Bedont Orthodontics: Your Journey In Braces
 

Braces: Your Journey
To An Amazing Smile

First Appointment
 

We are always excited about meeting new patients during their first visit to our office. Your initial complimentary appointment will consist of a thorough examination and a discussion of potential treatment options. This allows you to become educated as to your orthodontic situation and feel comfortable with your decision for care. Prior to your visit we ask that you complete the Patient Information and Health Form which will be mailed to you or can be downloaded from our website (download Patient Forms). Bring this form with you to your visit, as well as your insurance information.

 

At your first visit to our office you will be greeted and given a tour of our office. We will then take complimentary preliminary records which include a panoramic x-ray as well as photos of the face and teeth.  Our Treatment Coordinator will discuss any preliminary concerns. Then Dr. Bedont will conduct an extensive orthodontic examination and discuss the results of his findings. He will also discuss the treatment options and make a recommendation for care. 

 

After you have a complete understanding of the treatment possibilities, our Treatment Coordinator will then review the fees for treatment and discuss our flexible payment options. She will also discuss the policies and procedures of our office.  We know your time is valuable, so if Dr. Bedont feels treatment is ready to begin, a cephalometric x-ray and impressions for study models can be taken at the same appointment for your convenience to avoid a second records visit. Separators will also be placed if necessary. 

How much time should you allow for each appointment?

   

  • Initial Examination: 60 minutes

  • Records, including radiographs and impressions: 30 minutes

  • Placement of braces: 90 minutes

  • Periodic Adjustments: 20-30 minutes

 

Download New Patient Information Form Here

 
Placement of Braces

At Bedont Orthodontics, one of our primary goals is to design our treatment methods so that your orthodontic care is initiated, carried out and finished as efficiently, comfortably and effectively as possible. Our goal is to make the most of your time during each visit, and to minimize your discomfort. One system that sets us apart from other orthodontic offices is our use of the "Indirect Bonding" method to affix braces to our patient’s teeth. Indirect bonding is a technique which allows us to place all the brackets on the teeth at the same time, instead of one-by-one. This benefits the patient as it improves patient comfort, improves the accuracy of bracket placement, and reduces overall treatment time. 

 

Indirect bonding is typically more accurate than traditional bracket placement because the brackets are placed on your specific lab model by Dr. Bedont who can rotate the model 360 degrees as needed to visualize every angle and detail. He meticulously positions each bracket precisely where it should go on each tooth. With precise placement of each bracket, it allows for us to start in the right direction from day one, moving teeth more accurately, and causing for a smoother and quicker journey through your orthodontic treatment.

 

One of our highly trained Orthodontic Assistants will assist Dr. Bedont with the placement of your braces and answer all your questions and walk you through the entire process from beginning to end. On the day your braces are placed, you can be sure that every detail has been considered, including bracket positioning, bracket prescription, bracket type, and wire selection.

 

The adhesive used for attaching the braces to your teeth cures rapidly initially, but takes 24-hours to completely cure. You can eat anytime after leaving our office. However, we ask that you be mindful of the suggested list of foods that may be harmful to the braces. Until you become accustomed to eating with your new braces, you may find it beneficial to follow a diet consisting of soft foods.

 
First Days In Braces

First of all, congratulations! You have officially begun the path towards your healthiest, most beautiful smile. The first few days after braces are placed will be your biggest adjustment period.

 

The day that you get your braces on, you will probably just notice the odd feeling of having something taking up more room in your mouth. The second and third days of wearing braces are usually your greatest adjustment days and when you might experience some soreness, if you are to experience any at all. After the third day, braces should seem to become a normal part of your life!

 

Initially the braces feel like they "stick out". This is normal. As you become accustomed to your braces and your tooth alignment improves, this sensation will disappear and will cease to be a concern. Although the brackets have been rounded and smoothed, until the cheek tissues have "toughened", you may find it helpful to use a small piece of dental wax around the bracket that is creating the irritation. 

 

Your bite will feel different as the teeth move. If you have lower braces, you may also have “bite bumps” or “bite turbos”, little braces or bonding buttons on the inside or on the biting surfaces of some teeth. These are designed to prevent you from biting hard against your braces and may take 3-5 days to feel “normal”.

Keeping You Comfortable

One of the most common questions we get asked about braces is whether placing them causes any pain or discomfort. Some patients report that they feel no pain or discomfort, but minor tenderness and sensitivity is completely normal. 

