Dental braces have been improving smiles for many years and today they are a necessary rite of passage for many adolescents. When parents contact Lovett Dental Heights, they often ask about orthodontics, the process for braces, and what to expect when getting dental braces.
The Purpose of Dental Braces
The American Dental Association describes braces as tools used to correct “bad bites” In the dental world, we call that a malocclusion, and it occurs when the teeth are not straight for some reason. Sometimes the problem isn’t the teeth but the upper and lower jaw. If they are out of alignment, then the bite is off, as well.
Braces are for:
- Gaps in teeth
- Open bites
- Deep bites
- Crooked teeth
The devices are useful for fixing structural defects and cosmetic concerns.
How Do Dental Braces Work?
Braces work by using force and pressure to move the teeth and take advantage of a process called bone remodeling. The braces place constant pressure on teeth. Each time one loosens and moves due to the pressure, the bone holding it breaks down and rebuilds to support the tooth in its new position.
After the teeth move, the orthodontist will adjust the braces to increase the pressure. An adjustment to the braces starts the bone remodeling process all over again.
The truth is you can get braces anytime after age seven. Adults can get braces if they want to give their smile a makeover, for example. Typically, though, they go on between ages eight and 14. The dental professional will determine when to add braces based on many factors.
How Long Do You Have to Wear Braces?
There is no clear answer to that question. It depends on what the orthodontist is trying to correct and how quickly the teeth move. Most people will wear them for at least 12 months, and some have dental braces for years.
Once the braces are off, you will likely wear a retainer, too. Retainers are removable appliances that hold the teeth in place, so they don’t shift back. Moving your teeth and having them stay where you want them is a process that will usually last a few years total.
Dental Braces in Heights, Texas
Lovett Dental Heights is a multidisciplinary practice. This means the orthodontics specialty responsible for dental braces in TX is just one of the services they offer. At Lovett Dental Heights, you find:
- General dentistry – For essential dental services like checkups
- Pediatric dentistry – Dental services for children
- Periodontics – The treatment of gum and soft tissue in the mouth
- Maxillofacial surgery – Any dental surgery including wisdom tooth removal
- Endodontist – The treatment of dental pulp, the tissue inside a tooth
A visit to the office will usually start with a primary dentist. Your general dentist will exam your teeth and, if necessary, refer you to an orthodontist. It’s the orthodontist that determines if braces are the right option. The orthodontist installs the braces and makes adjustments every few months. You will still see your primary dentist for checkups, fluoride treatments, and teeth cleanings. Taking care of your teeth and gums is an investment in your overall health, and your biannual cleanings should not be skipped.
Lovett Dental Heights gives you the option to see both your primary dentist and the orthodontist in one practice. That combination of services is what makes Lovett Dental Heights stand out and the right family dentist for you. Discover the difference our practice can make in your smile.
If you have questions about your braces or need to see an orthodontist, give us a call today at 832.780.4573. We are here to help.