How your teeth fit together affects not only your oral health but also the structure of your facial bones as well as your overall physical health. Crowded, crooked or misaligned teeth often make people feel embarrassed and self-conscious. Teeth that are not properly aligned can lead to tooth decay, periodontal disease as well as jaw problems, pain and difficulty speaking properly. Without treatment, many of these problems will become worse over time. There is hope, though. With good orthodontic care, your teeth and smile can last a lifetime.
At JR Dental & Associates, we understand that it can be confusing to decide which orthodontic treatment is best for you or your child. When making recommendations we take everything into consideration. From your budget to your individual dental situation, and we’re here to guide you to make the best decision.
What dental problems can orthodontic treatment help?
The goal of orthodontic treatment is more than getting a beautiful smile, it also works to improve oral function, by gently and slowly adjusting and moving teeth into a better position to change how the teeth and jaws work together. The most common problems that orthodontic treatment can help improve are:
Sometimes, if your jaw is too narrow, there isn’t enough space for all the teeth. This crowding makes keeping teeth clean difficult, especially in-between them. This can lead to irregular wear and tear of the teeth, tooth decay, gum disease and tooth loss.
Spacing is the opposite of crowding and occurs when there is too much space or gaps between your teeth. This can lead to gum problems because of the lack of protection by the teeth.
Malocclusion or Misaligned Teeth
Sometimes, even when teeth look straight, the upper and lower teeth may not fit together well, creating issues with your bite. An uneven bite may make biting, chewing and speaking harder. Improper alignment of teeth can also lead to TMJ and jaw related issues. Overbites, crossbites, underbites and open bites are all types of malocclusions.
Crooked, Overlapping or Twisted Teeth
Crooked, overlapping or twisted teeth can lead to irregular jaw development and prevents proper chewing. It can also make keeping teeth clean challenging, increasing the risk of tooth decay, cavities, and gingivitis.
This can happen when an adult tooth doesn’t emerge from the gum or bone, or only emerges partially. Impacted teeth can cause pain, infection or misalignment of the surrounding teeth.
Orthodontic treatment for these dental problems not only improves the appearance of the teeth, but it also leads to easier chewing, clearer speech and helps protect teeth from further damage or decay.
What are the different orthodontic treatment options?
Getting orthodontic treatment to straighten your teeth can improve your life tremendously by improving your self-esteem and making it easier to bite, chew and speak.
All orthodontic treatments and solutions work by creating gentle and constant pressure to move teeth and realign the jaw bone. There are several different types of available.
Traditional metal braces consist of metal brackets that are glued to your teeth with an adhesive and connected by wire. The wire is periodically tightened and adjusted to gradually shift and straighten your teeth and align your jaw. They are available in either stainless steel or gold metal. These are incredibly strong and durable and are the least expensive option.
Ceramic Braces are the same size and shape as metal braces, except they are made of ceramic and have tooth-colored or clear brackets and wires that blend into teeth and are less noticeable than metal braces. These are a little more expensive than traditional metal braces.
Lingual Braces are also called “behind the teeth” braces. They are the same as traditional metal braces, except the brackets are attached to the back of your teeth versus the front and are much less noticeable. These are a little more expensive than ceramic braces.
ClearCorrect braces are a series of clear, custom-made, removable aligners that gradually straighten your teeth as you wear them, each aligner moving your teeth just a little bit at a time. They are worn for 20-22 hours a day and changed as teeth shift. They’re practically invisible, so most people won’t even notice them. they fit you perfectly, so they’re more comfortable than regular braces, and they’re removable, so you can eat whatever you like and clean your teeth normally.
Adults who want a straighter smile, but don’t want the look of traditional braces or spend the time involved with typical orthodontic care can choose Six Month Smiles. This unique treatment plan will only focus on the teeth visible when you smile. The brackets are clear giving patients the confidence to continue smiling throughout treatment.
How can I afford orthodontic treatment?
Braces and orthodontic treatments are an important investment for you or your child’s future. The cost of having your teeth straightened can vary depending on several factors:
- The type of braces or aligners you choose.
- If there are any pre-existing dental issues that need to be treated before beginning the orthodontic treatment.
- How long the treatment lasts.
It is a big financial decision to make and we understand how hard that decision can be. Cheaper isn’t always better. We help keep the cost of orthodontics affordable by offering a variety of payment options. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to let us know.
As a service to our patients, our practice accepts most dental insurance programs, including non-managed care, indemnity (traditional) and PPO out-of-network. Our accounting staff will prepare all the necessary forms for your dental benefits.
Our office accepts CareCredit, a healthcare credit card that is used to pay for out-of-pocket expenses not covered by dental insurance. CareCredit is subject to credit approval and is a great option if you’re on a budget.
We offer several different coupons and deals throughout the year. You can find our current offerings on our Discounts and Coupons page.
It’s never too late to improve and correct your smile. Call us today at (904) 786-5850 and let us help you get the smile you deserve. One that will last a lifetime!