 

We use only the highest grade appliances and wires that exert very light force, however, there may will be mild soreness or discomfort after the orthodontic wire is engaged into the newly placed brackets. To ensure the most comfortable experience, we provide complimentary Cold Laser Therapy or Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) treatment for our patients. Cold Laser Therapy is a safe, natural, therapeutic treatment that utilizes specific wavelengths of light to interact with tissue to promote comfort and help accelerate the healing process. Often used in sports medicine for tissue repair and relief from pain and inflammation, this is a device that uses low levels of light to stimulate healing. During the treatment, you’ll feel the device against your skin, but it creates no heat, sound, or vibration, and it takes only a few minutes.  

Non-prescription pain remedies commonly taken for other discomforts such as headaches can be effective for some patients. For maximum effectiveness, it may be best to take such medications before the discomfort begins.

 

We also recommend AcceleDent for comfort management, which also speeds up treatment time. Available at Bedont Orthodontics for home use, AcceleDent works by producing gentle SoftPulse Technology® micropulses. It is used for 20 minutes daily at home during orthodontic treatment, along with your fixed braces or clear aligners. The lightweight, easy-to-use device has been clinically shown to accelerate orthodontic treatment by up to 50% and to decrease the discomfort associated with treatment. Ask any staff member for more information.

 

Before leaving the office, there are routine steps which we ask you complete prior to leaving. These steps will minimize discomfort related to irritation from the braces and ensure an optimal response to treatment.

Please make these steps a part of each office visit:
  • Using your finger and tongue, check to see that the wire ends do not extend into areas which might poke or abrade the cheek or tongue.

  • Make sure you understand what you are to do until your next appointment. This could include wearing headgear or elastics as instructed, adjusting an expander or following specific hygiene and diet instructions.

  • Make sure you have an adequate supply of dental wax, special cleaning aids, elastic bands, or other related materials you may need between appointments.

  • Always schedule your next appointment before leaving the office. Waiting 1-2 weeks after an appointment before scheduling your next office visit complicates the scheduling process, since appointments are programmed 4-8 weeks in advance. Postponing appointments is a common contributor to overall treatment time taking longer than anticipated.

 
Eating

The adhesive used for attaching the braces to your teeth dries on the outside quite quickly, but will take 24 hours to fully set. You can eat any time after leaving our office; however, we ask that you pay attention to the information we reviewed together and gave you in your start-up kit. There are very few diet restrictions that come with orthodontic treatment, but it is important that they be followed carefully. Hard foods like nuts and French bread, sticky candies, and ice cubes have the potential to damage your orthodontic appliances. Not only can the braces themselves be damaged by eating certain foods, but any lingering food debris can lead to discoloration and tooth decay. Patients who eat the wrong foods, damage their braces, or harm their teeth will increase the amount of time that it takes to finish their treatment.

 
Home Care and Hygiene

"I feel that a patient's health, specifically their dental health, is paramount in orthodontic treatment. I have a responsibility to ensure that orthodontic treatment will not harm the overall dental health of the patient. In return, each patient has a responsibility during orthodontic treatment to maintain meticulous care of their teeth through excellent dental hygiene and a proper diet." - Dr. Bedont 

 

Brushing

With braces in place, it's more important than ever to brush and floss regularly to maintain a good oral hygiene regimen throughout the length of your treatment. You will notice that it is much harder to keep your teeth clean with braces. Food becomes caught in the brackets and between your teeth and can only be removed by brushing and flossing. If plaque remains on the teeth for any length of time, it can leave a permanent white scar on the surface (decalcifications). Brushing after meals should become part of your daily schedule. Use a soft toothbrush and brush at a 45-degree angle to the tooth in small circles above and below the brackets. Your toothbrush will wear out faster because of your appliances, so be sure to replace it whenever the bristles start to fray.

 

A Waterpik can be a useful addition to remove large food debris from the braces, but it alone cannot remove the sticky plaque that adheres to the teeth. An electric toothbrush such as a Sonicare can be used to help remove plaque. Flossing is important with braces and is accomplished using reusable floss threaders.

 

Eating Habits

With braces in place, it's more important than ever to brush and floss regularly to maintain a good oral hygiene regimen throughout the length of your treatment. You will notice that it is much harder to keep your teeth clean with braces. Food becomes caught in the brackets and between your teeth and can only be removed by brushing and flossing. If plaque remains on the teeth for any length of time, it can leave a permanent white scar on the surface (decalcifications). Brushing after meals should become part of your daily schedule. Use a soft toothbrush and brush at a 45-degree angle to the tooth in small circles above and below the brackets. Your toothbrush will wear out faster because of your appliances, so be sure to replace it whenever the bristles start to fray.

