FAQ

smiling girl with braces

My 6 year olds teeth are coming in crooked. What should I do?

It’s always important to find out about tooth position problems as early as possible because crowding and most orthodontic problems increase with age. Your orthodontic examination will allow you to learn the best way to prevent future problems.

Will I be able to play sports?

Contact sports require a mouth guard with or without braces. Braces do not get in the way of athletic performance. Mouth guards with braces are designed differently depending on one's stage in treatment. Bottom line, your orthodontist will advise and provide the best mouth guard for you.

Are braces a problem with wind instruments?

Any minor irritation from braces is easily resolved with a “brace guard.” This is a small plastic cushion that fits over the braces.

I’ll be attending college next year and I still have a year left for my braces, what should I do?

If your college is nearby and you are home on weekends we will be glad to make an appointment to fit your schedule. If trips home are difficult we will work with an orthodontist near your college to make sure your treatment stays on schedule. We often continue treatment for other orthodontists while their patients are students at Central Oregon Community College.

We are in the middle of treatment and are moving across the country, what will happen with my son’s treatment?

We will recommend an orthodontist in the new area to complete the treatment. We will also make certain that you clearly understand how long it should take to complete your case. The new orthodontist will be informed and have all our treatment notes to provide you the best possible care.

We are new to the area and already have started braces what do we do?

The first step is a consultation for which there is no charge. We will discuss how long you’ll be in treatment and review your progress with records from your orthodontist. It’s important to continue the treatment plan that your doctor has established.

My jaws hurt and make noise when I chew or yawn and I have frequent headaches. Why would my dentist want me to see an orthodontist?

As a team of orthodontists familiar with jaw joint problems (TMJ) we are qualified to answer your questions and determine your best course of action. Pain and noise in the jaw joints and many forms of headaches can be the result of upper and lower teeth not matching each other and not matching the jaw joints. Because teeth cannot be moved with dental fillings the solution usually involves correcting what we call the bite. Tooth movement to correct the bite requires a form of braces to match the teeth to the correct position of the jaw joint. A thorough evaluation allows us to review your possible treatment options.

My dentist referred us to another office. Can we get a second opinion?

Absolutely! We value the opportunity to answer your questions about treatment. A referral from your dentist is not necessary. When choosing an orthodontist, you will want to be certain the doctor has time to answer your questions and is sensitive to your concerns. If you like your orthodontic staff and your doctors, braces can be a very positive and rewarding experience.

I’m in my 50’s; am I too old for braces?

We consider correction of tooth position problems the best prevention investment possible. Teeth move at any age and correction at age 40, 50 or 60 eliminates more complicated problems in later years. We have patients in their 80’s whose teeth move very nicely. Teeth that are out of position continue to get worse every year. This results in excessive grinding, loss of gum and bone around the teeth, overbites, problems with chewing, jaw pain and headaches. With the ease, convenience and comfort of modern braces there is no reason to delay treatment and enjoy your best smile, chewing and dental comfort at any age.

My friend says “braces hurt,” is that true?

Placing the braces on the teeth is absolutely painless! Because of the new braces and elastic wires the initial two to three days of discomfort is minimal. For the first few days the teeth are sensitive only when you bite into something very hard. The next 5 to 8 weeks between appointments our patients always say they are very comfortable.

Will I need to have teeth pulled before I start braces?

Years ago removing permanent teeth for braces was the standard of care. This is no longer the case and most patients do not need teeth removed to have a beautiful smile.

I have worn off the edges of my teeth how can braces help.

The grinding or wearing of teeth is merely a symptom. Replacing the portion of the tooth that is worn away does not get to the cause of the problem which is always how the upper and lower teeth fit together. Improving how the teeth fit or the “bite” is accomplished through tooth movement which means orthodontic treatment (braces).

How much do they cost?

The cost of the treatment depends on the severity of the orthodontic problem. All fees and payment options will be discussed before treatment begins. There are no “hidden” fees when you begin treatment in our office. We will work with you to set up a payment plan that fits within your budget. We accept payment with credit cards, CareCredit and debit cards and offer financing with no interest and family discounts.

I have allergies and breathe through my mouth is that a problem with braces?

Mouth breathing is a result of blockage of the nasal airway, habit or allergies. Patients who mouth breathe have a muscle imbalance between the tongue, lips and cheeks that cause a complicated tooth position problem. Correcting the teeth without addressing the underlying breathing, lip posture and tongue posture imbalances can result in not only difficult but ineffective orthodontic treatment.

Will I have the same doctor at each visit?

Many people like having three doctors involved in their orthodontic treatment. They say they like getting the best combined approach. Other patients like having one main doctor knowing that all three doctors are involved in their treatment and the other doctors are there if necessary.

My four year old is a thumb sucker is that a problem?

Thumb and finger habits change the swallowing pattern in a way that causes complicated tooth position problems later. The habit is corrected with a fun ten-day program which does not involve braces or appliances or wires in the mouth. We have helped people from age 5 to 37 correct this habit.

I had braces in my teens, why do I see so many eight and nine years old with braces already on?

Younger children (8 to 10) with braces are in the First Phase of a Two-Phase Treatment. Standard orthodontic treatment years ago was done in teenage years. We have learned we can reduce the time in braces by doing a short first phase of treatment. This does not eliminate teenage braces but reduces the time, cost and complications.

Why is Two-Phase Treatment so popular now?

When appropriate Two-Phase Treatment is our favorite way of correcting problems with tooth and jaw position because:

  • Teenagers would rather have braces on for one year at age 14 rather than two to three years. Phase I corrects crowding, overbite and jaw position problems early so Phase II (age 13 – 14) is much shorter.
  • Parents like dividing a Standard orthodontic fee into two parts. (In some cases the total fee can be reduced by Phase One.)
  • Our orthodontists like that Phase I provides shorter treatment at age 14 which creates happier patients with better cooperation.

Why did my orthodontist recommend jaw surgery to correct my teeth?

An orthodontist recommends surgery when the orthodontic problem is a result of incorrect position of the upper and or lower jaw. We have hundreds of cases that have had surgical correction and an equal number of cases where surgery was advised in another office and we corrected it without surgery. The key is a thorough evaluation and understanding your options before starting treatment. Dr. Quas is an example of a surgical case treated non-surgically with braces.

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