Does it hurt?

Although everyone’s pain tolerance is different, the answer is, “No.” What you might feel for a few days after getting your braces or new aligner is best described as short-term discomfort. You know how a bruise doesn’t hurt unless you push on it? Your teeth are the same. Just sitting there, they are fine, but if you bite into something that requires much chewing, then they feel sore. But this feeling is temporary, and it’s nothing that you can’t handle.

What about when getting braces put on or taken off? I’ve heard that really hurts.

No, that’s just a myth. There’s nothing easier than taking braces off, which is why we encourage you to be careful about certain foods that can accidentally pop-off or pull-off braces. Braces are placed on the front of the teeth in the best position, and then an Ultra Violet light is shined on it for less than a minute. Then the braces are on! Taking braces off is accomplished by using a special instrument that squeezes the bracket and pops it right off. It only takes about 30 minutes to put all of the upper and lower brackets on and about the same time to take them off.

Will I still be allowed to eat foods that I like?

Yes, of course you will still be allowed to have most everything that you like.

Sticky and hard foods may break or damage your wires and brackets. Eating these types of foods could prolong your treatment time.

Hard, sugary candy like Jolly Ranchers, Candied Apples, Jaw Breakers and Peanut Brittle or hard and crunchy items like chewing ice cubes, popcorn, big hard pretzels, and really hard chips can pop braces off the teeth.

Sweet sugary and sticky foods like Sugar Daddies, Fruit Rollups, and Bubble Gum should also be avoided because they get caught up in the braces or aligners and are hard to clean off.

Aligners are not meant to be worn while eating, and they should be placed in their case during meals.

We recommend that you try not to drink more than a couple of carbonated beverages a day because carbonation can loosen some of the bonds holding the braces on.

How do I know if I or my child needs braces?

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children should be evaluated by an orthodontist by the age of 7.

At Ornella Orthodontics, there is never a fee for a New Patient exam, so if you have any doubts, or you just don’t like the way your child’s, your spouse’s, or your own teeth are looking, you can call our office directly for an appointment. You do not need to be referred. Dr. Ornella will tell you all about your teeth, what you might be looking at if left alone, and the various treatment options available. If Dr. Ornella needs photos or X-rays to get the full picture of your orthodontic needs, there is still no charge for that first appointment. This way, he can put your mind at ease because it’s almost never as bad as you think it might be.

Sometimes the teeth can look straight, but the bite is off, which will cause dental health issues. This is why your dentist may be the first to recommend that you see Dr. Ornella. Whether you find your way to Ornella Orthodontics through your dentist or from the referral of friends and neighbors, your dentist will be glad that you got an orthodontic evaluation. We are all on the same team, helping you have the best smile possible with lasting dental health.

Am I too old for braces?

No, it’s never too late to get that smile you’ve always wanted. Dr. Ornella has treated patients of all ages, and teeth will still move no matter what your age. If you’re self-conscious about how braces will look, we have clear, see-through braces or clear aligners, like Invisalign or ClearCorrect, which can be used by teenagers through adults after all the baby teeth are out.

What types of treatment are available?

Braces come in many varieties to give patients choices. Metal braces are very small, and often a favorite of school age patients. Clear braces are made from mono-crystalline-sapphire, which is stain resistant. Clear aligners, such as Invisalign and ClearCorrect are removable trays that gently move teeth by advancing tray to tray with the end result of straightened teeth and a great smile. Sometimes, the shape of the jaw can be influenced using Phase I - Early treatment to widen the upper jaw or encourage lower jaw growth, making room for adult teeth. Palatal-expanders or the Herbst are commonly used for early treatment, but there are many types of these special retainers and “orthodontic appliances.” Early treatment begins with the correct orthodontic diagnosis and understanding of the patient’s predicted growth pattern. Dr. Ornella has over 30 years of experience in diagnosis and individualized treatment planning. He will explain the various treatments available and give you a choice in selecting the treatment option that will work best for you.

I’ve heard of oral-appliances used to treat sleep apnea

Yes, Dr. Ornella has treated many cases of sleep apnea successfully. If you meet the diagnostic criteria, this may be a much better route to managing your sleep apnea than use of a C-pap machine.