A Step-by-Step Guide to Getting Braces
Nervous about your upcoming braces appointment? Don’t be! Sit back, relax, and let the smile you’ve always wanted transform before your eyes.
Understandably, the process of getting braces for the first time can be a nerve-wracking experience, especially for young patients. But the truth is, braces aren’t as bad as the stigma makes them out to be. It’s important to keep in mind the purpose of getting braces in the first place: straight teeth function better, are easier to clean, are much healthier, and perhaps most importantly, can provide an immense amount of self-confidence.
Making the initial decision to undergo treatment is the first step towards a beautiful smile. This article will explain the process of getting conventional braces installed and hopefully help answer questions and ease any anxieties about the process.
Let’s start from the beginning at the initial consultation. An orthodontic consultation is the opportunity to get to know the orthodontist, learn about their treatment philosophy, and ask any questions you have. You are one step closer to starting treatment after providing the office with your medical history, dental history, and insurance information. Several X-rays, digital scans, photographs, and impressions will be taken of your teeth and bite. Next, the orthodontist will perform a complete examination and, upon review, start formulating a customized treatment plan.
After your initial consultation, your orthodontist will create a customized treatment plan specific to your needs based on your dental history, X-rays, scans, photographs, and orthodontic evaluations. Each mouth is different, and treatment must be specific to the individual for it to be successful. Based on the digital scans or impressions taken of your teeth and bite at the initial consultation, your orthodontist will create a mockup of the braces.
Now it’s time for the journey to begin. The initial appointment typically takes one to two hours for the braces to be installed. Before the braces are placed, your teeth must be thoroughly cleaned, polished, and air-dried. Next, a specific conditioner sits on the teeth for 30 seconds, and once removed, the teeth are prepared with an adhesive primer to ensure the brackets stay secured.
Once teeth have been prepped, the brackets are placed using orthodontic cement. Brackets are carefully placed in predetermined positions outlined by the orthodontist in your customized treatment plan. Next, the orthodontist will use a curing light to set the brackets in place. Once set in their ideal positions, the orthodontist will thread the dental arch wires through the brackets and fix them in place with rubber bands.
The overall process of getting braces is painless, but you’ll likely experience slight discomfort following your appointment. Though the pain will subside within a week, it may take up to a month until you’re completely comfortable and used to the appliances on your teeth. It is essential to alter your diet and become familiar with braces-friendly foods. Additionally, proper dental care during treatment is crucial. Your orthodontist will guide you through brushing and flossing and recommend oral care tools to make the process more manageable.
Each patient will have a different experience, but getting braces installed and caring for them properly is essentially the same. It’s important to follow the instructions outlined by your orthodontist to ensure a successful treatment outcome. Remember, braces are only temporary, and you are taking the necessary steps to change your smile and enhance your overall quality of life!