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A do I need braces quiz. Do I need braces or should I get Invisalign? Do I really need any orthodontic treatment at all?” If you find yourself asking these questions, you may be feeling a bit overwhelmed. To help you determine if you need to see an orthodontist, try this “Do I need orthodontics” quiz.
Do I need Braces?…
#1. How old are you?
Firstly, it’s a common misconception that orthodontic devices are only for adolescents. While most people get orthodontic treatment between 12 and 18, it’s possible to straighten your teeth when you are a bit younger or an adult. In most cases, children who are less than 10 are advised to wait until their jaw is older and larger to get a better idea of how the teeth will look in the adult jaw. If you are 18 or older, there is nothing stopping you from orthodontics to enjoy a straighter smile and answering ‘Do I need braces.’
#2. Do you have noticeable gaps between your teeth?
Your teeth should be aligned with each other with very small gaps between each tooth: enough for flossing, but not enough to be noticeable. If you have large or visible gaps between your teeth, the gaps can affect your oral health. One of the most common reasons to get orthodontic treatment is to close visible gaps.
If gaps between your teeth are the only problem you have with your teeth, orthodontic treatment may not be required. Teeth bonding, for example, can cover a gap in a single office visit. Orthodontics will be recommended if you have other problems in addition to gaps such as a misaligned bite or crowding.
#3. Are your teeth crowded or crooked?
Occlusion refers to the proper alignment and overlap between the upper and lower teeth. Ideally, your upper teeth should fit just slightly over the lower teeth without crowding or crooked teeth. Dental crowding (malocclusion) happens when there is not enough space for all of your teeth to fit in your mouth. There are three categories of malocclusion:
- 1 refers to a normal bite with crowding or space issues
- 2 or retrognathism refers to a severe overbite
- 3 or prognathism refers to a severe underbite
While there are some behaviors that can cause overcrowding, there is also a genetic component. Crowded teeth aren’t just a cosmetic issue; this problem can also increase the risk of gum disease, tooth decay, difficulty chewing, and difficulty cleaning your teeth. Not sure if your teeth are overcrowded? Try sliding dental floss between your teeth. If it’s very hard to slide floss between the teeth, they may be crowded.
Orthodontic treatment is often used to correct crowding. An orthodontist may recommend removing two or more teeth to make room for the remaining teeth to be moved into the correct position with an orthodontic device.
#4. Do you have an overbite or overbite?
When your mouth is closed, your teeth should fit together without a large space between the upper and lower teeth or one set of teeth protruding past the other. An overbite refers to upper teeth that extend too far past the lower teeth when you bite down. This means that your upper teeth cover more than half of the visible surface of your lower teeth. If your lower teeth extend past your upper teeth when you bite down, you have an underbite. Another common bite problem is called overjet and this refers to a gap between the upper and lower front teeth.
A misaligned bite can increase the risk of plaque, tooth decay, gum disease, and tooth loss. This is because poor alignment makes it harder to chew and brush properly.
#5. Do you frequently get food stuck in your teeth?
Routinely getting food caught in your teeth can increase the risk of plaque, cavities, and gum loss. Orthodontic devices can eliminate pockets and gaps between your teeth that trap food particles.
#6. Are you willing to commit to wearing braces?
Orthodontics is a big commitment. Hence, the only way for the treatment to work is for you to follow your orthodontist’s instructions. As an adult, you will probably need to wear the orthodontic device for 12-20 months or longer. Most children and teenagers need orthodontic treatment for around two years. After the orthodontic device is removed, you will likely need to wear a retainer for several more months. Orthodontic care is a long-term commitment but it can protect your oral health and give you a straighter smile.
#7. Has your dentist recommended seeing an orthodontic specialist?
Dentists can treat a wide range of dental issues including cavities and gum disease. While dentists and orthodontists both improve oral health, they do so in different ways. Orthodontics is a specialty of dentistry that focuses on correcting occlusion, bite, and straightness.
A dentist can often address minor issues when orthodontic treatment isn’t necessary. For example, a gap between your front teeth doesn’t necessarily require orthodontic care; it can also be corrected with tooth bonding. If your dentist has referred you to see an orthodontic specialist, it means they aren’t able to provide the level of specialized care you need.
#8. Are you concerned about the appearance of your teeth?
An important factor to consider when deciding if you need orthodontics is if you are bothered by the appearance of your smile. If you aren’t concerned about how straight your teeth are and you don’t want to commit to Invisalign or traditional orthodontics, you don’t need to get them because they are not considered a medical necessity. Still, it’s important to remember that malocclusion or a misaligned bite can affect the health of your teeth and gums.
Going Ahead With Experts
Accordingly, the decision to get orthodontics is a big one. If you still aren’t sure if you need or even want orthodontics, a good first step is scheduling a consultation with an orthodontist to discuss your treatment options and explore what orthodontic care can do for you. Finally, you can schedule an appointment with Dr. Tisseront today to learn answer ‘Do I need braces?’
11720 Plaza America Drive
Reston, VA 20190
Phone: (703) 773-1200
Do I Need Braces Quiz ( 8 ANSWERS HERE)
After attending the University of Paris VII School of Dentistry in Paris, France for both my undergraduate education and my Doctorate of Dental Surgery degree, I continued on to the prestigious Orthodontic Program at Oregon Health Sciences University’s School of Dentistry in Portland, Oregon. During this three year comprehensive Orthodontic Graduate Program, I earned my Master of Science Degree in Orthodontics.
I participate in regular continuing education to keep abreast of the latest techniques in orthodontics available today. My bio-mechanics background coupled with my passion for orthodontics is a winning combination for all of my patients. Participating in classes and seminars allows me to stay current with all of the latest trends in orthodontics to pass on to my patients!