Regardless if you’re a teenager or a full grown adult, getting braces for the first time can be a daunting experience. There may be a multitude of questions that hover in your mind, and the best way to settle your thoughts is to get those queries answered by a professional. This is where going for a consultation with a good orthodontist can help. As with many long-term treatments, it’s imperative that you know about everything that is in store for you, such as the risks, side effects, maintenance, aftercare, and more.
Have you booked that consultation appointment? If you have done so, good. Now to make a checklist of the questions that you want to ask the orthodontist. It’s advisable to create a mental note or even a physical one, just in case you might leave any questions out.
So, what are those questions you should ask during a braces consultation? Read on to find out.
- What Type of Braces is Suitable for Me?
Advancement in technology has created various braces options, so you’re not limited to just the traditional metal braces. There are exceptions, however, as some people may not be able to choose certain types of braces, such as Invisalign or clear braces. Suitability of braces depends on a few factors; age group, the severity of teeth misalignment, duration of treatment, occupational factors and financial budget among others.
The common types of braces are traditional metal braces, customisable ceramic braces, lingual braces, and clear braces. During the consultation, your orthodontist will take into account the factors as mentioned above and then advise you on the most suitable type of braces for you.
- What are The Pros & Cons of Braces?
There are multiple pros and cons of wearing braces, and most of it depends on the type of braces. There are also a few considerations regarding your preference of braces, your pain and comfort tolerance levels, and even your budget for the entire braces procedure, and if you’re paying in a lump sum or instalments.
The dentist will suggest the types of braces suitable for you after considering those criteria, and the types of braces include:
- Pros – most cost-effective, dependable and durable.
- Cons – very noticeable, not aesthetically pleasing.
- Pros – less noticeable than metal braces, brackets are customisable, faster results than clear braces.
- Cons – more expensive than metal braces, bracket elastomeric modules can stain easily, require more care to maintain aesthetics.
- Pros – arguably the most aesthetically pleasing as braces are hidden from exterior view.
- Cons – more expensive, can be challenging to clean, not suitable for severe cases of malocclusion, high level of initial discomfort, lengthy appointment sessions as adjustments are difficult.
Clear Braces (Invisalign)
- Pros – virtually invisible, removable, allows easy consumption of food and drinks without difficulty.
- Cons – suitability is limited in some teenagers and adults. Invisalign braces costs are higher, removability means it can be easily misplaced, replacements are expensive, duration of treatment is longer.
- What Side Effects Can I Expect from Braces?
We all know that the main benefit of wearing braces is to get straight teeth that enables us to smile radiantly. But during the treatment process, there are also side effects that may make our experience less than ideal. Some of these side effects include:
Discomfort & Irritation
First-time braces wearers often encounter a heightened level of discomfort that may result in them frequently licking their lips or running their tongue along their braces. Additionally, the brackets of the braces may cause minor irritations on the insides of your mouth. This is normal and may take some time to get used to.
After the first installation of the braces and subsequent tightening session, patients may experience pain in their gums and teeth as the tightening process begins. Occasionally, headaches and ulcers may develop, but they can be managed with painkillers and topical ointments.
Elevated Level of Difficulty with Dental hygiene
Brushing and flossing of your teeth will require you to be more meticulous, paying more attention to parts of the braces and teeth that food may get stuck in. This process may result in a longer cleaning time too. You may also request helpful cleaning tools from your orthodontist, like an interdental brush to assist you in cleaning correctly.