 

Braces

Check your braces frequently (at least once a week) for anything loose or bent. If a bracket or band comes loose or you break a wire, please call our office so we can arrange an appointment long enough to repair it.

 

Sore Teeth

After braces are placed in the mouth, it is normal for the teeth to be sore for about 2 to 3 days. Tylenol or Advil/Motrin will help relieve this discomfort. We also have a drug-free option that provides oral comfort as well as speeds treatment time. Ask us about AcceleDent.

Some irritation to the cheeks and tongue is normal, particularly during the first few weeks as they toughen and become accustomed to the surface of the braces; but if you feel anything sharp is poking you, please call our office. You can put wax on the braces to help lessen any irritation.

   

Loosening Teeth

This is to be expected throughout treatment. Don't worry! It's normal. Teeth must loosen first so they can be moved. The teeth will again become rigidly fixed in their new - corrected - positions.

 
Emergencies

There are very few true orthodontic emergencies, but be assured we are here to help. Most problems can be remedied at home. Here are some ways to address common issues. If the issue cannot be resolved at home, please call us and we will work hard to fit you in for a repair appointment.

Loose or Poking Archwires

If a wire causes irritation, push the wire away from the area using the eraser end of a pencil or a Q-tip. If the wire cannot be tucked away, cover the end of the wire with a small piece of wax or a cotton ball until you can see us for an adjustment.

 

If the main wire has come out of the tube on the back tooth, attempt to reinsert the wire with a pair of needle-nose pliers or tweezers. If the wire is not sticking you, place a piece of wax over the area. As a last resort, if you cannot come into our office, the wire can be cut with a small wire cutter or fingernail clipper close to the back of the last bracket.

 

Loose Brackets or Bands

If a bracket becomes loose, it usually remains connected to the main wire by a little colored rubber ring or a small steel ligature tie. Tweezers can be used to reposition the bracket if it flips around the wire and becomes a source of irritation. Call our office and inform us of the problem. If a piece of your braces breaks, save the piece and call our office to schedule a repair visit.

 

Lost Separators

If a rubber spacer or separator falls out, call our office so we can arrange to replace it. If it happens a day before your appointment to put on braces or bands, it may not need to be replaced.

 

If You Swallow Something

Remain calm if you swallow a piece of your appliance. It will usually go into the stomach and pass later. However, if you experience difficulty breathing, you should seek immediate medical attention. X-rays will be taken to determine the location of the swallowed piece.

 

Broken Retainer

If a retainer cracks or breaks, remove the retainer from your mouth and bring all the pieces to our office for professional repair

 

Sore Teeth or Sore Gums

We recommend AcceleDent, a drug-free small, oral home device to address discomfort. Used 20-minutes every day it is reported to make treatments more comfortable and it is clinically proven to accelerate treatment time by up to 50%. Otherwise, take ibuprofen (Motrin/Advil) or acetaminophen (Tylenol) if your teeth are sore after your appointment. PLEASE CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN BEFORE TAKING ANY MEDICATIONS, PARTICULARLY IF YOU HAVE ANY HISTORY OF ALLERGIC REACTIONS.

 

Rinsing your mouth with a cup of warm water and half a teaspoon of salt can also be soothing. If your teeth get sore suddenly in the middle between treatment visits, give us a call. It is unusual for teeth to get sore several weeks after your last office visit.

 

If food becomes stuck between your teeth, use dental floss or a proxy brush to dislodge the food. If you cut your gums, tongue, or the inside of your cheek, apply finger pressure to the bleeding site for several minutes. If the bleeding doesn't stop, call our office or your family dentist.

 

Minor irritations and canker sores are common during the first few weeks in braces as the lips and cheeks get use to the new hardware. It will heal much more quickly if you place wax at the source of irritation. You can also apply Zylactin or Orabase according to the manufacturer's directions. You can purchase these products over the counter at most pharmacies and convenience stores.

 
About Retainers

Here at Bedont Orthodontics, our team looks at orthodontics as an investment in your smile. We want to help you protect that investment! The fact is, your teeth will move throughout your whole life whether you had braces or not. Now that we have your teeth in the position that we want them, it is important to wear your retainer as prescribed to insure that your investment is protected.

 

Most patients in our practice will receive clear retainers and will be instructed to wear them all the time for the first month, except when eating or brushing your teeth. The retainer should also be removed when participating in sports that require a mouthguard or while swimming. Whenever you take out your retainers, please place them in the case provided and place it in your pocket.

