The first important step you can take is ensuring you choose the proper person to provide your orthodontic care. You should always leave your care to an orthodontist. Even if your dentist says he or she can straighten your teeth, the best orthodontic care can only be provided by an actual orthodontist.
Why is that? Orthodontists are dentists who spent additional years dedicated to learning how to treat malocclusions, and the unique way the jaw and mouth work together. While dentists are more than capable for other dental work, only an orthodontist will have the understanding needed to ensure you have not just a pretty smile, but a properly functioning one as well.
Additionally, orthodontists will have all of the tools needed to ensure the best smile for you. The tools at the disposal of many dentists are more like one size fits all solutions to orthodontics, and unfortunately, that means you may not get your ideal smile. What works for one patient may not work for another. An orthodontist will craft a custom treatment plan just for you that is specific to your needs.
But just as the orthodontist you choose plays a large part in your care, so do you. Throughout the course of your treatment, and in some cases even before treatment can begin, your orthodontist will tell you things you need to do to ensure treatment is successful. You must be careful to follow all of your orthodontist's recommendations.
For instance, if you are an adult patient, you may be asked to have some teeth extracted or have jaw surgery in order to help your orthodontic treatment. Why is that? Orthodontic treatment is most effective while the jaw is still growing. While it can be effective as an adult, since the jaw has stopped growing, your orthodontist may recommend jaw surgery or tooth extraction in cases of severe crowding, for instance. This will ensure the best outcome once the braces are removed.
You'll also need to follow all care instructions as given by your orthodontist. It's important to brush and floss as normal, and avoid any foods that can damage your braces. If you foresee this being a problem for you, ask your dentist about Invisalign. These invisible aligners are removable, so you can take them out when you eat, drink and brush your teeth.
Keep all appointments with your orthodontist. This will ensure that your treatment stays on track and if adjustments need to be made, your orthodontist can catch them in a timely manner. Otherwise treatment may be extended.
Also, it's important to always remember that your orthodontist can never promise an exact amount of time your braces will be on. If you see someone who says he can guarantee your teeth will be moved in six months, get a second opinion. Everyone's teeth respond differently to treatment, and your orthodontist will most likely only be able to give you a time frame for how long treatment will last.
If you have questions during treatment, or if something happens with your braces, don't hesitate to bring it up with your orthodontist. Your orthodontist is here to care for you and is available to answer questions and repair emergencies. This will also ensure your treatment stays on track.
And finally, it's important to have a realistic idea of what wearing braces can accomplish. While you might have a straighter and better functioning smile, there may still be things about your smile you dislike. Braces will not change the color or shape of your teeth, so if those are things you dislike, you may want to speak with a cosmetic dentist about ways to correct that.
By working together with your orthodontist, you can ensure that when your braces come off, your teeth will function at their best, helping you chew, speak and smile better than ever.
For more information about Dr. Ali Kanani and Vancouver Orthodontics services such as Invisalign (http://www.vancouverorthodontics.com/
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Dr. Aly Kanani
Dr. Aly Kanani