Go ahead. Ask us anything.
You’re bound to have questions as you consider orthodontic treatment. We’re here to help. Here are some of the more common questions we get from our patients. Of course, if you don’t see yours listed here, please call us at 1-888-333-3757 or send us a note.
Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry that specializes in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dental and facial irregularities.
An orthodontist is a specialist who has completed an advanced education program following dental school to learn the special skills required to manage tooth movement and guide facial development.
McCormick Orthodontics has three convenient locations to serve you. For maps, directions and contact information, or to schedule a free initial exam, see our Contact page
- More attractive smile
- Improved self-esteem during critical development years
- Better functioning teeth
- Possible increased self-confidence
- Increased ability to clean the teeth
- Improved force distribution and wear patterns of the teeth
- Better long-term health of teeth and gums
- Guide permanent teeth into more favorable positions
- Reduce the risk of injury to protruded front teeth
- Help optimizing other dental treatment
While you or your child’s teeth might appear straight, an evaluation can sometimes uncover problems that can be corrected with proper orthodontic treatment. If you recognize any of the following issues, please call us to schedule a check-up. It may be one of the most important actions you can take to ensure a healthy, happy smile.
- Upper front teeth protrude excessively over the lower teeth, or are bucked
- Upper front teeth cover the majority of the lower teeth when biting together (deep bite)
- Upper front teeth are behind or inside the lower front teeth (underbite)
- The upper and lower front teeth do not touch when biting together (open bite)
- Crowded or overlapped teeth
- The center of the upper and lower teeth do not line up
- Finger or thumb sucking habits that continue past six or seven years of age
- Difficulty chewing
- Teeth wearing unevenly or excessively
- The lower jaw shifts to one side or the other when biting together
- Spaces between the teeth
It’s never too late, or too early, to begin orthodontic treatment. We’ve examined children as young as three and have successfully treated patients in their seventies. Of course, while orthodontic treatment can be started at any age, many orthodontic problems are easier to correct if detected early, before jaw growth has slowed. Early treatment can help patients avoid surgery and more serious complications.
The ideal age, and the age recommended by The American Association of Orthodontists, is normally seven. If we detect problems, treatment can begin even earlier.
By the age of seven, the permanent teeth are beginning to come in and the upper jaw has grown to just about its maximum width. This is early enough to assess the jaw and teeth structure and begin to plan any interventions that will prevent extractions, surgeries and tooth loss.
At this age, we can use a number of orthopedic appliances to help the jaw bones attain their correct width and length, provide enough room for the permanent teeth so they don’t come in on top of each other and interfere with tooth development.
Dr. Michaela McCormick explains the importance of early orthodontic evaluation
The actual cost of treatment depends on the nature of the orthodontic problems, the length of treatment, the type of appliances you require, and the type of braces you choose.
We offer several payment plans to suit your budget, including no-down-payment and interest-free options. Learn more about fees and insurance here.
Phase I, or early interceptive treatment, refers to limited orthodontic treatment (i.e. expander or partial braces) before all permanent teeth have come in. Such treatment can occur between the ages of six and ten. Phase I treatment is sometimes recommended to make more space for developing teeth, or to correct crossbites, overbites, underbites, or harmful oral habits.
Phase II treatment is also called comprehensive treatment because it involves full braces when all permanent teeth have come in, usually between the ages of eleven and thirteen.
Of course! Everyone wants a healthy, beautiful smile. Orthodontic treatment can be successful at any age. In fact, 20-25% of orthodontic patients today are adults.
Braces use steady, gentle pressure to gradually move teeth into their proper positions. We place brackets on your teeth and connect them with an archwire. As this archwire tries to return to its original shape, it applies pressure to move your teeth into alignment.
Treatment times vary, but on average treatment takes one to two years. Actual time can be affected by rate of growth, amount of correction, and your compliance to treatment. Maintaining good oral hygiene and keeping regular appointments are also important factors that can keep your treatment on schedule.
Placing bands and brackets on your teeth doesn’t hurt. Once your braces are in place, however, your teeth may feel sore for one to four days. Your lips and cheeks may also need a week or two to get used to the braces. Find tips for managing pain and other issues here.
Not at all. However, we do recommend you protect your smile by wearing a mouth guard when participating in any sporting activity. Mouth guards are inexpensive, comfortable, and come in a variety of colors and patterns. We even offer them free of charge. Just ask!
No, though there may be an initial period of adjustment. Brace covers can help prevent discomfort while you play.
Yes. Continue to see your general dentist every six months for regular cleanings and dental checkups.
Still have questions?
Need help? Didn’t find what you were looking for? Please send us your questions and comments using the form on the contact page and we will get back to you with an answer.