 

After the first month, we will usually have you go to night-time wear of your retainers. You will need to wear your retainer for as long as it takes for your teeth to settle into a better occlusion (bite) and for your bones, gums and muscles to stabilize and adapt to your new dental arrangement. While we strive to obtain stable orthodontic results, there are a small percentage of patients that will experience relapse after retainer use is discontinued, even after several years of prescribed wear. Therefore, we recommend indefinite night-time wear of your retainers to ensure stability of alignment in all teeth.

 

If your retainer breaks, stop wearing it and call the office as soon as possible so that your retainer can be repaired or replaced. Your final orthodontic result depends on your retainers, so follow through with the hard work you have put in so far.

 

Things to Remember About Your Removable Retainer

  • Don't fold it in your napkin or leave it on the table at a restaurant. Garbage cans don't make happy hunting grounds. A good adage is, "If you place your retainer on your lunch tray, it will likely get thrown away!"

  • Don't put your retainer in your pocket unless it is in its case. You might sit on it and break it. OUCH!

  • Take your retainer out when swimming. If it falls out, you may not be able to find it.

  • Animals and younger children love to play with it. Please make sure your retainer is either in your mouth or in its case at all times.

  • You may have a lower bonded retainer. It is not considered permanent and can be broken or detached from your teeth if you are not careful with it.

  • Bring your retainers to your check-up appointment. If anything happens to your retainers (i.e. it doesn't fit, it's broken, or it's lost) please call us ASAP. If your lower bonded retainer wire breaks, becomes loose, or comes out, keep it and bring it to your next appointment for rebonding.

  • The first two sets of retainers are included in your treatment fee. Any repair to or replacement of your retainer, or rebonding of your lower retainer will result in an additional charge.

  • Retainer replacement is expensive... with proper care they will last for years!

  • Keep retainers away from hot water, hot car dashboards, pockets, the washing machine, and napkins.

  • Keep them clean! Be sure to brush your teeth without your retainers in. Brush your retainer with a toothbrush using toothpaste or water to keep them clean.

 

Bonded Retainer

We also offer a bonded retainer in addition to the clear removable retainers. Also called a fixed or permanent retainer, a bonded retainer is a thin wire attached with dental glue to the back of the teeth in the same way the braces are attached to the front of the teeth. Lower bonded retainers are more frequently used than upper bonded retainers due to problems with bite clearance, because the bottom teeth may hit the upper retainer when you bite down. Even if you choose to have a bonded retainer placed, you still need to wear the removable retainers as directed to keep the other teeth from moving.

 

There are pros and cons to having a bonded retainer:

Pros

  • Bonded retainers help keep the lower front teeth straight. These teeth are the most common teeth to shift and become more crowded throughout life. 

  • Bonded retainers are not visible when you smile or speak and they do not impair your speech.

  • Unlike removable retainers, they are difficult to lose, and you will never forget to wear them.

Cons

  •  Bonded retainers do require special cleaning because plaque and tartar buildup is more common around a retainer. If proper cleaning is not done, cavities or gum disease may occur.

  • Care must be taken when eating certain foods. It is possible that the retainer can come off one or more teeth without you knowing, which can allow the teeth to shift.

  • A bonded retainer require periodic monitoring by your general dentist or our office, and at some point it may require repair.

   

Remain calm if you swallow a piece of your appliance. It will usually go into the stomach and pass later. However, if you experience difficulty breathing, you should seek immediate medical attention. X-rays will be taken to determine the location of the swallowed piece.

 

Broken Retainer

If a retainer cracks or breaks, remove the retainer from your mouth and bring all the pieces to our office for professional repair.

 
Changes After Treatment

Teeth have a tendency to change their positions after treatment, and throughout life. The more pronounced the misalignment of the teeth or depth of the bite, the more likely it is that your teeth or bite will want to shift "relapse" somewhat toward their original position. The lower front teeth have the greatest tendency to relapse. In some instances, we overcorrect some teeth in anticipation of movement after the retention period. However, some relapse may occur despite our best efforts and your conscientious cooperation in wearing the prescribed elastics, headgear and retainers.

 

Throughout life, the bite can change adversely due to the eruption of wisdom teeth, mouth breathing and other oral habits. Adverse bone growth, the normal aging process and other maturational changes that take place later in life are beyond our control, but long-term wear of your retainer can help reduce these potential effects.

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Gresham

503.665.1115

Vancouver

360.335.3232

Sandy

503.668.4333