Q: What is orthodontics?
A: Orthodontics is a specialized field of dentistry
that deals with the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of dental
and jaw irregularities. Braces and jaw correcting appliances are
used to solve these problems. An orthodontist is a specialist who
has received 2-3 additional years of training beyond dental school.
Dr. Souris also utilizes "state-of-the-art" technology to produce high quality
treatment results in a timely and efficient manner.
Q: Why is orthodontics important?
A: An attractive smile and improved self-image is just one of
the benefits of orthodontic treatment. Without treatment, orthodontic
problems can lead to tooth decay, gum disease, bone destruction,
chewing difficulties, speech impairments, tooth loss and other
Q: What are the benefits of braces?
A: Having straight teeth that fit together properly improves
function so your teeth and jaw joints can work together more
effectively. Straight teeth make it easier for you to keep
them clean. The appearance of your teeth and face are also
improved. Having a pleasing smile gives you more self-esteem,
confidence and a feeling of acceptance in your daily activities.
Q: At what age should orthodontic treatment occur?
A: Orthodontic treatment can be started at any age. Many orthodontic
problems are easier to correct if detected at an early age
before jaw growth has slowed. Early treatment may mean that
a patient can avoid pulling of adult teeth, jaw surgery, and
more serious complications. The American Association of Orthodontists
recommends that every child first visit an orthodontist by
age 7 if a problem is detected by parents, the family dentist,
or the child's physician.
Q: What are some early warning signs of a bite problem?
A: Difficulty in chewing or biting; mouth breathing; finger sucking
or other mouth habits beyond age 5; overlapped, misplaced,
or crooked teeth; overbites; underbites; biting the cheek or
into the roof of the mouth; teeth that meet in an abnormal
manner or do not meet at all; jaws that shift or make sounds;
jaws or teeth that protrude, retrude or create an unusual facial
appearance; speech difficulty.
Q: Will braces hurt?
A: Most patients experience some discomfort for a short period
after their braces are put on and immediately after their braces
are tightened. Aspirin, non-aspirin pain reliever, or ibuprofen
can be used to ease the discomfort.
Q: What can I eat with braces?
A: Most foods can be enjoyed just as before you got your braces.
Hard, crunchy and sticky foods can damage braces and should
Q: How long will I have to undergo orthodontic treatment?
A: It will vary for each patient and always depends on how serious
your jaw problems are and how much straightening your teeth
Q: Will I still be able to play sports?
A: Yes. It is recommended, however, that patients protect their
smiles by wearing a mouth guard when participating in any sporting
activity. Mouth guards are supplied by our office and are specially
designed to work around braces.
Q: Will braces interfere with playing musical instruments?
A: No. However, there may be a short period of adjustment. There
is no reason to abandon playing musical instruments because
Q: Can you be too old for braces?
A: No. Age is not a factor, however, there are advantages to
treating young people while they are still growing. About 25%
of orthodontic patients in the United States are adults. If
you are an adult considering braces, treatment has changed
a great deal in the last few years. Braces have become faster
and more comfortable. You can get them in traditional silver
or the much less visible clear braces. Also, INVISALIGN is
the latest technique that allows movement of teeth with clear
aligners (retainers) and NO BRACES. SEE OUR ADULT TREATMENT
SECTION UNDER SERVICES.
Q: Why are retainers needed after orthodontic treatment?
A: After braces are removed, teeth can shift out of position
if they are not stabilized. Retainers provide that support
and are designed to hold teeth in their corrected and ideal
positions. Teeth will shift with age whether they were straightened
with braces or not. Think of braces like eyeglasses, once you
get them, you should always wear them to keep things in perfect
condition. Wearing retainers exactly as instructed is the best
insurance that the treatment improvements will last for a lifetime
Q: How often will I need office visits?
A: Once appliances are in place, routine office visits are at
six-to-eight week intervals. Periodically, we may need to see
you sooner, or in case of any emergency we will probably need
to see you that day.