Below are some of our most commonly asked questions, please feel free to look through them. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact one of our friendly team members on 8814 9941 or book an appointment here.
Do I need a referral?
No, a referral is not required to take advantage of your complimentary consultation with Dr. Chang but we do require 2 x-rays (OPG and Lat Ceph) that we can refer for you. If you see a regular General Dentist regularly they may have a recent OPG available to you.
How can orthodontic treatment benefit me or my child?
- Asides from an improvement in their ability to keep their teeth clean and improved function, we notice a great improvement in the self confidence of our patients in school, work or in their social activities.
- Our patients in treatment range from 7 to 60 years, showing that one is never too young or old to start smiling again.
- Additional benefits would also include:
- Reduce the risk of tooth decay and gum disease by improving “cleanability”
- Decrease the risk of irregular or excessive tooth wear
- Help establish normal oral function related to chewing, breathing and speech
- Decrease the risk of dental trauma (accidental chipped, broken or lost teeth)
- Correct improper jaw relationships and reduce stress on the facial muscles and jaw joints
How long would treatment take?
- Once you are comfortable with the proposed treatment plan and treatment objectives, then you are ready to proceed into orthodontic treatment.
- Treatment times vary significantly depending on age, the severity of the initial problem, type of orthodontic appliances used and patient compliance. Comprehensive orthodontic treatment typically lasts between 1 and 2 years with appointments scheduled every 4-8 weeks. Once treatment is completed, retainers are worn to maintain the results.
- Early orthodontic treatment is usually of a shorter duration as its objectives are more limited.
Do I need to take time off work/school during after fitting of my braces or aligners?
- Do I need to take time off work or school after fitting of braces or Invisalign?
- Fitting of the braces or aligners does not hurt. For the braces fitting, we usually schedule an hour appointment for this. Often, we have teenage kids going to school or adults going to work afterwards on the same day. Fitting of aligners is usually a shorter appointment.
- Typically, the discomfort associated with the teeth moving occurs 4 to 6 hours afterwards and we recommend taking some pain relief shortly after the fitting of braces. This initial discomfort can last for up to a week or two. With fitting of the aligners, there will be some “tightness” initially for up to a few days.
How long and frequent are orthodontic adjustment appointments?
Orthodontic adjustment appointments are usually scheduled every 4 to 8 weeks. The adjustments are usually 10 to 20 minutes in duration and for this reason, most appointments can be scheduled before and after school or work. Occasionally, the teeth may feel tight or sore after each adjustment for a day or so after.
Will my/my child’s speech sound different during orthodontic treatment?
The speech changes with orthodontic treatment are generally minimal and temporary in nature, and depends on the orthodontic appliance chosen.
If you are considering outside fitting braces, these speech changes are minimal, if any. If an upper expander is required, the initial lisping can be more pronounced, especially with the ‘s’ and ‘th’ words. This tends to return to normal within a few weeks. To minimize this, we recommend reciting our speech passage at night which would help greatly.
The speech changes with aligners are mostly minimal if any, and rapidly resolve. Again, practise reciting at night helps greatly with the tongue and speech adaptation. We have a speech passage recommended by speech therapists that upon reciting, will rapidly help with speech adaptation.
What will change with eating and my braces during orthodontic treatment?
The biggest changes after fitting of the braces are eating habits. For the first week or two, a soft diet consisting of blended foods, stews and porridges may be best. Not to mention the ice-cream, yogurt or jelly, which would be soothing for the teeth. Sometimes the back teeth may get sore temporarily. This gets much better by the end of a week. The need for this initial soft diet is due to 2 reasons:
- the upper and lower back teeth would not be biting like before after fitting of the braces as the teeth move. This difference and the need to adapt to a soft diet is the most noticable immediately after fitting of the braces.
- As the teeth first start moving, they are often sore. This often means having a softer diet is more comfortable.
By the end of a week or two, all patients have noted a significant improvement from the time of fitting of the braces and typically, is able to return to a more normal diet minus the hard crunchy/ crackly foods or sweet and sticky foods.