new braces.
It is best to brush at least three times per day with braces. These frequent brushings will help your teeth, gums and mouth stay as healthy as possible during your orthodontic treatment. Brushing your teeth helps eradicate food particles that become lodged between your braces. Flossing also helps remove food particles from between the teeth in places the brush cannot access. Our team will gladly show you the most effective brushing and flossing techniques to help keep your braces clean and your teeth healthy.
Absolutely. Routine dental care is important throughout your life, and it is even more essential during your orthodontic treatment. Braces can make it harder for you to clean your teeth, and sometimes food gets stuck in crevices created by your braces. Trapped food can increase your oral bacteria and eventually cause dental caries, gingivitis and even periodontal disease. Visiting your dentist and orthodontist regularly ensures that your oral health is closely monitored from all angles. The cleaner your teeth are, the better they will look when your braces are removed.
Braces would not stop you from playing the clarinet or hitting the basketball court. With instruments, you may need to practice some to get the feel of playing with braces. This adjustment period will be well worth it, because you are on your way to a straighter, more attractive smile. To protect your braces, lips and gums on the field, we can give you a mouthguard to wear during your favorite contact sport.
Easy, just give us a call! Our scheduling coordinator can gladly help you set up a convenient time for your upcoming orthodontic appointment. If you have not been to our practice before, let us know, and we will get you set up for an initial consultation to see how we can better your smile.
We believe in making our practice as comfortable, friendly, and hospitable as possible. During all initial consultations, prospective patients will be given a tour of the office. You will also get to meet members of our team and learn about the orthodontic treatments offered at Associated Orthodontists.
Each patient’s orthodontic treatment will differ, and likewise treatment cost will also differ. Our orthodontists will evaluate your specific alignment needs, and our team will create a cost analysis and present several payment options specifically for you. We want you to make the most beneficial choice for you wallet and your smile. We fully explain all costs before your orthodontic treatment, so you woould not be surprised later. There will be no hidden costs, and you will have all the payment information before your braces are put on.
Payment Plans You Can Afford
Our goal is to provide you with the smile you have always wanted. These smiles will last a lifetime. We offer realistic and reasonable payment plans for your treatment.
Associated Orthodontists processes most major credit cards and accepts most insurance plans.
Some patients have insurance plans that cover all or part of their orthodontic treatment. We will be happy to assist you in filing insurance claims or finalizing paperwork. We can also answer specific questions about what your insurance covers.
Online Services Save You Time
Our patients love the ease of our online services. The secure service lets patients see their scheduled appointments, opt-in for email and text message appointment alerts, view their payment history and account balance, make payments, see account information and print tax receipts.
If you are not sure how to log in to our system, please CLICK HERE for instructions, or contact our office and we will walk you through the steps. If you do not have an online account, we can set yours up at your next scheduled appointment.