My top teeth aren’t that crooked. Is it possible to get braces just on the bottom?

Whether orthodontic treatment focused on your bottom teeth will properly align those teeth with your upper teeth is something that can only be answered by visiting an orthodontist for an exam and consultation.

Orthodontic treatment is designed to develop teeth that fit well and, as a result, wear better over an individual’s life. Think of the teeth in the mouth as a “gear” system. Teeth, like gears, must intermesh well to help avoid excessive wear throughout a lifetime of use.

I have seen three orthodontists and they each offer a different treatment plan. Which one is right for me?

There is no single “right way” to perform orthodontic treatment. As long as all of the doctors you have consulted are orthodontists, all offer valid treatment plans.

How long does treatment last?

The average length of orthodontic treatment is 22 months, according to a 2014 survey among members of the American Association of Orthodontists.

Depending on the individual’s needs, treatment can range from 12 months to 36 months or more.

I had braces before, or I don’t want old-fashioned braces. What are my options?

Thanks to advances in technology, your next-to-invisible treatment options may include ceramic (tooth-colored) braces, lingual braces – which are placed behind the teeth, or clear aligner trays.

Today’s standard metal braces are much smaller and sleeker than those of even a generation ago, and less obvious than the braces you may have had previously.

Please review your options with Dr. Park by scheduling an in-person consultation to determine what type of treatment will be best suited to your needs.

Can I get braces if I’m missing some teeth?

It may be possible for you to have successful orthodontic treatment if you are missing some teeth, depending on your circumstances and your treatment goals. Orthodontic treatment may be able to close the space of a missing tooth, or may be able to create or save sufficient space for a replacement tooth. Consult an orthodontist to discuss what is right for you. Your orthodontist may need to work with your primary care dentist and/or other dental specialists to help you achieve optimal dental health.

Can I get braces if my teeth have crowns or root canals?

It may be possible for you to have successful orthodontic treatment if your teeth have crowns or root canals. Consult an orthodontist for answers that are specific to you and your circumstances.

I lost my retainer. How can I keep my teeth from shifting?

Call your orthodontist right away to make arrangements for retainer replacements. Without retainers, there can be unwanted movement of teeth.

I met with an orthodontist. Should I get a second opinion?

Whether to seek a second opinion is your choice. You may have had more than one orthodontist recommended to you by family, friends, or by your dentist. Ultimately, you should feel confident in the recommendations made by the orthodontist you select for your orthodontic treatment, and trust the ability of your orthodontist and his/her staff to provide you with the best possible care.

I am a senior citizen and considering orthodontic treatment. Is there an orthodontist in my area that specializes in treating seniors?

Members of the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) regularly treat adult patients. About one patient in five is an adult. Many patients are in their 50s, 60s, and 70s.

Healthy teeth can be moved at any age. Depending on your circumstances, your orthodontist may work with your primary care dentist and other dental specialists as necessary to help you achieve optimal dental health.

Can I use a rubber band to align a turned tooth?

Self-treatment is not advisable. Dental and orthodontic treatment should always be conducted under the supervision of a licensed healthcare professional.

Patients should be aware that “do-it-yourself” treatments substantially increase the risk of irreparable damage.

For example, rubber bands can work their way under the gumline, and if forgotten or not promptly removed, they can strangle the root of the tooth and kill it. That could lead to the need for an extraction.

If a tooth has rotated, something within the oral cavity is the cause. Please consult an orthodontist to understand what has caused your tooth to turn and how it can be corrected.