Do I have to be referred by my general dentist?
No, it is not necessary. The majority of our patients are referred by their dentist, but many other patients take the initiative to schedule an appointment for themselves.
At what age should a child first be seen by an orthodontist?
The South African Society of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening at age 7. By this age, several permanent teeth have already erupted in most children, allowing us to effectively evaluate any developing orthodontic problems.
Will I need to have teeth extracted for braces?
Although new technology has provided advanced orthodontic procedures and the majority of orthodontic problems can be corrected without the need for extractions, there are still situations where extractions are required in order to achieve the best orthodontic result.
How long will it take to complete the treatment?
Treatment time depends on each patient’s specific orthodontic problem and can range from 18-30 months. Patient compliance regarding elastic wear, breakages, oral hygiene and keeping of appointments obviously play a major role in the determination of treatment time. The average time is usually in the region of 24 months.
How much will braces cost?
The costs of orthodontic procedures vary and can only be determined after analyzing the initial clinical records. You will be provided with a detailed quotation at the discussion appointment and you will also be given information regarding the financial policy of the practice and how the costs of treatment will be payable. Any account related queries can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
How often will I have appointments?
Appointments are scheduled according to each patient’s needs. Most patients in braces will be seen every 4 to 10 weeks. If there are specific situations that require more frequent monitoring, we will schedule appointments accordingly.
Can I schedule all of my appointments after school?
Due to the fact that over 90% of our patients are school children, there will be times that appointments need to be scheduled during school hours. Because most appointments are scheduled 4 to 10 weeks apart, most patients will miss minimal school time due to their orthodontic appointments. All the schools in our area have always been very accommodating when it comes to orthodontic appointments and will allow their students to come for their appointments if prior arrangements are made by the parents.
Do braces hurt?
After certain visits teeth may be sore for a few days. In these situations, standard pain medications can be taken to ease the discomfort.
Can I still play sports?
Yes, but wearing a mouth guard during any form of contact sport is essential.
Do I need to see my dentist while I have braces?
Yes, you should visit your dentist every 3-6 months during your orthodontic treatment.
Are there foods I cannot eat while I have braces?
Yes. Once treatment begins, we will give you full instructions and provide a comprehensive list of foods to avoid. Please also see the list of ‘Foods to avoid’ on this website. You can avoid most emergency appointments to repair broken or damaged braces by carefully following our instructions.
How often should I brush my teeth while I have braces?
Patients should brush their teeth at least four times per day – after each meal and before going to bed. Full oral hygiene instructions, including the use of a normal toothbrush, inter-dental toothbrush and dental floss, will be given on the day the braces are fitted.
What is an emergency appointment?
If your braces are causing extreme pain or discomfort or if something breaks, you should call us. In some cases we can address these issues over the phone, but if necessary we will schedule an emergency appointment to help you.
Can orthodontic correction occur while a child still has baby teeth?
Yes, certain orthodontic problems need to be intercepted or corrected as soon as possible and that is why we recommend a screening appointment for patients as young as 7 years old. If a patient is not yet ready for treatment, we will follow that patient’s growth and development until the time is right for treatment to begin.