Orthodontics is a branch of dentristry that deals with the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of dental and facial irregularities, otherwise known as malocclusion , or incorrect bite. Malocclusion is a variation of normal growth and can affect the bite, the ability to clean teeth properly, gum tissue health, jaw growth and speech development. Failure to treat may lead to bone destruction, chewing and digestive difficulties, tooth loss, chipped teeth, temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD), and other dental related problems.

Orthodontics bring teeth, lips and jaws into proper alignment not only to create a beautiful smile, but a healthy one as well. Straight teeth function better and are easier to clean. The psychological benefit, increased confidence and self-esteem that a healthy smile provides, is a significant factor in the decision to undergo treatment. For this reason, it is often listed as the number one goal according to ortho patients.

When to Consider Orthodontics

Orthodontic treatment can usually be successful at any age because the basic process of moving teeth is the same in adults as is in children. However, in order to achieve maximum improvement while minimizing time and expense, it is recommended that children as young as 7 years of age be seen for an early exam. This exam involves the detection and evaluation of your current orthodontic problems, and a suggestive treatment plan to correct them. An early exam will likely prevent more serious problems from developing. Please keep in mind that the health of the teeth, gums and supporting bones will also determine the prospects for orthodontic improvement.

What is Involved

Dr. Palencar will examine your mouth and determine what is required over a series of appointments. He will then apply the braces, removable appliances or other fixed devices to change, as gently as possible, the positioning of your teeth. Typically, full orthodontic treatment will require 18 to 36 months. During this time, Dr. Palencar will make adjstments to your orthodontic appliances every three to eight weeks. It is therefore, especially important to keep all scheduled visits, be on time and take your appliances with you to each visit. When your braces are removed, you will be given a retainer and a specific schedule to follow that fits your treatment. Usually retainers are worn full time for six to twelve months (removable retainers are just taken out for eating, sports, and special occasions). After six months, they can be worn just at bedtime.

Cost and Payment Plan

Dental plan coverage for orthodontic treatment varies greatly depending on your insurance company. If you do not have a dental plan that covers all or a portion of your orthodontic treatment, then you will need to cover the costs yourself. At Brock Dental we can discuss with you our no interest, monthly payment schedule that will cover treatment costs, while meeting your financial needs.

If you think you might benefit from orthodontic treatment, call Brock Dental to set up an appointment with Dr. Palencar, and find out what your options are. Together, we can keep your teeth and gums healthy for life.

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