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|frequently asked questions
Q - What is Orthodontics?
Orthodontics is a specialised form of dentistry that focuses on the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dental and facial abnormalities. The word “Orthodontics” stems from the Greek words “ortho” meaning straight or correct and “dontics” which refers to teeth. Dentofacial orthopedics also stems from Greek words “dent” meaning teeth and face, while orthopedics comes from the Greek "ortho”meaning straight and “pedics” which refers to children.
Q - At what age should my child first visit an Orthodontist?
The Australian Society of Orthodontists recommends an Orthodontic screening at 7 years of age; although your general dentist may provide a referral earlier for a specific orthodontic reason.
Q - What happens at the Orthodontist?
When you make your first visit to the orthodontist you'll visit an office that looks a lot like your dentist's office. The orthodontist will examine your teeth, mouth and jaws and may tell you and your parents that your teeth and jaws are fine, or recommend that you begin treatment. We will take the necessary photographs and xrays in order to complete a proper diagnosis and explain the treatment plan.
Q - Do I require a referral from my general dentist?
A written referral from your general dentist, school dentist or Paediatric dentist is not necessary, but is preferred. Many patients or their parents take the initiative to schedule an initial examination themselves.
Q - What is the difference between an Orthoodontist and a dentist?
All orthodontists are dentists who have embarked on 3 years of postgraduate study to specialise in Orthodontics. Your general dentist will help you to maintain good oral hygiene, carry out fillings etc but will usually refer you to an orthodontist for more substantial work, like the fitting of braces.
Q - How much does Orthodontic treatment cost?
This is very much dependent on the treatment that you require. It is impossible to give an exact cost for treatment as every treatment is tailored to each individual patient. A detailed report will be sent home that outlines all treatment options and the item codes associated with that treatment. Several financing options will also be made available to you.
Q - How long does Orthodontic treatment take?
This is very much dependent on the type of treatment you have. Treatment time may vary from 12 to 30 months however the average tretament time frame for a person wearing fixed appliances (braces) is approximately 18 to 21 months.
Q - Does Orthodontic treatment hurt?
Orthodontic treatment doesn't hurt, although at various stages throughout your treatment you may experience some discomfort. This is usually around the time you have your braces fitted for the first time, archwire adjustments or when you are given your next set of aligners. This discomfort can be treated with over-the-counter pain relief, such as panadol.
Q - Do I still have to visit my dentist while receiving treatment?
Yes, we recommend you continue to see your dentist for your regular checkups while receiving orthodontic treatment. This will help to ensure your teeth remain clean and healthy throughout treatment.
Q - I would love to have orthodontic treatment but as an adult I am too embarrassed to wear braces. What options do I have?
These days, many of our orthodontists treat more adult
patients than children and teens. One of the most popular treatment
options is Invisalign which uses virtually invisible plastic aligners
to move teeth into position. If your Orthodontist recommends braces
as the best treatment option for you, there are different types that
are very discrete and won't affect your appearance.
Q - I play the trumpet, will wearing braces interfere with my playing?
Whether you play the trumpet, trombone, saxaphone or clarinet or any of the brass or woodwind instruments, Relax! Although you'll have to adjust to playing your instrument with braces, Orthodontists say that braces usually don't get in the way of making beautiful music.