Frequently Asked Questions
What are the qualifications of an orthodontist?
An Orthodontist is a licensed dentist who has successfully attended additional three-year courses of Orthodontics. Dr. Zarbi has attended a three-year German course of orthodontics and was certified after passing the German State Exams. Furthermore she was accepted at the European Board of Orthodontics, after passing the required examination.
What is the appropriate age for a child to begin an orthodontic treatment?
The American Board of Orthodontists recommends that all children should be tested by an orthodontist by the age of 7. Even though only a few orthodontic problems need to be corrected at such a young age, an early control allows the orthodontist to offer timely advice and to indicate the appropriate age for the treatment to begin. Apropriate Age
Am I too old to begin an orthodontic treatment?
About 25% of the patients in our practice are adults. Many patients believe that orthodontics is for children whereas permanent teeth in adults cannot be moved. However, when supported adequately by a healthy jaw bone, the teeth can be successfully moved at any age.
What happens if I do not have an orthodontic treatment?
Various problems might arise if a patient decides not to address their orthodontic problems.
- It is difficult to properly brush crowded teeth since some of their surfaces are almost unapproachable, and thus more prone to caries.
- Crowded teeth exercise great forces to the gums. That combined with unsuccessful brushing leads to gingivitis, periodontitis, and possibly bone loss, i.e. the supportive tissue of the teeth, resulting in their premature loss.
- Neglected skeletal problems affect the orderly function of the jaw joint, resulting in a form of arthritis that over time might manifest as pain in the joint in front of the ears, headaches, noise (clicking) when chewing or opening or closing the mouth.
- A neglected orthodontic problem has a detrimental effect on the proportions and symmetry of the face (frontal and side), while negatively affecting the smile. Thus, the self confidence is undoubtedly jeopardized.
How much does a standard orthodontic treatment cost?
The cost of each orthodontic treatment varies depending on the severity of the patient’s problem, the duration and complexity of the treatment. We offer various payment methods to meet the needs of each patient and make orthodontic treatments more affordable.
Will my treatment cause pain/discomfort?
Nowadays orthodontic treatment is much more painless and more acceptable in terms of aesthetics. Modern appliances are smaller and sleeker while the arch wire we use exercises gentle forces to maximize comfort. In general, patients may feel some discomfort for approximately 1-2 days after their first appointment. Light painkillers such as paracetamol (Depon, Panadol) are usually strong enough to relieve the patient as long as there are no known allergies to these medications. After the first two days patients are not expected to feel any pain. If a sudden pain occurs, then something is most probably wrong and a visit to your orthodontist will solve it.
Will my treatment affect my ability to perform sports?
During the treatment, and while wearing any sort of orthodontic appliances, one can enjoy any sports or other activities. We recommend that patients wear a protective splint while participating in excessively active sports during which players might injure each other.
Will my treatment affect my ability to play a musical instrument?
The brackets do not interfere with playing a musical instrument, although you may need a short adjustment period after the appliance of the mechanisms.
The only thing orthodontics does is to improve one's appearance
Orthodontics does indeed improve a patient’s smile; however the main target of a treatment is a successful occlusion. Teeth in abnormal positions will eventually lead to gingivitis and periodontal disease. Ineffective occlusion can cause chewing problems, muscle pain and discomfort in the jaw joint. Successful orthodontic treatment eliminates many of these problems and prevents further damage to the dental and periodontal tissues, whereas in the case of skeletal abnormalities it improves the profile and proportions of the face and restores the proper function of the mouth.
Do I still need to visit my dentist?
Of course. Frequent visits to your dentist to check and clean your teeth are vital during an orthodontic treatment. The frequency of these visits will be determined by your dentist.
How long will my orthodontic treatment last?
The duration of treatment varies depending on the complexity of the orthodontic problem, age, growth stage and tissue response to treatment and the level of cooperation of the patient during treatment. Orthodontic treatment is a team effort in which the family, the dentist, the orthodontist and the patient all play key roles that can affect both the duration of treatment and the quality of the final result. Poor oral health directly affects the treatment duration since gum disease will cause your orthodontist to interrupt a treatment for several weeks until gingivitis has been successfully treated. Generally, the duration of a comprehensive, full orthodontic treatment varies from one to three years.
Can a retentive mechanism correct the position of my teeth?
Retention mechanisms are not designed to move the teeth, but only to retain the teeth in their new positions after completing the active orthodontic treatment.
How long should I keep on using the retentive mechanisms?
After the active phase of your orthodontic treatment your orthodontist will indicate the type of retentive mechanisms appropriate for each case and also the length of the retention phase. If retentive mechanisms are not applied properly, teeth tend to migrate towards their former positions.
Will my teeth remain straight?
Just like all mouth related problems, the success of the treatment depends on a correct diagnosis of the problem, proper application of the required treatment plan, and finally a proper maintenance of the result. The first two points involve the orthodontist. Maintaining the treatment’s final outcome solely concerns the patient. After active treatment the patient is given explicit instructions on how to use the retentive mechanisms. If both the orthodontist and the patient are consistent with the above, the teeth will not “go astray”!
May I be certain that all tools used in my treatment are properly sterilized? Are all the measures taken so that infection transmission is minimized?
Obviously in our office all the tools are sterilized between patients’ appointments. We protect our patients from transmission of diseases using various means such as sterilizing oven, appropriate disinfectants, masks, gloves, etc.
What kind of financial options are there?
Orthodontic treatment is an excellent “investment” in health and the well being of the individual. The cost of each treatment depends on the severity of the problem. Consequently there is no standard fee applicable to all treatments. After an initial study of each problem, the treatment cost is determined, and will not to be unfavorably adjusted during the treatment. The payment method is agreed upon, usually involving a front payment and several installments during the course of the treatment. Our goal is to arrive at a payment schedule that makes the treatment affordable to the patient and/or his family.