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to our patients
Orthodontia / Braces
Braces are applied to teeth for various
reasons, including poorly aligned jaws, crooked, crowded and missing teeth,
or a bad bite (also called malocclusion).
Various things can cause teeth to become crooked or jaws misaligned,
including thumb-sucking or a traumatic injury. Some conditions are
Children between the ages of 10 and 14 are typical candidates for braces
because their facial structures are still developing. Adult braces usually
entail additional procedures because their faces have already fully
Orthodontics is a field of dentistry that deals with corrections involving
jaw and teeth alignment.
Orthodontics involves the
treatment of tooth malpositions, bite disorders, and growth imbalances of
the jaw. Orthodontist fulfill a unique role by contributing to the
function, comfort and happiness of the patient.
This is usually performed in conjunction with (as an adjunct to)
restorative procedures planned by your general dentist. Often missing teeth
allow shifting of the remaining teeth. Before replacement of the missing teeth
can be planned, the shifted teeth should be realigned to their proper position.
First Phase Treatment
This is orthodontic treatment performed on patients in the 6 to 11 year
old age groups. The underlying usefulness of First Phase Treatment is that it
is better to intercept a problem early rather than let it grow to its full
extent. Retained habits (e.g. thumb sucking), skeletal discrepancies of the
upper and lower jaws, and problems in the transition from the primary to adult
dentition are examples of just some of the problems for First Phase Treatment.
This is the usual full braces treatment which patients experience as
early teenagers. This is an excellent time for treatment as optimal jaw
development occurs during the growth spurt.
This is of particular interest to Dr. Cullen and he is familiar with
all aspects of adult orthodontic care. Whether you desire limited treatment for
an aesthetic problem, or comprehensive care, be assured that we are well aware
of the needs of the adult patient. If you desire, appointments may be more
frequent in order to keep treatment moving to completion.
Besides traditional metal braces, this office offers a full range of
aesthetic ceramic (not plastic) braces. Recent advances in ceramic translucency
now make possible less noticeable braces than were available even as recently as
one year ago. Dr. Cullen will discuss any particular aesthetic concern you
Aesthetic and Comfort Issues
Advances in technology have vastly improved appearance issues with orthodontia.
Braces today are made from extremely lightweight and natural-colored materials.
The materials that braces attach to-brackets-are bonded to the surfaces of teeth
but can be later removed.
People can expect to wear braces for about two years-less or more in some cases.
Adults are usually required to wear braces for longer periods of time.
Because orthodontic appliances need to be adjusted from time to time to ensure
they continue to move the teeth into their correct position, they can create
pressure on the teeth and jaws. This mild discomfort usually subsides following
each orthodontia adjustment.
office for more information.
People who wear braces must be diligent in ensuring that food particles and
other debris do not get trapped in the network of brackets and wires. In
addition, brackets can leave stains on enamel if the area surrounding them is
not cleaned on a daily basis.
Daily oral hygiene such as brushing, flossing and rinsing are a necessity. Some
people with orthodontic appliances can benefit from using water picks, which
emit small pressurized bursts of water that can effectively rinse away such
Another caveat: Braces and sticky foods don't mix. Crunchy snacks and chewy
substances should be avoided at all costs because they can cause orthodontia to
be loosened or damaged.
Space maintainers are nifty devices that can help teeth grow in normally
following premature tooth loss, injury or other problems.
The devices can help ensure that proper spaces are maintained to allow future
permanent teeth to erupt.
If your child loses a baby tooth early through decay or injury, his or her other
teeth could shift and begin to fill the vacant space. When your child's
permanent teeth emerge, there's not enough room for them. The result is crooked
or crowded teeth and difficulties with chewing or speaking.
office for more information.
Now there is a new way
to straighten teeth
What is Invisalign ®?
Invisalign ® is a way to straighten your teeth without
braces. Invisalign is also referred by many as Invisible Braces, Clear
Braces, Adult Braces, Adult Orthodontics.
Invisalign ® uses a series of clear removable aligners to
straighten your teeth without metal wires or brackets.
Invisalign ® has been proven effective in clinical research
and in orthodontic practices nationwide. In fact, over 70% of all U.S.
orthodontists are certified to treat patients with Invisalign®.
How Does Invisalign ® Work?
You wear each set of aligners for about 2 weeks, removing
them only to eat, drink, brush, and floss.
As you replace each aligner with the next in the series, your
teeth will move - little by little, week by week - until they have
straightened to the final position your Invisalign Dentists Dr. Patel & Dr.
Cullen has prescribed.
You'll visit the dental practice of Dr. Patel
& Dr. Cullen about once every 6 weeks to ensure that your Invisalign orthodontic
treatment is progressing as planned.
Total treatment time averages 9-15 months and the average number
of aligners worn during treatment is between 18 and 30, but both will vary from
case to case
contact us today to find out more about Invisalign
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