Somehow the years have flown by and we already have TWO kids in the braces stage! I feel like I was just going through all of that myself and yet here we are! A lot of you seem to be in the same boat too! As much as it can be a hard + stressful stage, we have loved working with Dr. Elison and his team! They are always so friendly and willing to answer alllll the questions we ever have. When we shared about our appointments over on Instagram you had so many questions too, so we reached out to Dr. Elison and he took the time to answer them all for you!! From why we chose him + his team to the ins and outs of braces, we’ve covered it all below!
:: WHAT MADE YOU CHOOSE DR. ELISON AND HIS TEAM? (this first one was for me of course, not Dr. Elison)
Joe and I are a little crazy when it comes to things like this. We do a TON of research before committing. When we knew we were about ready to get the kids started on braces, I asked for all of your suggestions over on Instagram. We got probably 20 different ones. Once we narrowed it down to the ones closest to our area, we started asking around for friends opinions. We even went in, and had consultations with more than one office.
I can’t even begin to tell you how impressed we were with Dr. Elison and his whole office. He took the time to explain everything in a way we could all understand, and answered so many of our questions. And don’t get me started on his other employees. First of all they are so kind and welcoming. Sometimes when you come in to an office like that with a herd of 5 kids (2 of them toddlers) you can feel that you are a disturbance or a bother. We NEVER felt that with them. They always go out of their way to help me out with anything. In addition to that, they do such a great job of making sure your kids who are going through these crazy changes and pain of braces fully understand what is going on and feel like they understand and can ask questions.
I suggest really looking into the office and all of the employees, not just the orthodontist, when making your choice. This isn’t a one time thing, you are going to in there every 6 weeks, so you want it to be a place you really feel comfortable with how you are treated as well as their skills and professionalism. You will hands down get that from Dr. Elison!!
:: WHAT AGE SHOULD YOU START BRINGING YOUR KIDS IN TO CONSIDER BRACES? WHY HAS THE RECOMMENDATION CHANGED TO DOING BRACES IN 2 PHASES? IS IT BETTER TO START OUT YOUNGER?
When most people think of orthodontics, they think of teenagers. And the fact is, most orthodontic treatment begins between the ages of 9 and 14, however, by age 7, most children have a mix of adult and baby teeth. Orthodontists can spot subtle problems with the jaw growth and emerging teeth while some baby teeth are still present. That’s important because some orthodontic problems are easier to correct if they are found early. For these reasons, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that your child get an orthodontic check- up no later than age 7. While your child’s teeth may appear to be straight, there could be a problem that only an orthodontist can detect.
Even if a problem is detected, your orthodontist may not recommend immediate treatment. Chances are, I will take a “wait-and–see” approach, checking on your child from time to time as the permanent teeth come in and the jaws and face continue to grow. For each patient who needs treatment, there is an ideal time for treatment to begin in order to achieve the best results.
Sometimes a problem might be found that can benefit from early treatment. Early treatment may prevent more serious problem from developing, and it may make treatment at a later age shorter and less complicated. Typically, early treatment involves guiding the growth of young bones and creating a better environment for the adult teeth as they emerge. In some cases, we are able to achieve results that wouldn’t be possible once the face and jaws have finished growing. Early treatment gives us the chance to guide jaw growth, lower the risk of trauma to protruded teeth, correct harmful oral habits, improve appearance and self-esteem, guide permanent teeth into a more favorable position, and improve the way the lips meet.
:: What happens when you start braces early and then wisdom teeth arrive?
A common belief is that wisdom teeth cause crowding of the front teeth, but many studies have shown this is not the case. However, most people do need to have their wisdom teeth removed because there simply is not room for them to erupt. After each case is completed we do x-rays and evaluate the state of the wisdom teeth and make a plan with the patient as to what should be done. If necessary, we will then refer them to an oral surgeon.
:: Would you recommend braces or Invisalign as an adult? I had braces when I
was younger but my teeth have shifted.
Invisalign is great for cases that aren’t really complicated. For someone who has issues with their bite or crowding braces would more than likely be a better choice. Sounds like in this case, where the patient already went through braces and then has experienced some shifting, Invisalign would be just as good of an option as
:: BEFORE’S ::
:: Do you recommend getting a permanent retainer or not? Are there positives
and negatives to having one.
After orthodontic treatment is completed retainers are necessary to keep the teeth from shifting. I prefer to use retainers that are bonded to the back of the teeth. The great benefit of this is that they cannot be taken out and lost or forgotten about. Cleaning the teeth is a little harder but by using a floss threader cleaning between the teeth is not difficult. However, in certain cases, if hygiene is an issue, I will do a removable retainer instead.
:: How much does a round of braces typically cost?
The cost of braces depends on what the treatment is. Orthodontics costs about $2,000-$5,000. We do initial exams at no cost to the patient so it is easy to come in to our office and find out exactly what your individual case would entail.
:: Are bottom braces really necessary? Or is it just extra as more of a cosmetic
Yes, bottom braces are usually a necessary part of orthodontic treatment. As the teeth are moved, it is important that we are able to use both the top and lower arches to align the bite.
:: Why are braces better than invisalign for kids?
There are always exceptions, but for the most part braces are better for children because we are correcting not only crowding but in most case we are also correcting their bite. Invisalign is great for cases with minimal crowding, but doesn’t allow us to correct problems with the bite. And honestly, Invisalign requires a lot of compliance, which isn’t always easy for kids.
:: Do you offer any kind of family (multi-kid) discount?
Yes!! Each additional child in a family that is brought in to our office for treatment receives a discount.
:: My daughter just got braces a few months ago, and we are now moving out of
state. Can we continue with our current set with a new orthodontist, or are we
going to have to start completely over?
Great question. We have patients transfer in from other areas and we also have patients that move. A lot of orthodontists will accept patients who are already in treatment. I do, because I know that I would want my patients who move out of state to be able to continue their treatment. As far as continuing on with the braces that are already in place, for me, that depends on the individual case. If everything seems to be going well and I like the braces that they have on then I just pick up and continue on with their treatment. However, sometimes I will see patients that I don’t like what is happening with their previous treatment .
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Hopefully this helps answer your orthodontist questions! I know from experience making all the decisions regarding braces can be overwhelming, and we have been so grateful to Dr. Elison and his sweet team for not only being so knowledgeable, but always taking the time to explain things not only to me but to my kids so they understand the whole process and feel included in the changes. If you have any other questions, please leave them here and we will add it to the post!