There are several different kinds of braces- metal braces or clear braces that are made out of porcelain or a hardened plastic. Both types work in the same way. The braces (also called brackets) are designed to fit each of the individual teeth in your mouth. They have a horizontal slot through them that the orthodontic wire fits into. This wire is what puts the forces on the teeth to move them.
Invisalign® straightens your teeth by using a series of clear, customized, removable appliances called aligners. It’s virtually undetectable, which means most people won’t know that you’re straightening your teeth.
The Invisalign® System uses 3-D computer imaging to manufacture a series of clear aligners, or trays, to move your teeth. Each set of aligners (upper and lower) move your teeth in small increments. You wear each set for two weeks and then move on to the next set. As you replace each aligner with the next, your teeth will gradually move into their final positions until you have the beautiful smile you always wanted. You can take the trays out to eat, brush and floss.
Your first step is to give us a call to set up an exam. At the exam, Dr. Kyger will determine if you are a good candidate for Invisalign® treatment. (Invisalign® does not work for kids and it is not appropriate for every adult) If Dr. Kyger determines you are a good candidate, we will take impressions of your teeth and send them to Invisalign® . Once there, the impressions are scanned into their computer. Dr. Kyger then can view a 3D image of you teeth on his computer and dictate to Invisalign® how he wants your teeth to move at each stage of treatment. Dr. Kyger is a certified Invisalign® Pemiere Provider and is very experienced with the Invisalign® system.
Invisalign® recently came out with a new product line called Invisalign® Teen. These trays work in the same way the regular trays do. For a teen to qualify for treatment, the back molars (called 2nd molars or 12 year molars) must be fully grown in. With Invisalign Teen® you get up to 6 free replacement aligners in case any are lost. Parents are often concerned about compliance with Invisalign Teen® because they can be removed and are not glued on like braces are. Maybe we are just lucky with our patients, but we have yet to have a teen not comply with their treatment.
Early (Phase I) Treatment and Phase II Treatment
When is the best time to think about orthodontics? The American Association of Orthodontists recommendation is that kids be seen for their first orthodontic check up at age 7. The reason for this is that is the age when most kids have their permanent front teeth (incisors) and their first set of adult back teeth (molars) in place. Most of the time, kids don’t need treatment at that age, but Dr. Kyger can identify any potential problems that might be developing and give you an idea of when treatment will be required.
Sometimes Dr. Kyger will recommend treatment while some of the baby teeth are still present. This is often called interceptive, or Phase I treatment. Some of the indications for this early treatment are significant crowding or bite problems (overbites, underbites, and crossbites of the front or back teeth).
These bite problems can cause excessive wear to the teeth, prevent the lower jaw from growing straight, or put the front teeth at increased risk of chipping or being knocked out. Sometimes this Phase I treatment does not include braces on the front teeth, but expanders on the inside of the teeth to correct crowding. When done at the proper time, this type of treatment can often prevent the need for extraction (pulling) of adult teeth later.
Parents will often ask if they get Phase I treatment will that prevent the need for Phase II treatment? Most kids that get Phase I treatment will require Phase II treatment after all the adult teeth grow in. The advantages of doing Phase I treatment to correct the bite or crowding before the adult teeth grow in is that the teeth will grow in closer to their correct positions and that decreases the amount of time in Phase II. (Less time in full braces!)
Braces aren’t just for kids anymore. One of the first things people notice when they first meet someone is their smile. Generally speaking, teeth can be straightened at any age if you have health gum tissue and bone support around the teeth. Having straight teeth not only improves the health of your teeth and gums, but it can do wonders for your appearance and self esteem.
There are a number of options for treatment that include traditional (metal) braces, clear braces, or Invisalign®. The latest techniques we use reduce treatment time, discomfort levels, and the frequency of visits. Often times you will only need to come in for checkups every 8 weeks. We appreciate that you and your families probably have pretty hectic schedules, so we want to impact your schedule as little as possible.
Adult treatment can sometimes be more complicated than treating kids. Life happens! As we get a few decades under our belt, there may be excessive wear on some teeth, missing teeth, or bone loss around some teeth. In these situations, Dr. Kyger will work closely with your general dentist to make sure that you not only have a beautiful smile, but that the teeth are placed precisely where your dentist needs them for future dental work.
When we remove your braces, the retention stage of your treatment begins. Your final orthodontic result depends on your retainers, so follow through with the hard work you’ve put in so far. Remember to remove your retainer before brushing, and brush your retainer before placing it back in your mouth. If your retainer breaks at any time, please do not adjust it yourself. Call us to schedule an appointment. Oftentimes we will recommend that patients get a fixed retainer on their lower teeth. Fixed (Bonded) retainers are cemented directly to the inside surface of your lower canines (eye teeth). This is one of the best ways to prevent your lower teeth from shifting as it is permanently attached!
Corrective jaw surgery (orthognathic surgery) treats and corrects abnormalities of the facial bones, specifically the jaws and the teeth. Often, these abnormalities cause difficulty with chewing, talking, sleeping and other routine activities. Orthognathic surgery is done by an oral surgeon and, in conjunction with orthodontic treatment, will improve the overall appearance of the face.
State-of-the-art materials such as titanium plates and miniature screws provide stability, strength and predictability to your treatment. These advances in technology, procedures and equipment reduce post-surgical recovery time, thus allowing patients to return to their normal routines soon after the surgery.
Orthognathic surgery may be unnecessary if orthodontic treatment can correct the problem. With the latest advances in orthodontics, this is sometimes the case. We will determine if orthognathic surgery is the correct treatment option for you.