Patient FAQ

As your home for braces and Invisalign in St. Catharines, Beamsville, Niagara Falls, and Fonthill, it’s our goal at Niagara Orthodontics to give our patients the compassionate orthodontic care that they deserve. We understand that the orthodontic journey can be overwhelming for new patients, which is why we’ll always do our best to help you out with any of your questions and concerns. You’ll find a list of answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about orthodontics below.

What Do Orthodontists Do?

Orthodontists are dental specialists who are capable of diagnosing and treating problems that are associated with the alignment or position of the teeth and jaws. We utilize a variety of orthodontic appliances, which include braces and Invisalign, to achieve the desired results of healthy bite and straight smile.

Why Should I Get Orthodontic Treatment?

The magic of orthodontics video

There are two main reasons as to why a person should undergo orthodontic treatment – aesthetics and function. Orthodontic treatment won’t just give you a beautiful smile that’ll be attractive to others, but it can allow your teeth to function better as well. This will keep your teeth healthier, make it easier to keep your teeth clean, and also improve your overall health.

When Should Orthodontic Treatment Start?

Typically, the earlier it starts, the better. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that a child first comes in at around the age of seven. However, you’re never too old to begin orthodontic treatment and you can come in at any time.

How Can I Recognize a Bite Problem?

Some of the most obvious signs that treatment is needed are when teeth are erupting out of position, protruding, or crowded together. If the teeth don’t meet properly when the mouth closes or if the jaws make sounds when they move, there may also be a bite problem. Some potentially problematic habits that can indicate bite problems are mouth breathing, speech difficulties, frequent biting of the cheek, or thumb sucking that goes on past the age of four.

You can also visit our common problems page to learn more.

Will Getting Braces Hurt?

Thankfully, no! Having braces put on is generally painless, though you may feel a bit of discomfort or soreness in the first few days after they’re either put on or adjusted. If you experience any discomfort, you can take an over-the-counter pain reliever to help.

How Long Does Orthodontic Treatment Take?

Unfortunately, we can’t give you a close estimate as it’ll depend entirely on the severity of a patient’s orthodontic condition. It can last anywhere from six-to-30 months and after that, a retention phase will be needed for at least several more months.

How Often Will I Come in for Appointments?

It’ll depend on the kind of treatment that you need, though you’ll typically need to visit one of our offices every four-to-ten weeks.

Will I Need to Have Any Teeth Extracted?

If your teeth are severely crowded or if you have impacted teeth, extraction may be necessary.

Do I Have to Watch What I Eat?

Yes, during your treatment with braces, we recommend avoiding hard foods and sticky foods. Hard foods can sometimes break the brackets or wires of the braces while sticky foods can get caught in the braces and potentially pull them apart. You can learn more about the foods to avoid on our website

Can I Still Play Sports or Musical Instruments?

You can continue to play sports, but we recommend that you wear an orthodontic mouthguard while doing so. Musicians are typically able to play their instruments after getting braces, though they may need a short adjustment period to get used to them.

Will I Still Need to See My Dentist During Treatment?

Yes, you’ll need to continue to see your dentist during orthodontic treatment. Your dentist can make sure that there aren’t any underlying dental problems that could complicate your orthodontics and also keep your teeth free of plaque.

Will I Need a Retainer After Orthodontic Treatment?

In just about every scenario, you’ll need to wear a retainer. The reason for this is because a retainer will keep your teeth from shifting back into their previously unfavorable positions.

Is Orthodontic Treatment Expensive?

At Niagara Orthodontics, we’re committed to providing patients with the care they need at a price they can afford. Orthodontic treatment is a long-term investment into your health and well-being, and we’ll work with you to find a financial plan that works best for you. Not only can it make you healthier, but it can prevent problematic conditions from growing worse and requiring more expensive treatment down the road.

Contact Your Local Orthodontist Today!

If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us and we’ll be glad to help you as soon as possible. If you’re looking for an experienced orthodontic practice in St. Catharines, Beamsville, Niagara Falls, or Fonthill, we invite you to schedule an appointment with us by filling out our appointment request form. We hope to hear from you soon!

Related Articles

Orthodontics - Dear Doctor Magazine

The Magic of Orthodontics Proper alignment of the teeth is basic to “Smile Design.” Their position dictates how they work together and affects the way you look and smile. Only orthodontic treatment can move teeth into the right position. Simply put, when things look right, they probably are right. Learn the basics of smile analysis and design and whether the magic of orthodontics will work for you... Read Article

Adult Orthodontics - Dear Doctor Magazine

Orthodontics for the Older Adult Healthy teeth can be moved at any age, so there's no such thing as “too old” for braces. In fact, nowadays about one out of every five orthodontic patients is an adult. Yet this figure represents only a small portion of adults who could actually benefit from orthodontic treatment... Read Article